My morning ritual is very important to me. After getting out of bed I usually sit for a bit and read the news while my water heats in the kettle on the stove. Once the whistle calls me back to the kitchen I pour the water over my tea and let it steep while I take a shower and get ready for the day. It's not a friendly whistle, not even warm and well-liked, but it does its job and does it well.
This morning, however, I made a shocking discovery: at some point during the night while I slept someone removed the whistle and hid it. I was slow to come to realization while I skimmed The Huffington Post, checked in with my friends on Facebook and scoped out the weather for the day. The kettle just never seemed to come to a boil and instead of that familiar screaming baby trill I was met with an unsatisfying hiss and a boiling, gurgling sputter. My morning routine was clearly shot as the mystery unfolded. No amount of crawling around the floor, searching with a flashlight under the fridge or scanning the area for signs produced any clues as to its whereabouts.
Winnie, perched on the counter behind me began to pace nervously. While normally well-behaved and fiercely loyal to me, she's not above occasional mischief and merriment at my expense. As a kitten she was prone to knocking plants and pots off sills and stands and then running in circles around me while I cleaned up the mess. She's been known to climb onto the counters and play with spoons or fortune cookie wrappers, knocking them onto the floor and chasing them under the dishwasher. I have no proof it was her, but her anxious demeanor makes me wonder.
Olive, who was the most precocious kitten and still occasionally takes delight in terror, was curled up on the back of the couch, indifferent––almost desperately so––to my grumbling and searching. She refused to even entertain the idea that I would question her and seemed offended that I would suggest she is capable of such an act. I didn't say it for fear of further offense, but her weight does limit her ability to jump on the counter, although I've seen her do it from time to time, often with disastrous consequences when she knocks over a peppermill or candle. Still, she could have been the brains behind the operation and cannot be ruled out.
Duncan, obviously, could not reach the tea kettle, but he'd be the perfect tool for hiding the whistle once it was knocked down. He does enjoy a new toy and the whistle would be something he'd be interested in. And he's been known to commit acts of unthinkable horror. He was there in the kitchen, where he's not allowed, looking extremely agitated, ears curled down, tail stiff and unmoving behind him. If he didn't do it, I suspect that I could pry some information out of him. A few pumpkin treats and a good belly rub and I'll have him singing like a canary.
Pip was nowhere to be found. It's no secret that he despises the whistle almost as much as the vacuum and has been known to flee the room once it sounds. After careful searching he was located under the couch, a dark and seedy place known for the rough-and-tumble gang of dust bunnies which lurk there. He was reluctant to come out, pleading the fifth, and chose to slink back further into the shadows after being questioned.
It's a mystery which, I fear, may never be solved. No one is speaking and the whistle has yet to be located. I'll keep you updated with any new information.