Archive for April, 2006

High Tech Felines Ready for Kazakhstan

Pets. They do become part of the family and what we won’t do for them. In our house we are ruled by two cats.


There is Masha, the Howard Hughes recluse who may as well wear Kleenex boxes for shoes like old Howard did or she can be like the Jack Nicholson character in “As Good As It Gets”; an obsessive compulsive that shuns contact with most humans. She has licked herself so clean she has no fur left on her belly. Her only meaningful contact is to come in and walk on our heads in the morning when SHE thinks it’s time to wake up. She usually does this right after using the cat box, so the aroma will tend to make you sit up in bed! This is the ultimate in silent, olfactory alarms.


Cat #2 is Tsaganka – the name means “Gypsy” for you non-Russian speakers. She is a shameless hussy, dropping in your path and rolling over on her back so you can rub her stomach. Tsaganka also demands the exotic food (wet canned treats). She seeks no affection other than the tummy rub and a snuggle with Sophie before going to sleep. She is gregarious yet totally self-sufficient. She has all the fur on her stomach and seems totally well adjusted.


Our little Feline darlings are getting ready for the trip to the land of Kaz. They received their shots and their EU approved 10-digit I.D. chips which were embedded between their shoulder blades. $310.00 just like that! They will travel on Lufthansa as excess baggage; add another $200.00 per cat. The Kazakh government could care less about the chips – that is an EU thing. A cat cannot even transit through Europe without this Orwellian touch. 

Meantime other activities continue apace in the household. We have cleaned more cupboards of things we don’t use. It is truly amazing how you get used to keeping things that you never use. A move like we are making encourages one to jettison the crap and never look back. The most useless award (so far) goes to a 6 quart pasta cooker that we have never used. It was gleaming like new. In the next couple of days pictures will start going into boxes and Nadia’s toy box will become the property of her girl friend Anya.


We are boxing up old memories and anticipating the new ones in Kazakhstan. This is an adventure that will give us new friends, new vistas and new pots and pan that will have to be disposed of when we leave there! It’s a vicious cycle.


The Move is Getting Real……

This Easter Sunday 2006 finds us still in Denver and preparing for our jump across the pond to Kazakhstan. Sophie and Nadia leave May 10th. Sophie will take Nadia up to Yekaterinburg to be with Baba and Dediya for the summer while she gets her new job underway in Almaty. My departure is still up in the air until the house is for-sure rented and affairs concluded.
It was a day to spend in the backyard shed, going through our "stuff" – deciding what goes into storage, what goes to charity and what to the metal savior in the alley – the dumpster.
Nadia helped me shred old papers and organize things before she toddled off for her nap. Sophie took off early and went over to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science with her girlfriend Natasha to view the Body Worlds 2 Exhibit. Sophie called later and said it is spooky the way they have these real cut away bodies. It shows it all!
Well Nadia is up from her nap and that means old papa here needs to get his fanny in gear and go have fun with the child.
More later.