Something so extraordinary has just happened that I’m sitting here wondering if I really saw what I thought I saw. Surely not! It couldn’t be! Could it? Luckily I’m not alone. If I was, I’d be telling myself I was seeing things.
Because I’m lounging on the sofa on our terrace, thinking about important things like where to go for lunch and whether my Candy Crush habit is turning into an addiction, when what looks like a cat slides under the gate and putters up the garden path. Most of the houses around us are unoccupied so maybe this thing that looks like a cat thinks there’s no-one home. Because it’s looking pretty relaxed. Until it catches sight of us, stops, stares, and slips away under the hedge while we’re still registering that this thing that looks like a cat isn’t.
The terrace in question is in Puerto Pollenca, Majorca. It looks out over a (very small) garden, with a gate opening onto the pool area we share with thirteen other houses about ten metres away from me. So we’re talking seaside, built up, urban – not pine forest, secluded, unpeopled. Which is the kind of habitat what I’ve just seen prefers.
Because this thing that looks like a cat is a Pine Marten. Honestly. I promise you. In Great Britain they are incredibly rare; shy, secretive creatures you might catch a glimpse of in Scotland if you’re very very lucky.
And I’ve just seen one. So close I could have reached out and touched it. Unfortunately I was too stunned to get myself together and take a photo. But even so…
Too exciting not to share.