The Expatriate Cat, Part 2

The Expatriate Feline, Smudge, Becomes a Caribbean Cat

7 months in one place!

(Did you miss part 1 of my adventure to become The Expatriate Cat?)

Apparently, we had arrived at our seven-month rental home in Venice, Florida on June 1, 2021. I was okay with it. I had all my fluffies, and there was a private pool where I could sit on Rick’s lap while we watched Anne swim laps. I don’t understand why they always seemed rather upset – especially when the landlords were present. I admit given that I am a typical finicky cat, this habitat did seem rather unkept, despite Rick and Anne’s habitual tidiness. 

Our car rides changed from daily to once weekly outings to downtown Venice. When we arrived, I was placed in my Bubble Pack on Anne’s back and off we went to walk the main street of Venice in search of . . . quiche! That was Rick’s preferred Sunday dinner. He would go inside the bakery to purchase it while Anne and I greeted curious passersby on the sidewalk.

And then these visits to a Veterinarian started to happen periodically. Heck, I’ve never been sick a day in my life! Why did I have to see a Veterinarian? Anne tried to explain. I would need to make multiple visits to a veterinarian to prepare to leave the US for paradise. Not for me to worry, they would all be nice (and they were indeed), and Anne promised to take care of all the bureaucratic paperwork.

It was just before New Year’s when Anne began to act frantic again (even though the furniture wasn’t disappearing). On New Year’s Eve, we all went for a drive, stopped for a picnic lunch, and later arrived . . .  (once more) at a hotel, this time in Dural, Florida.

And this time, it was not a one-night stand. We were there for 4 months. We all liked this place. Unlike the prior rental, it was clean and tidy and ever so friendly. I had harness walks nearly every day on the surrounding grounds. And I had this terrific windowsill to sit on. From our fourth floor room, I could watch the planes flying in and out of Miami Airport. Indeed, it was a happy New Year. Was this the paradise that Anne kept referring to?

I think we’re flying to our Caribbean paradise now  …

It was the last week in April that not just Anne, but also (most uncharacteristically) Rick, began to act frantic. And I had yet another veterinary visit during which Anne and the Vet seemed to be paying far more attention to the paperwork than to me!

May 2, 2022 started out as a perfectly routine day (well, maybe not as now I recall suitcases). I had my breakfast and was settling into my mid-morning nap when they picked me up and gently put me in my cat carrier (rather than my Bubble Pack). We went down to the hotel lobby where much of the staff was present to wish us well. Then we got in a car and went somewhere they call an airport. All I know is that there were a lot of people, and then at one point, my carrier and I had to be examined by a stranger.

Anne explained: Not for me to worry, they would all be nice (and they were indeed) – how come they did not examine Anne – and where was Rick?

I sat quietly in my carrier for about an hour. Then I realized  that Rick was carrying me in the carrier. Then (what again?) my carrier and I had to be examined by another stranger.

So, May 5, 2022, Rick and Anne introduced me to the paradise they kept promising as my future. Pretty cool indeed! They explained to me that our now forever home is on the top (i.e., third floor) of a newly built Condo overlooking canals that lead out to the North Sound of the Island of Grand Cayman (and to the west within a mile of its famed “7 Mile Beach”). Our Condo’s entire east side is a wall of windows accompanied by a full-length balcony that looks down on the canal waters.

Plus, our roof top terrace gives us a 360-degree view of Grand Cayman – east toward the North Sound, north toward West Bay’s north end, west toward 7 Mile Beach and south toward Camana Bay and the Cruise Ship Harbor.

Then rather than furniture disappearing, furniture started to arrive. I loved it! Comfy chairs and couches that accommodated my favorite fluffies and gave me new perches to enjoy the views of the Grand Cayman Great Outdoors!

And gradually, they introduced me to the balcony with its 3.5+ ft high safety clear plexiglass wall (I am approaching my 16th Birthday, so I am no high jumper anymore).  They outfitted the balcony specifically to my preferences.

First there was the small outdoor coffee table with double chairs which I could choose to sit on or under. Then my “yoga mat” appeared (I have always enjoyed commandeering both Rick and Anne’s, so they figured out that I might like my own, even though they refer to it as a “cat comfy door mat”). Most recently, because I choose to spend so much time on the balcony, they added an outdoor water bowl (frequently replenished with ice water) and a food bowl (snacks added if I forget to eat enough of my breakfast).

I so protest at 10 pm when they go to bed and tell me I need to come inside – because it is neat to be outside staring at the moon or the summer night flashes of lightning.

Guess what else . . . They tell me that this coming year, they will build out the roof top terrace and make it accommodate my preferences!

Wow! I am now a Caribbean cat. What a terrific place for feline retirement. Indeed.

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