So we had a vet appointment last night at 6 o’clock for the felines. It was a new vet, so we were asked to be there 10-15 minutes early to fill out some paperwork. No problem, right?
Uh, no. That would be oh-so-wrong.
I left work a little early so I’d be home in plenty of time to corral the cats and get them in their cat carriers. What I didn’t count on was that bright sunshine in the middle of winter in Columbus, Ohio, is evidently just as treacherous as black ice.
People were driving approximately 3.2 miles per hour on a freeway despite the fact that there was not a single fender bender or a solitary car sporting a flat tire off the side of the road waiting for Triple A.
I don’t know, perhaps people around here haven’t seen the sun in so long they weren’t sure what the big yellow thing in the sky was. Or maybe they stashed their sunglasses somewhere last August and the shades haven’t turned up since and the sun was blinding those drivers on our eastbound commute. But considering that the sun still sets in the west, this should not have been an issue. Unless, of course, drivers were peering in their rearview mirrors the entire time. This could explain the problem.
So I arrived home about 10 minutes later than I had anticipated. I left the car running and kept my winter coat on so as not to delay our departure.
My master plan was to bring the pet carriers up to our mudroom as close to the garage door as possible. I’d open the carrier doors wide so I wouldn’t later have to fumble around trying to open them with one hand, while holding a wriggling, pissed-off cat in the other. The next step in my plan was to loudly shake the bag of kitty treats so as to entice them into the mudroom where I would then shut the door to the room to trap them and thus they’d be unable to escape my clutches. I could then, at my leisure, stuff them into their carriers.
Yeah, like any of this worked.
Well, except that I was able to accomplish Step 1. I brought the carriers up to the mudroom and opened the pet carrier doors.
The flaw in my plan is that cats have acute hearing and that first tiny, almost-silent clink-clink of the pet carrier doors alerted them to impending doom.
Twinks, however, was lured out of her hiding place by the rattle of the treats bag. But she’s a quick little bugger and was able to snatch the treat off the floor and scamper out of the room before I could shut the door to the mudroom.
My second attempt to trap her, resulted in successfully closing her off in the master bathroom. Mission almost accomplished! The pet carrier, of course, was still in the mudroom. But I figured that was a minor point and at least she was sequestered somewhere where she couldn’t escape.
Now my search for the elusive Jinx began. Jinx, by the way, has perfected the art of hiding. At the very hint of someone approaching the front door, she darts under beds or hides in closets or disappears under dressers. We don’t see her again until long after the visitor has arrived back at their own home and is relaxing on the couch in their PJs watching the 11 o’clock news.
By this point, I was starting to get a little panicky because I couldn’t imagine that we could possibly get to the clinic on time. And Vince was getting a little frustrated with my ineffectiveness at getting the cats into their carriers and/or my ever increasingly panicked state. Hey, I never professed to be The Cat Whisperer, nor do I have powers that allow me to divine which of the four beds Jinx may have been hiding under.
But she wasn’t under a bed at all. Fortunately, I spied her twitching little nose under the dresser in the lower level bedroom-slash-office. How she fits her body inside and underneath that thing, I have no clue. But it’s nearly impossible to get her out.
I closed the bedroom-slash-office door and somehow managed to get her out from underneath the dresser, but she promptly scampered under the bed and backed her little furry body up against the wall where I had no hope of reaching her.
I calmly called to her in a soothing voice. No luck. I placed cat treats on the carpet to lure her out. She normally can’t resist them, but, nooooo. Not this time. Of course, I then knelt on the treats, effectively grinding them into the knees of my black slacks.
Fortunately, Vince came to my rescue and stepped into the fray. He walked into the room carrying two long cardboard Christmas wrapping paper rolls and he shooed Jinx into the bathroom. He then picked her up by the scruff of her neck and walked upstairs and calmly deposited her in her cat carrier. He then walked into the master bathroom and did the same to Twinklebelle.
I, meanwhile, was a disheveled mess. My hair was sticking up on one side where I’d been lying on the carpet trying to locate Jinx under the bed. I had cat-treat dusty knees. And I had sweat dripping off my nose from running around the house in my winter coat.
With not a spare moment left to primp – or, truthfully, at least try to look a little less like a crazy lady – I grabbed one of the carriers, Vince grabbed the other and off we went.
The cats meowed and howled like we were torturing them the entire drive over. Thankfully, it was only a short trip to the vet’s office. But once they were in the office getting examined, they were little angels.
Personally, I think they did this on purpose to get back at me and cement my crazy-cat-lady image in the vet’s mind – but that’s just a guess.
I was relieved that the cats are healthy and won’t need to go back to the vet for another year. I was thankful that Vince was home and there to catch the cats. But mostly? Well, mostly I was grateful for the margarita I ordered to help me forget the whole ordeal.