During a brief afternoon game of wallball with Ranger, she snatched the rebounding sphere out of the air thus effectively ending whatever streak I was on and ended up by the south side gate where she immediately set to growling through the wooden slats — ball still firmly in mouth — at something on the walkway.

The silence from the side of the house meant it wasn’t human so when Ranger remained focused on something close to the ground and didn’t break away when I called her I got up and peeked around the corner and dang if it wasn’t a previously never-before-seen hairless cat crouched there on the concrete.

I barely had time for a “Whoa!” before the cat turned tail and skeedaddled away toward the front of the house, around the corner and out of sight. I followed shortly thereafter but the feline was long gone.

Doubt if it’ll be back but I’ll keep my eyes open and my camera more at the ready. And speaking of keeping my eyes open and camera at the ready, I’ve been trying like the devil to get a good shot of one of these cactus flowers in full bloom, but they are slow to open and when they finally do, they must be tasty and/or very fragile because they either fall apart on their own or get decimated by some critter (bird? rodent? marsupial? hairless feline?) pretty dang quick.

Well the first “crop” was much smaller and went away really quick, but  the second “crop” is huge in comparison. The cactus branches areloaded with blooms waiting to happen — and they’re pretty spectacular when they finally get around to opening up. Making it all the more tragic that they don’t last very long.

bloom.jpg

Hopefully the one above that’s looking ready to pop will either get left alone or linger long enough for me to get a good snap of it after she blows, which I’d guess will either be later tonight or tomorrow.