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Earlier tonight, we experienced a sudden squall. After threatening to rain for some time, it finally started, and within seconds, it was raining and hailing so hard I couldn’t see the tree across the parking lot from the apartment. It was an absolutely devastating storm that only lasted maybe five minutes before dissipating, but it was hard enough to leave a couple of hail dings on the hood of the car. We were lucky, there were other vehicles that looked to have more damage than we had.

The scariest part of this storm is that Stormy Cat was outside at the time, and we couldn’t call him back home. We tried three times, but he was left to fend for himself, and we were left to worry.

My wife actually broke down and cried over it. I tried reassuring her that he was fine, that he always seemed to dodge the worst of any rainstorm that we experienced, and I was fairly confident that he was someplace safe, hiding from the rain and hail. But deep down, I was sick with worry too.

About 45 minutes after the storm had passed, sure enough, we saw him on the balcony, and we let him in. He was fairly wet, his paws were muddy, but he seemed fine. He came in, stayed for about an hour and a half, got mostly dry, then went back outside for a while.

That didn’t last. He was outside maybe fifteen minutes before he was back at the door, wanting in. As I write this, he’s on our bed, probably continuing to groom himself in a dry, safe location.

This is one of the reasons that I wish we could be a little more insistent that he stay indoors. He could be hit by a car, he could get in another fight with the neighborhood cats, he could get hurt by a hailstorm. If we weren’t pretty convinced that litter box training him would be a long and messy endeavor, we’d keep him inside for good. But unfortunately we are liable for damage to the apartment while we’re here, and we’d like to get our security deposit back when it’s time to move. (That won’t be for another couple of years at least.)

Moving is another thing that worries me. If we move, and he goes to another apartment complex with us, I’m worried that he’ll get lost and not find his new home if we let him roam as he does here, and the same litter box concern of keeping him inside will follow us anywhere we go. Perhaps the only way of making sure is to slowly, over time, convert him to being an indoor kitty while we’re here and eating the security deposit. That unnerves me, however. I pride myself on keeping a fairly clean and neat home, and cleaning up kitty accidents would be problematic without a steam cleaner. We’ve experienced the issue of kitty accidents with other cats that we’ve owned, and we’d both prefer not to have a repeat of the circumstances.

For now, I think we’re mostly content with the situation we’re in – one indoor cat, one indoor/outdoor cat. I suppose we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

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Storms and Stormy

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Last night we had a pretty bad storm come through. It woke me up at least once that I can recall, and it drenched half of the balcony, the half that the chairs and Stormy’s box are on.

Fortunately, we were able to bring him inside last night, so he was safe through the worst of it. He still went outside to a very uncomfortable situation, however.

Both chairs are drenched, so he’d just get wet if he went to lie down in one of them. This also means that until they dry it’s going to be problematic for us to sit in them to give him snuggles.

The top of his box is somewhat concave, and so when it rains hard enough to get in the balcony, the box holds water. Thing is, it’s not concave enough to very easily just remove the lid and walk it over to the side of the balcony by the stairs, where we can dump the water over the side and not get any on the downstairs neighbors’ porch.

Again fortunately, Stormy’s blanket soaked up a lot of the water, so I picked up the blanket and grabbed a spare pot of soil that we have on the porch to catch drips while I took the blanket over to the side to wring it out best that I could. That left only a little water in the lid, which I very carefully walked over to the side and dumped without spilling a drop on our balcony and potentially on the downstairs porch.

It’s been a few hours since I’ve done that, and the lid is now bone dry. The blanket still has some water in it, but it’s drying out nicely and should be completely dry by the morning. As for the chairs, they take some time to dry out, so if we’re going to go sit outside for cuddles later on this evening, we’re likely going to have to put a towel down to soak up the moisture before our pants do.

Stormy’s gone off walkabout for the afternoon, but he’ll be back by the evening, and we’ll be ready to go love on him when he comes home.