Archive for July, 2006

Catching up

I saw a matinee of the Leonard Cohen- I’m You’re Man movie today with Andy. It’s a documentary/concert movie of a tribute concert done in Australia with various musicians including Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright, Nick Cave, Kate and Anna McGarrigle and also an appearance by U2. I’ve been a major Leonard Cohen fan since I was in high school (way, way back in the 70’s) so it was a real treat seeing the movie and music in a theater. I think my favorite song was Antony’s (of Antony and The Johnsons) rendition of If It Be Your Will. Julie Christensen & Perla Batalla’s rendition of Anthem got me a little goose bumpy.

The reason that A. and I could see it in a theater together in the middle of the day during the week is because A.’s out of work. He was laid off a couple of weeks ago from a job he’s been at for 21 years (well, not the same job for 21 years, but the same company. Well, not really the same company because it’s changed hands 3 times, but he’s been in the same office building for 21 years.) He has survived many massive layoffs over the years, but not this time. Because he’s been there for so long he got a very good severance package so he can afford to take some time off to rest, enjoy himself, do some work around the house and figure out what he wants to do next. So we’re both okay about it for now although it is a little weird (but very nice) having him home. He was laid off right before we left for our shore vacation with my family, so he’s really only been home for a week. I tell you it’s really freed me up having someone around to help with driving and picking up Z. from camp! I could get used to this! (Oh no, never mind, we’re not supposed to get used to this!)

Meanwhile we’ve been having a pretty good summer. Z.’s been in various day camps off and on and has 2 weeks of science camp starting next week. Calvin is settling into the household very well. He’s a very energetic kitten now that he’s not emaciated! Z. sometimes refers to him as her kitten brother.

I’ve been going to my art classes at the Wellness Community which I have been enjoying immensely! This session we are working with collage which is one of my favorite mediums. I’ve been using a small amount of paper material (mostly black and white (or low color) magazine photos and colored tissue paper) with a lot of watercolor, gouache and watercolor crayons. These are the last two pieces I did. They aren’t great photos, the colors aren’t right, the edges are curled up and they are just laying on my dining room table, but it gives a little idea of what I’ve been doing.

I’ve got some of my checkups coming up these next couple weeks. It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost 2 years (August 20th) since my surgery. A. and I are planning a trip to San Francisco at the end of the month, just the two of us. It’s a long overdue vacation for both of us. Of course we haven’t figured out where we’re staying or booked our flights or anything yet, but that’s not unusual for us. We’re also plowing right ahead with the 2nd floor bathroom(s) renovation we had planned. The contractor’s were here last week scoping out the situation and A. and I have been spending time in tile and plumbing showrooms. It had been postponed 2 years ago when I was diagnosed with endo cancer and we’re not postponing it again. Life if too short to keep living with a cruddy bathroom 🙂


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Z., A. and I are pleased to announce that we’ve been adopted by a sweet, orange, boy kitten. On Tuesday, July the 4th I was talking to A. in the driveway after coming home from water aerobics class and heard meowing coming from the bushes near the front of the driveway. I went over to look and out pops this adorable little guy and without one iota of fear walks right up to me for pets. We have not had a cat since Z. was little and our last cat Samantha died. While a beautiful cat (a long haired Himalayan) she peed all over the house and had to take Paxil every day (yes, the antidepressant for people) which cut it down from almost daily to once every couple months, but was still a major PITA. When she died unexpectedly we were not anxious to get another cat and deal with all the responsibility again. I should mention that before Z. was born, A. and I were cat parents kind of people. A couple years before Samantha died our most beloved cat Sidney had died after having thyroid disease, a trip to the NYC Animal Medical Center for expensive treatment, then kidney failure and a few years of a number of daily medications- we were pretty burned out from the years of sick or behavior problem cats.

So, back to this new kitty, after petting him I could see he was dirty and was extremely bony. So I said to him, “follow me and I’ll get you some water at least” and turned and walked down the driveway and up the back porch stairs to the kitchen door. He followed me like a puppy and waited on the porch while I got him some water. After a few minutes I thought, well, I really should feed the little guy and found a can of chicken left over from my radiation days and gave him some. Well, that was it, the kitten decided we were the home for him and he hasn’t left since. We won’t let him inside (he has an appt. next week to be checked out at the vets and treated for whatever bugs he may have) but he wants to come inside desperately. He stays on the back porch close to the door when we are inside and if we go outside he follows us around wherever we go. He has no fear and is very affectionate and friendly. We had friends over that evening and he was really good with the kids (9 year olds and a 17 month old). While we kept saying we didn’t want a cat, if we did want a cat this was the perfect one!

I emailed my neighbors and took his picture and put up a flyer at the supermarket and library down the block. But after a couple days it became clear that this cat wasn’t going anywhere and we’d all be heartbroken if someone came and claimed him. So today, after making the vet appt. and rationalizing that if his previous owners really were missing him they’d be the ones with signs up at the Acme, Z. and I went and took the signs down and started talking about names. The current favorite is Calvin, after the boy in the Calvin and Hobbes comic strip. Z.’s been obsessed with Calvin and Hobbes lately, but since she has a stuffed Hobbes she didn’t want two Hobbes in the family, so we thought, why not Calvin. We’ll decide for sure very soon.

I think having a pet will be good for Z. She’s actually a little apprehensive, not terribly so, but she’s a bit nervous around animals. She has major dog phobia, but likes cats and has enjoyed going out in the backyard and hanging out and talking to the kitten. I think it will be good for her to have a live creature to talk to and play with at home besides her stuffed animals. As for A. and I, in spite of our initial resistance, which I have to say was pretty half hearted, we both quickly became attached and started feeling those cat parent feelings again. My friend C., who has a number of cats of her own and is a foster cat mom to many others says that cats and people find each other. I think she’s right, I think this cat was destined to find us and to live here. I’m so glad we’ve been adopted!

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