Road Trip! (Trex Is An Angel)

Bugs On The Last Morning . . .

. . . that he and I would be just us two.

And now we are three.  Today it’s the morning after Trex’s Transport Day.  Yesterday, in a Hardee’s parking lot in Jonesboro, Arkansas, we did the deed.  Friends: We did it.  The transfer has been accomplished.  I’ll never feel the same about Hardee’s.

Private-rescuer Chrystal said her sadness in saying goodbye to Trex was outweighed by the joy of seeing him off into a bright future.  I was the one who cried.  It was about loss, for me, no matter who may feel it.  I don’t know, actually I think we both shared a pretty sad moment there.

We were wondering how Trex would be, asking him to move from Chrystal’s carrier to ours.  Mr. Nonchalance.  We opened both doors — and he simply strolled into his new one, without a fare-thee-well.  Teresa kept saying how he appeared to know:  He had found his new person at last.

I felt the joy come soon after the parting from Chrystal and her daughter.  On the long, long, long ride home – plodding through pancake-flat plains of blurry mud, endless monoculture wastes of altered soybeans and genetically engineered rice, stretching from horizon to horizon as far as the eye could see – as the sun arced high overhead, as the day waned, as the sun went down in a blaze – Trex slept soundly.  He then explored the car, sat on my lap, patted driver Teresa with his paw many times, ate, and used the litter box.

And for the final dramatic leg through the cute little Bobby Hopper Tunnel, and up into the Ozark Highlands, he casually draped himself over top of his crate.  Enjoying the emerging sliver moon and silver stars, sparkling down on us through Teresa’s spectacular sunroof.

And many times he did his sighing little mew at us, and made us smile and smile and smile.

Toward the end of the trip, he got a little snotty and sneezy.  Chrystal predicted this might happen, due to his immune system not settling down just yet.  Her vet, though, gave him a clean bill of health, so we’re hoping that the sniffles were stress-exacerbated and will clear up soon.

There were set-backs.  These were not serious – let’s just say they “added interest” to the whole adventure (like more interest was at all necessary or called-for).  All the while I was preparing The Hell Room, in the lead-up, I had left the door open.  Last thing early yesterday, on the way out to hit the road, I tried to shut it.

Nuh-uh.  It’s warped.  Wouldn’t close.

So mid-morning on the road in Russellville, Arkansas, found Teresa and me combing Wal-Mart for a solution.  We didn’t want to go the obvious route of a hook-and-eye latch, because I am totally home-improvement-compromised and I own no tools whatsoever but for an ancient ball-peen hammer that seems to be good for very little but it was my Dad’s.

In the end, the hook-and-eye latch seemed the only solution.  We bought a selection, hoping and trusting that our four hands would do the job later, and we just figured we’d fall off that bridge when we came to it.

The bridge eventually came, of course, and we did fall off it.  The latches couldn’t be installed by hand.

And so, while poor Trexie waited in the car – an APB went out for Teresa’s husband to the rescue.  Here is his handiwork (not the crack in the frame, that was there before).

One set is to close the door tightly, and the other for later on in the acclimatizing period, when we will be able to crack open the door a little.

The only consolation to rousting Teresa’s husband on a Saturday night was that at least we did get in at a decent hour.

And then Bugs began to howl.  Note the bottle-brush tail.

To be honest, I can’t remember much about what happened next.  I did make a note at the time: “Now he’s settled down a bit but I can hear poor Trexie mewing.  I can’t get into base camp because Bugs is glued to the door.  The lights are still on in there!  I just don’t know what to do.  Honestly, after 12 hours in the car for the humans and 8 for him – was this really a good idea?  At all?”

I hated not being able to be with Trex – he was sounding awful “chuffy” and that sound, through the door, drove Bugs bonkers – but somehow both guys ended up quiet all through the night.  Bugs even came into bed with me, purring – and he very rarely does that.

The lights are still on, this morning – Teresa’s due to arrive shortly and we will soon fix that, and spend some time with both guys.  May I hear it for Teresa and her husband?  What friends will do for each other.


Bugs is up on Top Shelf sleeping now.  Before that, he was pretty quiet this morning.  Except for a few outbursts, which I quelled with our accustomed play routine and lots of chicken baby-food.  Then he settled down.  Still meditating on the new horror – but blessedly quiet.  Notice the peaceful tail.

Bugs Stands Vigil

Notice also the spilled contents of a large binder on the floor.  Happened last night in the frenzy.  I don’t even want to touch that, at the moment, for fear of upsetting the equilibrium.

And now, as the sun sets on this day, our gratitude goes out to Chrystal and family, who saved Trex twice from certain death.  As Chrystal said to him at the hand-off, “See what happens when you hang in there?  You made it home!”

Yes he and we did.  Thanks to Chrystal and family, and to the wonderful friends on the CB, all of whom made this happiness possible.

Pee Ess:  Please read here what Chrystal has to say, about from things on her and her daughter’s end.

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About nadbugs

Anita loves cats. This must be because she, too, has had nine lives. She’s been dancing since she could walk, she was a commercial artist and advertising producer, she earned a third-degree black belt in Aikido, she is a drummer with the Afrique Aya Dance Company, she is an attorney, and she’s a meditator and a devoted student of Nonviolent Communication. She also spent one lifetime sidelined with a devastating back injury in 1992. Since then – FELDENKRAIS METHOD® to the rescue. The FELDENKRAIS METHOD is all about dreaming concretely – thinking intelligently and independently by way of a gracious and kind physicality. The work affords all who study it a process by which to reach, with movement, into the mind and the heart, to make nine lives into one whole being.
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51 Responses to Road Trip! (Trex Is An Angel)

  1. lahgitana says:

    I’ve been thinking about you, Trex, and Bugs all day and hoped for an update! Aw, gee! Yaaaaaaaay!

    It usually takes time for reconciliation–after all, BUGS didn’t ask for a roommate!

    Congratulations and happy homecoming! Hope you’re having an early night!

    • nadbugs says:

      Oh believe me, I did. I felt positively ill. Asleep by 9:00. Thank you so much for your connection. And you’re so right about the unsolicited roommate. I have only to think of how I’d feel, in his place.

  2. rumpydog says:

    Mr. Bugs, I know this is hard for you, but you two are gonna be the best of friends in no time!

  3. MelanieJ says:

    Yay, I was so glad to see that you had updated! Like lahgitana, I’d been thinking about you guys all weekend, wondering how it was going.

    It will take time for the cats to be comfortable with each other.

    I’m glad that Trex was such a good-natured passenger. It would have been a much worse drive if he was like one of mine! (Yowl yowl yowl yowl yowl arewethereyetarewethereyetarewethereyet, yowl yowl yowl Ihateyoudieinafire.) You get the idea.

    • nadbugs says:

      Melanie, your thinking of us is wonderful, thank you so much. And oh yes, as to the worse passenger. Like, oh, I don’t know, like, say, Bugsy perhaps? I imagine you can hear him into the next county. That’s on the way to the vet. On the way back, it’s all: I am completely shell-shocked. You will not get a peep out of me. Ever again. Ever. I will die silent.

  4. Yay!!! The suspense was KILLING me!!! Glad you made it home, and glad Bugs’ tail shrank overnight. I hope all goes smoothly from here on out…

    I’m very excited for Bugs to have someone to play with!

  5. So glad to know you made the trip with no major problems. We were starting to get a little worried.

    Hang in there, Bugs. Things will get better. (if nothing else, you’ll soon have someone to point at when there’s a mess in the middle of the floor)

  6. HURRAH!! Now the fun begins…

  7. Cat's Cats says:

    It is perfectly normal for Bugs to hiss or howl at the door, he is saying this is my house and you are the newcomer…don’t worry, he won’t do that for long. Teresa and her hubby sound like great friends to help out so much 🙂 I’m sure it feels strange for Trex to go from a multi-cat household to a single cat household, but hopefully he will acclimate soon. Keep us posted and good luck!!!

  8. Oldcat says:

    Congrats on getting Trex back home

  9. oh yay yay yay!!!! I’m so glad you got him home! I don’t know what it is about Chrystal, but her kitties all ride in the car well and it sounds like Trex did too! Don’t expect that to stay the same the first time you take him to the vet though, lol!
    Don’t worry about the sniffles and sneezes, Leo did too, it’s the long distance and the change, however slight or large, in location. Leo’s sneezes were gone within two days and we never saw them again.
    I’m so glad Trex is home! Yay and congratulations to you both!!!

    • nadbugs says:

      Thank you, dear Andrea! He did ride amazingly well. And I will keep in mind what you say about the first trip to the vet. Something to look forward to. So glad to hear about Leo’s snuffies passing soon. Seems like Trex’s are moving through, too, thankfully. Thank you, thank you, thank you so much, Andrea, for making this joyful event happen.

  10. Welcome back! Happy to hear it went okay, and thank you to your friends for being there for you, too! As everyone said, they will settle down – the best thing is to stay out of their way and don’t try to break up a spat. I found getting new cats to play together eases tension, too. They can’t resist the string, feather, etc, for long – and if one is relaxed enough to play then other feels more comfortable too.

  11. CATachreis says:

    Ok you need to be poised with camera all the time, to catch the moments of fun and frolics. It is always interesting to see two cats when they first meet! I hope Trex settles in well and quickly and Bugs doesn’t bug him!

    • nadbugs says:

      I will try with the camera, Catachreis. But I’d need to be pretty relaxed, and that hasn’t happened quite yet. Working on it. Poor old Trexie, I really need to get him out of Base Camp. Bugs is still pretty jumpy, though, so it’s going to be a while longer.

  12. So glad to hear that Trex has arrived safe and sound. I hope it does not take too long until he and Bugs are best of friends.

    ps: Harley had a watery eye and sneezes his first few days home from the shelter.

  13. What wonderful news ~ we are happy to know the journey went well. xxx

  14. IsobelandCat says:

    Great post. How’s it been today?
    Scroobious pip noted it took four days for calm with four cats. Or was it 48 hours? Shorter than I thought, anyway.

    • nadbugs says:

      Wow, that would have been quick, Isobel, either way! We’re going the slow-and-steady route. I like what Jackson Galaxy says, about wanting the experience to be a happy one for all parties — or the stage may be set for continuing trouble. I’m going for the happy.

  15. Mom has a serious case of the grins….. You will look back on this whole event one day and just laugh….

    As a suggestion, try feeding them both something VERY yummy on opposite sides of the door. It should help them process the smell of the “other guy” with something positive.

    As for the hook and eye – there is a reason I am thankful every day that my dad is still around and is VERY handy. 🙂

    • nadbugs says:

      I enjoyed your comment, RF — definitely more than I enjoyed the experience in the post, I’m telling you! I’m happy to hear about your handy dad.

  16. Dianda says:

    Good to know everything went well during the trip and such!
    And they are cats, it takes time before they get used to each other. 🙂
    They’re cats after all!

  17. Marcy Benham says:

    Welcome to your new home Trex! Bugsy, be a good boy! It will be worth it in the end. My thoughts are with all of you as the transition begins!

  18. Anya says:

    Ah yes – everyone sing now: “Getting to know you, getting to know all about you – Getting to like you, Getting to hope you like me.” Old song from “King and I” musical – 🙂 I have been through this soooo many times – as they say – no matter how things may appear dicey – this too shall pass. Mr Poole after almost 2 years, still gives Tristan “attitude” – and sometimes prevents him from coming into the house. Then – as I leave for work in the morning, or in the middle of the night, there they are on the bed – bum-to-bum 🙂 ebony and ivory living together in harmony….hmmm…another song there I think. Best of wishes for you all – and of course DO keep us posted!

  19. Yay! I know when Audrey came here we kept swapping around blankets that the cats had slept on (with human scent on them as well) as well as putting the same scent on all of them (we had four cats in the house to begin with) and also used Valerian to calm things down if they got too heated. Here’s hoping that Trex & Bugs become used to each other quickly!

    • nadbugs says:

      Ah yes! Here’s one of the comments I was trying to remember! Thank you for the scent tip, Kat. And I gave Trexie a valerian-scented toy — he was OK but kind of iffy about it. Bugs, on the other hand, reacts to valerian like catnip — so maybe not giving it to Bugs just yet! Thank you for your wishing the acclimatization goes quickly. I would love it to be so. I really want to let Trex have the run of the house along with Bugsy. Not just yet, though.

  20. Christine says:

    SO SO SO glad to learn that you all made the trip safely; you’ve been in my heart, with hope for all to be well. Love seeing Trex’s photos too. WAY cute.

  21. MTVA says:

    Happy to hear that the long trip is over and everyone is settling down . A whole new way of life for all, and may it be a very happy and peaceful one. Also fun-filled, and with lots of catnip for the boys, and perhaps a glass or two of something for you, Dear Nadbugs, to recover from all the hullaballoo!

    So nice to hear that Bugs joined you for a purry sleepytime, no doubt he really missed you all day. Now… let the fun begin!

    • nadbugs says:

      Hoots, as far as that glass or two of something. Much needed! It is true, about the whole new way of life — and so many thanks your way for the happy and peaceful bit. That time with Bugs, after the long long day, was really heartwarming.

  22. Daisy says:

    I don’t write much but I’m a frequent lurker here…just wanted to stop by and tell you how happy I am for you–and for “future Bugs”! After the initial introductory hisses and once Bugs and Trex agree on who’ll wear the title of “alpha cat,” it will be all good from there. I once adopted a stray kitten found on the premises of the oil company where I worked, and that little guy was just totally laid back and didn’t give me any problems during the ride home, I couldn’t believe my lucky stars! Wishing you many years of happy companionship with Bugs and Trex!

    • nadbugs says:

      Thank you so much, Daisy, for your readership and now your wonderful comment. I am so glad to hear about your laid-back little guy. Sweet, and so glad you have had that good luck.

  23. Wazeau says:

    So happy the trip went well and you are all back home to begin this new three-way conversation.

  24. kimmo says:

    What a hero’s journey for all of you! Teresa and hubby are gems! xxxooo
    Loved the picture of Trex on a lap!

  25. nadbugs says:

    They sure are gems, Kim. Just like you are.

  26. littlemiao says:

    Trex looks so sweet! Congratulations!! 😀

    When I moved home last year with Chun, we took our time introducing him to my father’s miaos and everything went very (more or less) smoothly as a result, I think because everyone was patient. So Bugs, the Miaos’ advice to you is to have patience and before you know it you’ll have a fantastic playmate and best friend. Just think, you could both perch on the door at the same time!

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