Thanks for the input – well, some of you – but it really was kind of a foregone conclusion once I heard the sound and meaning together: Moojgai/Mooj Guy. And once I started skritching the little critter around his happy purring face and discovered just how natural it was to coo, “Aw, Moojie Woojie,” that sealed it. He’s The Mooj, fer sher (yes, Sarah, at least once I have regarded him reclined in a state of profound slackitude and said, “The Mooj abides.” But I ain’t calling him Moojie-pants. Yet.) I’ll just have to keep his name a secret from my Afghani freedom fighting friends – all…well, none of them – since Mooj is also U.S. Army grunt shorthand for Mujaheddin.
I had a bit of a scare at the beginning but I didn’t want to write about it until it was over. When I brought the Moojster home and fed him, he seemed to empty his food bowl in one great inhale. The same with seconds. For an encore, he had the barfs and squirts for three days, and wouldn’t eat for two more even though I waved every tempting kitty treat I could find in UB under his nose. I commandeered my Mongolian lessons to extract every phrase and question and icky verb out of Oyunaa I needed for a trip to the vet. The first clinic I visited on a dry run (exactly what I was hoping Mooj would soon have), sans kitty, was not at all encouraging in either the cleanliness or the friendliness department. More like Kitty Gulag. But then the vet there volunteered that there was a clinic right near my building run by an American. A puff of smoke and I was out the door, scampered home, stuffed Mooj in a valise (all I had, what can I tell you?), and found my destination. Cue Simpsons cloud-parting music: a brand new, Western-style clinic, and though the American was in Canada for some reason, the nice Mongol vet spoke perfect English and made all the welcome isn’t-he-just-the-most-handsomest-boy noises (at the cat). The Mooj got a thorough check-up from gaggle to zatch and was declared to be a prime specimen in robust health. Turns out my inspection skills are a little rusty, however, and he is, in fact, not fixed. But we’ll fix that pretty soon. They have surgery on Tuesdays. A little worming medicine and a bill of…five bucks. I love Mongolia.
Brought the beast home and the instant I unpacked him he was ravenous. Of course he likes the hideously expensive imported cat food, but you know what else he’s into? A mixture of boiled chicken, cooked rice, and plain yoghurt. Seriously, he’s wild about the yoghurt; each morning he tries to nose me away from my bowl of muesli. He can have all the good bacteria he likes, frankly. But you know what made him go “ptooie”? Sardines. True Mongol feline.
With the food, he’s come back to life energetically, roaring around the apartment. He’s just like my sister Laura says, a boy cat who’s super-snuggly and super-naughty. It seems he’s never heard the word “no” before nor does he consider the learning of its meaning at all significant. Like if he strews the garbage all over the kitchen floor and down the hall (he has), he’ll trot over with you to survey the wreckage, not out of contrition mind you, but just in case he missed a yummy morsel. He’s totally over his initial freak-out at being dumped in a new place and his many charms and quirks are emerging. You probably couldn’t tell, but I’m utterly, hopelessly in love with him.
This morning was so funny. After we woke up and had breakfast, he started playing this game where he was diving in and out from under the bedsheets attacking unseen bedmice until it was all…just…too…exhausting and he had to crash all the way under the sheet with just his two little forepaws poking out. Lee Ann, this is for you:
And, of course, like any pathetic new daddy I’ve taken a zillion pictures, but I won’t bore you with the whole batch, just a few of the best and funniest (note the Living Tissues in the background of the first one):