My day began somewhere around 04:30 in the morning local time, when I received a message from my daughter that she and the cat had successfully checked in and were at the airport awaiting departure from Berlin. Security check went without a hitch, and not even a complaint from the little madam, who patiently went through all the motions. This was Maike’s first time to travel alone with a cat, and this was of course the maiden voyage of Cherry not only outside of Berlin but on an airplane!
The first leg of the journey was the Berlin – Cologne stretch, which was a relatively short flight. They had an entire row to themselves and once the plane reached cruising altitude, Maike was allowed to have the carrier on the seat next to her. Not a squeak out of Cherry, not even during take off and landing, which is when I usually had problems with my other cats that I transported internationally. The only comment Cherry let out was when a passenger dumped their bag unceremoniously on the seat next to her while deplaning. Madam was offended for invasion of personal space.
The layover was less an hour and then it was time to board the plane to Lisbon. The Feliway calming spray was working wonders for Cherry, because she just curled up and slept all the way to Lisbon. They were met at the airport by MM, who once again has been a pillar of support during such milestone moments ever since moving from Vila Franca. Muito Obrigada!
A radiant Maike and a perplexed Cherry arrived at the Frobbit House and it was such a joy to embrace them! At that moment my life felt complete and the house took on a different emotional hue. Cherry of course immediately began exploring and got lost within three minutes of disappearing around the corner. A loud meow resonated from my office as she stomped back out to the living area. The kitchen she liked, and began inspecting surfaces, altitudes and nooks and crannies. Then she discovered more stairs and followed those, and it wasn’t long before we heard another frustrated yell from the bathroom. This is not the house for little old ladies with wobbly knees, but perhaps Cherry will find her second wind and rejuvenate somehow. Only time will tell. But friendly towards the Milk Bar customers she was not. In true Berliner rudeness, she hissed at one of the customers who dropped in for a drink. She may not have much of a nose, but she has a sassy grump and attitude that will take her places.
We left her alone for an hour while we ran to the grocery. By the time we returned, a somewhat annoyed looking cat greeted us at the door, as if to say “And where the f*&^ did you two disappear to?!” But food was obtained for human and feline alike. so all was well with the world and balance restored. We sat down together in the living room and the little princess took took her seat at the sofa, and let out a sigh of relief.
It was with the greatest of pleasures that I prepared dinner this evening, which consisted of baked butternut squash stuffed with feta cheese and peanut, and paired with fresh salmon. Cherry “supervised” in the kitchen and seemed genuinely happy to have her family together again. As I write this, she is curled up exhausted in the dining room, probably trying to process what on earth she just went through today. It was monumental, to say the least, but little old lady, oh, excuse me, princess, mastered it with grace.
It feels like Christmas in September, not only because of the treasures from the Berlin apartment that Maike brought along with her, but because of that sense of anticipation for that grand arrival, and everything transitioning so seamlessly.