Tuesday, February 7, 2012

We Will Survive

Weather in the Netherlands is never reliable, not even with weather reports. This is, in part, due to the fact that the country is miniscule, but also because the eastern part of the country, where we live, is right at the boundary between coastal and continental weather. You don't really notice the difference, until you get into a train under the auspices of golden rays of sunlight, and step out into a downpour. I've been drier getting out of the shower.

So planning vet visits is always dicey. First and foremost, of course, is finding a day when we're both free, which is hard enough. Then we have to find a day and time when the vet is available, which is even harder, since they charge an extra €20 on the weekends. But lastly, we'd like it to be not-too-hot, not-too-cold, and preferably not-raining. This latter is nearly impossible to plan for, as we usually schedule vet visits weeks in advance. And it's been COLD.

The temperature this past week has been below freezing all week. I've been wearing leggings and long johns to go running and get to work. It's been so cold that wet laundry freezes stiff in ten minutes--after fifteen, it can be used as a weapon (the upside, though, is that it smells INCREDIBLE after it dries). Not that I would know.

So walking to the vet with our Kitty Tower of Terror required a few extra considerations, on top of the usual concerns about bungee cords and figuring out to cram all three fuzzbutts into their respective carriers without having them hide in impossible places. The Tweeb, in particular , is all skin and bone and and thin fur, so she got a hot water bottle in hers(much to our regret, as she was plenty comfortable enough to belt out her own operetta of howls and yowls). The entire KiTT was wrapped in one of our fleece throw blankets, which we thought would convey the added benefit of screening the kitties from seeing the enormity of the whole wide world. Alas, all it did was keep us from smelling Noodle's stress-turd until we go to the vet's. By then, Karel was quite frazzled--and I wouldn't have put a stress-turd past him.

Like Shadow, I bear these trips to the vet with an equanimity that's not quite grace--they're part and parcel of having fuzzbutts, so it must be put up with. Still, even though I'd prepared for it and checked my balances ahead of time, getting socked with an €[ungodly number] vet bill is something that you never really get used to, no matter which side of the Atlantic you're on.

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