Almost Home

Miami, despite its incongruities and illogical ways is finally starting to feel like home. There are several reasons for this stealthy transformation, two of which are facilely identified.

1. Cervantes. No, not the underappreciated father of meta, but my new feline companion. Cervantes (nee Ronald) came to me from the 95th street animal shelter last Wednesday, a dashingly cute brown and dark grey tabby, with green and golden eyes. I hadn’t planned on choosing a tabby cat, since they’re *so* mundane and ordinary looking, but this little guy was too cute for words. Plus, the guy who worked at the shelter said that it was his favorite cat.

He is certainly good natured, and a priceless addition to the household; makes me feel all “responsible” and stuff, feeding him and taking care of another little being. Of course, I still haven’t taken him to the vet, which I was supposed to do within 4 days of bringing him home…it’s only been 5, so I’m not too irresponsible. Yet. So far we have had very few mishaps with rearing a kitten, save Cervantes’s psychotic morning transformations.

I usually wake up at about 5:30, feed the cat, shower, and start my morning routine. This is all well and good, since the cat is usually awake when I get out of bed. On Saturday, however (and again this morning), the furry thing does a Jekyll and Hyde number, decides that he wants to attack my hair and ears, gnaw on my toes, and try to disembowel my stuffed animals. It’s a little disturbing, but it only happens from the hours of 6:30-8:00 am. I’d say it’s hormonal, but for god’s sake, he’s neutured! I’m just hoping he grows out of it. I’d also like to think that when he nuzzles his cute little nose into my shoulder to ask for his head to be scratched, he’s not just doing it because I put kitty food in his dish and make sure that his litter box is cleaned. I mean, there’s got to be some sort of intrinsic love in there, doesn’t there?

All of my TFA friends have taken to him as the token pet in D-Place, which is fun. If people don’t want to visit me, at least they want to play with the cat.

2. The other marked improvement in 266 NE 53rd is the new paint job in the living room. Mary and I worked from noon till five yesterday painting our living space a lovely light orange, with a stripe of green around the ceiling. We even have our front door ‘goldfish orange’ on one side. I’m not kidding, it matches the salty cheddar snack food so well that we put out a martini glass full of them on the coffee table for decoration.

The apartment is starting to feel quite a lot more like home, which is nice, now that I think I’m settling into the routine in teaching, gettting used to my new life (sort of). Dave is coming down, and there’s another football game on Thursday night; I think a bunch of us teachers might make a cameo.

3. The third and final elment of the heimlich that has returned to my life (in complete and total regression to high school…but in a good way, I swear) is the Hot Hot Saturday Night. Ashley, Amanda, Virginia, and I went to CocoWalk to see Garden State, extravagantly treating ourselves to an outrageously priced bag of popcorn to accompany the movie. I love good movies so much, and it’s funny that an outing such as last night is enough to constitute a good social evening. Plus, in true cyclical fashion, there were some lovely philosophical musings about the nature of “home” which made me both nostalgic, expectant, and sad all at the same time. Zach Braff is my new hero.

The last element that’s missing is one that is soon on it’s way; once we start having company over, it will really feel like a home instead of a living space. Got some phone calls from old friends who are far away, and that was comforting, especially when they might be on their way South. The place is almost presentable, and I can’t wait to introduce them to D-Place. “Hi, this is where I live.”

Sigh, the calling of independent life hearkens: there is laundry to be done, groceries to be bought, and a small cat chewing on my flip flop, which is still on my foot. I should get going, so I can be home in time for dinner.

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