Meditating with a Cat

For better or for worse, I usually do my morning and evening meditations sitting on my meditation pillow on my bed. Different meditation experts say different things about whether or not it’s good to meditate where you sleep, but screw it. It works for me and if it works for you too, have at it.

It’s been an interesting time for the last almost two weeks adjusting to coexisting with another living creature. Cats are weird because they need you sometimes and want nothing to do with you other times. Don’t get me wrong: that’s a good thing. 

I digress. The one time Playbill (my cat) seems to always want me is whenever I’m meditating. I’m not sure if it’s because she’s wondering where the voice of my meditation MP3 is coming from and she absolutely-must-investigate-it-now or if that’s just what she likes to do. I haven’t gotten through a single session without opening at least one eye once because she jumps on the bed or mews (I still haven’t come to terms with the fact that cats just meow, for anything or nothing, and it doesn’t always mean something’s wrong). 

I’m sure I’ll figure out how to circumvent this issue eventually, right? Right. 

An Upper West Side Weekend

I spent all weekend in my ‘hood. I really like my ‘hood and I wasn’t seeing a show, so I didn’t have a real reason to leave. Additionally: this weekend was for being lazy. On Friday night I watched Gone Girl (for the millionth time) and colored a page in my “art therapy” coloring book. I basically just vegged. It was the nicest. After pouring myself into bed before 11pm, I woke up at the crack of 8am to head to my 9am yoga class. It’s an advanced class and is always hard but this was by far the hardest class my teacher has ever taught. I was dying and I also set a record for the most calories ever burn in one 90-minute yoga class (478 calories to be exact).

I spent the next couple of hours relaxing (and eventually showering) before Justin came over and we went to get coffee at the Hungarian Pastry Shop (somehow I was still exhausted) and he suggested watching John Adams. (Meh. It’s good, but sort of slow.) We headed out into a rather mild winter evening to The Ellington on 106th and Amsterdam for dinner with my folks. I like brunch at The Ellington better than dinner, but it was good anyways. After saying goodbye, we ended the night at new Amity Hall on 109th and Amsterdam (the location used to be another Pourhouse) to watch some football and have a drink. I fell asleep to another episode of John Adams later in the evening.

It poured all day on Sunday. In the brief break we got in between downpours, I ran out to Absolute Bagel to pick up the freshest bagels ever and we made coffee and started to wake up. Multiple cups of coffee later, we made ourselves semi-presentable and took a long walk to Petco to look at adoptable cats. There was a really sweet one named Grace that seemed really calm. Shortly after, we tried another new bar near my apartment, The Hamilton, which used to be ‘The ‘Dam,’ until it closed suddenly and without notice. The bartender was Scottish with a heavy accent and he was really friendly. They’re still trying to find their way into the neighborhood but with their prices and selection of craft beer, I have no doubt they will. Both of our meals were delicious and our bill came out to $29.

After we finished eating, we took out the chess board that we’d ordered (him, rather – it was really him) and played. I’d never played Chess before and I had a lot of trouble remember which pieces could move which directions and how. I felt like a dope, but he showed me how to beat him and I tried not to let my ego get too down on itself.

Back at my apartment, I worked on something for work in my bedroom while more John Adams was watched in the living room. That show, while interesting, bored me to tears. While perusing Netflix after, we found the documentary “The Nightmare,” about 8 people who suffer from sleep paralysis. It freaked me out, for sure, while my dude just laughed.

It was a good Upper West Side weekend. New places, new experiences, and I definitely remembered to enjoy the day.

Sunday in the Heights (of Morningside)

After a great Friday night at Salvation Taco and an extremely relaxing and reenergizing Saturday, I spent Sunday morning watching a few episodes of The Leftovers (apparently it gets better after the first couple of episodes that I’d watched, says everyone). After I headed over to Columbia University’s campus where the weekly farmer’s market was – almost bought some of those Pink-a-Boos, but instead went with some apples, string beans, and sweet potatoes, and that little pumpkin (does anyone know how you keep a pumpkin fresh?). 

I looked for the For Dummies guide in Book Culture that I’d sold to them last year but they didn’t have it unfortunately. But incase you’re looking for a number of books on Marxism, they have those in spades.

Last on my walk around my neighborhood was the Petco on Columbus Avenue. The beautiful animal above is 2 years old and named Felicia. I didn’t want to adopt a long-haired but she was so sweet and mellow and apparently if you brush them often enough, they don’t shed. So I submitted an application to adopt her. We will see what happens.

I ended the day with a vinyasa and meditation class and a few more episodes of The Leftovers

Not a bad day at all. 

Kitten Sitting & What I Learned

What did I learn while kitten sitting this weekend? Kittens are a lot of work. Not a lot of work like a puppy-amount-of-work (because you don’t have to walk them and they’re smarter than dogs and a bit more independent), but they’re kind of crazy. They run and jump on everything, and when you’re not looking they show up behind your feet and you could step on them (but you don’t because they’ll yell at you first). Or they could run under a mat on the floor (see above – I think that’s her best bitch, please face) and it just kind of looks like it’s a bump in the mat, until you realize: oh, it’s a kitten

I wondered if Miko the Kitten wasn’t eating because she would never eat when I’d put her food out, but then a friend said, “No! It’s not food time when you’re there, it’s play time!” Oh, yeah. Duh. I also realized that her food was always gone when I got back again so it’s not like she wasn’t eat at all.

Kittens are also very talkative. Miko talked… a lot. I’m not sure I could handle a pet who mewed so much. It’s adorable, but I’m not a heavy sleeper, so I’d probably get woken up by the slightest mew. I also spent moments here and there trying to remember whether or not I had re-closed the bathroom door (I always did) or if she had fallen into the toilet. I don’t think she’s small enough to drown in the toilet, but still…. That wouldn’t be fun to come home to.

But… BUT… despite the mewing and the crazy energy, they are so, so cute. She was 4lbs of furry adorableness that I had a great time playing with her. I’m going to check out some kittens at the ASPCA when I get back from Scandinavia, but I think I’ll look at ones that are 6 months to a year old, and not four months old. Because the older they are, the less likely they will be to drown in the toilet.