Give that cat an award for bravery.
Scooter and Hamish, those most fearful little woodland creatures, are now venturing out of an open window, so long as I am with them. Although they still run away from me if I look at them the wrong way at all, my presence gives them courage to creep outdoors for a few moments.
Usually such acts of bravery occur only in the walled back yard, although even the flutter of a leaf will send them fleeing back inside as though pursued by ravening wolves. It's a hard life, being a scaredy-cat.
The dog and the girls, bold and confident, are fond of sitting on the pavement at the front of the house, where they (rightly) expect passers-by to make a fuss of them.
But on a quiet sunny afternoon, with no traffic moving, Scooter was lured out.....
Suddenly Scooter spotted Millie in the distance - and he was off!
Lottie looked mildly surprised; the dog wore an expression that clearly said "It'll end in tears!"
And it did, of course: Scooter panicked, dashed wildly into Sandra's house, upstairs, downstairs, and out again, and then hid under a bush, howling loudly and piteously, until rescued by Millie and me. His expedition had lasted about 30 seconds. But, for the first time, he had ventured at least 10 yards from home.
Hamish asked if we could have the window shut now. The Great Outdoors was altogether too big and dangerous. Scooter agreed.
There's no place like home. No basket like the dog's. No need to go anywhere else.