As a Person With Cats, I am apparently neurotic, fretful and restrictive. Of course I want the boys to have the freedom of California, to roam the wilds and come home with leaves in their fur, full of anglers' tales about the birds that got away - but we let them out one by one this afternoon and I was as anxious as you can imagine, watching them all the time, looming over them when I could, distressed when they wouldn't come when I called them. As soon as Mac jumped to the top of the fence, I hooked him off - he hissed at me! - and fetched him in, rather than see him jump down into the neighbours' yard; and I brought Barry in even sooner, long before he was ready.
Still. No doubt I will settle to the notion; no doubt they will come back at suppertime, when we do eventually let them roam at will. When I can steel myself to it. Right now I am the opposite of a mother-bird with fledglings: pushing them back into the nest, rather than helping them to fly.