Tag Archives: travel

Bassackwards

Confession: The Boy and I weren’t home yet when I posted on Sunday. So there are more kittehs of Italy at the end of this post.

Lori, Best Kitteh-Sitter Evah, took great care of Kitten Thunder while we were gone. It wasn’t exactly easy. Winter decided to get in one more big storm, dumping ten inches of super heavy snow on Cheyenne. It must have been super heavy – it ripped a giant branch off one of our trees that was trimmed recently. Poor Lori had to drag the branch/log out of the street. Above and beyond.

She reported that she and the fuzzies had a routine involving a five minute brushing of Obi, then breakfast in the morning.

THEN breakfast!?! I can’t imagine howo unacceptable this was for Oliver. Oli doesn’t even think The Boy should waste time putting on pants in the morning before breakfast. And woe is The Girl who can’t find her glasses (because a cat knocked them off the nightstand) in the morning. She shall be verbally abused for the delay.

In the evening, Lori would return to watch some television. I left her a bag of treats to bribe the kittehs for affection. She has so bribed.

And on the weekend, Lori stayed at our house. Did I mention what a good kitteh sitter she is?

She’s a good girl. We’d rub her belly or scritch her ears if she wanted. Instead, we bought her gifts. Hopefully she prefers jewelry to inappropriate touching.

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Kittehs of Italy!

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This pretty girl was in Urbino. She showed us her doorway and asked if one of us might be so kind as to turn the knob and let her in. We did not so she asked the next group. And the next. As we turned out of sight she was talking to a priest about the doorknob situation.

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This cat had the opposite problem. She wanted out. Or for someone to send up some sardines.

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There’s no cat in this picture, just what I assume was a cat door in a palace. It was about a foot tall. I’d have had The Boy stand there for scale but just after I took this I realized that photography was not allowed.

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Car alarms in Perugia are very sophisticatted. And okay with having their picture taken as long as you keep your distance.

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This handsome boy was off duty in the piazza outside a chapel. If only he had been so kind as to tell us that it was his day off. And the chapel’s day off. We waited quite a while for a church that doesn’t open on Monday to open open open.

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Dogs of Europe! Hey, we love the pooches, too. Not all of them got into the blog because there were dogs walking their owners everywhere we looked.

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The dog of Split.

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The bored dog of Mostar.

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This is not a dog. I thought I had one more dog picture but I don’t. So, since I had to pick a picture…I thought this view in Dubrovnik was particularly special.

Kittehs of Croatia

Confession: For the last two weeks, The Boy and I have been in Europe.

We started in Rome where we were told we would see a whole bunch of cats. There are even calendars and post cards (Photoshopped) about the kitties of Rome. We saw none. Not one.

Croatia, however, had more. And some of them allowed me to take their picture for you. I promised them international fame.

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This is from the top of the city wall around Dubrovnik. My accent in Croat-Meow must be bad – neither of these cats would even look my way.

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This one was trying to understand me.

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This one was off duty. He refused to pose but said he didn’t mind if I took a picture.

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We affronted this lady with our picture taking. This, so soon after someone had the audacity to walk down her stairs without asking, was more than she could bear.

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Each cafe had its own cat. This is the cat in the cafe where we hid from a rainstorm and met some nice people from Seattle.

Due to an ancient agreement that has lasted through a number of governments, Bosnia has a section of coastline that divides Croatia. We took a day trip to Mostar. Bosnian cats, like its people, have a population that is thriving and one that suffers.

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Cafe cats are better off.

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Our final day in Croatia was in Split where we caught the ferry back to Italy.

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This cat was less than impressed by the notion of my international blog.

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The book I’m reading has a one-eyed stripper. Weird coincidence, I think, that we met this mama cat who has lived hard at the ferry terminal. I fed her the ham from our left over sandwich. This is her afterward, giving us serious one-eyed purr face. I wanted to give her a scritch but I didn’t touch any of these cats for fear of creepy crawlies.

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Back in Italy, we saw this handsome gentleman at his basilica in Ravenna. He posed for about 20 women who wanted his picture. Then a woman stepped wrong on the wooden walkway and the sound sent him running.

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In Urbino, just as I was about to lose my mind from the need to scritch, we walked by a theatre and saw a couple with a cat. They saw us taking pictures and let us in. I got a purr of appreciation from him – he could tell I was cat trained and kitten approved.

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But in all my travels for these two weeks, there is one simple truth:

There no scritch like home.

The Runaround

I apologize if you felt a horrible loss over not having a Kitten Thunder blog to read on Tuesday, but I was on an important mission. I had to download and watch a movie on my computer to see what impact it would have on the battery. The Boy and I are going to Europe this spring and we wanted to know how many movies we could take with us in case we only want to watch the in-flight movie six times. I chose Anna Karenina – it was very artsy, but pretty good.

And then it was time for bed.

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On Wednesday evenings, The Boy and I drink beer. This has been so since our bar, The Capitol Grille, opened about 11 years ago. When we started, sometimes we had enough people there to fill the bar. Over the years, our friends have grown up (old), had kids, and found other things to distract them from our Wednesday night tradition. Until it was just The Boy and I. And so we decided we might as well date and eventually get married.

Now when we go home at night, The Boy plays flat mousie with Obi. In case you are new to the blog, this is where The Boy throws Obi’s flat mousie into the hallway. The brown kitten races to get his toy and brings it back to the belly rubbing rug. Rinse and repeat until the kitten loses interest.

Last night, though, there was an issue. His name is Oliver.

For some reason Oliver decided to forgo his usual snuggle with The Girl and wanted to play flat mousie with The Boy and Obi. The problem being that Oliver doesn’t know how to play the game. He kept running with Obi to get the mousie, but then he would sit down, confused, and get in the way. The brown kitten had to go around, or over, the grey.

Then, Obi had enough.

The Boy threw the toy into the hallway. Obi got to it and tossed it into the air. He bumped it away and chased after it…out of sight. Oliver went to find him. He never did.

Obi came through the kitchen, and returned to the living room from the other direction. Having lost his brother – who was probably reminded as he entered the kitchen that he was peckish – the brown kitten and The Boy played on.

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A kitten has to do what a kitten has to do.

Extreme Supervision

The Boy and I were gone over Christmas. We left Kitten Thunder alone, with kittensitter Lori keeping them full and happy, for three days. It. Was. Traumatizing.

We’ve been back since Wednesday, but I am under heavy supervision to make sure I don’t try to go away again.

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Lucky for me, my parents gave me brand new work shoes – perfect for my job of trekking from one Facebook page to another.

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Oliver is using his own strategy to keep me home. It’s called “hold The Girl down on the sofa and shush her whenever she suggests she should get up.” The short name for the strategy is Super Snuggle.

Also, Oliver is not impressed with my fuzzy feet. He has four of his own.

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Sleep With One Eye Open

I was gone AGAIN this weekend. But now the traveling is over for a while. To add insult to injury, when I arrived home early this afternoon I left almost immediately for a meeting and then had a call on Skype. So Oliver and I didn’t settle down for a nap on the love seat until after dinner. He was full of the purr.

Obi doesn’t trust that I’m really back. He settled down for a nap at the same time on the couch. Every time I looked over he was napping…with one eye open and watching The Girl. I’m not going anywhere without him knowing.

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I was expecting to have a super cute video of Kitten Thunder and their first Skype. I mean, a man’s voice coming from my computer? His face on the screen? Me trying to be semi-professional? All of these things told me I would have two kittens crawling on my lap, over my shoulders, onto the keyboard…

Nope. Not a kitten in sight. 

How…catlike.

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At my parents’ house this weekend, Cousin Spade helped me get ready for bed in the basement. After I turned out the light he jumped up on the bed, walked up my leg, over my shoulder, and stepped on my head as he moved on to the nightstand.

Then I heard it. The sound of a contact case scooting.

“Spade. Stop.”

Scoot. Scoot.

“Spade-O. Don’t knock my stuff off the table.”

Scoot. Scoot scoot.

“Hey. Spade. Un-uh.”

Scoot. Scoot scoot scoot.

*Sigh*

When I woke up in the morning I found my contact case balanced precariously on the ledge of the table. Exactly half on and half off. Also, the black kitten had scooted my contact solution bottle onto the edge. He wasn’t there to see the look on my face.

I told him later that I was impressed.

Catifornia

The Boy and I were in California for seven days. Since returning, I have been very well supervised. As was the window guy who came to give me a quote this evening. For one thing, he brought an awesome bag thing with window parts in it.

Obi wanted in the bag something fierce. I kept picking him up and holding him in my lap. Then he’d walk off. Next thing I knew he was in the bag again. Lap. Away. Bag. Lap. Away. Bag. Eventually he’d reached his limit for snuggle time and started biting me. He was sent away with a swat to the bottom.

The second he was gone, Oliver walked in and started trying to get into the bag. So he was on my lap. Obi came and sat on the window guy’s worksheet.

This was after both Oliver and Obi helped us discuss the windows on the cat shelf. They were in his face, on his workbook, playing with his tape measure…and they followed us downstairs to discuss the windows over the train layout. Obi liked that – he was at shoulder height with window guy.

I did apologize to window guy for the attention he was getting. It occurs to me that he might be wondering why I didn’t lock up the kittens. I know why. Two kittens locked up would be loud. And distracting. And traumatizing to the kittens who have not left my side since we got home on Tuesday.

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It’s Thunder Thursday! While we were in California, we visited some kittehs that helped us get through the time without our fuzzies.

Benjy and Freddy hosted us in Monterey. There was a lot of belly rubbing during the two days we were there. Benjy even met me at the bathroom door in the middle of the night and informed me that I could pet him for half an hour before going back to sleep. He accommodated me by going back to the bed so I could lay down.

Lacey, in Redwood City, was not too interested in hostessing. She watched us. From afar.

Lacey’s brother, Chuck, was more active in his hosting. Or in his attempt to turn us into slaves. He has the tell-tale yowl of an older, deaf cat that reminded me of Poco. At least, that’s why I think I picked him up every time he asked. We’re pretty sure we spoiled him rotten and he is now insufferable.

And then, in China Town, I found these itteh bitteh kittehs. We adopted them and brought them home.

Say Cheeeeeeeese Treats!

Confession: The Boy and I have been on vacation for the last week. I bought some cheese flavored treats for kitteh (and dragon!) sitter Lori to bribe Obi with.

But Obi decided he does not need Lori’s help.

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We’ve decided to stop leaving bags of treats on the coffee table.

Thunder Thursday Snapshots

Oli was on the director’s chair glaring at me because I’m in his chair. Then he got in the condo and glared at me. Then I looked over and he was laying on my computer bag on the bed. Oliver is on his blanket. Poor put down upon brown kitten.

Just as I finished writing that paragraph, Oli and Obi switched places. All is right with the world.

I left the house for two hours today. Kitten Thunder was so relieved when I arrived home. Have I put more products in my Zazzle store? I assured them I have.

Last night I went into the basement to Draino my shower and there was a HUGE wolf spider in there. It made the one in this photo look kind of on the small size. I’ve discovered that I have an inner second grade boy – for about ten seconds I thought about what the spider would do if I poured Draino on it. Luckily, the me that would still feel guilty about that ten years later smacked the 2nd grade boy upside the head.

When the Draino had done its magic, Obi happened to be with me and he chased the spider for a while. Then it ran down the drain. Which means it was waiting for me this morning because it can’t climb the walls of the bathtub. Ick. I scooped him up with a box and threw him in the trash.

So he’s still down there…waiting…

The squirrels are frantically collecting food for the winter because it is finally a tiny bit cooler. I slept under a sheet for the first time in four months last night. Yay! It has made for some excellent OutTV because I stocked all the window sills with corn mix and peanuts.

I put some finch mix in the bird feeder, hoping for some goldfinches. Nope. Sparrows and wrens as per usual. I was hoping some of the Brewers blackbirds would come over for some of the corn. Unfortunately, our neighbor seems to be serving bird cocaine and they won’t budge from that feeder. Eventually they’ll notice the berry trees on the other side of our house and there will be AWESOME OutTV for about one day while they strip them clean.

The squirrels are also harvesting the plums on those top branches of our tree. They make getting the plums look easy. Climbing a telephone pole with a plum in your mouth, however, looks difficult.

Since I’m LOLing at you, this is a cute picture of an otter. The Boy and I are going to Monterey/Redwood City/San Francisco in the near future. My favorite part of the Bay area? Otters. Otters. Otters.

We should probably do a drinking – or the “if I had a dollar for every time I hear” – game about the word otter. Because I’ll be talking about them. A lot.

Interesting fact: otters have to be taught to swim. And the first time they are dragged into the water they act as if their mother is trying to kill them. No joke.

At arms length

I went to my home town for a client visit – a whirlwind trip that started yesterday and ended today. I somehow managed to get my suitcase out of the house without either cat seeing it so I don’t think they even knew I was gone.

I haven’t seen The Boy yet, so I don’t know for sure.

Since arriving home, Oli and Obi have been in the same room as me. But on the other side. Clearly there is some confusion about protocol when they aren’t certain if I went on a trip or just had a really long meeting.

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It is Thunder Thursday! However, I’ve got nothing.  Sorry, I don’t have the will to go turn on the computer to find something.

Have a great Labor Day weekend!

Bed Bugs

The Boy has been out of town for a couple days. This, of course, means that I’ve received extra attention from Kitten Thunder. Especially at night. And, now, from Mr. Bear as well.

Lately Mr. Bear has taken to sleeping tucked under the blankets behind my knees. This isn’t where Oliver sleeps. Oli sleeps in my arms, under the blankets, with his head on the pillow. Now, though, he makes sure Mr. Bear is settled before he comes to bed.

The first night The Boy was gone, Kitten Thunder and I read until late in the night. I turned out the light. Oliver left to go get Mr. Bear.

Then it happened. Something fluttered in my face. I new, of course, that this was a miller moth – they tend to dive bomb faces right after the light goes out. So I sputtered and waved him away and settled back down. But he came back! Again and again! Eventually, I figured out what was happening…

Not wanting to be outdone, Obi was tucking HIS favorite toy into my bed as well.

He brought millers to bed for a while last night, too. But hopefully, with The Boy’s return, this foolishness will stop.

The Boy got a surprising welcome from Kitten Thunder. Obi demanded a belly rub; this is not surprising at all. But then The Boy decided to take a nap – he’d been up since 3:30 a.m. mountain time. I figured he’d have company. Even if Oli didn’t nap WITH him, I figured he’d have two aura snugglers.

But no.

I didn’t realize, when doing my figuring, that The Boy had set up a perfect storm for neglect upstairs. First, the best box in the world has returned. That’s where Obi spent his afternoon. And second, The Boy opened his closet to hang up his suit. That’s where Oliver spent his afternoon.

You can’t blame them, really. Closets and boxes are fleeting. The Boy is forever.

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It’s Thunder Thursday! I just spent way too much time looking at pictures of LOL cats. And this is the one I picked.