Library cats

Stromness Library has had two cats warming the books over the past few years. Librarian Becky Ford used the library blog to tell the tale of the catty bookworms.

As some of you may know we recently lost one of our regular visitors in tragic circumstances, when Bubbles the cat was hit by a car as she crossed the road from her home to the library.

Bubbles was waiting at the door most days at opening time and was never happier than when she found a welcoming lap to curl up in for a bit of a stroke and a quick nap. In the absence of a suitable human cushion she would make herself at home on top of the library bag display on the counter or take up her vantage point on top of the printer.

Needless to say we were heartbroken to lose our faithful companion and still miss her cheerful meow, her happy purring, and even the cat fur on the chairs.

One of her particular friends was the novelist Lucy Ellmann who was staying next door to the library while working on her novel. Bubbles made such an impression that she appears as a character in Lucy’s novel Mimi.
Bubbles appears as a stray cat, rescued from starvation in the Manhattan snow by the central character – plastic surgeon Harrison Hanafan.
Then when Bubbles stopped using his library card there was room for Seamus to move in….

Seamus was quite a character with a bit of a split personality. He would rub himself affectionately against your legs or jump up on your lap to be petted, but could get very grumpy if you dared to shift him off a chair he had chosen for a nap. We even took to bringing in a pair of leather gardening-gloves to work, in case he objected to being put out when it was time to go home!

Unfortunately Seamus’ owners moved house, and following Bubbles’ tragic accident we have been without a library cat for quite a while now. Maybe we will be adopted by one when we move to the new library?! – Becky Ford


Seamus (photograph by Mike Goldstein)


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