Saturday, November 20, 2010

FCCO Clinic Tomorrow

Freshly painted garage wall. Some caulking of cracks between the boards I put up still needs done.
To the far right, the boards I put up join sheet rock put up by a former tenant, and there is still one vacant uncovered section to cover. The garage is a mess, as you might imagine, with the shelves I used to store things upon dismantled and no shelves put up yet on the wall. It wasn't easy to cut the outlet hole because I don't have a jigsaw. So I drilled out a few holes and then cut the outlet hole in the board covering that area using a kitchen steak knife!

Tomorrow, a FCCO clinic will be held at the fairgrounds. I registered for five cats some time ago. But then I heard nothing, and thought the clinic had been cancelled. I got the cats I was going to trap for the FCCO clinic fixed through Poppa Inc. funds. Then a few days ago, I got a response from the coordinator the clinic was on for Sunday. Now what to do, about the five cats I registered for but already got fixed.

I've finished the colonies I've been working, except the one adult left to catch clear up outside Lebanon at the Attic cats. Catching that one would be a long ordeal.

There are two cats at Heatherdale who would qualify, since they were abandoned and living as strays, even though tame.

I can take them in.

There are cats who need to go in, several from Albany, but I cannot get caregiver cooperation or go ahead on it. LIke at the Bengal man colony. He has more needing fixed. He asked for help doing it a couple months ago, to which I immediately agreed, but has not responded since. There were three left to catch on 20th, in a colony there, but I can't get them to respond either.

It's frustrating to not be able to finish a colony completely. It's also common. The caregivers tire of the effort, even though usually, they're not the ones making the effort. The Rural Trailer colony had about two left, but the complication there is the woman won't check traps on her porch, and that is a long way to drive check them and release ones already fixed. I can't sit in her driveway because the cats won't come out with me that close to where they eat. So that is clean up I"ve put off, too.

Yesterday, I had a day in Corvallis. I found an offer of free cans and bottles on craigslist and responded. I "won" the offer since they love cats and picked up a carload of cans and bottles! I turned them in at three stores, garnering about $21 which I used to put gas in my car. I also bought one shelf, and hardware that will hold, eventually about three shelves, at the Habitat store in Corvallis for a total of $4, which is why I love that store so much.

That's for the garage wall. I really inflamed myself putting up the last wood on the wall. This project has been going on for awhile. Any spare pieces of decent size thin plywood I get I cut to put on that wall to cover the insulation I've also installed.

It took me a long time to accumulate the insulation to for that wall. When I had the money, I'd buy a $10 roll and staple it up. I knew it had to be covered, however. So I'd save up any plywood pieces I came across to use.

The biggest part was getting out the heavy but disintegrating particle board shelves some other renter had made and sat against that wall. Moisture in the garage had its effect over time on those shelves and pieces had become wet and flaked off. It was teetery and dangerous because of its weight. It almost fell on me when I was knocking it apart. It had to go, I knew, but I kept putting off that heavy job. Sometimes there is no avoiding such painful tasks in the end, because of the danger of not doing them.

It's legal to cover a garage wall in plywood, instead of sheet rock that does not adjoin a residential space. This wall does not adjoin residential space. Using plywood makes it easier to attach things. Some former tenant covered part of the wall in very thin sheet rock and I left that up, even though it was not insulated beneath. It was too much to take it off. It's only a small area on the wall that also has a work bench and wall storage shelves.

I caulked cracks yesterday until I ran out of spackle. Then I painted the wall anyway, most of it, despite not filling some cracks, will do that one day when I get more spackle. I gave it two coats of the same gray paint I used on a bedroom wall.

While in Corvallis, I also walked in three 16 lb bags of cat food to the homeless campers, one for each. It had begun to pour by that time. One of the campers arrived back on his bike and helped me walk the bags in, even carrying the last bag to deliver out to the farthest camper as I followed behind with other food for that camper's cat. Bobby and two other cats shot out of one tent when I came around the corner to the last camp. In the first campers tent, his cat, "Biker" is now hanging out with the short hair brown tabby tux female. They're best buddies, he said. At the second camper's tent, the old long hair female was inside pacing. "She's hungry. Richard ran out of food," the camper with me said glumly. "Good thing you came today."

I poured out food into a bowl he had there for that purpose. She had retreated to the back of his tent, until she saw the food, then she tore into it. Richard takes care of her. His other favorite cat whom I got fixed a year ago, died a couple months back when hit by a car. He was devastated over the loss. This cat, Sabrina, was left behind by younger campers. She's older and clings to Richard like he's god in heaven.

There are not that many cats left in the camps. I took the majority of them out of there. Poppa's president still has one of those she took in a year ago--Trudy. She had two other adult females from these camps she took in a few years before that, but both have now died, one of peritonitis and one of cancer.

I still have four cats from this camp: Zach, Teddy, Starr and Honey.

I feel a pride in getting that area cleaned up. Besides the 52 I got fixed from that side, across the way and down the road just half mile, I took out almost three dozen cats, which was not easy either. And behind the homeless camps, I got about 18 fixed in total, fed by other people.

While at the Habitat store I ran into former neighbors, from way back when in the duplex in the Freddies district. That was a hard time for me. I'd just come off being homeless and had been badly beaten on the psyche ward by staff and had that horrible injury. However, I could not get medical help for it as the doctors told me my symptoms, of spinal cord shut down, were really symptoms of mental illness. I was in such horrible pain, I don't like to remember much about those years.

She and her boyfriend lived on the other side and we battled a decrepid ill maintained property. They were students then. She'd had one wall heater spark and fall off the wall. I had one that didn't work. The roof leaked. The phoneline didn't work because water in the walls destroyed it. A particle board shed door, water engorged, crashed down from its own weight, narrowly missing me. In the end, HUD refused to re-approve it and I desperately searched for somewhere else to live.

That resulted in my writer friend writing a column, describing the faults of the rental, and quoting me as saying "despite these things, it is the best place I've ever lived," which was pathetic in itself. That prompted another Corvallis slumlord to contact my writer friend offering up her slum shack for me to rent. This prompted five more years of hell, because I had no choice but to take that offer. I did not know the misery I was in for.

My neighbors also had moved out. They bought a house, a fixer upper, and are still fixing it up, she said, with a knowing smile aimed at her husband, who returned it.

They now have two kids and are married. Their kids are beautiful. She is a stay at home mom and he still has his job. They looked great and it was good to see them. I am happy they are doing so well.

The Albany woman who feeds the mom and three teens got the two boys I caught in and fixed at her own vet yesterday. I got those two traps back, to use today, if I find any cats to catch to take to the clinic. I offered a spot to the woman with the three teens, for the third of hers, but she declined and said she preferred to take the cat, once we catch her, to her own vet. I don't blame her. She's a nice woman and close to 90 years of age. I would have guessed 66 or 67. I told her she looks incredible for her age.

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