Friday, August 19, 2011

the flight home

Being in a house again just takes part of my soul so I have begun bike riding, walking the dogs and enjoying suburbia fresh air for what its worth. I got wifi installed in the house I am staying in to enjoy my tablet and laptop. My cell gets horrible reception so I needed communication with the outside world. I am slowly getting back into the school drill after some seriously stressful exams, a long flight, time change and getting semi settled. I am enjoying having my cats and I can tell they are enjoying me.

Ajah has been velcro kitty and Iulia purrs nonstop. I have been working on getting Iulia used to her new walking jacket and reaquainting Ajah to clicker training and holding positions. We haven't had the opportunity to show since Feb. It is also summer and Ajah isn't in prime coat. She also loses weight due to tne heat. Luckfully OH doesn't stay hot for to long. Its cooling down at night so wet ad raw food along with a good structure is good for the both of us. There were thoughts on the kitten. I think she will get things figured out. The constant changes over the past year have created a lot of unique challenges that have brought both happiness and pure heartache. Having pets does complicate things but I can't imagine life without them and they weren't insurmountable.

So let me back up... I traveled from spot in AZ, spent the night in a smoking cubicle outside at the airport. I used my two carry on bags and blanket to sprawl out. Then got on my flight 10 hours later. Tucson airport was cool with actual plugins and seating. In Houston, things were pretty quiet. I ate lunch and couldn't find a plug. The flight was roomy. I watched a movie on my laptop and got a very limited nap. Then Houston to Chicago was like a sardine can with some lady who wws nice that didn't speak english. It was fine except I had to go to the bathroom and couldnt get
out. I felt near claustrophobic. Being by the window was my only saving grace. It was an overbooked flight. They ran out of room in the overhead bin and didn't offer valet service so I had both carryons below my feet for 4 hours. Its like riding in the middle hump seat of a toyota corolla. Needless to say for someone my size, keep in mind I fit in the airplane seat with room to move but I am not small either, it was tight. I couldt even sit up straight because tbe lady next to me had her arms resting on borh sides. Luckfully, chicago to Toledo was nice. They had a small plane and I got the one seat row where I could actually stretch oht. It felt nice and they had valet for the flight. Then, there was not any public transportation from our small cornfield airport for night flights. So I walked 8 miles and then got a cab after taking a nature hike. I saw it as a walkabought as described by John Locke in Lost. Then after an investment for a cool high top minivan taxi I got to my current location. The taxi driver was smoking peach cigars, a Vietnam vet and we shared some political views and VA medical changes amongst other things.

And so I will be returning to Az for school reasons in 3 months. After that its Az for a few months but hopefully to Phoenix to be closer to the events listed previously. Then hopefully I have an rv setup and will allow me to spend the winter in Phoenix. From there, spring and finally a summer break. Next summer I want a workamping position and some breathing space to shift gears. Then graduation 6 months later and onto Portland hopefully. But by Fortuna, the fates with have their way. Pax for now with warm wishes and happiness to all.


  1. Clicker training works with cats? I thought they would be too independent...

  2. Hi Conrad,
    Please visit to see examples of how it is done. Most cats are responsive to clicker training. It gives them something to do aka environmental enrichment, merely transforms what they do naturally to when you want them to do it, and it enhances the relationship between owner and pet. I used clicker training initially to compete show cats in agility (yep we have cat agility like dogs do as well). otherwise known as International Cat Agility Association.
    Then when I decided on traveling, I experimented with taking the cats and found many of the skills from agility and show training were applicable to coexisting in a van for days at a time. Clicker training made it possible for my cats to learn to go to crate, I made it inviting. I put the harness on them and used play as a distraction and eventually they looked forward to their leash. Its a continual process. Another factor is that its positive reinforcement training which has come in handy with teaching kittens to stay off certain furniture and my kitchen counters. And it all started with a cat named Angel who was bored and destructive at home by himself. So we got him a buddy (he passed from crystals in 2007 very sad) and found clicker training through the TICA Anchorage cat show club. Some cities have actual lessons like dogs but based on 1/2 hour timeslots at a studio with one on one instruction because lets face it, cats aren't dogs in that they remain selectively social.