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:: Thursday, April 11, 2002 ::

New Cat

I finally caved in and got myself a new cat. I still miss Chester and will take him in if he turns up, but I'm not very optimistic. This is going to be a very stressful term, and I think a kitty in the house will greatly help me relax. Not mention I have all this cat food with no cat to give it to.

Surprisingly there was a whole new assortment of cats to choose from at the humane society. Apparently Corvallis has a really high adoption rate. Anyway, the cat above is the one I chose and his name is Bentley. Bentley has a interesting history. He was originally brought in because he was found trapped in a garage or something. They thought he was feral, but who knows. They called him Major and I actually remember seeing him a month ago. He was one of the very noisy cats in the kennel. He was subsequently adopted and returned a month later. The reason he was returned? Let me quote off his file: "Couldn't deal with the hyperness." Yes indeed, this cat is a loud, noisy, frisky, needy trouble-maker. But I digress.

This is Bentley checking out the new place. It didn't take him long at all before he started running around and seeing where he was.

This is him sniffing the spot where Chester sprayed before he took off. I did my best to wash that as clean as possible, but there's only so much you can do. Besides this initial inspection, he didn't seem to mind it too much and too my knowledge, hasn't made so much as an accident around the house.

And this is him relaxing about 10 minutes from his arrival. Quite an easy-going cat and very very demanding of attention. This cat talks so much you can't help but do everything he demands.

I think this is one of the reasons he got returned from his previous home. At about 5pm, while I was doing homework, I went looking around the house for him and couldn't find him. I started panicking but eventually he meowed at me and I found him up on top of the kitchen cupboards. He's quite the jumper. There wasn't much I could do to get him down, and I was trying to decide if I should discourage this kind of behavior. He didn't spend much time up there though and eventually spent the night sleeping with Logan.

I think this was the worst time for me to get a cat because all while this was happening I was progressively developing a terrible cold which climaxed this morning. All I need is this nuisance running around and jabbering at me. Seriously, the minute you look him in the eye he'll meow at you. So I have to deliberately ignore him to make him shut up for a while :)

He's a good cat though and I think I lucked out. He's pretty clean and uses the litter box just fine. The house was wasn't trashed when I got back from school today, and he's a real pleasure to be around.
:: everist 5:41 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, April 09, 2002 ::

Chester Still Gone

Its been exactly a week since Chester ran away from home, and I still haven't heard anything from him. I left a bowl of food and water out by my door, and its a week later and of that same food, only half is missing on the count of ants and birds.

I made a "Lost Cat" poster with a color picture of Chester on the front. I made 40 copies and posted them all around the neighboorhood in a 3-mile radius. All the major intersections in the area have 4 posters, 1 on each corner.

I put in a notification at Petco and the Heartland Humane Society. Fortunately, the people at the shelter knew my cat well, so they'll very easily recognize him if he ever comes back in. Unfortunately that hasn't happened yet.

I've received 2 calls so far responding to my posters. Unfortunately both leads turned out to be different cats. I didn't see either one of those cats, but I could get enough information by questioning its appearance that I was quite sure it wasn't him. That and the cats were found way too far away.

So I've spent the last week contemplating what I'm going to do. However, I usually have a lot of homework that I need to do, so fortunately it hasn't bothered me that much. I went to a Mechanical Engineering advisor last Monday and in a panic, I discovered that I needed to take 2 new classes this term so I can manage taking ME curriculum next year. So I had to drop one of my CS classes and add 2 more engineering courses that just happened to have schedule conflicts too! So now I'm bumped up to 6 classes with 19 credits. Its lots of fun. Its actually kept me quite busy and coursework has been so exciting. At least that's what I tell myself. That seems to work good enough for me.

:: everist 12:18 AM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, April 02, 2002 ::

Something Terrible

Yesterday we let Chester roam around the apartment free from his bathroom confinement. Things went relatively well. Nothing was torn up, but he did urinate on the rug at the top of the stairs. It took us a while to find it, but we did.

I took him to the vet yesterday and got his rabies shot. I also got him some flea mecidine that you put on the back of his neck. The vet told me to take off his collar during this time. For what reason, I don't remember exactly.

I also went to the store to get some cleaning solution to clean up specific cat messes, a spray bottle to discourage certain activities like furniture clawing and extracurricular urination, and a laser pointer to give him something to play with. Turns out he wasn't interested in the laser pointer at all. Quite odd since I've never seen a cat that aloof from chasing frivolous moving objects.

Logan and I went nextdoor at about 6:30 to play games and have lasagna and pie. I came back to the apartment at around 10pm and discovered the metal screen in the window was pushed out and Chester was nowhere to be found. I started panicking and asked for help from my neighbors to search the premises and bring him back. We walked around the apartment complex for about a half hour and he was nowhere to be found.

Really quite upset, I didn't quite know what to do. I've had Chester for only 3 days and in that time I managed to completely blow it. To top it off, the vet told me to take off his collar, so now he's out lost without an ID tag. Did I do something wrong that made him want to leave? Was there something I could have done to prevent this? How was I supposed to know the metal screen wasn't fixed into place?

Endless questions, regrets, and guilt. I decided the only thing I could do at the moment was leave the window open and hope he'll come back in the night or in the morning. I slept on the couch next to the window, so I would meet him when he came in and discourage any opportunists from looting our apartment.

I stayed up until 1am reading a book and passing the time hoping that Chester would make an appearance. After that I drifted into an uneasy sleep. My dreams were filled with false scenarios of Chester coming home and their being a joyful reunion. But I would quickly realize that this was a dream and that he really hadn't come back.

Morning came and there was no kitty. I walked around the complex calling him, but no luck. I left some food out in front of my door with the hope that if he didn't come back when I was there, he would at least eat the food and continue to come back as a source of food.

I also made some Lost Cat posters that I'll be posting around the area and at the animal shelter and pet shop. I'm embarassed to go back to the animal shelter with my situation since I only had him 3 days and I still managed to fuck things up. I'm resentful of the veterinarian for having me take off his collar which drastically reduces the chances that I will see him again.

Its been a bad past 24 hours.
:: everist 3:18 PM [+] ::