03 October 2008

Humble Pie

Eating humble pie is not as bad as, say, eating a bug or walking into an unseen (and quite large) spider web (as I did today)... but it's, well, humbling.
My ranting last post still has some small measure of validity with an emphasis on *small*.

I just spoke to the vet that made the calls... yes, that's plural... to the number I provided to her for Dr. Michel Houard. No, she didn't update me on the fact that she had tried and was unsuccessful. Had she done that I would have been back on the trail enforce.
However, as a person who doesn't really believe in FATE but who likes to leave her options open on that subject (to some extent), I guess - as with many things - timing is everything.

My timing this past month was extraordinary. I was, shall we say, hell-bent on gaining some ground on my lost time. I posted to a group of Sphynx breeders - a Yahoo based group I help moderate - asking for any more assistance on finding a person willing to make a call to gay old Paree. By luck I was offered help from four kind breeders; one in Tennessee, one in Texas, one in the UK, and one in France.
Here's how it played out and why I am eating this tasty pie.

My UK contact and my Texas contact both put me in touch with the Project Manager International Marketing for Royal Canin Group in France. I contacted her - she is moving to Brazil. She gave me another vet's name that will be taking her place. Both of those outlets were a no-go.

Then I decided to phone the breeder in Texas. While we spoke she found not one, but two more possible French "connections" tucked away in her files. One, a TICA judge and the other, the president of FiFe (Federation Internationale Feline). I wrote first to FiFe president, Annette Sjödin. She responded back within thirty minutes to offer me two more contacts. I wrote to both.
Another scant few minutes passed and then an email came in to me at gimmiesfishes from one of the contacts. She was willing to help and she gave me another contact as well.
... you know what's coming next, I suppose... Yes, I wrote the new contact.
The first contact is a Sphynx breeder in France. She had a new document containing scientific information on a research study conducted by a team of researchers studying Ketamine use in felines. [ see document ]

The second contact took me back once again to the International TICA judge. Her email to me has had me on cloud nine for days. She stated:

"You found the right person. I know well Michel Houard. I worked with him as his vet tech for 22 years. I can translate things for you or bring him material because I go in France every month. Tell me what you need."

As tears streamed down my face I composed myself as well as an email reply to this kind person. Her advice to me was to draft a letter to Dr. Houard (who is apparently not a member of the virtual community) and outline my mission and my reasons for it. She also told me that the telephone number that I have for Dr. Houard was incorrect. One little number was off... umm, now are you following me?

So... that brings me to today and the meal upon which I now feast.
In my letter to Dr. Houard I am including the names of all of my contacts - people who have stated that they clearly want to help. I wanted to include the vet cardiologist who was trying to contact him as she is fluent in spoken and written French... so I phoned her this afternoon to ask if she would allow me to list her as an Alabama contact for Dr. Houard. In our conversation she mentioned to me that she had tried two or three times to phone him with no success -- umm -- no wonder. I told her about my recent streak of good fortune and that my latest contact corrected the incorrect telephone number. "AHHHHhhhhh, she said, so that's why I couldn't connect with him!".
Yes, indeed. *chomp-chomp*

As for being kind enough - and most importantly, interested enough to allow me to list her as a contact for him, she also offered to translate my letter to him from English to French. I most likely will accept that offer even though I have already arranged for the Tennessee breeder to "loan" me her native French brother-in-law.

Always have a backup plan. I've learned that about ten weeks too late but...

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance..."

Today I am dancing for Gimli.

A loving look to mom

Gimli looks back at Mom - taken two days before his death.