Naughty, Naughty, Shirley!!

One day last week, I decided to take a stroll in the garden. The ground was still wet but not so soggy as to get my paws wet. I know how to step carefully and avoid any sudden plunges into a puddle which could soak my legs up to my hips and soil the fur on my tummy. Horrible thought!
The sun was shining, the temperature outside the window was above freezing. Carefully, I slipped out through the back door when my person opened it to take out the trash. I ran from the deck onto the wet grass, cautiously taken one step at a time. All was well. My paws were only slightly damp. Then something caught my eye. My focus was lost. My hind foot slipped and I found myself nearly submerged in a deep puddle of muddy, cold water!
"Hi there, Henri!" I recognized the voice! It was that of Shirley, the squirrel who resides in our tall evergreen. "Do you need some help? Can I give you a paw?"
"Shirley!" I growled. "What are you doing, hanging from the bird feeder?"
Shirley snickered. "I'm feeding. What else is a bird feeder supposed to do?"
I climbed out of the puddle and tried to shake the dirty, cold water from my coat. "It's a bird feeder, Shirley, not a squirrel feeder. It's supposed to be squirrel proof!"
"Squirrel proof. Right! There is no bird feeder in the whole wide world that is beyond my capabilities to get at the seeds. I thought you knew that?" Shirley proceeded to munch on a paw full of seeds.
I wiped my runny nose on my paw. "The humans at the store said it was guaranteed to thwart the most ambitious rodent. I saved up all my catnip allowance to purchase it. You should be ashamed of yourself, Shirley."
She shook her head at me and threw a pawfull of seeds at my head. "Don't be such a prude, Henri! We squirrels take courses at night and learn how to outsmart those guaranteed squirrel proof bird feeders. Every time humans come up with something new, we are notified. That's how we keep ahead of the game. By the way, this is the best bird seed I've had in a long time!"
"I'm glad you like it. Please don't tell your friends about it!" I hissed. "Well, I have to go inside the house now. Hopefully, I won't get dumped into the bathtub and get showered off. Maybe I will only get a brisk rub down with a towel. I can put up with that."
"Well, I'll see you in the spring, Henri. And don't catch a nasty cold." Shirley went back to robbing the feeder and I returned to the warmth and safety of my home. I'm glad I don't have to steal from bird feeders to get my breakfast, lunch and dinner. For me, the days of stealing food from garbage cans are over. I have only to meow and point at my food dish and my meal is put before me! It pays to be a handsome cat with an irresistable personality!

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