I probably don't have to tell you that I wasn't planning to bring a new cat home last night. Right? Here's how that happened.
Over the past ten days or so, I've sent out inquiries on a few cats. The first one, they said, wasn't fully socialized yet. The second, it turned out after a few days of no answer, had already found a home. The third I still haven't heard back about. The fourth was not Tonto, but was at the same shelter/organization. I inquired about her, and they suggested I come to their event last night to meet her.
I went innocently off after work, and found myself in the basement of a house in a nearby town, small and full of cats (and the associated smells, not blaming them, but slightly warm and pungent down there), some in cages, some wandering around. They actually foster the cats in volunteers' homes, but bring them to the shelter and to pet stores for frequent events. (Which, clearly, is a winning strategy. After all, if I'd been able to go meet the one, and didn't like her, I wouldn't have a second cat yet. But there he was!) I met the cat, a young female tabby, and didn't feel any particular draw to her. She didn't seem that interested in me, and while not unfriendly wasn't friendly either. She also hadn't been introduced to the general population yet, having only been fixed the day before, so no saying for sure how she'd be with other cats. I talked to the people about how I was looking for a cat who would be friendly to me and to Carlos, and they pointed out a few: there's this cat, he was in a home with other cats (he gave me the hairy eyeball from a distance), and then there's Tonto, he's never met a cat he didn't like. Tonto was walking around, so I put out a hand to him, and he rubbed against me enthusiastically. He seemed friendly, so I carefully picked him up, at which point he curled up, settled down, and started purring. Well, then. I patted him and rubbed his head, he purred up a storm, and I started to think, well, I could...
I had to run back home for the carrier and my checkbook, and proof of owning the condo*, so I told Carlos briefly about what was happening (not that he understood me, I know, but anyway). In the car, I had a few qualms, but hearing the song All Mixed Up, and the lyrics to "trust your instincts" gave me a good reminder. It just felt right.
*I imagine that after I left, they were asking each other who comes to a cat adoption event unprepared to adopt a cat...
The paperwork didn't take long, once it was my turn; I'm glad to say they were busy adopting out animals. (In case you felt bad for the cat I went to look at and didn't take, I should mention that a family came in shortly after I did, and they were looking at her when I moved on to Tonto. By the time I got back with my carrier, she was gone. She got her happy ending, too!) Tonto went into the carrier without much fuss, and strangely to me, did not meow all the way in the car! We were home in short order, and I brought him into the office and closed the door, then let him out of the carrier. I had moved a litter box in, and brought in a bowl of water, and he moved around, sniffing at everything, and rubbing against me frequently. I called my mother to tell her the news, and we talked while I watched him explore. After I was off the phone, Carlos started meowing outside the door, and I went to see him. Tonto was all ready to join me: OK, where are we going now? I was laughing as I told him he had to stay in solitary for a while; in the end, to get out the door, I had to pick him up, open the door, step out, then turn back and pop him in before quickly closing the door. So curious!
Carlos didn't appreciate the whiff of change in the air, metaphorically speaking, and snubbed me a little before later settling on my lap again. I went in and out a few times, giving them both time, and letting Carlos smell Tonto on me (he didn't seem too interested, but he didn't get upset anyway, which is good). Tonto was very relaxed, which was a wonderful thing to see. I brought him in some toys, which he found interesting. He has some major hooks for claws, and it's clear he's not used to having them trimmed, but he doesn't mind his paws being touched, which will be a big step, and I got a few of them done, here and there (he's a big kneader, so they need to be done, ow). I don't think it will be long before he accepts the process without a problem. Finally, I had some cold pizza and got ready for bed.
This morning when I went in to see him, he was on the perch by the window, but was VERY happy to see me, purring up a storm, rubbing and butting into me. I tried brushing him, and he seemed to like it. I went in a couple of times, but eventually had to get ready and leave for work.
He is almost 100% black, just a couple of white hairs, down to nose and paws (his paw pads are dark grey). I think even his whiskers are all black. He has plushy soft fur, and is just slightly bigger than Carlos is. Friendly? Check. Affectionate? Check. He gave me more love last night than Miri did in almost five years put together. He's a head-butter and a happy drooler.
I called the vet this morning, and they'd actually had a cancellation for 6 tonight, so I was able to get him in and checked promptly. Probably wouldn't hurt to introduce them before he's checked, but hey, I'll take a quick convenient appointment, thank you. And the vet loved him; she said she's worked there ten years, and could count on one hand the number of cats who accept attention from her like he did. While she listened to his heart, she commented, "So that's what a normal heart rate sounds like," and added that she had to try to hear it around his purring. Yes, he purred up a storm at the vet.
The shelter estimated him at 2 to 3 years old, though their vet-check said 4. He was part of a trap-neuter-release program a year ago (which is why his ear is clipped), and was found to be so friendly that they adopted him out. The person who adopted him recently couldn't keep him, so he gave him to a friend, and she's the one who gave him back to the shelter (they're a no-kill shelter, so they're pretty adamant that you give the pet back to them if you can no longer keep it). Thus freeing him up for me! And Carlos.
I got back on the exercise bike a week ago, and in that time have ridden it five days out of eight, for 6, 8, 9, 10, and 12 minutes. Better than nothing, and getting better! Plus, that's that much more sock done. Just keep knitting, just keep knitting...
Three weeks ago, my boss spoke to her boss, who agreed that I should get a laptop.
Last week, her boss asked me in passing if the IT guy (in NY) had talked to me yet about it, and when I said no, she said she would have to remind him.
Monday, one of my coworkers spilled a cup of tea on her laptop (I looked up to see her holding it upside down, liquid dripping off it). Five minutes later, the boss is unlocking the IT room to get her another laptop to work on while hers dries out.
I wasn't quick enough on the draw at the time (being preoccupied with thoughts of that phone interview) to comment on it*, but today, when the boss was going back into that closet to get a laptop for someone else (whose Word kept crashing), I asked whether she had heard from the IT guy yet, and she said that since there were, in fact, spare machines, I should e-mail him (copying her) about what he needs to get it set up.
*One of my friends at stitch and bitch that night suggested I should have asked her to grab one for me while she was there.
And in the end, it's on my desk. For now, until it gets fully functional*, I'll keep the desktop. Progress, at any rate.
*Which supposedly will happen after it finishes the 138 updates it needed, which was hardly half done when I left, and is rebooted a few times ... but I'm not holding my breath.
As I mentioned the other day, the Bruins won their game on Saturday 6-1. Monday night, they beat the Islanders 6-3. Tuesday night, they beat the Panthers 6-2. This has been a fun stretch of Bruins fandom, and tonight, it's Montreal! Unfortunately, it isn't starting well. Plenty of time for a dramatic comeback, though!
I mentioned PMS the other day, and along those lines, I had a mild headache Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. It really wasn't bad, but it reminds me of how much better my head has been* recently, and how amazingly grateful I am for that.
*And the associated upset stomach. My consumption of Tums has dropped dramatically.
If 2014 is The Year the Migraines Weren't a Big Thing for Me Anymore, that would be so amazingly awesome, words fail me. And you know that doesn't happen often!