While going away on a trip or a holiday is fun, for me there is always a downside: it involves taking Freya to the cattery. I start to feel anxious days before and this uncomfortable feeling intensifies as we come nearer and nearer to the date of departure.
I suffered the same anxiety over my previous cat, so it has nothing to do with the particular cat or with the cattery. The cattery we use today is very good and looks after Freya, perhaps better than she deserves, given her grumpy and even fractious behaviour while there.
My emotional discomfort comes, I think, from the fact that I cannot explain to the cat that her stay is only temporary and that we shall soon come to collect her and take her home again. I can do nothing to assuage the fear and uncertainty that Freya obviously feels when she is put in the basket to go to some unknown destination. I imagine her in the cattery with no way of knowing that this new life is not permanent, no way of knowing that I will eventually come for her. I suffer the anxiety that I imagine she suffers.
At the time of writing my last post, I was uncertain whether Freya would be going to her usual cattery or staying with the vet. We resolved that question this morning. The vet found that Freya had not lost weight and I was able to say that her demeanour had improved and that she had even eaten a hearty breakfast. On the other hand, she hasn’t been usual herself over the last few days and so, for peace of mind, we agreed it was better that she should stay with the vet, who boards cats and dogs on the premises. I will at least have the satisfaction of knowing that her condition is being supervised and that if treatment should be necessary, there will be a vet on hand.
I phoned the cattery to let them know that Freya would not be staying with them this time. They were quite happy with the arrangement as they understand the situation and in any case, would not want to have to handle an ailing cat.
So tomorrow we depart to our as yet unrevealed destination (or have you guessed it yet?). Faced with my failure to print off the Eurostar tickets online yesterday evening, I called Eurostar this morning. They confirmed that reservations issued by that particular agent would not print on their site but agreed that it was a good idea to print them beforehand. So after depositing Freya, I walked down to St Pancras and interviewed a ticket machine. Or did it interview me? No matter: either way it worked. You type in your booking reference, it displays your details, you confirm they are correct and it prints off your tickets. All done and dusted.
All that remains is the packing. Our stay is a short one so we will not need to take much but at this time of year it is not easy to know what to pack: warm clothes? spring clothes? raincoat? We will end up taking a range of stuff to cover all eventualities.
Our train leaves at 7:34am and we are advised to check in 45 minutes beforehand. I hate these early starts! Fortunately, St Pancras is within easy walking distance or we can take the friendly 214 bus to the door.
And yes, I am looking forward to going to fetch Freya next Tuesday.