Friday, December 2, 2011

Conservative cat

We spent last night in the parking lot at the Northwood Animal Hospital (map). They had asked us to drop Angel off first thing this morning, but the closest parking spot is across town, and I did not relish the thought of trying to navigate the bus in rush hour traffic to a clinic where even getting into the parking lot was dicey. So we dropped by last night around 5 and asked if we could just park overnight, and they agreed. Getting into the tiny lot involved going through the parking lot of a sign shop next door, facilitated by the fact that they were already closed and the lot was empty.

After leaving Angel with the vet this morning, we had to clear out of the lot to make room for other customers, and so we headed to the Tallahassee Mall just a few blocks away, with its enormous lot. The mall is breathing its dying gasps, and already featured over at (a site I frequent as we encounter dead malls around the country). As a side note, what looks like a shopping center on the satellite view across from the vet, a tempting place to park, was in fact Tallahassee's first enclosed mall, but, having died back in the 1980s, is now leased entirely to the State of Florida, which fills the lot to the brim.

When we pulled in to the mall lot we positioned ourselves in what looked like an unused part of the lot (map), near a long-vacant anchor store, but close enough to one of the working entrances that we could wander in and kill some time. We ended up spending a couple hours in the mall, including the half-hour call from the vet which I took sitting on a pleasant bench. We walked back the length of the mall to the bus to get ready to pick her up, and spotted an enormous line snaking around the mall from the Barnes & Noble, one of the few going concerns here.

What could this be, we asked ourselves? An incredible holiday deal on the Nook? Nope -- it turned out to be the book-signing tour for Glenn Beck. Apparently, he has a loyal following in Florida's capital. Of course the tour's Prevost entertainer coach was stationed outside the store (generator humming, even though this weather does not call for any air conditioning -- I don't think these entertainers have even a single operable window). The sea of cars belonging to conservative talking-head fans spread as far as the eye could see, engulfing Odyssey in what we thought to be a little-used part of the lot.

We got lucky -- the parking space immediately in front of Odyssey was vacant when we walked up, and I immediately put a couple of cones out to keep it that way while we packed up and ate our lunch. The lunchtime entertainment was watching the dumpster truck retrieve a dumpster for the Guitar Center store that had been positioned in the same general part of the lot, one of our clues that this part of the lot was unused. The onslaught of cars ended up blocking the lifting slots and he had a mighty struggle to retrieve it. Beck's coach pulled out just before we did, and we realized that we must have looked like part of the tour. Too bad we already gave away our Obama bobble-head that used to live on the dashboard.

We had to take our chances in the State of Florida lot to pick Angel up -- no way to get back into the vet's lot in the middle of the day. We got a few odd looks, but no one disturbed us for the half hour we were there. That was long enough to pick up the cat as well as another ream of paperwork for her file, plus some extra cat food, injection needles, and yet another prescription.

The ultrasound did not reveal any conclusive reason for the recent illness. Interestingly, one of her kidneys is less than half the size of the other one, which accounts for marginal numbers on some of the blood counts, but the complete set of tests seems to rule out kidney disease as the root cause here. There is some enlargement of the pancreas that may warrant some follow-up, but that would required a surgical biopsy, so we are holding off until we see how other treatments progress.

The new script is for Mirtazapine, which in humans is used to treat depression, but in cats is an appetite stimulant as well as an anti-emetic. They gave her one pill in the office, and the first thing she did when she got back to the bus was to eat a few dog kibbles -- the first food we have seen here eat voluntarily in over a week. Normally we would not let her eat dog food, but we are at the point where any nutrition is a good thing. We are going to continue with the antibiotics, since urinary or GI tract infections are one possible explanation for the symptoms, and increase the subcutaneous ringers to 100cc daily. If we don't see more improvement by mid-day tomorrow, we might stay right here in Tally so we can follow up with the same clinic.

In the meantime we'd already decided to spend at least tonight here, and so after we wrapped up at the vet we came here (map), to a coin laundry not far from our club in town. When the laundry's done, I made dinner reservations at the club, which is actually inside the university's football stadium. After dinner we'll trundle over to one of three convenient Walmarts here in town for the night.

On our way into town we had thought about dining at the club last night, but after securing permission to stay at the clinic we didn't want to then run around town. Instead we walked over to El Jalisco Mexican restaurant just a couple blocks away, and were surprised to find it jam-packed. The food was quite tasty and it was a friendly place, with half-price draft beer to boot, so it was a good choice.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Glenn Beck, eh? Hm, if they were offering free entertainer coaches, maybe I'd line up. But even then I might have to think it over.

  3. Looks like regular folks in the line, many with jobs I bet, and being civil. Maybe there is a lesson here for the folks at occupy! Just saying!


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