Good Afternoon, dear readers. I hope you all had a lovely weekend. Taking a break from all things ‘chore’ wise, we took Aspie Daughter to a cat show. This might seem like a strange event to take somebody with Asperger’s to, held as it is in a huge, echoey, glaringly lit room (thanks to overhead flourescent lighting) in a leisure centre with constant noise emanating from both humans and cats as it bounces off the walls and rude people pushing past you never minding to say excuse me.
You would think that Aspie Daughter would go into sensory overload and have a complete meltdown, what with her social anxiety issues and hatred of crowds and clanging sounds. You would think that I would! I wouldn’t blame you for thinking that this could have been a recipe for a disastrous afternoon out.
So why do it? All I can say is that her love of cats helps her override all this. However, we have to do things in a certain way.
This is how we do a cat show with Aspie daughter:
- We go in, walk up and down every single isle making sure to stop, very briefly, at every single cat.
- When we see one we particularly like, we stop and ooh and ahh and this time, when the owner comes over (which they usually do as cat owners are very proud indeed of their kitties and want to talk about them) we ask if we can take a photo.
- I keep talking to the owner, Aspie Daughter is ready to move on.
- We keep going, I see her running out of steam. It doesn’t take long.
- She looks over at me and I notice the very slight, first signs of exhaustion beginning to creep across her face which means it’s time to leave the room and go and get a drink. Right now.
We leave and go to the café, have a drink (and a piece of cake) and then go back inside just to see the overall winners of the show in their posh cages proudly displaying their ribbons. By that time, we are both so hot and completely overloaded (and I don’t mean with cake) that, as much as we all love cats, we can’t take anymore. It is at that point that Aspie Daughter looks across at me and I see clearly in her eyes, a sort of flat, exhausted and desperate look that screams out:
“Get me the hell out of here!”
I agree. We leave. Simple. That’s how you do it. All in all, a really lovely time had by all.
Here are some photos of a few of our favourites from the show (all taken with their owner’s permission of course!) I should also say that where I can’t remember the proper pedigree name (shame on me, if I were a journalist, I would be fired) I have made up a name, as you will see:
We all agreed that these cats are obviously very well trained from day one to get used to travelling in a car, being kept in a cage for the duration of a show and are all incredibly good-natured. We also think that our cats would have easily won the show. The only problem is that Eddie, our black moggie, absolutely hates going in his cat box and also in the car. I dread taking him to the vet as he always poops in his box, so it’s probably for the best that we don’t enter him.
When I was quite young, my mother used to breed Siamese cats and show them. I can remember going to one or two shows with her in London but mostly I remember when she would be gone all day, leaving me and my brother with my dad. It was great fun and here’s why:
- Firstly, Dad would have a lie in and
bribe usoffer us extra pocket-money to clean out the cat runs and sheds (my parents ran a cattery business from home, and that is another post of its own).
- Next, after Dad decided to get up, we would have a quick breakfast and he would take us into town to buy us some sweets from the pic ‘n’ mix at Woolies.
- Lunch would follow which was always fish and chips, in newspaper, which we would bring home and eat in front of the television
- Dad would then watch sports (football, wrestling or boxing, or maybe even cricket depending on the season) all afternoon and eventually fall asleep while we
did whatever we wantedplayed.
- Tea-time and Dad would always make boiled eggs. He would bring them into us on a tray, complete with felt Noddy & Big Ears egg warming ‘hats’ perched on top. There we would sit, allowed to watch a cowboy film on television while eating our eggs, and not forgetting the bread and butter soldiers for dipping.
Those were the days. Now you can see why we love cat shows so much 🙂