CAICO’S PHOTOS WITH SANTA
AMBER LOVE 06-DEC-2014 For a couple of years, I drove Caico out to a small mall in Pennsylvania where they had pet day for Santa photos. It may have been small as far as number of stores goes but there were tons of people and lots of lights, music, noise and dogs. Caico has always been a trooper. She’s survived a small comic con before in Pittsburgh. She might not enjoy noisy places but as long as she has her buggy to stay in, she’s willing to put up with my eccentricities. Caico is the best. I had a cat named Milton that I probably could’ve managed this with but Caico is the most well-behaved and tolerant cat I’ve ever had. She has her bitchy moments because she hates being alone. Even if she’s napping, she likes someone in the room with her at all times. She also detests her new cousin Oliver. She would allow him to live in the house if only he would leave her the hell alone – which he refuses to do so they are usually separated. We have several “cat o’clock” times during the day when we swap them from first floor to second floor so they each have time in the whole house. It’s ridiculous but it keeps her happy.
The mall Santas were great. They look like Santa, the Coca-Cola American version of St. Nick. They have great beards and white hair and their suits aren’t shabby. Today, I wanted to make it easier on my old girl and try picture day at PetCo. It’s “only” a 30 minute drive instead of an hour and I was correct in assuming that it wouldn’t be nearly the level of madness and noise that a mall is. However, PetCo did not have their shit together.
I followed the circular aisle to the left side of the fishy nucleus of the store. There was a sad display. A red plastic tarp on the floor, a creased snowy backdrop, two skinny plastic candy canes, and a metal folding chair which was draped with a white plastic tablecloth. The backdrop was taped to stacked up boxes of fish tanks and you could still see them from the one side. Then I got a look at Santa. He was a really nice young guy and I felt bad for him because the store was warm and he said he was hot in the Santa suit. It wasn’t his fault there was no effort put into Santa day. His suit was kind of a mess. He had the hat on with the seam facing front. And he wore one of those horrible fake beards that wouldn’t fool a three-year-old.
Two dog owners got in what we could muster of a line through the fish supplies behind me. Caico and I were first. It was scheduled from 1-6pm according to the PetCo website. We had spotted Santa who said it would be a few minutes as he needed to finish up at a cash register. We didn’t get started until 1:15. The process was that the manager of the store would snap photos on a camera and go back to his office to print them. They didn’t have the printer there by Santa. People were losing their patience because it was 20 minutes, then 30 minutes waiting for me the first person to get their photo printed. The printer had jammed. Luckily, in the level of casual I had taken a number of pictures of Caico with Santa for myself on my phone. We got Caico’s official $10 photo at 1:48pm. She was asleep so I cruised through the feline aisles and picked up some more Star Wars toys for Oliver for Christmas and a bag of treats that I hope Caico will like. In the end, we got a decent 5×7 of her but you can see below that previous year’s had much better results. For some reason, even with how little Caico actually moves, it’s harder to get a photo of her than of Tasmanian Oliver.
Those shots of her in “her” tower were the brink of her tolerance. Since Oliver moved in and began coming upstairs, he took ownership of Caico’s tower. Once it began to smell too much like him, she refused to go in it anymore and now sleeps on top of my desk on a small blanket. She swatted and hissed at me for the Yule theme tower photoshoot.