Country Style contributor Rob Ingram shares five tongue-in-cheek thoughts every cat owner has every time holidays and long weekends roll around.
1. What are we going to do with the cat?
"Woo hoo," I exclaim to The Chosen One (my wife). "We've just won a 21-day all-inclusive ultra-luxury seven-star European cruise in a penthouse stateroom with gourmet dining and free unlimited shore excursions at every port. It was under the lid of the peanut butter jar."
"Well that won't work, will it?" she sneers. "What would we do with the cat?"
"Hey, hang on a minute," I say. "This is a once-in-a-lifetime travel experience."
"I know what once-in-a-lifetime travel experience means," she says. "It means 'never again'. Besides, you know Polly would stress out if we weren't here. She's a very nervous cat."
2. Should we risk taking the cat on a plane?
Here we are, tucked up in our little house on the prairie, the world passing us by, deprived of the joy of travel by a smug cat. World issues like the global economy could be fixed, international understanding reached, and peace on earth achieved were it not for the conniving cat.
The simple expediency of drilling ventilation holes into overhead lockers could open up a vast new market for incarcerated cat lovers. It could multiply the profits generated by international airlines. After all, airline food is totally acceptable to cats — especially the tuna mornay.
3. If so, where would we stay?
Hotels offering a dedicated cat floor would easily achieve full occupancy without even providing take-home slippers. So why aren't there more of them around?
4. Does running to the store for cat food count as a trip?
If truth be told, we have actually unwittingly contributed to the big fat lie that is domestic tourism statistics.
According to Tourism Research Australia, a tourist is someone who travels a round-trip distance of at least 31 miles and is away from home for at least four hours. Out here, that's a trip to the corner store to buy more cat food. And from now on, we're taking the cat with us. She can select her own bloody cat food, seeing as we're doing such a poor job of it.
5. Should we have gotten a dog instead?
Dogs seem to travel okay. Most dogs are at their happiest when they are traveling on the back of a pickup with the wind in their face. Cats are only happy when they are stretched out on the best chair with their head on a pillow and their feet on a cushion, gloating that the whole family is standing by to cater to their every desire.
Meanwhile, somewhere in the marketing department of a major peanut butter producer, staff are scratching their heads over the poor response to their once-in-a-lifetime promotion. They should, of course, have instead offered an all-inclusive ultra-luxury seven-star European travel experience with seasoned cat concierge and unlimited truffled tuna mornay dining.
So no, we won't be going away these holidays. We'll be at home looking after the cat. After all, in ancient times, cats were worshipped as gods — and they haven't forgotten it.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Homes to Love.