The Lakeland & District Cat Club had their show in Kendal on Saturday, and we took Breckin, Xaria and Ali this year. Last year at that show, Tármus and Xaria both made up to Premier, and both that hall in particular, and Kendal in general, are lovely locations for a show, so we were hoping for an enjoyable day. This year, Xaria was looking for her first Imperial, and Breckin and Ali for Grands (Challenge and Mastercat).
As usual, we had packed the show case a few nights beforehand, so that we didn’t have a mad rush on the morning of the show. On Friday night, we also shut the three who were attending in the front hallway (with ‘facilities’), so that we knew we could find them in the morning. We had offered to take Xaria’s brother, Xander, in our car again, since he seems to do better when he’s travelled next to her, and this was to be his third (and qualifying) Grand, if he behaved well enough to win it. She was also glad to have one less basket to take, since she was also taking her stud boy, Teddy, one of her girls, Sophie (Xaria’s Grandmother), and one of her most recent litter of kittens, little Zach.
We had arranged to be at Elisabeth’s for 6am, so left the house about 5:15am, and had a good clear run through to Glasgow. We arrived a bit before 6am, and just in time to have a cup of tea! A good run South saw us arrive at the show hall just after 8am, which meant we were early enough to sail straight through vetting in: half an hour later, and there was a sizeable queue.
Breckin was a bit unsure to start with, because this is the first show we’ve had her at where we’ve not had Kia, Monty or one of the Tiffs to pop in the pen with her for the first half hour to help her settle. Margaret Rodger did say to me later, though, that she was absolutely fine when she was being judged (and that she’s gorgeous!), which is good to know! Ali was penned next to the gorgeous Agacat, owned by Steven & Stuart (Esanes Bengals, Pixiebobs & Maine Coons), who had taken Best Household Pet at the Nor’East a few weeks ago. We fully expected Aga to win, but losing is never a problem when you’re been beaten by something as gorgeous as him. As it happens, we were both beaten for the Grand Mastercat certificate by a ginger that we don’t know. Personally, I still think Aga should have got it!
The Sports Centre where the show takes place has a nice cafe upstairs, but it isn’t big enough to cope with the influx of exhibitors when the show ‘chucks out’, so we got up there just before 10am, to ensure we got seats (and bacon & sausage rolls!). We had managed to secure one of the window seats, which meant that I could watch Xander being judged (and Xaria, after that). Thankfully, Xander behaved impeccably, which meant that Elisabeth was able to come down from her panic station and actually enjoy the rest of the day! Xaria behaved beautifully, as always.
We then took advantage of our seats to mark up show catalogues, and also have another round of tea/coffee. By the time we finally went back down into the hall, Xander and Xaria’s results were up, and we were delighted to see that both had won their certificates. In fact, I checked Xander’s result first, and was so excited to see that he had won his Grand, that I forgot to check if Xazzle had won her Imperial! Elisabeth had been sidetracked by another of our friends, whose two Abyssinian boys had ‘done the double’ again, winning both the Imperial Grand Challenge and Imperial Grand Premier certificates. That meant I got to ‘break the news’ of Xander’s result to Elisabeth, which was quite a nice job, really! When we did look at Xaria’s result, we were delighted to see that she had also done us proud and won her first Imperial.
As already mentioned, Ali didn’t win the Grand Mastercat, nor did Breckin win her Grand. We didn’t actually expect Breckin to get it, though, because she is still so young, and the cat that did win it was the beautiful Freya, a Tiffanie girl owned by another friend, Sue Dykes (Kashi Tibetan Terriers). Freya is one of the most stunning examples of the breed that most people have ever seen, and is out of the stud that I had originally hoped to be able to use before we even got our first girl. Unfortunately, he is no longer working, so we just have to be content with seeing his gorgeous offspring at shows!
Once we were allowed back in to the cats, we did the rounds, telling them how clever they had been (all of them), and then gave them lunch. We then headed off for a leisurely walk in glorious sunshine, to find our own lunch. We couldn’t resist heading back to the same place as last year, the Natland MillBeck Ice-Cream Parlour. Needless to say, we all enjoyed ice-cream sundaes to finish!
When we returned to the show hall we went straight over to check the remaining results, and another of our friends came up to say that Elisabeth needed to go and check baby Zach’s pen. When we did so, we discovered that to top off the day, Zach had taken Best Foreign Kitten! The two Imp-winning Abys had also taken Best Foreign Neuter and Best Foreign Adult, so regardless of who took Overall Best Foreign, one of our friends had it! In the end, it was the stunning adult, Coen (Glendavan Roderick-Jaynes), who also made up to Imperial on the day.
Sunday was another lovely sunny day, and we spent the first half getting some of the garden back under control (two weekends where we were busy on the Saturday and then it rained on the Sunday, followed by last weekend at Kirsty’s meant it was needing the work!). The afternoon and evening were spent through at Elisabeth’s, where she was having her annual barbecue. Another delicious meal, helped along by Lenny Pontello’s barbecuing skills, and also a chance to meet some of Elisabeth’s family, as well as catch up with Lorraine and her baby, Lina.
This evening I have been out with my family to celebrate Kirsty’s and my birthdays. When the others decided to sing ‘Happy Birthday’, we discovered that the two names actually work quite well for joint celebrations – “Happy Birthday, Heather and Kirsty”! How we didn’t discover that years ago at our joint parties as kids, I don’t know.
Katie is really heavily pregnant now, and has become really proud of her tummy in the past 24 hours. She will roll onto her back to ask you to stroke it, which is something she’s never done before.
Before going out tonight, we noticed that Katie’s sides had relaxed off, which I’ve been told means that labour is starting, and she was being quite chatty today, so I think she’s going to go tonight. Her kittens are also being really active, although I didn’t manage to record their most active period because I was too busy watching it myself!
We filled her birthing box with towels before going out, just in case she decided to have her babies while we were eating, but she is still wandering around the bedroom happily now. In preparation, I’ve brought up the scales and a notepad and pen to record weights, and also a selection of nail-polishes to mark kitten toenails so that we can tell them apart. Wish us luck!