Chris Blackwood
Photography

Heeere’s Johnny

My Kids

Visit Johnny’s Photo Gallery.

In November of 2005, I decided that it was time to find Misty a playmate. I was working every day, so I was away from home much of the time. I drove over to the Star of the North Humane Society in Bovey, Minnesota which was just a stone’s throw away from my hometown of Grand Rapids. When I called them, they said that they had a young Red-Point Siamese male that they were trying to find a home for. They were foster homing this one, so he wasn’t at the shelter for me to see. However, if I wanted to come back the next day, they would bring him in for me to see. I stayed overnight at a friend’s place that night.

The next day, I drove over to the humane society early to see the cat. Big surprise. Right after I left, the woman from the shelter that I spoke to the night before, called to tell me that somebody came in and took the cat sight unseen.

Another week or so passed and I hadn’t received any answered to the ad that I had put in the paper looking for a kitten. While I waited I kept on looking. I found several Siamese, but they were all females which wasn’t what I wanted. I didn’t think Misty would put up with another female in the house.

After about three weeks, I got a call from a shelter down in Rochester, Minnesota. They told me that they had a young Siamese male that they were having trouble finding a home for. A couple of people had taken him home, but they found out that he had too much catitude for their families they brought him back. I told that that I could drive down the following Saturday to see him, and we made an appointment.

I filled up the car on Friday night, and I planned on leaving early for the 5 hour drive. Another big surprise. I got about half way there when I got a phone call from them that they had given the cat to somebody else. You can imagine how upset I was. The second time I had a cat practically pulled out from under me.

Just as I was getting home from this wasted trip, I received another phone call. This one came from the Beltrami Humane Society in Bemidji, Minnesota. The woman I talked to said that she had seen my ad online and she had exactly what I was looking for. I told her what had happened with the last two potential playmate. She assured me that this would not happen. She said that she had sent me an e-mail with a picture of Johnny as we were speaking. I went inside and checked my e-mail right away.

As we spoke she told me how they happened to come upon Johnny. Someone duct taped Johnny into a black plastic garbage back and tossed him out the window of their mini-van in front of the casino in Cass Lake, Minnesota. A couple riding right behind them thought that it was just somebody tossing their garbage bag out. The couple went and collected the bag planning to follow the mini-van until it parked and returned the garbage to them. When they found out that their garbage bag was alive, they brought it to the humane society. It might sound strange, but there was something different this time. As soon as I saw the picture of Johnny, I instantly knew that this was the one I was looking for. I can’t really explain how, I just knew.

 

 

I made an appointment to see Johnny the following Saturday morning. My buddy Terry rode along with me to Bemidji. When I got there, they hadn’t even had Johnny over to the vet to have him spayed yet, so I had to wait another two hours for that. It wouldn’t have been so bad accept for the fact that I knew I was going to be bucking a blizzard all the way back to Eveleth.

About 1:00 pm I got a call from the shelter that Johnny was back from the vet and he was ready to go. They told me that I was going to have to keep him good and warm since he had just gotten out of surgery about a half hour earlier. I had the heater in the car running full tilt. Terry and I had to ride with the windows down for a little while.

Now you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? Well, that old saying applies perfectly here. We were just about 10 miles out of Bemidji when I blew the rear driver’s side tire. I called a tow truck which wanted an arm and a leg to tow me back into Bemidji. I needed to get Johnny somewhere warm, but i couldn’t afford to be taken advantage of either.

Just as the one tow truck was pulling away with a bad taste in his mouth, another pulled up behind me. He told me that he knew the other tow truck driver and the guy had a reputation for gouging customer. This driver towed me into a garage in Bemidji, mounted and balanced a good used tire for me, and we were on our way for another $75 over and above the $75 I pad to take Johnny home.

We were on our way back up north on highway 169 and we made it as far as a small one horse town called Ball Club when we had another stroke of bad luck. The same tire that we had replaced in Bemidji blew. Just about my luck. I called a friend who was about 40 miles away who came with another tire that he found in his garage. We changed the tire, and once again we were on our way.

This time I made it to my friend’s place in Marble which was about 45 mile short of where I needed to go. I dropped Terry in Grand Rapids, and they asked me if I wanted to stop for dinner. I told them that after everything that happened that day, I just wanted to get home which was about another hour away. I said my good-byes and took off for Eveleth.

It was about 9:00 pm when I was passing the entrance road going into Keewatin. Guess what. If you guessed that I blew another tire, you’re right. I was fit to be tied. I went and got the lug wrench out and started to pull the tire. It wasn’t like it was going to do me any good since I didn’t have another tire. I fought with it for almost 20 minutes, but I couldn’t break the lug nuts on the tire loose. I was almost in tears.

Just as I was about to scream, I highway patrol car pulled up behind me. I told him what happened, and he was ready to help me out. We used one of his road flares to heat up the lug nuts and got the tire off. He took me into Keewatin where a friend of his fixed me up with another tire. The patrolman took me back to my car and put the tire on himself. Once again I was on my way.

Now, I started out on this little jaunt to Bemidji at around 5:00 on Saturday morning, and here I am rolling back into Eveleth at almost 2:00 am on Sunday morning. A trip that shouldn’t have taken more than 5 or 6 hours took almost a day, and i was really upset about the whole thing. If it hadn’t been for the fact that I was bringing Johnny home, it would have probably been the most miserable day of my life.

I took Johnny inside to the apartment and left him in the carrier while I took off my coat and boots. Misty came up and sniffed the carrier, but she didn’t make a sound. When I finally let Johnny out of the carrier. He hissed at Misty, Misty hissed at him, and after that they played like they had been together all their lives. It was the craziest thing.

Hearing about people abandoning pets like the people did Johnny pisses me off to not end. However, in this instance, I’m glad they did. If not, he would have never found his way to me. Somehow, we were meant to be together.

I guess some things are just meant to be . . .

 

This was the very first picture that I ever saw of Johnny.

 

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