Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Adventures with Ashbutt - and toilets
You may recall that Ashbutt, our 'new' farm kitten, has fallen in love with little plastic-coated springs. Here he is with one, shortly after we brought him home.
He's now much larger (bigger than our 5-year-old adult female cat), but still utterly kittenish at 5 months of age. He carries his springs around, and 'fetches' them when thrown so that we can toss them for him again. I'd say his Maine Coon ancestry is pretty much confirmed by this point.
Anyway, on Friday I noticed he was jumping up on the toilet seat to purr at me as I stood at the sink, performing my morning ablutions, holding his spring in his mouth in an obvious invitation to play. Being otherwise engaged, I didn't think any more of it. Later that morning, I used the toilet for its intended purpose . . . but it clogged solid, more so than it's ever done since we moved in here. Baffled, I tried the usual remedies, but to no avail. It was Miss D. who asked, eyes wide, "Do you suppose Ashbutt might have dropped his spring into the toilet?" We looked at each other and winced, simultaneously!
I went to the hardware store and bought a big, heavy-duty rotary rooter (this model, if you're interested). It was expensive, so I asked the clerk with a sigh whether it was worth the money. He merely grinned and said, "What's an unclogged toilet worth to you?" Sold!!! I also bought a couple of packets of clog remover, 'guaranteed' to get rid of 'organic matter'. (Note to self: those things are cheaper on Amazon.com than they are from the hardware store. I should have bought them in advance, 'just in case', rather than pay emergency prices!)
The clog remover didn't do much, even after being left overnight, so it was hi-ho for the rooter. That cleared the block in short order - and retrieved the remains of the spring, too, tangled up in the wire ball at the end of it. (Miss D. asked me, somewhat irreverently, what color it was. I told her I hadn't felt inclined to check, its odoriferous condition being a strong deterrent!) Another packet of the clog remover helped to clean out the last of the detritus from the pipes, and a mopping with a strong bleach solution took care of the splashes on the bathroom floor.
Meanwhile, of course, Ashbutt was absolutely entranced by this new game, and the new toy I'd brought home for him. "But, Daddy! There's a wire ball on the end of a three-foot coiled wire shaft, and it twangs when I bat at it! More! More!" Then he went to fetch another spring . . .
Tell me again why we like cats???
(P.S.: Our toilet seats are now left with the lid down . . . just in case.)
(P.P.S.: Due to reader demand, I've created a category called 'Ashbutt', and updated my posts since October to use it where appropriate. Click on it, either here or in the sidebar, and it'll bring up all blog entries mentioning our farm kitten.)