Road Trip

Yesterday morning I dragged my weary backside out of bed early for a rescue mission road trip. After what seemed like weeks of trying to make arrangements for transporting my now gentled kittens to a foster mom in eastern Maryland, she and I decided to take matters into our own hands and meet half-way (or close to it) to make the exchange.

You have to realize, these kittens have never been off the farm. To them, the world consisted of the barn and part of my back yard. I had told them they were going on a road trip. But they didn't know what a road was. Or a trip. They were in for a shock.

Loading them into my Pet Taxi didn’t go as smoothly as I would have hoped. Two kittens, two hands. Sounded like a good plan. Except for one minor glitch. One of those hands also had to close the crate’s door. When I did, lightning-quick Sophie escaped. Which was better than Chickie getting away. I don’t know that I’d have re-caught her. But I was able to coax Sophie back into my reach and get her back in the crate before Chickie could make a run for it.

By 6:30AM I was on the road with plans to meet the new foster mom at Keyser Ridge, Maryland at 9:00. I was prepared with a cup of tea, bottles of water, a banana, and a stack of my favorite road trip CDs. I wouldn’t play the CDs with the kittens in the car, but I had them packed for the solo ride home.

My first stop was for a gas fill-up. A frantic girl in the SUV next to me asked if she could use my cell phone. She had left her ATM card in the bank machine and didn’t have her phone with her. While I pumped gas, she made her call. We chatted a bit while she was on HOLD. She was on her way to a flea market. I told her of my reasons for being out so early on a Sunday morning. A cat person, too, she oo’ed and aw’ed over the babies cringing in the crate in my backseat. We parted company with well wishes to both for safe trips.

Fog blanketed the valleys, slowing my pace, but I made good time. Thanks to the previously mentioned tea and water, I had to make an unplanned stop at a McDonalds in Brownsville to use the facilities. That turned out to be the most hazardous part of my trip. Either I’d gotten oil on the soles of my shoes at the gas station or they had just waxed the floor. Either way, I did some less-than-graceful skating on my way in and some stiff shuffling on my way out. Back in the car, I changed into another pair of shoes that I had brought along.

I made it to Keyser Ridge without further incident…unless you count plugged ears from traveling through the mountains. I arrived at twenty minutes ‘til nine.

The babies’ new foster mom arrived fifteen minutes later. We shared hugs and I moved the crate and kitties to her car and her care. By 9:00, I was heading home feeling some strong pangs of loneliness as I glanced into my empty back seat. I sniffed back some tears and reminded myself that I would no longer have to worry about coyotes roaming around the barn at night looking for a meal.

I put on my Oasis CD and cranked up the volume. Somehow, though, rock music blasting from the speakers didn’t feel quite right as I drove through the peaceful green mountains of the Laurel Highlands. So I turned it off and listened to silence instead.

I made one last stop at Panera Bread in Uniontown for a blueberry bagel with cream cheese and a caramel latte. All the major food groups: Fat, carbohydrates, caffeine, and imitation fruit. Yum. I ate as I continued my way home.

By 11AM, I was wheeling back into my own driveway, exhausted, but happy to be relieved of one responsibility when I have so many others on my plate at the moment. This was a good trip and a good outcome for two little orphan kitties.

Thanks to the Nancy, Jen, Deb, Donna, Lynn, and especially foster mom Trish of Maine Coon Rescue for a happy ending.


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