She's come up with a latest trick.
The usual order of things is for the human to pet the cat. The other night, and just now tonight, she's decided that if I'm staying still, then the cat should pet me. She lashes her tail -- not anger, or boredom, or any particular usual emotion that usually makes cats lash their tails -- this is very definitely and deliberately aimed at stroking me with her tail.
I'm so very glad she's back.