Hm, my mom has told me that her main coon (formerly a show cat) always paws around the water (and food?) BEFORE consuming as well. This often results in overturned water bowl.
My tabby frequently paws at his food when he's done. It's cat lingo for "I'll save this for later. Doggie bag please?". Sometimes he seems to use the 4 year old kid logic, "My stomach has room for desert but not the main course" and then will proceed to keep eating after he has signalled that he is done.