As Steve looked up he noticed Cathy’s framed diplomas hung on the wall of the recess next to the sidelight. He asked her about the various Librarianship qualifications. She explained briefly what each represented on her journey to her present role.
“Enough about work,” she said to change the subject , “let’s go and have that cup of tea.”
He handed her a bag containing a box of a selection of cakes from the local bakery shop.
“I thought that you might have been going to bring me some that you’d baked yourself,” she teased.
“That’s a gift that I lack,” he confessed.
They went through into the Living Room. Cathy invited him to sit in one of the armchairs while she took the box of cakes into her kitchen. He looked around. It was a through room with the sitting-room at the front, overlooking the lake, while the rear portion was a dining room whose patio doors looked out onto her garden.
A sizeable dining-table had six chairs around it, and two further chairs had their backs to a wall. The floor was covered with a fitted carpet whose colour matched that in the hall. A large fireplace on the wall to his right had an inset gas fire and some china ornaments on the mantlepiece.
As Steve’s eyes took in the nature of his surroundings, Chivers jumped up onto the arm of the chair and made himself at home on Steve’s knees, demanding to be stroked by nudging his head against the hand that Steve had placed on the other chair arm. As Cathy returned with refreshments from the kitchen she noticed her cat on Steve’s lap and laughed.
“Well!” she said, shaking her head in mock disgust, “That didn’t take long. You’ve only just arrived, and you’ve seduced my cat already.”
“I deny that categorically. He seduced me.”
She laughed. “It’s strange. He doesn’t often take to strangers, especially men. You’re honoured indeed.”
He admired her room and its view of her garden.
She had moved a table between them on which she had placed a plate with the cakes and a tray that held two cups of black tea, a milk jug, a sugar bowl and spoons.
“Please, help yourself, “ she invited him as she sat down on a second armchair.
As they collected their refreshments, she continued, “Okay, you wanted to compare and contrast our beliefs regarding religious faith or the lack of it. Is that it?”
“Beautifully summarised,” he said. “But I hope that we’ll be able to move on from that to see what other common ground we have between us.”
As my opening photo today, I’ve chosen a view of a small water park to represent the view that Cathy might have been able to see from her front window across the road to the Mere. For today’s Featured photo – to represent Chivers, I’ve used another smartphone photo of our beautiful, beloved, but now deceased, ginger tomcat Tigger.
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