The Kitty cafe was enjoyable, although probably as a one-off experience. Disappointingly though, there were no cats zooming around in wheelchairs. The house rules didn’t do much to make the human diners feel welcome. The first line of the rules basically told us that we should remember that we have entered the cats’ home, and that we should be mindful and respectful of that at all times. We were also informed that the cats weren’t there purely for our amusement. We then got a list of things that we weren’t allowed to do: no picking up the cats, no pulling the cat’s tail, don’t push the cats off chairs, don’t prod or poke the cats. I was starting to think that this would be no fun at all. I mean, I’d come all this way, and I wasn’t even allowed to pull the cats’ tails or knock them off chairs? We were also told not to feed the cats, yet there was a sentence later on which informed us that our food was our own responsibility, and if the cat’s jumped on our table and snaffled anything, then that was our own look-out.
We were then charged £5 upon entrance, which was simply a fee to sit in the cafe, and didn’t cover the price of food. When I first entered the cafe, I didn’t begrudge this £5 charge – after all, wheelchairs for cats can’t be cheep – but the fact that there wasn’t a wheelchair-bound cat present made me feel a bit cheated out of my money. Perhaps if I’d paid a bit extra they’d have let me pull a tail or two or knock a few cats off some chairs. If you do go to the Kitty Cafe, it might be worth enquiring. Also you might want to check in advance of going whether they’ve actually got any feline wheelchair users currently in their care.
When we arrived at our table, there was a cat lying on the chair at our table which I was meant to sit on. I knew that it was frowned upon to knock the cat off the chair, so I considered that I might be standing and eating, while the cat sat on my chair, and probably stole my food. But then I realised that there was nothing in the rules about not sitting on the cats. I remembered that the rules had stipulated no prodding or poking, and so, not wanting to break the rules, I made sure that there were no sharp objects in my back pockets that could potentially come into contact with the cat, thus causing it to be poked, and then I sat down. The cat quickly vacated my chair. David Eagle one, cat nil.
I met all the stars from yesterday’s Dollop: toffee, muffin, marmalade, pumpkin. I thought about trying to get a photo for the Dollop of the four cats standing around me, or perhaps I could have the cats lying on the table, while I held a knife and fork poised over them, as if I was about to eat them. But I couldn’t think of a way of getting all four of them in this pose, without breaking several of the Kitty Cafe’s house rules.
I managed to eat most of my food, before a cat bounced onto my table and ate the rest of my salad. I only got into trouble once from a member of Kitty Cafe staff, as I forgot about their “no stroking with your mouth full” rule. Ruth got into trouble for leaving the table before the cat had finished her meal, which apparently was terrible manners.
We overheard a bit of a spat between one of the diners and a member of Kitty Cafe staff. The man must have yanked one of the cat’s tails, because the waiter bounded over and said, “get your coat, you’ve pulled.” Unless the man had actually been propositioned by one of the cats, and the poor bloke, in spite of his complete sexual disinterest in cats, was forced to go upstairs to the cats boudoir and make love to it, which may have been one of the rules written in the small print section. I would have asked, but I didn’t want Ruth thinking that I was interested in having sex with cats, so I remained silent on the subject. I can always go back another time.
So, if you don’t mind sharing your food with a load of cats, and being treated as a second class species, where cats rule the roost, then the Kitty cafe is the place for you.
No, I am being a little facetious here, it was actually quite fun, principally due to its novelty value, and the staff were very hospitable. Although, I have to say that, otherwise I’ll be breaking one of the Kitty Cafe tenets which stipulates that anyone who speaks ill of the Kitty Cafe shall be hunted down and set upon by a pack of ferocious cats.