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Posts Tagged ‘Pets’

Dear Bio Family,

You’ve only known me a short while, but you KNOW me.

Do I want to go?

Does my Senator (Josh Hawley) run from chaos he helped create?

Yes. The answer is yes.

As some readers may remember, I went to this event in Atlanta. Alone. (I’m the “weird” one.)

But yesterday, it was a family affair.

Mom, sister, niece, nephew

Perhaps I’m jaded, but I felt like the offerings were not as varied as the prior event and were more expensive.

Here are some fresh things I saw but did not buy (because expensive).

A gumball machine filled with cow eyes
A creative use for vintage photos
Part of a giraffe
Fun (and horrifying) night lights
The worst item anyone could dream up for me: a clown doll. IT (the character and the doll) haunts me still.
Mothman (To be fair, he wasn’t for sale. Actually, he might have been. I don’t know.)
Whatever scene this is

But I did buy two things. Very cheap. Necessary, I felt.

A snakeskin pendant and a chicken foot. Everyone needs a preserved chicken foot. (Yes, everyone. 😄)

So thanks, Fam, for showing me once again that DNA is remarkable.

Love,
Beth

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Dear Gladys,

I need to report that I got a lemon of a cat.

I love Leo, I do. And that is the only reason I can justify the THOUSANDS of dollars needed to fix him.

First, it was an ingrown dewclaw. The person you hired did not do it correctly.

What the vet removed.

Then he suddenly had a lump on his back end.

Plus another swollen toe.

Seriously, lady: Who did this surgery? He/she should never be able to do it again.

The lump: A sarcoma that needed to be removed immediately.

A day/night in the hospital plus nearly $3K later, and he’s home looking like a football (according to my mom).

But he’s alive. And has all four limbs. (There was some concern from the vet that he’d have to lop off the leg to get all of the mass.)

I’m sure you didn’t realize he would go through any of this. (Except maybe the dewclaw surgery. You knew the antibiotics weren’t working.)

Anyway, he’ll be fine in 10-14 days. Not sure when my bank account will recover if the pet insurance claim is denied.

Send thoughts and prayers*,
Leo Richardson’s new mom

* ‘Cause those ALWAYS work.

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COVID, Day 7 (Maybe? Could be Day 4 depending on when I displayed symptoms from ‘Rona and not the booster.)

Captain’s Log

I’m feeling fine, but still testing positive.

I’ve managed not to drink away my sorrows every day, but isolation is difficult for an extrovert.

I’m not an indoor cat.

And even my indoor cat has gone loopy.

His tongue is stuck.
He went to sleep with his mouth open.

I’m SO BORED.

I’m sick of TV. I’m tired of social media. I’ve had enough of lonely walks around the neighborhood.

I’ve even cleaned out the freezer.

That’s how bad it is.

But I’ve eaten well. That’s positive. Haven’t lost taste or smell.

I’ve been FaceTiming people because I need human contact. (Petra knows. She got a surprise.)

Maybe tomorrow I’ll test negative, and I can rejoin society. Carefully, of course.

The good news is that I don’t appear to have infected anyone else.

Small victories.

Sigh.

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Dear Coronavirus:

Why are you still here? I hate you so much. I’ve managed to avoid you for more than two years (safety first!), but you finally got me.

How? I don’t know. You tell me!

Having an incubation period of 2-14 days makes tracking source difficult.

All I know is that I got my second booster Friday. By Sunday, I had a sore throat. I took two tests from two different companies. Both negative.

See? Negative.

On Monday, I felt like crap: headache, body pain. I was already scheduled to go to a new doctor to establish care.

Me: I got the second booster Friday and feel terrible today.
Her: That’s the booster. I wouldn’t have recommended you get the second one so soon.
Me: They recommended after six months.
Her: Yeah, but you don’t have comorbidities.
Me: Right.

The cough started Tuesday.

The runny nose started yesterday.

I decided to take another test.

Uh oh.

And then another from a different brand.

I was furious and mortified.

I spent my weekend living my best life as the infection vector I apparently am: garden tour and antiques fair with neighbors, dinner with a colleague, handyman direction on wall patches, “Stranger Things” with my sister, card games with neighbors.

So I had to issue various and sundry mea culpas.

It’s possible I was exposed to you on my flight home from Savannah: Two hours on the runway (weather delay), an hour at the gate (more fuel), an hour in the air. I was one of only three people wearing a mask (because, of course, you no longer exist 🙄).

I don’t know.

I do know that I had another busy week/weekend planned, including lunch for about 15 family members at my place. But now, thanks to you, I will spend the next 5-10 days on my own with just Leo Richardson to keep me company.

Leo, who also is not feeling well.

Leo, the cat who (likely) got COVID.

Gee, I wonder how he could have caught COVID. (Note: I am not kissing the cat. He was sleeping on my shoulder, and I turned my head for the pic.)

So thanks SO MUCH for your continued presence in all of our lives.

(Sarcasm is my love language.)

Your new BFF,
Typhoid Mary
‘Rona Beth

*Manic Street Preachers’ ninth studio album. Worth a listen.

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Dear Leo,

I’m so glad you came into my life. You bring me so much joy.

Your personality is distinct. You are nosy, noisy and aggressively cuddly.

Who are you? Gladys Kravitz?

And weird. You are SO weird.

To look at, for one.

Look at this alien foot!
Your back = brain surface
Where are your whiskers?!

But also, the way you sleep is unlike any other cat I’ve ever known.

Who sleeps like that?
Cats don’t sleep on their backs!

And you always have to have your paws on my face.

Or be ON me somehow.

You look annoyed even when you are sleeping peacefully.

Here you look annoyed, but you have a right to be: I’m harassing you with a gift from Charlotte and Nate.

I love it when your tongue gets stuck.

I know you hate this collar, but it’s better than the cone of shame. I can’t have you licking your surgically enhanced paw.*

Despite the fact that you are a bizarre creature (or probably BECAUSE of it), I’m so happy to share my life with you.

Love,
Your human

*Leo came to me declawed. The person who did it needs a refresher course as he/she left part of his dewclaw. It got infected. He’s had surgery and is fine now.

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Dear Dominic,

Thanks for going on a road trip with me to bring Eddie some stuff that ended up with me in St. Louis.

It was a great bonding experience for you and your new brother.

It took nearly 16 hours of driving (should have been 12), but we made it manageable with stops in Chattanooga (no time for towing, sadly) and Atlanta (so you could harass all your school friends).

Barb the Minivan (rental) served us well. She was spacious enough to allow for a litter box for Leo’s bathroom breaks.

It turns out that he’s good on car trips.

Just so everyone knows, I don’t usually put clothes on pets. But Leo is naked, and it was cold when we left St. Louis.

So thank you for making the trip with Leo and me. Next time, I promise we will stop in at a ridiculous museum that will amuse us both.

Love,
Mama

*Thanks, Willie.

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Dear Gladys,

I enjoyed meeting you for five minutes outside the Greenville, S.C., airport as I adopted your cat son Leo. Thank you for posting him on a rescue site and choosing me as his new parent.

He’s not happy. At all.

You may have saved my sanity. Seriously.

As I mentioned, I’ve been living alone for a few months — visiting family when I can.

Those after-dinner hours (7-9 p.m.) are really quiet/lonely. I can only watch just so much “Ozark” and “Great British Baking Show.” And my house is VERY clean.

Isolation has breathed life into my workaholic side, for sure. Plus, I took on a freelance project and am taking courses online toward various credentials.

Still.

I found myself talking to — and responding to — myself. Out loud. Uh oh.

And I missed taking care of critters (i.e., Dominic and Gideon).

I haven’t had a pet in 11 years. It’s been 16 since I’ve had a cat. That’s weird in itself, as I had a cat or cats my whole life. At one point, Eddie and I had four dogs and four cats.

We had a temporary cat at the time of this Christmas card photo, and Maggie the Boxer hadn’t joined us yet. The photo gives you an idea of the craziness, though.

I’ve been wanting a Sphynx for more than five years — haunting rescue sites because I wasn’t about to spend more than $2K on a damn cat.

Luckily, you started to travel more and felt guilty about boarding him all the time.

So now he’s mine. Traumatized, but mine.

Things are going great.

He is aggressively cuddly. He gets right in my face. Breathing in my mouth to steal my soul.

And has to be ON ME at all times.

I mean. LOOK AT HIM.

Look at this FOOT!

I don’t know how you were able to give him up, but I’m so glad you did.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Beth, Leo’s new mom

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Dear Kathy Lou Who, aka Spot, aka Mother Dearest, aka Mom:

Thanks so much for inviting me on your trip to Costa Rica with Sister Kara, and your friends Sharon and Brad (aka Bardo). Though you, Kara and Aunt Beth visited me in Atlanta for Mother’s Day last year, this is our first trip together.

I admit that I was a little sad to miss the huge winter storm in St. Louis (it would have been my first). Then I saw these stats: Missouri State Highway Patrol responded to 1,578 stranded drivers and 556 crashes.

Now, my Southern ass wouldn’t have been driving around in that. But Brother Lodell sent video of his freshly shoveled driveway re-covered with another five or six inches of snow.

I don’t have a snow shovel.

So.

It’s best we are here.

No snow. Ever.

And Juancho’s Rancho via Airbnb doesn’t suck either.

Except for the couch. The couch sucks. The couch sucks HARD because it IS hard.

WTF, Juancho?! This is like a park bench!

We had to get a cushion for this monstrosity.

It was nice to meet Juancho. He’s MUCH YOUNGER than any of us expected. A bit of a hottie too. He suggested we go into Jaco for dinner, but you weren’t having it.

You: Not tonight, Juancho.
Me (suggestively): Not tonight, Juancho.
Kara: Said no one ever.

Kara and I went to bed laughing most nights. Why? Because of stuff like this (so stupid):

The way of life here is much slower than anything American. While waiting for breakfast to be served, Brad and I had plenty of time to notice our surroundings.

Braclets AND necklesses? Wow.

And debate the differences among words.

Por ejemplo:
Homeless=circumstantial, not a choice
Hobo=homeless with a goal
Bum=homeless without a goal

Thank you for letting Kara and me retire to the AC and the dark like mole creatures when we were done peopling for a while.

And there was much rejoicing on the last day when I finally saw a monkey.

Infinite sadness in those eyes. Probably because there’s no monkey dental plan.

Anyway, it was great. Thanks again for the invitation. Let’s do it again next year!

Love,
Beth

*The Costa Rican phrase and way of life

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Dear Rolla:

Though I was pained to leave my family, you have already helped me know I made the right decision.

I’m hanging out with you for a couple of months while I get acclimated to my new job and find a place to live in St. Louis.

Why was I entertained? In a word: camels.

I happened to arrive just in time for the annual Celebration of Nations parade and festival.

Camels in the parade
A camel moments before he sneezed on me
The Missouri S&T miner mascot riding a camel. (Photo courtesy of Missouri S&T)
Here’s a goofy alpaca just for kicks.

You know what else I loved?

“The World’s Finest Rolla German Band.” That’s their name. For real.
This goat
The farmers market
Lumpia and pancit from a Filipino food truck truck

After my last post, a number of friends said my decision is the right one as I’m always looking for new adventures. That’s true. And they said they look forward to me writing about them.

You’ve already given me plenty!

I’m going to be just fine.

Love,
Beth

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Dear Family,

Thanks for one particular Christmas gift:

I’ve never had a Chia Pet (though I always wanted one).

I love that my first one is a Chia Child.

But actually, as we know, his name really is Grogu Craig.**

Despite the fact that I read and followed the instructions — and even bought a plant mister — I could not get the damn seeds to sprout and keep growing.

I tried and failed twice.

I was determined that the third time would be the charm, so I soaked Craig a little longer — much to your dismay.

Look. Listen. It had to be done.

And you know what? It worked.

I’m disappointed that the seeds I put on his head didn’t sprout.

So y’all can get off my back.

I did what needed to be done. If you don’t have the stomach for it, look away.

But seriously, thanks for the gift that keeps on giving.

Love,
The Gardener

*Remember this commercial?

**We thought it would be hilarious if the Star Wars folks would have named him a regular dude name like Kevin. Or Craig.

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