Thursday, August 17, 2006

Crazy? Very likely.

It's been an interesting few weeks. I warn you now that this is going to be a long post...

My step-dad's mother died on the Saturday before I started my vacation, so there was no trip to the farm that day and no field-trip to the guild meeting. Also, no alpaca. Instead I drove out to the farm on the Monday after my job interview to take care of all the animals so that they could take care of the visitation/funeral business and not have to drive the two hours each way from their home to the town Frank's mom lived in.

My mom and Frank have about 17 head of Texas long-horn cattle, plus a couple of calves, two grass cattle, five horses, three big dogs and somewhere in the neighbourhood of 17 cats. They bought this farm after I was grown and gone, so I am not a farm girl born and bred. As I said to my mother, I'm a good pinch-hitter, but I'm no professional.

Some of the cats are barn cats, some are indoor-outdoor cats, and some are indoor cats. With so many of them (and many of them being out of the same parents), I have a hard time telling some of them apart, never mind remembering who can go out and who can't. Since I would be arriving after the humans left, Mom said that she would make sure that all of the cats that are allowed outside would already be out there. Around dinner time I was letting a cat in when one of the ones inside escaped! I sat outside on the porch for over an hour with a can of Pounce hollering "Here, kitty, kitty, kitty!", since I didn't know the cat's name. I thought it might have been Carmelita, but wasn't sure. I just knew it was one of the white/tabby patched cats. Finally a cat fitting the description wandered up to me. I gave it treats and scooped it up, and inside we went.

Two hours later I'm outside with one of the dogs when a white and tabby patched cat comes bounding through the clover... Inside we all went. Around midnight I spoke to Mom on the phone. I told her about the escapee, and my later confusion. Mom's response? "Oh, there are four kitties who look like that. I told Snuggles that if he didn't go out before we left, he might not get out."

I come by my crazy naturally.

After attending the funeral on Tuesday I headed home with a headache. Lack of sleep (it was very, very hot and one of the cats gives you love by bodychecking you while you sleep. Seriously.), stoopid heat and crying combined will do that to me. I took a nap for a couple of hours, but when I woke up my head still felt like it had been steamrolled, so the two hour drive to Aurora to see the Yarn Harlot was nixed. I was very sad, but she lives in Toronto. Technically, I could just show up on her doorstep all stalker like...but I won't. *grin* Instead I took some painkillers and worked on my sock. I have one and three quarters of another sock done. I'm looking forward to being able to wear them.

I did not get the awesome job that I really wanted. When the HR lady called me back she told me that I was by far the best candidate they had interviewed and would have had the job, except that they decided to change the job description. Argh. They're unlikely to find (in my opinion) what they're looking for in the salary band they are offering, or at least unlikely to find someone who will stay very long. I will be working on certifications so that when the job is posted again in about a year, I'll have more of what they are looking for. And in the mean time, I'm back to the resume-tweaking drawing board.

We took Zoe in to the vet to be spayed on the Wednesday of my vacation. They told us to call around 2:00 that afternoon to find out how the surgery went, and when to come pick her up. When I called the nurse said "Um, went well, and Zoe's fine except...Zoe's a boy." What? Yeah. Zoe's a boy. A neutered boy, but a boy nonetheless. Fred has decided to be in denial. Her name is still Zoe, and we still use the feminine pronouns to refer to her. Fred wanted a girl kitty, and as far as he's concerned, that's what Zoe is.

I'm not just descended from crazy, I live with it too!

On the holiday Monday, the day before we were to return to work, Fred noticed that Sabre wasn't using her right rear leg. She was dragging it behind her or knuckling over on the foot. It was colder than the other paws. She wasn't withdrawing it when tickled or grabbed. No movement. No feeling. Very scary. The emergency vet we called said that it didn't sound like a "true emergency", as in, the cat wasn't dying. So we waited and took her to the vet on Tuesday. By this time we'd noticed that her tail, which is usually straight up in the air, was hanging to the right and that she wasn't moving it either. After a 3-day stay at the vet and a bill large enough to negate our vacation plans for October, she came home somewhat improved. The was able to tell us what it wasn't: fracture, major neurological issue, blood clot/stroke. It's probably not cancer, although there's still a remote chance of that. So we still don't know what it is, but she is improving daily. The tail is almost back to normal. The leg is still stiff so she limps a bit, and although she still doesn't seem to have feeling in her paw the circulation is good. Which is good, because in a household that already has a trans-sexual cat, do we also need a 3-legged one?

See? Crazy.


Annika said...

Oh dear! I hope you had SOME rest and relaxation!

Leone said...

I'm sorry that your ten days of freedom was not all that you expected. As for stalking the Yarn Harlot, you could go stalk her at Lettuce Knits and also buy some stellar yarn too! I'm glad that all the kitties are all right. When I took Spike in to be fixed I returned home from school that same day to all these messages from the vet asking me to come in and it freaked me out, that was his whole evil livoo incident on his blog. I'm glad that Zoe was incident free at her... his.... her vet visit. I can't believe the vet didn't think that Sabre's leg was an emergency! Spike and Chuck both agree that she should get extra tuna water twice a day. The kitties and bears and I all send our hugs and are glad that you are bloggin again because we missed you!

stitch-dom said...

OMG...I'm not sure whether to laugh or cry. I think I'll just opt for both here. Am sorry about your mother-in-law - and the apparent gender crisis at your house. Of course, Zoe is a girl now anyway since he'll/she'll have lost all interest...or you can rename him Joey?

Shadow is definitely a boy. Yep. We've had some pretty solid displays of boyness which the kids found quite educational - not to mention all the giggling and stuff.

Jess said...

Yikes! I'm sorry that your vacation(s) got pre-empted, and for such stressful reasons.

Helen said...

What Leone said! (except for the Spike bit, and I send my own hugs).

Sorry about all the crazy and stress, but if it's any consolation, you have a funny (as in humorous) way of telling the stories (apart from the sad bits, obviously).

This was a lot more eloquent in my head, honest!

Kristy said...

Oh gosh! What a trying time you've had. Poor kitty, too. I hope he continues to improve.

Thanks for stopping by and sending sweet thoughts to Sally. I am sitting here nearly in tears because she won't stop whimpering and crying in the crate...I just have to keep telling myself that this is really what is best for her. Ugh!

The Bears said...

I'm so sorry you had to go through so much on your vacation.

I'm glad to hear that Zoe is both fine, and now out.

And the Bears and I are all sending many Bears hugs for Sabre.

Jim, Stompy and All the Bears

Jenn said...

Hi sweets, so sorry to hear about your last few weeks.

I send you my best hugs.

CosmicAvatar said...

Oh, crumbs. That doesn't sound very restful at all, and I'm sorry you didn't get the job. Stupid company changing the goalposts!


Laurie said...

Sorry your vacation was such work. :( And about your step-grandmother.

But you are a crazy cat-woman and that is just my kind of crazy!