your old trousers," I tell the Senior Cat.
"No, I'm not."
"Oh yes you are."
"I am not."
"All right but have a look when you change."
The Senior Cat is vague about clothes. He tends to just grab the nearest thing to hand and, if it looks about right, he wears it.
He has two pairs of grey trousers. They are virtually identical except that one pair is much older than the others - and they look it. They are thin in the seat of the pants. The knees are slightly baggy. They are a size larger than the current pair and they have an old belt attached. The Senior Cat has apparently noticed none of these things.
He hates buying clothes. As I do not like clothes shopping either this is something of a problem but I do notice his appearance and mine.
Fortunately he has only been to see the lovely person who cuts his toenails and otherwise keeps an eye on his feet. She is the daughter--in-law of a friend and very understanding. I know that he has at least made sure his feet are very clean before he sees her!
He disappears to change back into comfortable workshop and garden clothes and then comes out.
"Er, you were right."
"Never mind. I am sure Liz understood."
It being the first Saturday of the month yesterday the local charity shop was open. The Whirlwind and I prowled into the book section as usual. There are some gaps in her library and she is trying to fill them. We had to go past the men's clothing section to get to the books.
"New shirts," she tells me, "I wonder if there would be any there for my Dad."
Yes, new shirts. They are still in their cellophane wrappers and packaging. There are white business shirts, cream business shirts, a striped one and a number of coloured shirts. Unlike most children the Whirlwind knows what size her father takes and what he is likely to wear. He is, if anything, even more conservative than the Senior Cat.
We look. They are good quality and cheap. I pick up a couple for the Senior Cat. The Whirlwind finds two good business shirts for her father and borrows the money from me to buy them. Why not? Where else will you find a brand new shirt for $3?
We look at the books but do not, for once, buy any. We pay pay for the shirts and head out the door. As we go the Whirlwind says,
"You know Cat my Dad was wearing the most disgusting shirt yesterday. I felt awful. It's like I don't look after him properly."
"I know exactly how you feel," I tell her.