Today’s checklist for a good (great!) day:

1: spend the early morning biking on a beautiful trail with Puck. Check

2: find perfect beach for Puck to play in river. Check

3: have butt kicked at CrossFit. Check

4: drink good coffee. Check

4.5: drink more good coffee. Check

5: successfully bake in microwave. Check

6: enjoy glass of wine sitting outside. Check

Bend is definitely living up to my expectations. Today we started exploring the trails in the Phil’s trail complex. There are a lot! We have only dipped our toes in, but from first ride, they are awesome trails. On our way down from our bike ride I found a sandy beach for Puck to play in the water. Talk about a happy dog. He was even happier when another dog showed up and they could sprint through the sand and water. Ha, I thought he was tired from our mountain bike ride!


After CrossFit, I was pooped. So I decided to explore some new coffee places. There seem to be an equal number of coffee shops and breweries in this town. Must start on breweries tomorrow! Thump Coffee was my destination today. Cool space and good coffee.

My second attempt at cooking in the RV was successful. I have never used a convection microwave, but it acts like a mini convection oven. So I baked two chicken breasts. Not bad, seems to do a good job.

Good day accomplished!

Time to introduce the next cast member: Maya

Maya and Makoya are sisters. I did not name them, just for the record. I first met them when I was volunteering at the animal shelter in Golden in 2012. We had been considering a cat. Bob the dog was gone and we weren’t ready for a new dog. We thought a (singular) cat was a good first start. Anyhow, I had been looking and when I met M & M they were 7 months old and I fell in love. Hubby told me to go for it… so the next day I went in intending to adopt them both.

I was there when the shelter opened, not wanting to lose my chance. They weren’t there! They had been sent out to a Petco adoption event. I had my heart set, so I raced off to Petco where I found Makoya but no Maya. Panic! After some phone calls I discovered Maya was at a different Petco. She had not been adopted yet; I made them promise to hold her for me, they couldn’t separate SISTERS! I adopted Makoya, threw her in the car and drove off to find Maya. The minute Maya was in the kennel with Makoya, both of them quieted. It made me so happy. It was probably good I did not know what was to come.

I don’t know what their first 7 months were like, but they were skittish cats. They also had chronic diarrhea and Maya in particular did not always feel the need to use the litter box. If there is one theme in Maya’s life, it is poop (and pee), in all the wrong places. It was a rough beginning and things really started to go downhill when Maya peed right on my husband while he was deep asleep. I can’t blame him for flinging her off the bed, I would have done the same, but she was still peeing. Flying pee! Strike one.

Then of course there was the night when I noticed Maya coming out of the litter box – good – with a tail covered in diarrhea – not good. I mentioned they were skittish, right? I tried to calmly walk up to her but she freaked out and started sprinting around the house. Diarrhea was flying everywhere – walls, new carpet, windows. When I finally caught her, the damage was impressive. I spent the entire night cleaning. Strike two or three or four or one hundred by that time.

Maya also gets carsick, as I have mentioned. It took me many attempts to find a car travel arrangement that works, more or less. On one of our early trips, Maya (you guessed it) pooped, stepped in said poop and then ran around the car. Poopy foot prints everywhere. I was a little frazzled when I finally pulled off in a remote parking area near Idaho Springs. As I was trying to clean things up, Makoya jumped out of the car and ran into the forest. Without thinking, I ran after her. 15 very tense and tearful minutes later, after climbing up quite a forested hill, I was able to get close enough to leap on her. Back at the car I realized I had left it running. And there was Maya peering out of the OPEN window she had opened with a poopy paw. So it could have gotten worse, thankfully it did not, my heart couldn’t take much more. We drove straight to the kitty groomer and the car wash.

Over the next years there was more poop and more pee. Whenever Maya didn’t like something, she would poop somewhere. My pillow, for example.

It was a rough start and I will admit there were moments when I knew I had to find them another home. I reached out to our cat sitter and some other folks and everyone told me that finding someone to take them together would be difficult. I couldn’t do it, so we soldiered on. Things improved slowly. Now I can’t imagine not having the girls.

Maya is still a nut case. She was probably dropped on her head (the both might have been). Her favorite form of exercise is sprinting to her food bowl. She only wants to eat if I am scratching her butt, so she will get my attention and then sprint to the food bowl. When I don’t follow, she will come back, get my attention and sprint to the food bowl. She does this over and over until I give in.

She still gets carsick; I’ve just learned how to deal with it. It was not an option not to travel. And the RV seems to be an exception, woo hoo!

What do you mean it’s too big for me?

Maya is the one who always sleeps with me, usually in such a way that I cannot move. Puck has become her security blanket and she loves to sleep right in the middle of his beds. Which really confuses Puck. She just seems happier when he is home. They don’t cuddle yet, but I am hopeful.

So that’s my girl, Maya. Like all of my animals over the years she has somehow become irreplaceable!