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Thursday, 10/21/2004 - 04:25 PM PDT
The topic: Stuff. Lots of stuff.

Thursday, October 21, 2004 Well, we had a really good time at Disneyland. Thursday night, we had a late, late dinner at Granville's (at a time when Brian and I are usually well on the way to dreamland). I had a baked potato with everything, prime rib and two tall Wild Turkey presses. Much, too much food for us to be eating that late. And the wrong food, for sure. I woke up around two with a splitting headache and took some Excedrin. For the rest of the trip, my intestines were killing me. I think I might have some sort of IBD problem. The pains are most definitely diet related. I'm just now getting back to normal. The worst day was Sunday, the last day we were there. Fortunately, it wasn't really bad when we were walking around or on rides, but affected my sleep, so I was pretty worn out by the time we got home. I swear, that Sunday when the party was over and Brian and I were on our own and getting ready to come home, there were a few times I felt like I was going to pass out.

I think we learned something. We may be on vacation, but our bodies still work the same. We need to keep our diets as close to what we have at home as possible. We just can't eat the way we used to. Ah, the benefits of getting old.

I understand there was quite a bit of rain down here on Saturday, but we didn't see any in Anaheim until Saturday night. It was great park weather. Not too hot where it would just be miserable (like last year), not too cool to where you'd need to be wearing something heavy, which is a pain when you're in and out of buildings. Saturday night, we were in Fantasyland, went on the King Arthur's Carousel when I decided it was my birthday and I wanted cake. The only place open that late with cake was on Main Street, so we went over there. Carnation Cafe was closed for the night (it's an outdoor eatery, covered by big umbrellas) so a couple of us sat our butts down there while the others shopped or waited in line for our cake and drinks. While we were waiting, the rain started. It was relaxing to sit and watch the lines of people streaming to the exits. You'd think a little rain would melt us Southern Californians. By the time we were done, the rain had let up and those of our group who lived locally left for the evening and the four of us who were staying at the hotels made our way over to Splash Mountain. We walked right on and it was the last ride of the night, the park was closing.

We had breakfast at La Brea Bakery on Sunday morning, Brian and I having gone to DCA first thing. (We rode the Golden Zephyr twice in a row, the Brian went on the Maliboomer and Screamin' while I just sat, relaxed and waited to hear from our friends.) After breakfast, we rode the train around Disneyland, saw the Snow White live show, then said our goodbyes.

I was really happy to have a working cell phone. It was such a huge help when there were so many of us at the park. Fourteen people in all! Some were smokers, some were not. Some wanted to shop and some didn't want to do the more intense rides (yeah, yeah, I know some people don't think Disneyland has such a thing, but us old farts think they do). It was so handy to just call the other group to make plans to meet up. Unfortunately, last Tuesday, my cell died. There was "No Service". I call AT&T, frantic. They arrange for me to get a new one. It got here Wednesday. I sent the old one back in the same packaging. Then I got it set up. Guess what? It didn't work properly. I couldn't hear anything. I could hear the phone ring, and people on the other end could hear me. It's hard to have a conversation when you don't know what you're responding to, yanno? And I didn't realize it until late Thursday morning. I called AT&T and they arranged for one to be available at a local AT&T store and credited me for the entire thing. We decided to hit the store on our way up to Anaheim instead of going there, then coming back home.

While at the AT&T store, I asked about a charger for the car (since I needed to copy phone numbers over and could do this on the way up) and the guy said that it would be thirty two dollars and change. I thought he was joking. He wasn't. I passed on the car charger. We went to Wal-Mart, where we got one for less than twelve bucks. What a rip off AT&T was. The killer is I have one at home that I just never put in the car. *sigh* Brand new, still in the package.

We got home around five Sunday afternoon. I had to rush to the bathroom. Brian and I got out of the car and he had the keys out. Imagine our surprise to see Little Bit laying on a blanket in the entryway. Huh? Little Bit? Outside? Uh oh!

I rushed inside, did what I had to do and then found a note from the sitter on the kitchen counter. It seems that Potter had been really, really mouthy while we were gone and Becky would take him outside to burn off energy. Well, Sunday morning, Becky made sure there were no cats around and took Potter out through the sliding door. And Little Bit saw her opportunity and seized it. She took off. She ran down by the pool and under the wire around the fish tail palm (you can see that on the backyard page). I kept looking for her and later that night, Brian saw her walking on the fence. She wanted back into the yard. With us both very busy, Brian opening and closing the gate, and me using the wire cutters to make bigger holes for her to get in and a can of human tuna, we finally got her back into the yard. It took another fifteen or so minutes to herd her to the sliding door, where she finally went in. Of course, Marco took this opportunity to exercise, something the vet cautioned us strongly against, but I had no alternative. The kittens were also out, having lots of fun and running all over. At first, it looked like Little Bit was trying to gather them all up, but they were having none of it.

When I had a chance to relax, I was pleasantly surprised at how clean the house was. No scattered litter, the towels were clean, the dishes were all done, no garbage, the litter boxes had all been freshly scooped, it was really, really nice. But I did have to change the sheets and give DeeJay his fluids. I'd say we finally started to wind down around nine or nine-thirty Sunday night. Brian was supposed to help his brother with windmill stuff on Monday, but the rain kind of put the kibosh on that. But there was some office work he had to do and he left late morning on Monday. I kind of took it easy, being in so much pain. I did start on the laundry and also cleaned out the litterboxes, but not much else.

When I was walking through the living room, I noticed a smaller black cat at the office sliding door. A small puffy black cat. Hmm. I hoped it wasn't Little Bit. I was thinking the puffiness was from a cat who was hissy at the weather. It happens sometimes. I did a headcount. Jackie was on a cat tree, Little Bit was in her nest. Ross was on the bed and all the other cats were accounted for. So, who was this cat? And how did it get in our yard?

I went outside in the light rain, armed with a flashlight. Even though it was light out, there were a lot of dark hiding spots. I started looking. It was in the first one I looked in. Under the pool pump. It cried at me. Well, that might mean that this cat is not feral. But domestic. I quickly walked back into the house and went into the garage, grabbing a can of Friskies Salmon. I went back down there and tossed fingers full of the food towards the kitty. It ate a little, but then Sagwa showed up and the stranger moved back against the wall. I figured there wasn't much I could do, it was starting to rain harder and there were plenty of places in the yard for a cat to stay dry. Later that day, I put out a bowl full of dry food. I saw the cat eating at one point, but when I opened the door, it took off.

Tuesday, I renewed my efforts at finding this guy. I looked under the pool pump, no cat. I looked in both doghouses and all the cathouses. No new guy. I began to think it had gotten out somehow. I came back inside and thought to myself that I hadn't looked under the deck of the doghouse on the bank. I went back out. I had to lay on the wet ground to get a good look. I moved pine needles and directed the flashlight into the rear. Two eyes shined back at me. Aha! I tried to reach it, but my arms were about six inches short of the goal. The cat still hadn't hissed or growled, so I was going to go with the thinking that this cat was not a feral cat. I went into the house and grabbed another can of food. I popped it open, tossed the food with a fork, went up to the doghouse and slid the open can as far in as I could, leaving it close enough for me to reach the can. The smell got kitty's attention. It moved a little forward and started lapping at the food, then started biting at it. I pulled the can a little closer to me. The cat moved, too. We finally got to a point that I could touch the cat. It didn't mind, as a matter of fact, leaned into my fingers. I played around the ears until I could reach the back of the neck. When I was there, I scruffed the cat and slowly pulled it towards me.

I cradled it in my arms, this smallish wet bundle of fur and walked into the house. I felt for claws and found none! I felt the genital area, finding testicles. This was a declawed, unneutered male! And as far as I could tell, four paw declaw! I started to tear up. I walked into the house, still holding him. He halfheartedly tried to get down. I took him into the family room and held him on my lap. I looked at his paws again. A big sigh of relief, he did have claws, they were just really, really short. I could also very easily feel his ribcage. This guy had been out for a while.

I let him go and he ended up under the bed. There was minimal curiousity from the other cats. He stayed to the middle of the bed. I brought in a towel and folded it over, sliding it under the bed. I also brought in food and water. He talked to me a little. I tried a few toys to get his attention, to see what he would do. His reaction to the toy mouse really saddened me. When I told Brian about it that night, he almost started crying. See, when I gave him a rabbit fur mouse, he tried to eat it. He seriously started chewing on it, gnawing on the head area. Apparantly, he's been living on rodents for a while now. He spent the night under the bed. The next morning, he really started talking when the rain started pouring down. I don't think this will be a cat who is terribly interested in playing in the rain, not after the past few days. This morning I put Advantage on him, then a few hours later got him to come out to me. I also pulled his towel out after him and I got the flea comb and started combing. I found quite a few fleas on him and quite a bit more flea dirt, mostly on his head and neck, areas he couldn't reach.

He's staying here. We'll look for "cat lost" signs and I'll check the paper, but I seriously doubt I'll find anything. I won't advertise him because it's so close to Halloween. And by the time that date passes, he'll be a part of our family. Yes, we could let him go, but I think back to Blackie, how he must have started out the same way, only finding love and his onetruehome at the end of his life.

Chandler is going to have a much better chance. His first vet appointment is next Tuesday, where I'll find out more about him.

Ciara is back on the L-Lysine. Her breathing is noisy. I think she's got the runs, too. All this stress of the past couple of months can't be good for her.

DeeJay is holding steady.

Marco is all over the place. The sitter was nervous about his climbing the cat trees and kept trying to get him down, but I explained to her that it was okay, he needed the exercise. He just couldn't run long distances yet.

Little Bit started up with her crying at dawn and dusk. She had quieted down quite a bit, then had that little adventure. I hope we didn't lose too much ground. She's still hissy and growly, even gives an occasional spit, not only to me, but the other cats as well. She explores the house, looking for out options and I think is frustrated that she's not finding any. The kittens are calming to her, but she gets worried when she's out and they're running all over the house. It looks like she thinks she's lost control and it scares her. But by the time we go to bed, she's settled down, so it's not so bad.

Well, that's it for now. Going to go see what's on the tube tonight.

Replies: 1 Comment

Glad you had a great time at the DL & DCA. Congrats on the new arrival to your home. Are you sure Becky didn't secretly slip him in the backyard while you were gone? :)
I believe that the ones that need the most help will find you! ;) Thankfully!

Posted by Melanee @ 10/23/2004 06:07 PM PDT

lisaviolet is fifty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

October 2004

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