Volume I, Number VIII: 1995
The Bringing on the Cats Edition
The Naming of the BureauCats
We are now home to a bureaucrat and a pair of bureaucats. In a move that supports claims that cats are smarter than people, the two cats took the 90 minute trip between the state capital (Olympia) and Seattle only once. On the other hand, Paul made the return trip daily all summer long.
Paul took the road too-often traveled after being offered a contract job as a policy analyst with the Department of Information Services (DIS). He worked on three telecommunications projects -- all of which wind up by year's end. It was an opportunity to work on some really intriguing issues and work with a university colleague, David Danner.
David and his wife, Lauren, also gave us the first cat -- bringing Mr. Mistoffelees up from Olympia in April. When the Maine Coon kitty first arrived, he was a furry ball that would fit in a human palm. Now, at over ten pounds and 28 inches from tail to nose, Mistoffelees can go paw to palm with anyone in the house. Paul brought Rumpelteazer, a Calico half the size, up from Olympia in August and she quickly found ways to beat Mistoffelees to the food dish and Elaine's lap.
We resisted the temptation to name the cats after famous Washington governors and opted instead for characters created by T.S. Eliot -- and popularized in the musical Cats. Eliot names 15 cats in all but we have already assured family and friends that we won't adopt the entire cast -- although this pair's cousin, Skimbleshanks, lives with mom and dad Taylor in Manitoba.
Rooms with a View
Paul used up most of the travel allotment by going back and forth on the same stretch of highway this summer but there was enough left over for weekend getaways to Kitsap County Memorial Park and Ocean Shores.
The stay-at-home attitude was also fostered by a new home with a view. We are renting a house in North Seattle with a great view of Lake Washington and the Cascade Mountains. Elaine took on her first garden with gusto -- our view is framed with all manner of flowers, beauty bark and other good stuff from the local garden centre.
When Seattle weather lives up to its reputation, she heads inside to continue her search for dead relatives (genealogy), work on professional development programs through the hospital, and has even rediscovered her sewing machine. When all this domestic activity gets to be too much, we throw a couple of logs in the fireplace and enjoy the view.
We also stayed close to home because, frankly, we weren't allowed to leave. The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) forbids travel out of the U.S. when it is considering changes to the visa status of non-resident aliens. After considerable soul searching, we applied to become permanent residents, and were granted Green Cards in October.
Bing Crosby was right
We are looking forward to our first White Christmas in three years. We are confident that the snow and cold will chill us to our bones, having become acclimatized to west coast weather. However, we can't think of anything that we want for Christmas more than to be home for the holidays with family and friends. We also can't think of anything else we would wish for you than to be with loved ones this holiday season.
The Adventure Continues ...
With the change in visa status, and with Paul's graduation eagerly anticipated in 1996, it is unclear where we will be when we write to you next Christmas. That will be the subject of next year's TaylorGram International.