Happy Hairy Heart Day!

My cats have been fighting and I have no idea why. It started on Sunday, I was making my breakfast and doing up the dishes and both cats were hanging around, which is not unusual, in particular for Chance. Anything in the kitchen might mean something for him. Either given or dropped.

I saw them swatting at each other at the same time I heard the hissing. This part isn’t unusual at all. Jango, more so, when it comes to the three-legged upstart always getting all up in his grill, but this escalated quickly.

All of a sudden, there was hissing, screaming and fur flying, they were tearing around and it wouldn’t stop. Jango got by the door and they sat there for a bit just growling, but that deep guttural growl that frankly frightened me a bit. Chance, right in front of him, their eyes huge and wild, staring at each other. Chance’s back hair and his tail were at full height.

Then, Jango made a move to just get away, Jango, the Lover, and Chance, Chance the fighter, was on him. They went around at each other and it was just a blur of fur, like on Bugs Bunny cartoons when the Tasmanian devil does his spinning thing, and they were going at it like I had never seen. The sound alone was unbelievable.

Jango managed to break away and went and got under the bed, Chance right behind him.   At this point, I went in and put one of the pillows down to cover where Jango was and cut off the insane eye contact that was going on.

Chance finally tucked himself up in the corner behind my big fan and ten minutes later they were still growling, even though they couldn’t see each other. I went in to suss the sitch and when I looked under the bed at Jango, he had blood on his ear, and it was dripping on the floor.

I went and got an oven mitt on and managed to get Chance out of the corner, even though I didn’t need the mitt, he can do some damage. I got him out to the chair on the balcony and closed the bedroom door, to give Jango so time to recoup. He isn’t used to this type of activity and he is turing 13 or 14 this year. I’ll have to check. I’m not a bad cat mum, half the time I can’t remember my own age.

I took some water in for him and just left them in their own space for a while and when Jango wanted to come out, it happened all over again. The noises coming out of them, it was enough to set the neighbour’s dogs off.

I have no idea what is going on. They ended up on the balcony with Jango under the chair, so Chance had him trapped. I took my flip flop off and tried to put it between them. I know. I tried to just stop the paws and claws from doing more damage and I ended up giving Chance a whomp on the head with it, so thankfully it wasn’t a Doc Martin!

It startled him enough to stop for a second and then I managed to get him back inside and slid the balcony door over. There is a lot of power in the that little cat!

Monday was pretty much a repeat, so Jango spent the better part of the day on the porch, either under or sitting on the chair, with Chance glaring darts at him from inside.

Tuesday morning started out okay, with them actually eating their breakfast together, which they normally never do, that has to be in shifts. I mean, honestly! Cats!

Then, Chance just walked up to Jango and started washing his ears like nothing had even happened. Honestly, the relief I felt!

They both got quite hurt through it all. Jango now has cuts on both his ears and has been favouring his left front leg, but he did let me look at it and I didn’t see any scratches, so it likely just got banged against something.

Chance lost a claw, which I found parts of wedged in the back of Jango’s neck. Plus, this morning when I kicked of my flip flop, he gave me a low growl. Ha Ha … I never even hit him very hard, but point taken. For the record, I do not hit my cats.

So, Wednesday, Valentine’s Day, there was a bit of growling but no fisticuffs, so maybe it has passed. I don’t know what started it but I was shocked when it happened and it really stressed me a lot. I was also shocked how quickly I was siding with Jango. He’s been with me a long time and he is not a fighter, at all, and he isn’t particularly active, either, so it was a lot for him.

I remember telling him years ago, back in Toronto, as he was play fighting with me, that he was lucky he lived with me and didn’t have to fend for himself in the wild, because he would have his fuzzy butt handed to him by an arthritic squirrel. An arthritic squirrel with a bum leg and one good eye.

Chance, on the other hand, has had to fend for himself in the wild. The Dominican wild but he had to find food and defend himself against other animals and that’s very apparent to all of us when something like this comes up.

I have no idea what stared it, maybe because I’ve been so stressed for the past few months that now I’m actually seeing a bit of sunshine through my fog, that they felt it was time they let theirs out. I know they feel our feels, but they don’t understand.

Here they are, not really talking yet, but in the same space with out tearing each other’s hair out in clumps.

 

IMG_1914

Happy Hairy Heart Day

My Shit Show

First off, I want to say thanks to all of you who reached out to me with kind words and thoughts. Big thanks to those of you who reached out with cash, it means eating or not eating. The gift of $50 is, in fact, priceless. So, Thank You.

Also, thankful that fuck that holiday has fucked off for another year. Depressing AF.

It’s not come as a big surprise to me, this lifestyle I’m living. I call it Nouveau Chic Poverty. I’ve spent my adult life with my hand out, so why change now?

I was almost out of money when I posted my New Years blog last year, and through friends, help and some online freelance work, we’re still here.

What sent me over the edge was just a big bunch of shit hitting the fan all at once. As shit is won’t to do. Do Do.

Somewhere around October, I got a rent raise, followed on the heels of that, by the notice someone might be interested in buying the apartment I live in. PS, my rent is low here. Just under $400. I know.

The idea I would have to start apartment hunting again and moving again is naturally very stressful. It’s stressful even more when you don’t know the language. More stress when you don’t have the money. Luckily I have a friend here who was onboard to help.

Crisis avoided on the apartment move, they decided on something else. I will admit, when they came to see the apartment, I didn’t bother to sweep or do my dishes or hide the cat box or put pants on.

I also never realized, because I see it all the time, that I have chalk writing on my walls and cupboard for the cockroaches and ants and any other bug that decides  to crawl across my space.  A few direct messages that tells them in no uncertain terms, to piss off, go to hell, no one likes you, Hey, you, ya you, off you fuck, and a few that have super bad words in them. I hope the possible buyers didn’t read English.

Then in the headlong fall to the holiday season, I discovered my credit card was not working. I’d been living off of it, so that was just another shoe that I was waiting to hear hit the floor. But when I tried to put a payment on it, my money kept returning to my PayPal account.

Turns out they bank in Toronto mailed me some “very important papers” months ago even though they know I don’t have mail service, to tell me that as a non-resident, I have to close the account. So now that avenue is dead to me too. The bonus is I guess they can just pound that Visa balance straight up their holes.

Because I couldn’t access the money, they cut my power off. I hadn’t paid the bill for two months so I had to take the cat food money and walk to the bank to pay it. It was about $30. I know. The kid that came to cut it off actually buzzed my apartment to let him in the gate. Sweet.

Fuck sakes.

I opened a new PayPal account for the Dominican, but can’t connect my Dominican Bank to it, they only accept the the most popular one, which just happens to be called Popular. I had to gather up all kinds of information and set out to open a new account. Luckily, my friend came with me and did all the talking. He actually works in a bank, so that was a big lucky break and a saving grace and some other trite sayings about luck and blessing and fortune smiling that would fit in here. But I won’t bore you.

So now it’s just the waiting to see if I’m approved. The best part of the whole stressful day was when the power went out in the bank and I yelped like a demented cocker spaniel and then my friend and mostly the woman helping us with the bright orangy-pink lipstick laughed for several minutes.  The Jumpy Gringa. Good times.

It’s been a lot to deal with and I know everyone has their own plateful, but it’s not a contest. This is my stress at the moment. It’s eye-opening, the reality of living in a different country where language is a barrier and you are all on your own. It’s difficult to ask for help, worse when people say no.

I had expected, up until very recently, my friend would be visiting for the hols, but they didn’t make it this year. I had bought a small teapot for them to use, and now every time I see it I feel embarrassed somehow.

I’ve had my little hissy fit and I’m trying to be optimistic but just saying it  doesn’t make the dark and scary go away.

Next, stay tuned about my dissertation about why I’m not moving back to Canada.

Toodles.

just-breathe-orlando-espinosa1

 

 

 

It’s Hols, or Something

The Cats Say Hey

chanceis

Both

It’s been a rather shit year for me, but it’s been a hard year for many people.  I’m thankful for my cats in particular because unlike people, they never let me down.

I’ve struggled a lot financially this past year and it seems my friends are deserting me, as well. Fuck them really. It happens. We move on, up, away, we move to better and bigger and our lives change.

It doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt. My boys have never argued with me, or tried to one-up me with anything and they certainly have never put conditions on our relationship.

It’s Christmas and it’s a time of year I dread anyhow, and this is my first one alone since moving here. I’m oddly okay with it.

I’m making apple pancakes later and the boys get tuna, so we’re fine. I’ll hide away in some one line movies or show or…

View original post 73 more words

It’s Not You, It’s Me

 

img_0253

 

 

 

It’s been really windy here, windy enough to break a couple of favourite planters on my balcony. I was rather sad to see them break, one I’d had for almost 20 years, like old friends.

It’s Not You, It’s Me

We’ve said, we’ve heard it, it’s cliche and trite but it’s true.

People come into our lives and leave our lives and sometimes it’s painful and sometimes it’s a relief and sometimes we barely notice and sometimes the loss and hole they leave is insurmountable. That’s life. It’s not them. It’s us.

I’ve taken notice of such things, I am someone who likes to try, I keep in touch, sometimes to the point of down right annoyance and verging on stalker. So when people leave me, I notice.

I remember people leaving my life when I left my home, town, bigger losses when I applied for college and moved to a larger city, farther away.

Big losses happened when I quit smoking, which I didn’t expect but completely understood. It was needed and welcome. People seemed to feel like I’d let them down. It’s an odd thing, to go from smoker to non-smoker and I assume the same drinkers and drug users, once the user buddy is gone, the user needs to find more of the same, likewise, for the new non-user.
Moving out of province to Vancouver was another break, harder to keep in touch, new experiences, new adventures, new people come in and leave again.
Toronto, same. Shifting, incoming. Outgoing. Keep moving, keep shifting, keep spinning. I was there for seventeen years, barely a notch on the belt for it, a small handful of friends. But it’s fine. It’s not you, it’s me.
When Jango and I moved to The Dominican, there was another big shift. It started before I left. I mentioned to a few people that I was leaving and no one really had anything nice to say to me about it. Their response was usually, oh, wow, good for you… But. But this is why I don’t like it.
There’s this weird feeling that comes over people, they somehow need to take it away from you, make it unappealing. So I stopped telling people.
I told a few more, later, same results. One of my ‘friends’ asked me about the facebook invite she got for my going away party. ‘Is that still on?’ She screamed. Incredulous is the best way to describe her response. As if it couldn’t be happening because I wasn’t fucking banging on about it everyday, doing some asshole countdown on my Facebook.

As I approach my fourth Christmas here, this past year has seen the numbers drop. Someone in the early part of the year just stopped talking to me. They are in Canada and I was just beginning this shit year I’m in but I guess they need to be the saddest person in the friendship.

Then within a few weeks, two people, I felt, had been less than kind to me. They handled a situation that I felt could have been better. One of them just removed me from their life. Blocked, like I no longer exist. maybe I don’t. It’s not them, it’s me.

Then it happened again, this time when I mentioned the situation could have been handled better, they basically told me their pain was bigger than mine, and then imposed conditions on the friendship. But, really, they had been there all along. As long as I don’t cross the line, we can be friends. They get to decide that. They are the more important one, they are in charge and decided if the relationship can remain or dissolve.

I don’t agree to that. I was never asked. So, no. I don’t agree to your friendship conditions. It’s not you, it’s me.

It’s been a shit year for me, and this time of year isn’t helping. I’m severely at a loss how to move forward and get out of this. I’ve reached out and asked for help, but people just say no. I don’t really blame them, why should they. I got myself into it, I can just bloody well get myself out of it.

But no one follows up. No one asks me if it worked out, or if I’m okay.

No. It hasn’t and No. I’m not.

I think about killing myself. A lot. And not in a ‘woe is me, goodbye cruel world’ kind of way. Just as a realistic, viable way to get out of the mess I’m in.

I’m rather level headed about it, quite resigned to it all. I’ve had a good life, lots of adventure, I’ve loved and been loved, had my heart broken, saw Elton John and Rod Stewart in the same summer! It’s been a good life.

I even think about how, how to do it. Sometimes eight or ten times a day.

That’s what makes me cry. Because who the fuck lives like that? It’s really hard.

But I don’t really want to die, not the physical, finality of it all, I just want out of my mess.

I want to kill the self you no longer like, I guess I don’t like her anymore, either.

The friend with the conditions said they were in mourning. Well, I’m in mourning, too. The woman who was. She was your friend and you no longer want her and that’s hard for me to take.

It’s not you, it’s me.

So, death to the old, shedding the old bullshit and friends, such as they were.

So, thank you to the ones who love me for me, without conditions. And thank you to those who don’t.

It’s not you, it’s me.

You’re fucking right it’s me.

 

Meow!

Cat Update

chanceis

24900251_10154775686112126_482056958318595832_n

I just got a notice on facebook telling me that it’s been donkey’s years since my peeps have heard from us, so I’ll pop in for a quick hello and an update from the boys.

Jango and I just celebrated 12 years together so that was very cool. There was tuna. He’s such a good boy and happy and loving, I’m very pleased he is on this adventure in life with me.

Chance is the same old chance-taking loving cat. He is so in love with us. This past week he has been sleeping right beside my head. Do your cats do that? He doesn’t always, he goes through cycles, but the other morning I woke up with his foot and poo-hole in my face.

I don’t mind.

He cries when I leave and I can hear him from the street. I tease him mercilessly when I get back; “Chancie…

View original post 153 more words

Comma, Bitch.

As all my money has dwindled away, I have been looking for work online. Living where I do, with regular power outages, it’s difficult to commit to anything where I need to be online for certain scheduled times every day. The best solution is writing.

I have been to college a few times, so I understand writing essays, reports, detailed assignments and whatever else that entails. I’ve also taken several writing courses, mostly ‘creative writing’, all of which I enjoyed and a few I actually found helpful.

Writing for sites online is a different thing all together. When I first started I had no idea what I was doing but after a few tried, managed to get the hang of it. I had merely did an online for ‘working online’ and found a few sites that we free to join. These sites are set up for all interested parties to bid on projects and then you just wait and hope for the best.

I made a few mistakes along the way, the biggest was allowing the person wanting to hire me to contact me outside the site. The sites I was using – one I still am using- have their own pay system. This is because they take a percentage for the usage of the site.  I didn’t  understand that this wasn’t allowed, and the first few times I did it, it worked out fine. I got the money in my PayPal account

There was one person who hired me and wanted to contact through Skype. I did, and the first article I wrote, I sent through the freelance site. He actually ‘yelled’ at me, by yelled I mean he was furious that I was late and that ‘he didn’t work this way …’. I explained I sent the article, did he not check the messages?

I should have just cut my losses and went back to the site, but I didn’t know. Plus, they were offering a far higher wage than most, so I didn’t want to just throw it away. We carried on for a solid week, then I started to ask about money. He said he would pay the middle and end of the month.

I said that was fine, but as I had already done quite a bit of work, would he consider just paying for what he had received. He wouldn’t. He also kept sending me work. I said I would do it once I was paid.

Another aspect I found fishy was there was always someone there online on the Skype. Always. Sometimes the messages were very clear, sometimes they were clearly from someone who was not native English. I didn’t get paid and ended up having a big falling out with the freelance company. They also bawled me out and said I still owned them their take. What?

Last week I was accepted on a job from a woman who paid well and seemed to even have a sense of humour. I was wrong. I did an example writing, which she paid me for and then she critiqued it to the bone. She had a real thing about commas. She sent me a message back that frankly was all commas. It made me itch just reading it. She was really upset about double spaces between sentences and a long list of other things.

When she sent me the next assignment I told her to poke it up her ass, which she promptly did. The contract was ended and the payment made and then she had the gall to demand a review.  I gave her a review.

 

Bird Flew

Some cat stuff.

chanceis

A few weeks ago, I woke up with both my cats on top of me, Chance was walking, running across my chest and Jango was right beside me, climbing up on my shoulder. I didn’t know what was going on and as both cats made a dive for the window above my head, I swear I heard bird wings fluttering.

Then the other morning I woke up, yet again, everything dark to a strange noise. It was growling. Loud growling. This scared the crap out of me, I’m not going to lie. I got my eyes opened and saw Chance on the mat beside my bed with something rather large in his mouth. I guess he came to show me and growling was the only way to let me know he was there. He is actually very vocal, but apparently clever enough to know he couldn’t shout at me and…

View original post 275 more words