Someone Is Out To Get Me (A Tale of Car and Cat)

It’s like the outside gods don’t want me to leave the house, or have fun, or have any money….

First of all, Saturday was a family barbeque, which was great, a full day of some productivity at home, then family, a huge delicious salmon, homemade bread (thanks dad!), cheese, etc. Great all around.

Then came Sunday.

So we had arranged a climbing day in Squamish. I’ve been hankering to get out on the rock again even if it’s just to see that I’m way too old and fat to be out on the rock again, and my buddy Lawrence was up for it, so we and some other friends arranged to head up early Sunday morning. I had all my gear ready (got it out of storage the night before, spent some time going through everything and smelling it to see if I could smell the rock again), and people were all about ready to go and meetup with Lawrence in Abbotsford to get on the road. As we were out on the driveway someone pointed to a cat and said something like “what’s wrong with her?”.

Closer examination showed that Munchkin’s whole backend was black. Not dirty, like she’d fallen in a mud puddle, but she had somehow gotten her whole back end into either paint, or tar, or the goop they use in asphalt. Her back legs, tail, and belly were covered in a black tacky goop that made it hard for her to walk, and was covered in dust and bits of plants that she’d picked up walking around. It also was splattered on various bits of her, including mouth and tongue (from trying to lick it off no doubt).

So there goes the day. Andrea saw pretty quickly that it wasn’t something we could just hose off, so we cancelled the day with everyone, and set to work figuring out what to do next. Of course being 6:30am on a Sunday the vet wasn’t open, but the answering machine pointed us to a Langley 24 hour clinic, who suggested we bring her in in case she’d injested any, as well as to get it off. Better them than us I say.

OK, so pack the cat into a carrier and head off. Heading up to the highway on ramp about 20 minutes in my car started making a funny noise. You can see where this is headed right? A bit farther down the road it stopped making the funny noise. OK, can’t be that bad, I’ll keep on going and deal with it later. A bit farther down the road it made a “schwack” type noise and I figured it was time to pull over.

Toll of the car was a belt had come off. Not bad right? Except there was another belt connected to another pulley that had also come off. And then the pulley at the bottom of the engine that that connected to was moving in a way that even a non-mechanic like myself could see a pulley attached to an engine wasn’t supposed to do.


So 30 minutes latery my mother-in-law showed up and too Andrea and the cat off to the vet, while I went with the tow truck and car in the other direction to leave it at the dealership. Course, the on-ramp is far enough away that it cost me money to tow the car there. And as I found out today, it’s not a cheap fix. Not “oh my god have to buy a new car” expensive, but a fair hit. Plus the other stuff that needs to be done to it as well, and at this point, I’m in for a penny in for a pound you know?

So a while later cat and wife returned, with the poor kitten very unimpressed and extremely silly looking in the carrier, with her hind end, tail, legs, belly, all shaved down. And we still need to bath her to work at getting the rest of the tar crap off.

That trip to the vet was costly too, not only the after hours call out fees, but the multiple baths they gave, vet consulting fee, etc. Luckily she wasn’t showing any “sick” signs of having eaten any of the stuff, so other than being completely emberassed and silly looking, she’s all ok.

Something about the experience (or maybe the cone of shame) has turned her into a bit of a lap cat though…. she’s spent the night on the bed with us, and a lot of time beside me and Andrea on the couch, something she’ll only do once and a while. Maybe in my “cat ownership by alan” book I’ll put a chapter on dunking your cat into tar or paint to get her to spend more time with you…. 🙂

So obviously the gods don’t want me out on the rock again, so I’ll probably not tempt fate by leaving the house on the weekend anymore. The way that it’s going I’ll be completely broke if I venture out the front door again!