Aby-a-Day – 16 Augusti: Waiting to board the ferry

After the long drive from Lempäälä to Helsinki, Björn dropped Dashiell and I off at Olympia Terminal where we waited whilst he returned our rental car.

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This was Dash’s first time with a leash and harness, and he did really well.

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But mostly Dash wanted to be in his carrier. Despite having been in that thing for 30 some hours on the trip to Finland from Newark, it represents safety and security to him. Which makes sense; it’s just like Jacoby’s attachment to his stroller.

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He was happiest when the top was open, so he could look around.

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In some of these photos, he reminds me so much of Jake. Especially the one where he’s meowing!

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Björn was taking longer than expected to return from dropping off the car. I was starting to get worried that the gates would close before he got back.

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I don’t know what would have happened if we missed the ferry.

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Dash was a wonderfully patient little cat, which bodes well for future trips.

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He also charmed the employees at the terminal. They took turns coming over to where we were to meet him.

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They also were very reassuring and told me that the gates wouldn’t close until Björn came back. Whew!

Aby-a-Day – 15 Augusti: A quick visit to the cat show

On Sunday, we spent some time at the cat show in Lempäälä (near Tampere) that Russell and Carol, along with my friend Pam, were judging. Because we had to catch the ferry back to Sweden at 16:45, and it was a long drive from the show hall to the ferry terminal, we couldn’t enter Dashiell in the show – it didn’t matter, pointwise, because he’s still a kitten, and exhibitors aren’t allowed to leave until the show’s posted closing hour. But that didn’t mean we couldn’t drop by for a visit.

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It was a very small show, held in a shopping mall (which was actually rather cool). One-day shows in CFA aren’t common, but they happen; however, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a show with only three rings!

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My friend Anne set us up with a small pop-up tent and a litter box for Dash. While in Sweden, people mostly use the metal show cages and spectators view the cats on the same side of the cage as the exhibitors, in Finland, people use SturdiShelters and pop-up tents with a clear back, and the spectators view the cats from the back whilst the exhibitiors sit with their cats by the cages’ doors. It feels a bit strange, not really being able to interact with the people coming to see the cats except over the top of your cage.

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Dash has been to shows before, so he knew what to do.

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He was very interested in this one little boy who stopped to see him.

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Dash wanted to make friends with the kid, but it’s hard when you’re behind plastic.

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If it had been a metal cage, Dash would have reaching out to touch the boy.

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I think both kitten and child were equally fascinated with each other. It was adorable.

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We were only able to stay for about an hour and a half (the show, being so small, didn’t start until 11), but it was nice to hang out with Meg and Anne a little bit more. I also managed to get a photo of Anne’s stunning tattoo…isn’t it lovely?

Aby-a-Day – 14 Augusti: Wordless Wednesday (Dashiell’s Ferry Photos…and one of Jacoby)

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Aby-a-Day – 13 Augusti: Remembering Jacoby in Helsinki (Cartoon Tuesday)

When we went to Aino, the Finnish restaurant in Helsinki, I noticed a sign-in book.

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When we visited Helsinki with Jacoby in 2016, we ate at this restaurant.

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I just thought they needed to be reminded of that event.

Aby-a-Day – 12 Augusti: The train home to Skövde (Hipstamatic Monday)

When we got back to Sweden from the ferry from Helsinki, we met up with Björn’s ex to get Emma to spend a week with us and the cats.

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We got there a little ahead of them, so we had to chill out in Stockholm Centralen until they arrived.

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Emma loves cats. I am sad that she doesn’t get to live with any.

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If ever a girl deserved to live with a cat (or cats), it’s Emma.

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Emma was amazing with Dash. I think he’s going to miss her when she goes back home.

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Dash also looked out the window at the passing scenery, just like Jacoby and all the other cats who ride trains.

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Finally, the train arrived in Skövde. Emma wanted to carry Dash’s carrier.

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From the train station, a quick taxi ride home.

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Dash was quick to feel at home in our bedroom. And after the long, long, long journey…He was finally home.

Aby-a-Day – 11 Augusti: Finally meeting Dashiell (Cinema Sunday)

As I posted yesterday, Meg, Russell and Dashiell arrived far too late for us to be able to meet them at the airport and collect Dash on Friday. So he stayed in Meg and Russell’s in the hotel near the airport.

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I awoke to some smexy photos of Dash lounging in bed. Everyone slept in, and rightly so.

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We had a day in Helsinki planned for Meg, Russell and Carol Fogarty, another judge, so Dash spent the day at Anne’s house.

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There, he bonded with Anne’s teenaged daughter. He’s very good with kids.

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After a day of walking around Helsinki, we had dinner at a great Finnish restaurant we’ve eaten at before on previous trips to Helsinki. Here’s Meg and me after dinner.

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On our way back to our hotel in Tampere, we stopped by Anne’s and collected Dash. This is the grand opening of the carrier when we finally got him into our hotel room (click on the image to watch the video in another tab in Flickr).

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We had a wonderfully spacious room, with places to put the food bowl, the water bowl…

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…and the litter box house.

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In anticipation of Dash’s arrival, my friend Molly sent him a welcome home present. It was even addressed to him.

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I saved it to open when we finally were together.

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He wasn’t entirely sure about it…but it will be his for the rest of his life.

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Next, Dash explored our room.

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And that was how we finally got Dash…

Aby-a-Day: 10 Augusti: Comedy of Errors

Yesterday was…interesting. We were supposed to meet Meg, Russell and Dashiell at Helsinki International Airport at 17:15.

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That…did not happen. Their flight from Newark was delayed, and they ended up missing their connection in Frankfurt to Helsinki.

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This is the photo Meg sent me when she finally got to Frankfurt.

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And here is Russell with Dash (under the banana), waiting for the connecting flight.

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Above is the Facebook Messenger conversation we had about meeting up and collecting Dash. FINALLY I got the bright idea to include my friend Anne, an Aby breeder who happens to live in Helsinki near the airport. We had booked a hotel in Tampere, two hours away from Helsinki, which was supposed to be the show hotel, but it got overbooked because of a German heavy metal band who were having concerts nearby. Turns out, we might have been able to cancel our “non-refundable” reservation…but, yeah. 20/20 hindsight.

But we had to drive to our hotel, so there was no way we could be at the airport to meet them and collect Dash on Friday.

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So my hero friend Anne met them at the airport instead.

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They landed sometime after midnight, and my friend Anne was there to meet them.

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This is all of them, taken by Anne, at sometime around 1am. At this point, Dash had been in his carrier for 30-something hours.

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Meanwhile, our hotel had been notified that we would be arriving with a cat, so they prepared a little gift for us: a packet of wet food in the cutest little bag.

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Look how cute the print is on the bag, all little kitty faces! I just wish we had had Dash that first night.

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But here he is on Meg’s bed, happy to finally be out of that carrier!