Masr’s Parting Blow

So I’m sitting here in my room, which is chaos amid packing, with no a/c and some food poisoning that just won’t go away. Not only am I dealing with painful stomach cramps but now, with the cool air kaput, sweating. I would like to continue packing however I just can’t do it.

I was sifting through my books today and I just have too many that I want to bring with me and thats not even looking at what Mr. MM wants to bring with him. I just don’t know if we’re going to be able to work under airline weight restrictions but I can’t imagine how much shipping is going to cost. I’ll obviously need to make a few painful decisions regarding the reading material but whats holding me back is the hassle and improbability of finding English-translated Arabic novels. *sigh*

There’s so much stuff to figure out and I just don’t have time to be sick. Gah.

I’ve got to take brincess Zuzu to get her rabies shots and a certificate from ye olde local vet. I’ll be taking her back to the vet who couldn’t cure her stomach problems –I’m sure you all remember this fiasco– only because he’s mad experienced with taking animals overseas. If only homeboy would answer my text message dammit.

Zuzu is, and this isn’t just a proud cat-mommy talking, like super insanely intelligent. I just adore her. She plays fetch! All. The. Time. She brings her bottle cap into the bathroom for me to throw from the toilet for her; talk about inopportune moments.

She’s totally awesome though, alhumdulillah, she is my cat-shaped shadow and is almost always in whatever room I am in.

I’m worried about the flight with her. She’s not a vocal cat so I’m not too worried about her crying a lot in the flight but I’m sad that I’ll have to keep her in her carrier for so freaking long.

She and Mr. MM, poor kittens, are going to both be flying for the first time and their very first flight will be 12.5 hours long. Thats a really, really long flight. And then we’ll have a 7 hour layover (!!!) to contend with before the very short 4 hour flight to MSP.

Since we’re laying over in NYC, Mr. MM wants to take advantage of our super long stay to leave the airport and see a bit of the big apple. I’m all over the idea except that I’m nervous that something would go wrong and we’d miss our flight/not be able to get back through security/something else totally horrific.

Hopefully at some point, somewhere, we’d be able to find poor Zuzu a nice big pile of sand to do her business in. She’s a very fastidious cat and I just don’t know that she would be ok with letting loose on the shredded newspaper in her pet carrier. I can imagine that she would keep her legs crossed, figuratively, until she found a proper place to pee no matter how painful/detrimental it might be. I do intend to cut back on her food intake 24 hours before the flight and hopefully that will help.

Can anyone who has travelled long distances with pets help me out with some friendly advice? I plan on paying the fee and bringing her into the cabin with me.

I’m just thinking how deja vu’ey this last month of being here is. Around this time in ’07 I got food poisoning and now I have it again- except like way, way worse. Top it all off with a regurgitation of some drama that happened at the same time in ’07 and its almost like emotional food poisoning. No hard feelings, but it just makes me remember how disgusting some people are, really. But it’s just so coincidental that all this is coming back around. I guess you could consider it full circle.

I was really hoping I’d be over this stupid food poisoning and the way its lingering makes me wonder if it was food poisoning or if it’s something more sinister. Anyone know how long FP is supposed to last? Have I finally contracted some horrible Egyptian disease that causes me perpetual emergency bathroom runs and nausea?

To everyone who is feverishly typing ‘are you sure you’re not pregnant?’ into my comment box right now: yes, yes I’m sure I’m not pregnant.

I really want to be over this now kthanxbai.

And eff the a/c! Dear God why? Three more weeks! Three more weeks please!!

Man… I have so much to think about, and plan, and do.

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16 responses to “Masr’s Parting Blow

  1. Are you sure you will carry her on? I took pets to Japan and had to have them checked in so they could go through quarantine in Japan. They don’t set a foot there until an observation period, and i think the US is the same??? Call about it. Don’t get shocked with it the day of. I would guess she will be flying cargo.

  2. Have you thought about getting (or improvising) a travel litter box? I know they sell pop-up versions online, but it would be easy to make your own. A plastic container or pop-up travel water bowl for the “box”, a sealed container of kitty litter that you can pour into it at the appropriate time … that being whenever you can open the crate to put it in there without (1) having Zuzu make a dash for freedom or (2) having raging flight attendants come down on your head. A small trash bag that you can dump the whole mess into once she’s done and then throw it away. It isn’t ideal for fastidious kitties, but then again–restrooms often are not ideal for fastidious humans when we travel either!

    Do you have a travel water bottle for her? My friends who just left found one on Rd 9. If you don’t have one already, I’d suggest getting one early and training her to use it. Dr. Amir may also have travel accessories for sale, since he deals with so many expats.

    You are so lucky to get to take her in the cabin. The airline we’ll have to use doesn’t allow any pets in-cabin on transatlantic flights.

    When I was home on R&R, I saw a few books that had been translated from Arabic into English, but not many. If you have some you want to keep but can’t fit in your suitcase, let me know. No promises, but I may be able to arrange with people flying to the States to hand-carry them there and drop them in the mail. (And you know everything’s available online if you need to replace some.)

  3. Here is someone who flew to the States with her cat earlier this month:

    http://americansincairo.blogspot.com/2009/07/flying-cat-circus.html

    Good luck!

    • I checked it out, very good to know someone else’s experience thank you.

      It made me call to reserve for Zuzu right away so now that is taken care of alhumdulillah.

      I don’t think she needed to get all of that paperwork from the Egyptian gov’t. Like that other woman went through with what I was planning to go through with- the certificate and the vaccinations. InshAllah everything will go ok.

  4. I also plan on putting a kitty leash on Zuzu. We’ll see how that goes… hilarity.

  5. Hahaha, just have Mr. MM standing by with a video camera for that one ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. OK, I asked a friend who brought cats into the states when he moved and he says that you should ask what they will expect to do here when they get her on US soil. They held his cat for 2 months at a quarantine facility and re-administered his vaccinations even though he had a certificate from a vet overseas. Of course he had to pay boarding for the facility and vet care for the vaccinations… I didn’t follow the link above though, maybe I am telling you something you already know… He was coming from Japan, maybe country makes a difference too???

    • I’ve done a ton of research on what the state of minnesota requires and I’ve heard nothing about quarantining the animals. And apparently the woman who wrote the blogpost had no problems with quarantining either.

      When did your friend bring the cats over? And maybe they didn’t accept the vaccines. I don’t know.

      inshAllah we won’t have any problems.

  7. I followed the link, WOW!!! Carrying on seems soooo much easier! Who’d have thunk it???

  8. No advice on the flying with pets thing except to say Awww! Kitty on a plane!!!

  9. I wouldn’t plan on leaving the airport AT ALL. You have to go through customs. It took me over 2 hours to get through customs, and I was using my US passport not an Egyptian passport with an immigrant visa. They process his green card right then and there(will be mailed to the address you give them), and it can possibly take a while.

    It all depens on how long the lines are. It may only take 30-45 minutes once it’s your turn BUT it could take longer.

    You aren’t going to want to get out of the secured part of the airport and then have to go back through security again. If you do, you won’t get very far with the sight seeing.

    BTW I’m very happy for you. I know it’s been a long time coming.

  10. About the flight with Zuzu *very surprised to hear no quarantining*…but anywho when I traveled with Des and Olly a BAZILLION people (even my vet) said I should give them each a tiny dose of benadryl before the flight so that they’d sleep/calm down/whatever. I didn’t do it but I guess lots of people do and even my vet seemed to be on board with it.

    About Food Poisoning…usually it doesn’t last very long, just until your food passes and goes on its merry, poisonous way. Maybe it was just the plain ol’ flu?

  11. Oh and I have to agree with the comment above me about not leaving the airport. I had a 5 or 6 hour layover in San Francisco and really wanted to check it out but by the time we got off the plane and located our new gate and got something to eat we had like 1hr left board, I couldn’t even imagine having to go through security all over again, we would have missed our flight for sure.

  12. MASHALLAH, that is excellent news that you are going back to states, (and you want to hahahaha), with your husband, and ZuZu.

    I am making a reverse trip. Actually going to Libya, from Ireland to be with my Husband there, en sha Allah, in 10 days and counting ……
    Unfortunetley, I will be leaving my 2 kittys here in the fab care of my family.
    I would have to quarantine them etc
    as travelling from Europe, and through Europe.
    I just could not put them through that they are both 10, and would be with strangers for months……plus Libya may not be the best place for them.
    Also I would not be able to take them on board.

    BUT, obviously they will have a better life in Ireland.

    MashAllah I am so happy you are taking yours, as ZuZu is so young etc.

    Advise for travelling with kitty….get her used to her box well in advance so she sees it as a secure place.Also add one of your jumpers to it…so she has a fammilar scent.

    EN SHA ALLAH all will go well. Please keep blogging,

    Salams
    A fellow Revert and Blogger
    Khedegah Mc
    khedegahmc.blogspot.com

  13. just a quick idea, they sell ferret litter boxes and they are smaller and triangular and perhaps might fit in a carrier easier (might even hook into the carrier somehow), just a thought, and now that I have typed this out I have no idea if you would be able to find such a thing in Eqypt….

  14. I was having the same thought as Amanda put the kitty to sleep girlfriend!

    As far as books maybe you can round up a group of 12-18 people who would lovingly each ship you a book or two so that the cost is not as high for them or you and it’s a good deed and charity ๐Ÿ™‚

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