Oct 21, 2012
As today marks the year anniversary of the return, after a weeks abrupt absence, of our cat Butthead, I felt the urge to share the story once more for those who missed reading it the first time. It’s a good one. Enjoy.
At 9am on a mid-October Saturday, my husband had called me at our home in Denton from his cell phone. Neither of us recalls the reason for this call. Before the line went dead, he utters the equivalent of “Freaking cat” and probably more unheard expletives. Our cat Butthead had stowed away in the back of a moving truck loaded with lighting equipment bound for a wedding at the Tidewater Inn, twenty minutes away Easton, MD. It took me five minutes to grab my kid and run out the door.
This near twenty pound terrified cat charged out of the tailgate opening like a locomotive, tore across the parking lot, and bounced off M. Randall’s shop window on the opposite side of Harrison Street before he disappeared. After searching for more than an hour, we endured my kid’s soccer game, informed Talbot Humane, and headed home.
As we drove home on Matthewstown Road, a squeak escaped me as I held my tears. He must have heard me because my son wailed,” I don’t want him to be gone. I still want to play string games with him. He’s my brother”. “I know you’re sad and I’m so sorry” was all I could say. I was painfully aware I could make no promises for his return. Helplessness is hateful.
I made a flier, ran it off, and we returned to Easton to commence the ‘Bring Home Butthead’ campaign which would gain a following. As I went from door to door with my lime green fliers, I was overwhelmed by the support of so many fellow pet-owners as they acknowledged the hole I felt. Butthead bugs us as only he can. My husband says spend a day with him and you’ll know where he got his name. But he’s still family and like a dog, he waits for the school bus with us.
By Wednesday, I had done all I could. I’d even walked through Spring Hill Cemetery one night and paid for a radio ad. I didn’t know where to stand now. If I stopped my search, I would be giving up. I contemplated the inevitable lesson in letting go of control, grieving, and entertaining acceptance. I revised my promise to myself. I would have to deliver thank you notes to everyone even if I didn’t find him.
My cell phone rang the next Saturday night. Her name was Ria and she was standing in the Historical Society’s garden petting Butthead. I sped out of the house knowing the search was over. I hugged Ria and her friends after I’d shoved Butthead backwards into the carrier. My thank you note to everyone I’d spoken to read, “7 days and 12 hours later, Butthead came home. Thank you so much, each and every one of you, for your kind words and support as we searched for our cat this past week. I am grateful for and humbled by your concern and community. Sincerely relieved, Shalagh Hogan, Butthead’s Mommy”. And there was a resounding “Yay!”.
Oct 19, 2012
My child’s most fervent desire upon earning his 15 Mom Bucks from our point chart endeavor, was to buy a set of cards called MAGIC. The flavor he chose was The Gathering. Suggested for 13 year olds, I’ve even less of a clue than I did with those daggone Transformers suggested for five-year olds. But he’s happy and rewarded.
In fact, after purchasing the cards at Target, as well as perusing the Halloween section just for shrieks and picking up a $5 skull, we visited the Bagel Bakery in Easton so Mommy could feed the Belly Baby. When I told him he could open his cards, he hugged me. He was so grateful. “You earned them” I said. And as he shuffled through them and read the How To Play paper (ha ha), I read this on the front page. And I liked it.
“You are counted among the élite spell casters of the Multiverse –The Planeswalkers. Some are friends and others are foes. All wield terrifying magic and command armies of creatures torn from the endless plains of reality.
No matter what challenge faces you, you have the strategies and weapons necessary to succeed.”
Say no more.
Oct 16, 2012
Now that we have a kid, I am ever in search of the penultimate activity to suit the seasonal holiday we’re in. Each fall, I command the task force for the retrieval of pumpkins and the resulting carve-fest. But I have yet to find a pumpkin patch that satisfies my every fall entertainment need. In my ideal fall scenario, I foresaw a corn maze, pumpkins, and a few other activities to fill our perfect fall family day. But this year, I hit the motherload.
I heard my friend was taking her daughter to a place called Fifer Orchards, 45 minutes northeast of us just outside of Dover, Delaware in the Camden/Wyoming, DE. area. And I said, what the heck. The website showed a slide and it mentioned hayrides and Fall Fest days. We had picked this past Saturday as ‘the day’. Joined by my mother-in-law Mary, and Gladys, the talking map mode of Mark’s Droid, we headed to our destination. We could never have imagined the mind-blowing fun our kid would experience.
There was the slide and a corn pit, an alternative to a sand pit but with lots of loose corn kernels. There was a hay bale chamber for a huge beach ball volleyball game in which Eamon spent a half hour bonding with his crew. And a five acre corn maze, excellent live music, swings, good food, and produce, apples, and pumpkins galore. He held a bunny, played pumpkin bowling and checkers, and had a woman paint a black snake with flames on his cheek. And held tight to a bar coasting down a zip line. The only activity we didn’t do was the hay ride. We were physically and financially tapped by then.
My kid had nearly four hours of nonstop fun ending with ice cream and a bouncy ride which he gave thumbs down to because they had too many rules about not doing things inside. I guess the parents signature and all information short of our insurance info was probably an indication of that. Otherwise, Fifer Orchards was worth every loving penny.
Fifer Orchards’ motto, ‘ From Our Lands to Your Hands’ was pretty hip. And even more impressive was the extremely happy and helpful staff of mostly younger people who took care of us. As I was leaving the zip cord area, I told the boys that I was impressed at their enthusiastic “Good jobs” every time they helped the little kids land. I could tell they meant it and I let them know they were doing a good job too.
Mary, Mark, and I got to watch our boy enjoy himself all afternoon. And we walked away with fresh apple cider, our bellies full of some pretty fabulous chicken from Abbott’s Grill, and three big pumpkins as well as the mini ones they give you for admittance.
I got what I needed and so did my son if his record bedtime passing out time was any indication. And I’ll guarantee we’ll be going back next year. Check out Fifer Orchards’ website here.
Now it’s time to decorate.