Moving Day Saga: Someone's Going To Emergency

Oh my goodness what a moving day.

It started off too early. We were up and out of bed at 6. Quick shower and off to Starbucks for coffee (moving day without coffee is unthinkable). We had a few things to finish packing and we had to load up our truck with stuff we didn't want the movers to take. Gave Piper her tranquilizer. The movers showed up on time. They were good and even had the tools to take apart my bed (something which made me just about gnaw all my fingernails off - I *love* my bed...) so that it would fit out the door and into the elevator. They moved a week bit slower than the last movers I got from this company but all in all, no complaints. It took about two hours to load everything into the truck and Lee and I kept cleaning the apartment because we had nothing else to do. I was fidgety and anxious, mostly about the bed, but also just regular old moving anxiety. I kept looking around the emptying apartment thinking how much I loved it and how I totally got lucky during my 20 minute apartment search the year before. And reminding myself that my new place had a fireplace and sunroom and was nice as well.

While the movers were slowly moving things I ran over to the building administration office to drop off my laundry cards and say goodbye to the building manager. I had said goodbye to the nice neighbour across the hall the night before. (An aside: Remember the crazy neighbour? Turns out she really was pretty crazy. She ended up subletting her apartment and moving out. Maybe Piper drove her to it?) Have I mentioned I truly loved the building that I lived in and that the management company was excellent? I've lived in a few buildings that are run by management companies and this one was head and shoulders above the rest. They prove that management company does not equal evil.

It was finally time to leave. We bid goodbye to the movers, saying we'd see them in a few hours. Then I had to give my keys to the doorman and say goodbye. That really sucked. My building had the best doormen (ok, not the night guy). I'm going to miss them. We thought about smuggling the morning doorman to Ottawa in the trunk but decided his wife probably wouldn't appreciate it. A quick call to Lee's dad (he was going to our new place early in case the movers beat us to Ottawa) and we were on the road!

The drive to Ottawa was the same as always - boring. Piper was excellent in the truck, very calm. I was less stressed than I had been most of the morning and a bit dopey from the Gravol. We stopped for Timmy's and well, that was about the most exciting thing that happened on the drive.

We got to the new place before the movers. Lee's dad had brought over some stuff that we had ordered online and had shipped to his place, including a new set of sheets. I threw those into the washer, Lee unloaded the truck. Piper, who has regained her Travel Champ title, was let loose in the bathroom. Once we had everything in the house we let Piper explore a little bit. She was her usual curious self. We were just debating whether or not Lee should run and grab us some lunch when the movers arrived. Yay! Our stuff!

Unloading went much faster than loading. Piper got locked in the sunroom (the better to see the birdies from) during the unloading process. The bed reassembly went well but I did get awfully anxious when it seemed that they were having trouble with it as evidenced by the fact that they closed themselves into our bedroom so we couldn't see what they were doing. But 30 minutes later my bed was assembled and did not seem to be missing any parts or have any large chunks taken out of it. Yay! The movers finished and were duly paid and tipped (exactly how much is one supposed to tip movers???). Piper was let out to explore the new place with all of her stuff in it. She had quite a good time. Plus she finally got to eat a really, really late breakfast (sure, it was 3pm...it was still breakfast).

We made the bed and set out to buy things. What's a move without buying things? First to Wendy's because I was having a wicked chicken nugget craving and then Canadian Tire to try to find things that adapt a two pronged plug to a three pronged plug. It turns out places can't sell them anymore which SUCKS when you rent. Luckily I still had one kicking around from another apartment. Then to Zellers to buy a pantry because either we accidentally fed our kitchen stuff after midnight and it started to breed or our new place has far less storage. And finally to the Great Canadian Superstore for groceries where we spent a heck of a lot of money considering we didn't buy cleaning supplies (we already own pretty much every product under the sun) or meat (Costco). Then home to face the dreaded unpacking.

As usual I started unpacking books. Lee was unpacking something else. Around 6 we fed Piper her dinner, a special treat of wet cat food because she had been so good all day. She gulped it down like she hadn't eaten in years.

It was around 7 that we noticed that something was wrong. Cats have an extra eyelid but we don't normally see it. Last night we could see Piper's. And let me tell you, it was pretty freaky looking. But we weren't overly concerned at first. We continued to putter around. We hooked up the tv and thanks to some borrowed rabbit ears sat down to watch some of the hockey game. Piper was sitting at one end of the couch, her eyes still a bit freaky, and I sat at the other end. She got up to walk over to me but she could barely walk.

Here's where I tell those of you who don't know - Piper has a bum back leg. Once upon a time I dated an asshole who broke her. He's frequently called the Evil Ex around here. So when something is up with her back legs I get worried. She sat beside me and *growled* when I touched her back legs. Then she tried to crawl into my lap from sitting beside me on the couch and she really couldn't do it. She could only get her front half on my legs.

This is the part where I start to freak out.

Lee calls his friend's who have cats and finds out who their vet is. I call 411 and get the number. I call the clinic but of course it's closed but thankfully their machine leaves the name and number of the emergency vet. I call the emergency vet and they say that the visible third eyelid probably means that Piper is in a lot of pain. That's the point where I almost started crying. When Lee came into the room he told me to call them back and tell them that we were on our way. So we called, gently threw Piper into the carrier again and headed off.

It was a rather tense car ride. Ever since the incident with the Evil Ex, which resulted in her femoral head being replaced (ie *major* surgery) I kind of fear the worst whenever anything is wrong with Piper.

I never thought that I'd be on my way to the emergency vet at 9pm on moving day.

When we got their we gave them Piper's medical records (thankfully we knew exactly where they had been packed). We couldn't give a current vet because we don't have on in the city. That was a great conversation.

"Oh, we don't have a vet. We just moved here.
"Oh really? How long have you been in Ottawa?"
"Since about 3pm this afternoon."
"!!!!!"

Piper and I were quickly taken back to an exam room where she was given a quick exam (weighed, temperature, etc) by one of the assistants. Then the vet came in and we talked some more. By this time Piper was walking better which led him to believe that it was just the tranquilizers. They decided to take her blood pressure and I was sent off to the waiting area. At this point Piper was better, I was better but poor Lee wasn't doing so well. You see, this was his first big foray into pet emergencies as an owner and they really are not fun. At this point both Lee and I could have used a tranquilizer.

Eventually we got Piper back. It was concluded that it was just the tranquilizers but that we'd have to give her some eye gel (called Tear Gel) until she was back to normal. Having the third eyelid out like that causes dryness which is not only bad but can be painful. So back in the truck to a late night pharmacy for eye gel and then finally back home. All in one piece. All fine. Piper got her eye gel before bed and then sacked out beside me all night.

When we woke up this morning Piper could walk fine, her eyes were back to normal and so was her attitude. I got meowed at. Lee got hissed at. And when we let her out into the sunroom she meowed and clicked at the birdies.

So we're getting on to life as normal as normal as it can be amid moving chaos. But the next time I move, which hopefully will not be for a very long time, Piper will not be getting tranquilizers. I, on the other hand, may just drink an entire box of wine.