Sunday, October 28, 2007

On the Expectations of Men, Mice, and Cats

Even the best laid plans...

Ursula K. Le Guin was right:

The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.

In other words, was seemed “certain” yesterday is not always certain today. For example:

My moving from this house is no longer imminent. This afternoon I met with the young man who purchased the house and signed a month-by-month lease on the house that gives me perhaps six months for locating a more suitable dwelling place. The cost is acceptable, just a bit more than I have budgeted for rent wherever I end up settling.

Meanwhile, my new landlord—strange: I’ve not had one of those in thirty or so years—will assume responsibility for maintaining the yard and making the numerous repairs to the house that I have been unable to afford over the past two or three years.

I also learned that he is a neighbor: he lives seven houses down the street from me and knew me by sight, even though I did not know him.

Angels come in many disguises—even as landlords.

Alex has an appointment with his vet on Monday. He will not be happy, especially since he has been prancing—yes, prancing— around since he became Alex the Mouse Slayer. And also because the furball just saw his vet last weekend. Appointments this close together traumatize my travel-wary—yes, wary, as in mistrustful; not weary, as in fatigued—feline. Alex resists (literally) being stuffed into his travel case, even though it is luxurious. For Alex, travel case = trip to veterinarian = trauma. Even though he is always the perfectly behaved cat around his vet, part of that good behavior comes from the uncertainty of what will happen when he is in her hands.

This appointment was unexpected. Friday night Alex asked me to cuddle him. When I placed him, like a human baby, in my arms with his belly up so I could rub it and tickle him under his chinny-chin-chin, he cried as if in pain. It was then I discovered a large—perhaps with a diameter of two inches and a height of three-quarters of an inch—lump on the right side of his rump just behind his tail. Last night it was tender to my touch.

Since the animal hospital was already closed Friday when I discovered the protuberance, I telephoned them when they opened at 7:00 a.m. Saturday morning. Unfortunately, no vet was working at the hospital Saturday, so I made an appointment for Monday and decided that, if Alex was in pain prior to that, I would rush him to the emergency animal hospital that saved his life when he was a kitten.

During the rest of Saturday and into Sunday morning (it is 1:50 a.m. as I write this), Alex behaved normally: eating, sleeping, playing inside and outside (he is at the moment doing his early morning catting around outside), and, of course, clawing and making demands on me, his servant. The swelling is no longer sore to the touch and doesn’t seem to bother him at all. Therefore, unless there is a change for the worse prior to his appointment of Monday, I’ll let my darling furball avoid the trauma of being stuffed into his luxurious cat carrier. Of course, I’ll post any updates to Alex’s condition.

Speaking of updates, Mike reports that Carmen had another up and down day. For the details, you can click HERE. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Sunday blessings and shalom to all!


  1. good news on all fronts then it seems. maybe alex was in a wee fight and got bitten. my cat wills had his anal glands drained when i took him to the vet last ... now THAT was scary.

  2. I think cats seem to know their servants will take care of them and they find ways to let us know somethings wrong.

  3. I do hope it's nothing serious with Alex.

    Glad the pressure is off on the move.

  4. Good news of the delay in moving! I look forward to hearing that Alex is found to be all right. Could that mouse have bitten him?

  5. Hope you will be able to find a suitable lodging soon.

    Alex Really does own you :D

    Hope all is well with him!

  6. ` Let's hope nothing bad happens to Alex - it would be a shame to have to move without him (which I had to). A home isn't a home without a kitty.

  7. Ah yes. If the cat isn't bossing you around then he is making you worry. I believe it is all part of the grand plan.

    Thanks for coming by my blog.

  8. I moved with Alice several times. It was always a trauma the first few days, the curiosity kicked in and I think she enjoyed the exploring.

    I'll say an extra prayer for your little friend. I hope he's feeling better soon.

  9. Glad to hear you got a breathing space and if the lump is still there take Alex to the vets even if it isn't sore. Just to be on the safe side.

  10. Just popping over to say hello.....

    I also think that maybe alex got a nip or bite and that makes for tenderness.... just see how he is in the morning......

    Dont know if you was reading me blob back in June, but you might like this :) it might make you laff at me saddo life again LMFAO...... its about one of me cats......

    Have a lovely Sunday evening (((Saint))))


  11. Poor Alex. I don't like it when our babies get sick.

  12. Excellent finding. Better now than never. Best to Alex and the Vet.

    Jeez, Santa, life's really doing that curveball thang, ain't it?

    (breathing in, breathing out)


  13. Nick, so glad you don't have to move right now.
    I ask for nothing but the best for you and Alex.

  14. Ah. Ursula Le Guin /Lathe of Heaven - one of my favorite books. That is good that you can have some breathing time to find a new place.

  15. Great about not having to immediately move. Not so great about Alex. I know how you worry about him. You are in my thoughts, Good things for you and Alex.

  16. oh no, i hope he's okay...
    i am glad your moving thing got sorted, so much nicer to stay where you are!

  17. So glad it's working out for your living situation. That's wonderful. I hope that lump is nothing. I mean, literally, nothing. I hope it's completely gone now.