There was a cat in New York who needed rescuing, possibly abandoned in an apartment without enough food to last for weeks. There were three of us who could split the fourteen hundred mile round trip drive from the mountains of North Carolina. We had ample disinfectant wipes, enough hand sanitizer for a sponge bath, and a whole box of latex gloves. And, damn it, we were willing to do it.
This was Saturday night, March 22, about the time NYC was becoming the known epicenter of covid-19 in the US. We planned to leave at 5 am, armed with our own water and food so we only had to stop for gas and bathrooms. The plan. Drive eleven hours. Double park in front of the Brooklyn apartment, grab the cat and, okay, maybe a few other things, and exit NYC without speaking to a soul. Without touching a thing. Almost without breathing. Then drive eleven hours home.
We told a few other people what we were doing. Ummm. They were not impressed. What if we had a flat tire? A minor accident? How about car troubles or illness? As the list of ways this trip could go wrong grew, even we had to admit this was not as well-thought out a plan as we originally thought.
Then, a local caregiver for the cat was found. The lost roommate reappeared. The mission was now a luxury, reuniting the adorable cat (see above – she is adorable) with her loving human. Nice but no longer necessary. The plan was abandoned.
Would it have worked? We’ll never know.
This has always been a blog about time, and about possibilities. About multiverses and the choices we make. It’s about how little events determine the course of our lives in ways we cannot predict.
Times being what they are, at the extreme ends of the probability spectrum, we could have lost our own lives because of this journey, or maybe saved someone else’s. Who knows. In the middle, we’d just have returned home, tired, and with a cat.