A touch choice to make

Posted by Gingerblossom at 7:34 AM

Monday, July 4, 2016

Pisase is a 14 year old cat. She is my first pet and first cat. She's had arthritis in her front paws for the last 4 years and it has hampered her movements. Despite being less mobile, Pisase has been generally healthy. Yearly checkups showed a clean bill of health. She ate normally and in fact, often snuck to Ody's food bowl to lap up his chicken stock. Despite the food, she's been losing weight as elderly cats do but not drastically that it was cause for concern. 

This weekend however, we noticed that her food bowl seemed always full. It took a while but we realised that it was full because she was not eating. Not a bite. That really scared me. Some years back when she was diagnosed with arthritis, I was advised to euthanise her if she deteriorates. She shouldn't be suffering, and suffering manifests in a lack appetite and an even more prickly than normal temperament.  Trouble is, Pisase has always been prickly. She has terrorized everyone except Dan and I since the day we brought her home. Strangely, she's gotten less feisty since being diagnosed and I thought, "She's ok". 

Today, I find out that she is not ok. Worried about her lack of food intake, we took her to the vet and I discover how NOT ok she is. Pisase has kidney failure. She is slowly but surely, wasting away. 

We were given a tough choice - save her possibly for a few weeks more with treatment or end her suffering today.  I have to admit that I am selfish and I do not have the strength of character to say goodbye. Not without a fight, and not today.. I've opted to try for a chance that she may improve and start to eat a little over the next few days.  It has given me time to make hard decisions but it has also taken my friend of 14 years away from her safe haven - home. 

As I sit here and type, I am looking at her usual perch and wondering how she is now at the hospital. She would be confused and afraid, and worse, she's bereft of the company of those who love her. I hope it is only for a few days. I hope I can take her home soon. I can only hope. 


Growing older...

Posted by Gingerblossom at 8:30 AM

Thursday, May 19, 2016


This was Ody and I in 2008. I snapped this using a timer on my old camera. It was taken in our apartment in Beijing for a magazine in Singapore that was doing a feature on cat food. Yes. Cat Food. I use to buy cartons of Fancy Feast from Singapore and lug it back to Beijing because Pisase and Ody loved it.



This is Ody now at 10 yrs old. And me... well...a good 8 years older. Unlike Ody who seems to look even better close-up, I mush prefer the camera further away from my face!




Spain - One of my favourite holiday destinations

Posted by Gingerblossom at 8:16 AM

You can probably tell from that ear to ear grin in every photo.  I love the architecture, the colourful stories, the pride locals take in their culture, the food, the wine and the fashion! 

The "Jump for Joy" photos below were taken in Toledo, Cordoba, Granada, Madrid and Ronda. 





2 years... a forgotten blog

Posted by Gingerblossom at 8:49 AM

Monday, June 23, 2014

I started this blog many years ago as a way to share my thoughts on life in Beijing. It was a way for me to remember the ups and downs of life in a country where I barely understood the language, and I a lot of time on my own. Yes Chinese is the common language but I was woefully unprepared. Twelve years of Chinese classes in Singapore wasn't much help when I couldn't figure out what a bus, taxi or market was called. And I mean the proper Chinese words for these things. Not the Singaporean Chinese translation of a Malay or English word.

So that's what this blog started as. It was a place to share recommendations for restaurants that I enjoyed; a place to stay connected with friends and share with them stories of places I get to visit in the course of my work and hopefully entice them to visit me in Beijing. 

The blogging stopped when we got home. I guess there's a sense of inertia being home, and there's so many commitments to keep. Slowly but surely we stopped going out to explore new places. It was either too hot, too far ( ironically, we would take 2hrs to get to the Great Wall for dinner) or too expensive to go out.  Without seeing the world, what experiences are there to share? Singapore is also such a very small place; anywhere you go and write about, chances are someone else in your circle of friends has already been there. More importantly, all your friends are right there in the same city as you. Isn't it just easier to try out a new restaurant together rather than blog about it for them to try later on?

That's partially why the blog has been forgotten in 2 years.I would like to try writing something occasionally, even if it's ever going to be for my eyes only.  I would like to be able to scroll through the blog years later and remind myself of the people I've met, places I've seen and odd situations I may get myself into.

The heartbreak of having an unwell cat

Posted by Gingerblossom at 6:39 AM

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Pisase the grumpy cat has got arthritis.  It's fairly severe arthritis in her front legs.

The vet showed me the X-ray and you can see how calcification around the joint creates painful looking spikes that cause her pain when walking. Just imagine having a porcupine or sea urchin wedged between your elbow joints. That was how it looked.

There's nothing I can do about it except give her painkillers and glucousamine, and hope that it doesn't worsen. According to the vet, even if I had all the money in the world to do bone replacement surgery, there is no replacement for that particular joint because it's got too many complex moving parts.

Pisase is now on medication and she's confined in one of the bathrooms to keep Ody from stressing her out. She seems to like being in there. Every now and then, I pick up her and let her perch in her favourite spots around the house which are probably too hard for her to get to now - higher spots which she'll have difficulty jumping down from.

It breaks my heart to see my kitty in pain. She's the first cat I ever had so even if she  sometimes behaves like the scary cat that everyone thinks she is, she's still MY pet. It's a special relationship we have too. She is clearly my cat because she's only ever nice to me. Even when she's upset, I get away with carrying her, rubbing her head or trying to hug her.

So everyday I see her feeling a little worse or huddling away in the corner, my heart breaks a little more.