Thursday, September 30, 2010

Panthers and Tigers and Tabbys, Oh My!

Happy Friday! Happy weekend! I hope Fall has finally fallen on you wherever you live. It’s creeping into NC and I hope it sticks around. I have sweated enough this summer – and sweating is very unladylike!!
While lolling around pondering what to do this week, I stumbled upon an article in the newspaper about a big panthers-bengals matchup in Charlotte on Sunday. I wasn’t quite sure what they were being matched up to do, but an arena full of beautiful felines sounded like something my friends and I would definitely enjoy. I tippy tapped on Mom’s computer and bought some tickets.
I knew Charlotte was several hours away, and it was going to take more pretty girls than I could guarantee were going to be anywhere to get Tristan to drive us. While the wheels in my head continued to turn as I tried to figure out what to do, I saw an ad in the sports section offering party bus rides to see the panthers play. Oh boy! A party bus to Charlotte. I had a plan now!
I gathered up some brave souls to accompany me on what was to be a long, hopefully adventurous day. Brothers Matthew and Anthony were on board for it, as well as dear Felisha and newcomer Jack. You know I was never going to head out without Malcolm tagging along, so I went ahead and invited him. Evidently, these Panthers are quite popular, as I found a variety of headwear designed to support them in their endeavors. Thanks to Mom’s magic card and express mail, my friends and I were going to be properly topped for our trip!
We still had to bum a ride off my brother to get to the party bus rendezvous spot. We were so excited we arrived very early – we were the first ones there! I thought this was good – that way we could greet each one of our fellow bus riders.

We expected the bus to be full of fellow felines and possibly a human family member or two, but we were totally unprepared for the stream of human males – and a few females - that proceeded to fill the bus.
You can imagine that we received quite a few strange looks as we greeted each new arrival. Everyone was wearing black and blue attire so I knew we had gotten that right. It was a long ride to Charlotte but we had such a good time on the bus! It didn’t take long for the other bus riders to realize we were cool cats in hats. Some were kind enough to share their food and beverages with us. Needless to say, we had to apologize several times for Malcolm’s behavior. I ended up having to promise one gentlemen that I would buy him some replacement food when we arrived at the venue.
Time passed quickly and we soon arrived in this HUGE parking lot. As we descended from the bus we were in awe of the scene. The parking lot was filled with people – mostly men - partying next to their vehicles. People had tents and chairs and grills. Malcolm’s paws had barely touched the pavement when he was following his nose to some poor person’s grill. The rest of us raced after Malcolm to try and keep him from getting in trouble. We ended up meeting some very nice cat lovers who invited us to join them for hot dogs and hamburgers.

We were having a good time, but were getting excited about seeing some panthers and bengals. Jack suggested we might want to head up toward the giant building sitting in the middle of the huge parking lot. We all decided that was a good idea. We thanked our generous hosts, gave them a high paw, and headed to the big building.
We became really excited when we saw the panther statues right outside the building. These must be the very brave panthers. The statues were of the panthers looking really fierce, but Felisha and I thought we could look just as fierce! What do you think?

Each one of us wanted to be the first inside so we rushed to the door. The ticket taker looked at us funny when we scurried up and handed him our tickets. The parking lot scene was nothing compared to what was happening inside! So many people! So much blue! No other cats! We looked around but didn’t see any panthers or tigers. They must be down that tunnel at the end preparing to come out and do whatever it is they do. We just assumed there would be some massive wrestling match or mouse catching contests.
With some help from a kind usher, we found our seats.

We sat nice and orderly for a few minutes until Matthew decided we needed to say hello to our fellow felines in the tunnel. Anthony thought his brother was right and led the way down to the field.
On the way down, we passed some cheerleaders who took a liking to pretty Felisha and made her an honorary cheerleader. They gave her a skirt and some blue and black pom poms so she could cheer along. Felisha was very excited – she just hoped she knew exactly when to cheer!
Before we reached the tunnel, we spied one of them – a panther!! He didn’t look like your usual feline - he was freakishly big and was walking on his hind legs. This must be a special breed of competition quality feline. We rushed up to him to say hello. He didn’t say anything, though he scooped up Felisha to give her a hug and patted each one of us on the head.

We asked him where the rest of the panthers were and he pointed to the tunnel – we were right!
The panther – we later found out his name was Sir Purr – motioned for us to follow him to the tunnel. When we arrived there, we were disappointed that there weren’t more panthers – just men in helmets and tight pants – really tight pants. We hung around for a while and received many pets and scratches from the helmeted men. I couldn’t imagine what they were going to be doing that would require such attire. Before I could ask someone to enlightenment me, Sir Purr picked up a big flag and started to run down the tunnel. He waved for us to follow. As we emerged from the tunnel there was a deafening roar from the crowd and lots of hoopla! The cheerleaders were all jumping up and down on the sidelines - making pyramids and tossing each other in the air. Matthew and I grabbed Felisha and tossed her in the air – such a cute little cheerleader!

The helmeted guys ran out behind us and started banging into each other and making loud grunting noises getting pumped up for what was about to happen. We saw a Bengal tiger walking on two legs down at the other end of the field. He had led his team out of their tunnel and they, too, we preparing for the big game. His guys had these cool tiger striped helmets – I really liked them!
We hung out with Sir Purr for the rest of the game – a football game. It was really cool. We got to stay on the sidelines and see all the action up close. Sir Purr helped us understand the rules of the game, but mostly we had fun just cheering and jumping up and down. Unfortunately, the panthers lost, but it was a lot of fun anyway.
When it was over, we said goodbye to Sir Purr and headed for the bus back home. The bus was much more subdued on the way back – everyone was exhausted. On the way home, Malcolm decided he must be a panther because he was all black. He was just like a panther, only smaller. He swapped hats with Matthew and declared we must call him Sir Malcolm from now on.

We napped most of the way home and were very happy to pull up to the parking lot where Tristan was going to pick us up to take us home. He was there as promised and was very patient while we all talked at once telling him about our exciting experience.
Tristan dropped everyone at their homes and when we arrived at our house he had to pick me up and carry me in because I was fast asleep.
I hope my friends had as much fun as I did. We’ll have to do that again sometime. I hear that football goes on most of the winter so there will be plenty of other opportunities.
Hope you enjoy your weekend. Check out the Sunday football games and root for you favorite team – it’s fun!

Love & licks,

1 comment:

  1. Very good adventure josie... it sounds like you had a Great Time !!!!! love jibbers and cami :o)