There are tells early on in a day if it’s going to be an odd one. You forget to put the pot in the coffee maker before you turn it on, your other half actually remembers to close the lid to the toilet before you decide to sit on it. Those kind of tellsl. Fridays of late seem to be that day for me. It’s gotten so bad even my mortgage broker issues “Friday Updates” on the progress of my loan, a courtesy he informed me reserved only for myself. Whether by chance or by unconscious intention my appointments, errands, commitments suddenly seem to be piled under Friday on my calendar, making it a busy, busy day for me. Even when I’ve purposely made appointments for the other four days in the week I have to chose from, circumstance seems to redirect them to Friday without my being able to stop it.
Yesterday, being Friday, defined my point exactly. The day started off with a bang and continued popping until my blond head hit the pillow around 9:00. Really it began the day before. Boo the Queen of Cats had an appointment Thursday at the pet clinic for her annual tune up and necessary vaccinations. As you might imagine, this is not a trip the cat either enjoys nor does she participate in without encouragement falling just short of the use of brute force. A smart feline, after her first encounter with the cat carrier rendered her both unconscious and barren, when she sees it now her disappearing act makes David Copperfield look like a rank amateur. The first few times this happened I found myself lying on the carpet offering treats and speaking in purring tones, while the cat sat in the corner out of reach under the bed looking at me as if I’d finally blown my last brain cell. Tiring of the game, and losing it, I learned to hide the offending cat carrier in the bathroom and sneak up on it with her when she wasn’t looking. Initially this worked quite well, but as I mentioned earlier, the cat is smart. Once she realized what the new rules were she initiated a plan to offset them. On facing the open end of the carrier she simply braced herself on the sides of the carrier or turned herself inside out, refusing to be shoved in. It’s amazing how strong a ten pound cat can become when they don’t want to do something. As I outweigh the animal by a hundred and ten pounds, it would seem I had the advantage, but if you were a fly on the wall during this dance, I would bet the big money would be on Miss Boo.
Once we actually get her in the carrier and the door shut, she goes to Plan 2, which would be moaning. It begins as moaning really, then amplifies to yowling once in the car. I must admit she is tenacious about this. On arriving at the vet’s, however, miraculously she becomes a perfect angel. Comments after our appointments always lean toward what a sweet kitty she is and how they want us to come back soon. Right. I’m watching you little cat, and I am on to you. On inspection this time they discovered she had a mild case of conjunctivitis, or pink eye. To be honest I didn’t know cats got pink eye, but then that’s why I’m not making the big bucks putting on elbow high gloves and retrieving calves from bovines, or cropping boxers ears. Ointment, I was told, was the preffered treatment. One half an inch in each eye twice a day.
So, first thing Friday morning we began the treatment. First, I wrapped Boo tightly in a bath towel. My other half placed the called for 1/2″ of goo on his finger (in case you’re trying this at home). Approaching her from the back Boo sensed movement and by the time we were through wrestling, her face, ears, whiskers, and nose were well dosed, as well as my hand, but as far as we could see not one ounce of goo was deposited in either eye. Boo 1, humans 0. I called the vet and asked if there was an alternative treatment, say gas. Getting a negative response, the receptionist suggested I bring Boo in and they’d show me how to administer the meds or to try scruffing her. Really? I was upset, but I didn’t think I was ready to scruff her yet. Turned out scruffing meant to grab her by the nape of the neck like a mother cat would. It apparently calms the animal and allows you to control them. That would be a pleasant change. A printout was available in their office I was told showing the proper procedure for doing this. I was welcome to pick it up any time. Silently I prayed Boo had read it, because I felt this wasn’t going to go well.
Now late for my appointment, I ran a brush through my hair, grabbed my keys and purse, threw on glasses and headed out with moaning Boo to the garage. I deposited the cat carrier in the passenger seat and went around to the driver’s side. Opening the back door I tossed in my purse, hopped in after it and closed the door. It took a moment to realize I was the only one in the car with a valid driver’s license (since Boo had that unfortunate incident after getting behind the wheel after too much catnip), and, although I’ve been accused of being a back seat driver from time to time, I’ve never really tried it actually sitting in the back seat. Isn’t it funny when you do something that incredibly stupid, you always look around to make sure nobody saw you do it. Like when you trip on the street, you always turn around and look back as if to say there must have been something on the sidewalk causing you to do this, rather than your own natural clumsiness. Fortunately only Boo noticed, and she wasn’t talking, but I had a feeling she was thinking something though I didn’t have any proof.
Situated where driving is the easiest, the driver’s seat, I poked the key at the lock and discovered I’d picked up the wrong keys. Now, I was getting late. Running back into the house to retrieve the right keys, I found them missing from our key drop. Crap. I ran back out to the garage and transferred the moaning Boo to the other car, threw my purse in the back and stopping myself before I climbed in, shut the door and sat in the driver’s seat. Yea for me.
Down the hill we went Boo yowling along to a possibly prophetic Taylor Swift’s “We are never ever getting back together”. After all the appointments were behind us, I decided to make a quick stop at the store for a few items before heading home. Leaving the windows cracked for Miss Cat, I hurried into the store not wanting to leave her too long in the car. As usual my list had 7 items on it but my grocery cart, having a mind of its own, added another 8 or 9 for good measure. While searching for a couple of artichokes I pushed my cart along the vegetable aisles. A woman I did not know tapped me on the shoulder and asked what I was doing. Why she felt what I was doing was in any way her business I had no idea, until she pointed out that I was in fact pushing her cart and not my own, which also had her purse sitting in it, and not my own. My cart was still sitting where I’d left it by the artichokes, thankfully with my purse still in it. At least I hadn’t stolen her child as well. I’ve done that once already. By accident naturally, although in hindsight he was better behaved then mine was being at the time so perhaps I should have kept him.
At this point, I bought some tonic, and a lime. Once home, Boo released and screaming down the stairs to all who would listen about what a terrible person I was, I poured my first vodka tonic of spring, and sat outside to enjoy the afternoon. Fridays, go figure.
This salad was just right for a warm spring evening. Lots of crunch and a nice mix of flavors. I whipped up some deviled eggs, added some sliced tomatoes and a few spears of asparagus and it was delicious.
Crunchy Shrimp Salad with Tangy Cocktail Sauce
Crunchy Shrimp and Cucumber Salad
1 lb. salad shrimp
1/4 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1 cup English cucumber, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup yellow or orange bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped fine (optional)
1/3 cup Seasoned Rice Vinegar
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 tsp. Lawry’s garlic salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Salt to taste
Leafy green lettuce
Mix shrimp, celery, onion, cucumber, bell pepper together in large mixing bowl. In small bowl mix together rice vinegar, lemon, garlic salt, and black pepper. Sprinkle shrimp and vegetable mixture and toss with dressing. Salt and pepper as desired. Refrigerate until ready to use. Serve on bed of lettuce with suggested garnishes if desired.
Tangy Cocktail Sauce
1 1/2 cups catsup
2 Tbsp. horseradish, or less if you prefer it less hot
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 Tbsp. sweet pickle relish
Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate for 1 hour.