Tuesday, May 26, 2009


The vet, Dr. Yuri, and Valeria, his wife, collected Crooky Sunday morning and took her to a colleague for spaying. They brought her back last night.

I was a little bit, but only slightly, sorry to have her neutered right now as I finally hit on the perfect Cat In Heat soundtrack . . . the first 20 seconds of Freddie Mercury singing "Somebody to Love." Studio version. Not live. It's impossible to find on YouTube.

Hey . . . anybody??? Find me . . . . somebody to-oo love?

Since a more realistic soundtrack to our lives is SpongeBob, the children skipped home from school yesterday singing "Crooky's coming, tonight-tonight! Crooky's coming tonight!"

Valeria called me around 9:00 p.m. to ask how late we'd be up, and if we preferred them to return the cat then or in the morning.

"She's at our place. We're on our way home now," she said. "With traffic it could be another hour."


She's been convalescing in their apartment? Which is in the same building as ours?

I suppose it doesn't really matter. And it certainly would keep Cat-O from trying to play with her right away.

Now, it has been ages since I've owned a cat, let alone a female cat. So it has been, oh, maybe 25 years since I've had one spayed.

But I don't recall them ever coming back from the vet quite like this:

(Don't you be passing judgement on all those empty wine bottles behind her . . . we did have folks over on Saturday.)

Isn't that a riot? I guess it beats the plastic cone over the head. She looks like Nurse Jane Fuzzy-Wuzzy in her little get-up.Cat-O was extra affectionate to us while she was gone. I'm not sure if he was worried about her or just realized it was his opportunity to bogart all the cat food. He has been slimmer.

This morning I discovered this peaceable kingdom tableau in the living room:

The minute I approached with the camera, Cat-O tried to look disinterested.

The vet's instructions are that she is to wear the "dressing" for a week. They will return in two weeks to remove the stitches.

Seems like a long time.

All of which got me to thinking: if I have heard horror stories about Russian public hospitals, what must a Russian vet clinic look like?


I am reminded of a story. If I've bored you with this before, you can stop reading now.

A million years ago, before we had children, we lived in Miami, and I worked for an HMO. My boss was a very funny gay man who owned what seemed like a million cats. It being Florida, most of the cats could live outside. So he wasn't like a Crazy Gay Cat Man or anything. But he did have a soft spot, and he was known to rescue strays now and then and add them to his posse.

To economize, he had all their medical work done at his local Humane Society. They spay and neuter at a fraction of the cost of a regular vet's office.

The vet at this particular Humane Society clinic was Russian. I never met the guy, but I imagine a big, burly Russian. Like a farm vet. With big, muscle-y arms.

Boss tells the story of how once he walked into the clinic to retrieve a cat who had been a patient there for something or another.

Dr. Ivan calls from the OR for him to "Come on in."

Boss does, only to find Ivan, mid-surgical procedure, with a cigarette dangling from his lips. The ash on the end was long and in imminent danger of falling into the unfortunate patient, etherized on the table.

"Um," said Boss, himself a smoker. "Do you think you should be smoking . . . er . . . now?"

"Meh," replied the Russian, stoically. "Cats die. People die."

The washing machine has begun to leak again, and Washer Repair Dude III is due this morning. Light a candle for me, will ya? I forsee a new washer/dryer in my future.


valentina said...

I LAUGHED OUT LOUD when I saw pix of Crooky in her spring ensemble!! Love the bow details too!

So nice that they aren't fighting too! Perhaps Cat-O was thinking Crooky has been disappeared into the river (is there a river in Moscow?)and was fearful of his own immanent demise!?

I had never heard the story of the Russian vet in Miami!
Quelle horreur!

Bad news about the washer...Hope this time, 3rd? time's the charm! xov

Jen said...

Sensational getup! It beats those plastic cones!

The washing machine :(

hka said...

yeah, washing machines die too obviously, haha

The Expatresse said...

Oh! Touche!

hka said...

or maybe not so haha, really

Luna said...

LMAO!! Poor Crooky... Two weeks to get the stiches out??? Cripes. That just doesn't seem right.

And of course I noticed the wine bottles first. I thought: Hey! Looks just like my kitchen--without the benefit of having had guests over the night before. :)

Dawn said...

I love the 'dressing' on the surgical site. And it does beat one of those awful cones, but.. stitches are usally a max of 10 days but more often 7
HOw clean will that little get up stay for 14 days?

ps I noticed the wine bottles also!

Tina in CT said...

Poor Cooky! 14 days seems like a long time for stitches.

That outfit she is wearing will do the trick. When the vet came to do my daughter's cat, he took one of her old tee shirts and made some sort of get-up for her cat to wear.

Why was Crooky convalescing at your neighbors? That stumped me.

Your washing machine sure has it in for you.

leo.batalov said...

I love it - that entire blog is why I love russians! so funny! you will have to post a pic of 14 day old dressings. I will light a candle for you and your washer at the xpam across the street. . . .

leo.batalov said...

it is katherine - not leo - sorry -

Susan said...

I think that vet moved to Vancouver and repairs vehicles in the back yard of our shop. Does he wear a speedo no matter what the weather??

The Expatresse said...

Tina: Moscow is a VERY small place and, coincidentally, the Vet of the Expats lives in my building. I had spoken to them on the phone many times, but only recently realized we are neighbors. I think they brought Crooky to their place after her surgery.

Susan: I am frantically searching for a photo of my neighbor in Slovakia in his UNDERWEAR, out watering the lawn. Other neighbors there painted their house that way . . . I mean, why ruin good clothes?

Tina in CT said...

Yardwork in underwear! Gross! And I thought I looked bad so bad in my old shorts that I bought two new pairs of shorts at Walmart to wear gardening.

Alison & Larry's Russian Adventure said...

are you sure there are stitches under there? Maybe just a Russian technique to keep the boyz out :-0

MoscowMom said...

OMG!!!! I almost peed my pants with laughter!!!! I've got identical pics of Asya on our blog in her get-up... But OUR vet made a house call and spayed her on the kids' IKEA table... And taught us how to make our own "dressings" out of Chris's old t-shirts! Ah, Russia.

I **LOVE** the pic I got of her brother looking after her as she recovered...

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