I know most of you who read here have probably seen this on Twitter or Facebook already, but Eldest Cat had to leave us finally earlier this week. He was eighteen, and had been sick with hyperthyroidism for years; he had a heart murmur, his kidneys felt ominous, he walked crooked, he weighed less than half he did in his prime, and he continued to lose weight. The vet had given us medicines to try to halt the weight loss, and he lost four more ounces. He was clearly hungry – he wanted food all the time – but it didn't make a difference. Wednesday night, he cried for food much of the night, and he was so weak that he couldn't counter his crookedness anymore, so he kept falling over into things. He was no longer comfortable.
I'm glad we did it, and our vet was – as always – amazingly nice and supportive. He went very peacefully, without fear. But when they took him away, I had an awful moment of thinking, Wait! I take it back! I made a mistake!
I got Eldest Cat just before my college graduation; I'm not sure I know how to be a grown-up on my own without him. And when I hear (Formerly) Middle Cat's collar-bell jingle, I still can't help wondering, for a minute, which cat is that?
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The last day of my internship was Friday. It was a good experience: I learned a lot, I liked the people I worked with, and the big boss told me a number of times that he was happy with my work, volunteering to be a reference for me, so I accomplished pretty much what I set out to accomplish (I wanted a good reference and a writing sample I could use, but everything I worked on turned out to be too confidential to use as a sample, so nothing I could do about that).
Something valuable I realized, I think, was that I do like working with people, more than I realized. I think I used to underestimate how social teaching really is; academia values research more highly, and research (in the humanities) is a relatively isolated endeavor, and so I always thought of academics (and myself) preferring to work independently. And it's true that historians don't have traditions of collaborative work the way that people in the sciences and social sciences do. But when I started my internship, I was one of the only interns there, and got given work to do and sent off to my cubicle to do it. And that work was interesting, but became much MORE interesting when there were other interns around and I started to be able to discuss it with them.
Anyway, it was a good experience. Certainly other summer opportunities would have given me different experiences, but overall, this was a good one.
But I am still looking forward to not getting up to my alarm tomorrow.
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Wish me luck at the tailor tomorrow – I pick up my amazing suit, and am crossing my fingers that it looks decent. I bought it thinking, Of course, the tailor can take the jacket down a size, tra la! But it turns out that the tailor didn't want to take in the shoulders, which, it seems, is reasonable since it turns out this is the most complicated kind of tailoring you can do, requiring you basically to reconstruct the entire jacket. But which I didn't know at the time I bought the suit. It's just frustrating, because I can't buy a suit in a size that fits both halves of me, so I'm stuck either taking in the jacket or letting out the bottom – and many garments don't have enough extra fabric to let out, so that's no good, but if every jacket ends up too big in the shoulders and therefore gapping across the chest, that's no good either (there are always separates, of course, but they're harder to find). I mean, I'd pay for the darn shoulders to get taken in! But if the tailors don't want to do that… What I need is a size ying to my yang, so we could buy the same suit in two sizes, and I could take the smaller jacket and bigger bottom, and she could take the bigger jacket and smaller bottom. Sigh.
I also have to see how the pants look. To get pants to fit me properly in the waist, they tend to have too much fabric in the, um, rise. But since these are non-stretch pants (all hail the glory of Lycra), they can't be too fitted when I'm standing up, or they'll be too tight when I sit. Which perhaps really means I should just wear skirts all the time.