A Visit to the Vet
A Visit to the Vet
So…after spending a night with the large feline who enjoyed jumping on the bed I was assigned to sleep on (without the warning cry of, “CANNONBALL!” not once but twice scaring the bejesus out of me, my host was nice enough to reassign the sleeping arrangements giving me a bed on the other side of the room away from the wall from which Ms. Kitty launched her attacks. I believe the bed was not only a soft landing zone for the little critter, but where she slept on occasion. Finding a strange man asleep in her bed might have been the catalyst for the chain of events (no pun intended).
The other ball of fur, a little Calico was in severe distress and spent much of her waking hours regurgitating the contents of her small belly to the point there was nothing left in it, and she gagged and jagged the dry heaves. By Friday my host decided it was time to get a professional opinion and call in a vet. Though it was a Friday, and most Veterinarian Offices were open, none were accepting Emergency cases. Unfortunately due north of Scranton PA, they require appointments and you can just drag your cat, dog, hamster, guinea pig or pet boa in a carrier and expect then to be seen for examination. Even if they are really sick. After my host and I googled and called a half dozen places, she was able to find one vet who was willing to see Miss Muffins, the fur-lined patient.
We had an address, and two iPhones between us, but my host was more comfortable writing down a few cryptic intersections; 307 East, 425 North, 345 East, 10 Toreador Avenue, Olyphant, PA. We only passed by it once but doubled back and I pointed out a yellow double-wide trailer at the end of a parking lot with “PET BOARDING” emblazoned across the open door. “That’s not it!” my host declared , “Yes it is, and since I’m the navigator and you’re the driver you have to take my word for it. We have ARRIVED at our destination.” Still doubtful of my excellent skills of navigation and location, she got out, walked in the open door and returned quickly affirming my declaration.
I grabbed my mask as she already had one on, very cautious lady she even wore one in the truck with me despite my assurances that I had had both my Pfizer vaccines monthgs ago, and walked behind her as she carried Miss Muffins into the clinic and back to the exam room. No place to sit, so I backed out to the waiting area, thanking my lucky starts that I’d brought my mast because that little clinic reeked of dog excrement and urine. There was a mop and bucket lying on the floor inside an anteroom marked clearly “EMPLOYEES ONLY” and despite my curiosity of what was causing the ruckus in that room remained seated. The “ruckus” was the incessant barking of two obviously large canines barking at each other and anyone else who would listen, LOUDLY and without pause. At times they sounded like they were barking at each other, at other times growling and crashing metal water bowls about making sounds like a veritable cage match for…well…two caged animals.
While I sat quietly contemplating my future a car pulled up and after a car door opened and shut, a little boxer walked in the open door with her mistress on the end of a leash. I looked over my right shoulder to see the woman hesitating at the door for a number of reasons I imagine; fearing to enter the building with a serious dog fight in process, and judging from the lowering of her mask just enough to pinch her nose somewhat taken aback by the powerful aromas wafting from within. “It stinks in here,” she remarked looking at me still holding her nose against the powerful stench. “Why do you think I’m wearing my mask?” I replied. She came in and sat to my left. “Have you ever been here before?” she inquired. “Nope. Just here with a friend with a sick kitty. They are in the back now with the Vet. We called every vet within 50 miles and this was the only place that agreed to see her cat.” “I know,” she replied, I called a dozen or more. No dice. We’re leaving tonight for the shore and I’m leaving Ginger at my house with a friend, and I think she has a UTI and I don’t want her peeing all over my house. This place agreed to see her, and I have a appointment t 11:30.”
I heard another car pull into the lot and a woman(?) walked in with no animal. Oh boy! Tune in tomorrow for part II.
Part II- The Gardener
We were waiting in the waiting room for the vet to finish nursing Miss Muffin back to health, breathing easy in our masks so as not to attract any more of the stink than necessary to keep us alive and well. A car pulled up and someone got out, a door slammed…hard, and someone walked along the gravel lot to the still wide-open front door. The best way to describe the apparition that entered the clinic was a quite obvious “butch” lesbian in a bright orange t-shirt, long pants and crocs. How was her sexuality so readily identifiable? The crew cut, baseball cap on backwards and the way she strolled in like she owned the place. She greeted us both and explained that she was the vet’s assistant, “And oh…I do the landscaping too...cut the lawn, fix up the hedges, pretty things up.” In the next ten, maybe even five minutes she went on to tell us the following. She had our attention, our full attention: “Well you see I been working for Doc since I was 18, and I’m 54 so you can tell it’s been a while, yeah she’s Egyptian, and…she’s Catholic so she had to escape religious persecution over there with all them Muslims. Her husband’s a vet too, in Jersey, but he retired so she covers both offices, and man! is she dedicated.”
I spoke up sharing that both my friend and the lady to my left had called all over creation to find a vet who would see our sick pets, and only this vet agreed to see us. “Oh yeah!” she exclaimed, “You won’t find a more caring and dedicated vet, she loves her animals and works nights and weekends if necessary.” With that the two giant dogs started barking again. “What’s back there, two dinosaurs?” I inquired, “Nah, just the Rottweilers.” With that she got up and picking up the mop on the floor and pushing the bucket out of the way, CLOSED the door to the “EMPLOYEES ONLY” suite. Thank God. The noise and the smell began to subside. “Yeah,” she said, “Been with her since I was 18 and I am 54,” she repeated, for emphasis no doubt, “Great vet and great person. I take care of the grass over at the Jersey office too.”
I will call her “Orange Maid” for lack of another monicker, well she finally sat down in the empty chair next to Ginger and her owner, immediately to my left. I was really digging the whole scene. “Yeah, I am in the middle of a divorce,” Orange declared, “Had to move out of my own place, then I had to go back and get all my stuff. And it was my place?” “You had to move out of your own house? Did you own it?” I asked incredulously. “We was renting it, but MY name was first on the lease,” she continued. I had to get the police to go over an get my stuff. Then my wife, or soon-to-be ex-wife I should say, wanted her stuff back. She been cheating on me for years and now she wants her stuff back? She wanted the air frier in particular.” I was dying inside. I have heard of custody disputes, for kids, dogs, and record collections, but air fryers? That was a new one. Then her phone rang;
“Yeah…No... they postponed it. Yeah the lawyer walks into the courtroom and turns out her FATHER is the judge. Conflict of interest much? My lawyer said no dice, postponement please, and it was granted.” Needless to say we, Ginger’s mistress and me, were both a bit curious of what this courtroom drama was all about, and leave it to me to be the one to ask. “Having some legal issues huh?” “Oh God yeah. THEY break into my house, and I beat them BOTH up, then they arrest ME!” I mean, you could not WRITE a script like this, it was just the most entertaining scene I have witnessed in…like forever. Loving every moment.
By now the Vet was out, and seeing Orange Maid, rolled her eyes, and said in her thick Egyptian accent, “This one talk too much!” and returned to the exam room. Orange was talked out at this point, and got up to check on the Rottweilers, leaving Ginger’s mistress and me looking at each other with this look of wonderment and complete amazement for the one-act play we had the privilege to experience. My friend walked out with Miss Muffin in tow, and we walked out to the truck as I told her, “Wait until you hear my story.” Now YOU have heard it. Every word. Ain’t life grand?