looking for a few good ideas

  amongst the irregular verbiage

Thanksgiving Season

The last week or so has been hectic, with flights to San Francisco, Seattle, and finally back to Vegas. The first thing on Sunday morning was to get the cats into the car for the flight to SFO. Our plan was to get Kami and Sophie settled in Cats Cradle in San Rafael at 4:00pm and before that could happen there were a number of steps that had to happen in sequence. We didn't hold our breath.

The first thing was to make sure the cats were comfortable on their journey. We waited as long as we could for the cats to use their litter box. Neither of them made any move in that direction and eventually, around 8:30am, we just had to put them in their carriers and dump them in the car and take off for the airport, or we'd be late.

As long as the car was moving, they kept reasonably quiet, but every time we pulled up at a traffic light, they started yelling. Then they got really quiet for about 20 minutes. Just as we were turning in to the long-term parking building at McCarran airport, Kami got car-sick and threw up in her travel carrier. *sigh*. The smell was... strong.

The signs said the M level was open but after driving around in a big circle and seeing nothing available we returned to the ramp and drove up to level 4, finding a park relatively quickly.

I ran down a level to get a luggage trolley while L attempted to clean up the mess in Kami's carrier. It turned out that she'd crapped as well. Oh Joy.

I distinctly remember standing next to the car, holding Kami at arms length as she dripped from both ends, and reaching out with a foot to stop the luggage trolley rolling away, while L cleaned out the bottom of the cat carrier with tissues. Kudos to L for always having a supply of plastic bags and tissues in the car.

After a bit of confusion at the check-in counter ("you have two cats? Are they in one carrier? It says here that there is one reservation for pets...") we lined up at the security point. No VIP treatment here. The cat carriers *must* go through the x-ray machine, we were told. You can walk them through the detector door in your arms. So, shoes off, laptops out, pet carriers on the conveyer belt, and with Kami clutched in my arms, I walked towards the TSA officer, both our boarding pass clenched between my teeth, I think. I tried not to think about how Sophie was behaving in L's arms behind me. She might very well wriggle her way free and bolt in the security area. When she puts her mind to it, I can't stop her from getting away.

But fortunately, they were meek little creatures and we made it to the other side, stuffing them back into their carriers and recovering our laptops and shoes and jackets and vowing NEVER AGAIN.

We settled in at the gate and I checked on Kami. Breathing very rapidly. Not good. I remembered that we'd given her the usual morning insulin shot but she had thrown up her breakfast, and might well go into insulin shock. Hindsight is wonderful... there is absolutely minimal harm to a diabetic cat if she had missed a shot, but if her blood sugar got too low, it could be disastrous. And we'd be boarding a plane shortly and flying for one and a half hours!

L bought a shot glass from a souvenir stand, and grabbed some sugar packets from Starbucks and I made up a sugar syrup and liberally smeared it over Kami's gums and mouth. It couldn't hurt.

Fortunately, events continued without further disruption. At the other end of the flight we had to catch a tram to the rental car building, and pick up the car, get them settled in the back, and then RELAX for a moment or two.

I confidently assured L that the simple Google map I'd printed out was sufficient, after all, we'd made the drive from SFO up to Marin many times 5 years ago. I was *not* going to get lost!

We got lost. The Google route was not the best one and we found ourselves driving in central San Francisco. Yeah. I remembered these streets. It was not the best place to be when trying to get to the Golden Gate bridge.

We made it to Cat's Cradle in San Rafael right on schedule, so the extra hour or so that we thought we'd have in hand turned out to be good planning. Kudos to L for figuring out the flights. Mark, the same chap who kept Cat's Cradle open late on a Sunday many years ago, is still there. This time we were there promptly at 4:00pm for Sunday opening time.

With the cats safely in their comfortable apartments for the next few weeks, L and I drove off and checked in to our human hotel, and then drove out to nearby Larkspur for soup at C J Chinese Cuisine.

For the next couple of days we showed our faces at the San Rafael office of our new employer, and visited our future residence, measuring and taking photographs and meeting our landlord.


On Wednesday we flew up to Seattle and stayed for several days with Walt & Sherri. A blissful Thanksgiving. We ate too much and had a wonderful time, more so because we knew we would have to leave soon and go back to packing up the house in Vegas in preparation for our move on Dec 6th.