Friday night, I couldn't sleep so I got up to fret a bit. Now, when I fret, I do things, so I went down to the basement to start a load of laundry and came back upstairs.
I. FORGOT. TO. CLOSE. THE. STUPID. BASEMENT. DOOR.
Saturday morning, I was awakened by Tim. "Well, that damn cat is down in the basement again. You left the door open."
I covered my head with the pillow.
The last time Houdini got himself into the basement, he didn't come up. After three weeks, we actually had to try to catch him. Eventually he bolted up the stairs and we came up after him and shut the door to the basement. It was traumatic for him and I felt awful about it, but he would have happily stayed down there forever.
I got up and went downstairs. "Well, we're not chasing him up again. He just started to settle down and to get playful. He knows where his food is and if he wants fed, he's going to have to come upstairs. If he doesn't come up to eat today, I feel bad about it, but we're shutting him downstairs over night. He needs to come up while we are here so that we can shut that basement door."
While we were out shopping for the sofa, the basement door was kept closed. When we got home, William saw the closed door and was outraged. "We can't close that door! Houdini is in the basement! He'll be trapped down there! Do you think he's going to knock on the door when he wants us to open it?!!!" He was in a state as he opened the door.
I explained what we were trying to do. William thought it was mean. I said that I thought it was a lot less mean than chasing him around the basement.
Here's the interesting thing. Houdini came strolling out of the basement, cool as a cucumber. He walked over to get some food. William simply shut the door. Unperturbed, Houdini continued to eat.
Not wanting to frighten him, William left him be and headed upstairs to call his Uncle Dylan.
Here's the best part. When Houdini was finished eating, he walked out of the kitchen and into the hall. He walked to the back of the house. He walked back through to the front, looking around (maybe trying to find William?) He curled up on the rug and watched us through the french doors. Tim talked to him.
William finished talking to his Uncle Dylan and came downstairs. He played with Houdini for a while. Houdini played right back.
I got up and went out to the kitchen and gave him his nightly helping of canned catfood, heated up in the microwave. He purred and purred and stretched out his head for a scritch under his chin.
If I didn't know better, I'd say he missed us. Or William, anyway.