Last week I went on another trip. Mr. Guy, The Lady and I went to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for the 2016 NOAH conference. NOAH stands for National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation. It is a gathering for people who, like The Lady, have white fur and trouble seeing. I met a few of The Lady's NOAH friends last year in Philadelphia. (I wonder why they always go to Pennsylvania?). I met Ms. Joni then. She has white fur like The Lady. Ms. Joni was very nice to me while we were in Philadelphia and when I got back to Texas, she messaged me on Facebook and always seems interested in what I was doing. I was very excited when I found out that I was going to get to see her in Pittsburgh! Ms. Joni told The Lady that she was bringing me a present. That made me even more excited!
As soon as we got to our hotel, I found Ms. Joni. I gave her a great big hug. Or, maybe she gave me a great big hug. We shared a great big hug! It was good to see her again.
The next morning, she gave me my present. It was wrapped in pretty blue paper.
You know that you have good friends when they pay attention to the things that make you happy. I like blue and Ms. Joni remembered that! Ms. Joni held me while Mr. Guy helped me unwrap my present.
As usual, The Lady was taking the pictures. As I started to tear the paper, I saw orange. Blue and orange!!!! Yep. Ms. Joni knows me very well! I thought my present might be a new t-shirt, but it didn't feel like a t-shirt. Now I was a little puzzled.
I pulled the rest of the tape off of the paper so that I could see my whole present. It sort of looked like a t-shirt except that it was heavy and the sleeves were long. It was the opposite of my vest and my tank top, which have no sleeves.
The Lady told me that it was called a sweater. Hmm...I wondered if a sweater was something that was supposed to make you sweat, kind of like a portable sauna, maybe?
This is a super special sweater. Ms. Joni made it especially for me with her very own sticks and orange string! The Lady knew all along what my present was because Ms. Joni sent her a letter asking what size monster shirts I wear. Ms. Joni made my sleeves exactly as long as my arms and made sure that my claws had just the right amount of room at the ends. I tried my new sweater on right then! I must say that I am a pretty dapper looking monster in my new orange sweater.
Then I started to sweat. I wanted to keep my sweater on because it made me smile, but it was too hot in Pittsburgh for a sweater. My fur was getting all soggy because I was sweating. Ms. Joni is from Wisconsin, where it is cold and snows a lot in the winter. Up north people wear sweaters to keep warm, but not to sweat. It will be a few months before I can wear mine in Texas. Maybe Mr. Guy and The Lady will take me somewhere cold so that I can wear it sooner! My new orange sweater is soft and cuddly and I want to wear it now!
Ms. Joni told me that in Wisconsin, the hunters wear orange so that they are safe. I am not a hunter, but I want to be safe too.
While The Lady and Ms. Joni were doing all of the official NOAH stuff, I caught up on sleep and HGTX in the hotel room. When they weren't doing official conference stuff, we had lots of adventures.
We were in Pittsburgh for six days, but it felt like about two. It seemed that one minute I was unwrapping my awesome new sweater and the very next minute I was having to say goodbye to Ms. Joni. That made me very sad because I don't get to see her very often.
Ms. Joni and The Lady told me that we will all see each other again next September in Denver when the adults with white fur get together like they did in Philadelphia. That is a whole year away! I don't want to wait that long to see Ms. Joni again! But, she is my friend on Facebook so at least I get to talk to her through messages.
Thank you so much for my awesome orange sweater, Ms. Joni! Every time I wear it, I will think of all the hugs that you gave me!
I wonder if it will be cold enough in Denver to wear my sweater???