Would it be unreasonable to go to Tokyo just to visit their cat cafes? Yes, that's right. If you've never heard of this notion before, there are cafes... with cats. This is my idea of heaven. Cake and kitties. However, I was thwarted. No sooner had I heard of the felines' arrival in London, than they were fully booked for months. This was to be a quest...
We are actually booked into Lady Dinah's Cat Emporium in October, but I was determined to get to stroke some puss cats before then. We went down to London a couple of months ago, but no joy. Then (cue dramatic drumroll) I saw a tweet saying they had experienced a few 'no shows' for planned bookings. We were visiting on the day of the first England match in the World Cup - prime real estate for flakey feline bookers.
We popped over to Shoreditch around 2.30pm and pleaded with the lady on the front counter. Eyelashes were fluttered, the 'mad cat lady' eye-glint was summoned and cat-faced shoes were pointed at. I was using everything I had with the keepers of the cats. She advised us to come back for the later session around 4.30pm to see if there were any cancellations. And there shone a shiny glimmer of hope... At 5pm we were told that two people hadn't turned up. I'm going to be honest with you, if they had turned up at this point I may have kicked them. Hard.
Before entering Lady Dinah's you are told of the house rules; no mithering sleeping cats or generally getting all up in their grill - in other words, don't do what you do to your own cats. There are gaps between the sessions for 'cat naps', and it's obvious that their welfare comes above everything else. Saying that, everyone who was in there seemed to know how to handle themselves around feline friends. There was plenty of supervision to ensure the cats were happy.
I hear that Donnie is head honcho of the Emporium's cats. He's a right little sweetheart who enjoys belly tickles and head rubs.
Nearly forgot to mention... they do food too! We were far too entertained by the cats to notice much about the food to be honest. They could have served me Baldrick's rat fricassee and I probably wouldn't have batted an eyelid. However, I did stop for a moment to take a mental note, and of course some pictures. It was a little warm for tea, so my husband went for lavender iced tea and I had Fentiman's dandelion and burdock. We ordered a couple of scones too (one plan, one fruit), which came with clotted cream and strawberry jam. Delightful.
If you're a cat lover, you recognise another when you see one. The ladies who run Lady Dinah's Cat Emporium clearly love their boys and girls. The cats are incredibly well looked after, and their every need is catered for. There is a £5 charge to enter Lady Dinah's, which goes towards their care and vets bills.
Our little Poppy had been quite poorly this week, so I think we were due some catty good luck as a result. As we left for London on Saturday morning, our little poppet was feeling much better. We both got the vibes that it was worth the risk of cancelling our dinner reservation in order to take a chance on Lady Dinah's. I'm so glad we did, we had the time of our lives.
Disclaimer: I understand that this post has demonstrated just how mental I actually am. You have become privy to lingo commonly used in our house, which may make no sense whatsoever to the average layperson. If I've caused confusion, I apologise. If you don't like cats, then I doubt you got this far anyway!
Join me on Facebook