Riyadh to Charlotte: Together At Last

The past two years have been quite a journey to say the least.  Life changed in ways never anticipated back in October 2008.  I was recovering from my recent mastectomy at that time when the bombshell was dropped that Abdullah had cancer too.  Our respective journeys with cancer took us from Riyadh to Houston to Charlotte and for my husband, back to his beloved Kingdom in February 2010 where he was laid to rest.  In the meantime, I continue to fight my own battle.  However, now I fight this battle with even more on-sight love and support.

When I first met Abdullah, he learned early in our relationship that I loved cats.  I was a package deal.  Love me.  Love my cats.  Abdullah showered all of us with his great love.  Yet while we battled our cancers, my cats had to remain in Riyadh.  When I was taking care of Abdullah and then in the midst of my own cancer treatments I realized it would have been futile to have had my cats with me at that time.  However after Abdullah had passed away, I not only ached with grief and pain but I also ached for familiarity.  I needed a piece of home.  I needed to be reunited with my cats.  Thanks to Aafke Brower, Wadeea Qutub, Nader Wahebi, Michelle, Nadine, Jan, Robin, Ray and many many readers of my blog that dream became a reality! The cats made it back to the United States where they were fostered by Nadine just outside of Charlotte, North Carolina.

Nadine fostered Tripod and Saheba because I could not keep them with me.  Instead I would visit with them as frequently as I was able.  Now I am so happy to share with readers that Tripod, Saheba and I are finally together at last in our own little home!  There’s no doubt in my mind that this long and overdue reunion is a positive healing experience for all of us.


32 Responses

  1. Salaams Carol!


    Eid Mubarak! And thanks for sharing the wonderful news. You guys look happy and lovely together!

  2. Praise the Lord!

    May God grant you and your kitties many years of health and happiness!

  3. Love the post!!! I am glad they bring you joy and support.
    Enjoyyyyyyyyyy them Carol.
    Take care :))

  4. Carol,

    I’m so glad that you and the kitties are finally together. I’m here – near Charlotte with Nit Noi, our Domestic Persian that we bought in Khobar in 1999. She’s fat and spoiled as ever but getting arthritic.
    Pat is in Soyo, Angola on another job and we really miss each other but needed to put some funds back in our savings after buying this new home.
    I am getting ready to have spine surgery the Monday after Thanksgiving. I tried all of the shots and it started out looking hopeful but now I’m in pain a great deal of the time.
    I’m sure you’re going through a great deal of your own and understand.
    I wish you well,

  5. Yippee!! I’m so happy for you! 😀

  6. You look great Carol. Glad you are back together with your cats.

    Hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving this year.

  7. I so enjoy responding to comments with Tripod and Saheba on either side of me! I was initially fearful that they would not remember or have new and different habits. But after only a few short hours of us being under the same roof, they showed me they did remember the little games we would play and the house rules!

  8. I love the picture. Congrats on your new home!!!

  9. Congratulations! I am happy for you (and your dear kitties!) 🙂

  10. I’m so happy for you Carol. Congrats on the new home and the reunion!

  11. I am so happy for you carol. your cats are so cute. you look happy together.

    my family and I love cats too, and we do our best to take care of them all around our housing.
    we have tow cats at home and I understand how difficult it was for you to let yours far of you.

    tout est bien qui fini bien, vous êtes enfin réunis et c’est l’essentiel. je vous embrasse
    vous lisez et comprenez le français n’est ce pas?

  12. Congratulations dear.. I am very happy that you have been reunited.. may your life be showered with more happiness.

  13. That is such good news! Though they will not fill the space that your husband did in your heart it is good to have the cuddle purring next to you or on top of you.

  14. Yipppppeeeee!

  15. Family re-united is love blossoming. It is a great healer too. Happy for your reunion.

  16. Oooh! What a lovely happy photo!
    I am so happy for you!
    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  17. So happy for you Carol. Thats exactly what I was wondering, would things be the same. House rules…how cute, what are the house rules? How old are they?

  18. Carol this is just wonderful news! Jessica – If Carol’s cats are like my cat there are no house rules other than the rules the cats set. Is that what you meant???? LOL!!!

  19. Praise the Lord


    I don’t know about that – my cats and I have pretty good communication. We’ve come up with our house rules together, my kitties have pretty much figured out how to tell when I am finished in the kitchen and the bathroom, and they know I’m going to ask them to leave so I can shut the door (after all, they know I don’t want to shut them in 😛 ), and sometimes they even ask me, ‘Is it time to leave yet???’ And I, on the other hand, am trying to learn the difference between ‘Just playing!’ and ‘I’m hopping mad at you!’ They’ve learned both English and Polish, and I have learned a bit of their language too 😛 And if they are playing together and I ask them calmly, ‘Are you guys having a good time down there?’, they know that means I think they need to consider toning it down a bit….

  20. oh boy, I know I am going to really sound like a crazy cat lady….but…..in regards to house rules and communications….

    My cats know that tabletops and counter tops are off limits. Now I’m not blind in thinking they may try to jump up and explore while I’m sleeping but I’ve not found evidence such as loose cat hairs.

    My cats know that they will only receive cat food and begging for anything else is not tolerated. However they will also let me know quite loudly and verbally if their food or water bowl is almost empty!

    They will tell me if I’m staying up too late and they are ready for bed as they each have their own place on the bed at night but will not go into the bedroom until I am there!

    They do not realize they are cats and that not everyone who comes through my door will love them as i do.

    Saheba is the chattiest cat I have EVER encountered. She chats so much that I was able to teach her to meow “Mama.” She knows exactly when to use that meow to get my attention!

    Saheba and Tripod will both be turning 13 years old in the Spring!

    They both are such a comfort and know when I am feeling sad and missing Abdullah and come to cuddle and comfort me.

  21. What a good deed by your friends.

  22. wow…that really great. I’m happy for you Carol..Mabrok 🙂

  23. I’m so happy for you!!!!!! ❤ 🙂

  24. Carol,

    That is unbelievable, and hilarious! Awesome really.

    Guess you were wrong Wendy!

  25. Oh yes…I must add that there are also times when THEY train me too! (LOL)

  26. That’s great news, Carol. I’m so very happy for you! May you have continuous happiness and joy..

  27. Thank you Nader…and much of the happiness and joy is due to your facilitation of getting my cats back to me.

    My son wonders how you managed to retain your sanity being in a car with Saheba for hours?! (smile)

  28. Nader just rocks!
    I bet Sabeha thought so too 😉

  29. I think so too…it was so cute though when I had family visiting from Atlanta and they wanted to know the whole story of how the cats came to me. When I told them about Nader’s role of transporting them for hours in a car they remarked that Nader must be an angel to withstand Saheba’s incessant chattering! (smile)

  30. […] He will remain forever fascinating to me for many reasons but perhaps most so for his role in reuniting me with my cats. In this endeavor he demonstrated his ability to organize and organize quickly within an […]

  31. […] for my love and fascination of camels.  The two cats are illustrations of my own precocious cats, Tripod and Saheba, who were both rescued from Pakistan.  The sheep which bears a slight resemblance to an old […]

  32. […] to my cats.  When Abdullah and I first arrived in Saudi we came with my three cats:  Max, Tripod and Saheba.  Max was an all-black Persian which I acquired while in the United States.  Tripod and Saheba, […]

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