Who is Chuck and why does he like to travel?

I was born to be a writer and when I wrote my novel Wild Point Island, Chuck, my orange and white recently rescued feral tabby, got it in his head that he wanted to travel to the island and see the place for himself. Well, of course, Wild Point Island, can only be seen by revenants (you'll have to read the book to find out who they are) and Chuck is no revenant so instead, I concocted a plan to take Chuck with me when I travel around the world, which I do frequently. Not an easy task. First, I have to deflate the poor kid of all air, stuff him in my carry-on bag, remember to bring my portable pump, and when I arrive, I pump him back up. Ouch. But he's used to it by now and given the choice to either stay home in his comfy cat bed or get deflated, he pulls out his passport, ready to travel, every time.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Chuck Almost Goes Wild in Shanghai

Shanghai at night

          What happened next with Chuck was our fault.
After we almost lost the rascal cat in the Peace Hotel, we took him back to our hotel--Broadway Mansions--and fed him plenty of snacks.  
And since we were scheduled to return home to the states the very next day, we decided to take Chuck on a whirlwind tour of the city.  We wanted to show him all the points of interest--the Bund, the historic part of the City, the French Concession and then drive him around at night because we’d heard that Shanghai lit up at night looked spectacular! 
Chuck was to become King for the Day in Shanghai.
Our hope was that Chuck would fall in love with Shanghai.
Little could we guess what was about to happen.
And, Chuck, well, we lured him out of the hotel with the promise of snacks.  I had a bag of Temptations with me, Salmon flavor, and that’s all Chuckie needed to see.
We left the hotel and crossed the Garden Bridge, the first all steel bridge in China, built in 1908, to replace the wooden bridge that was there. This camel backtruss bridge is often the destination for brides dressed in red for good luck, posing after their wedding for pictures.  This is Shanghai’s landmark bridge.  Chuck seemed barely interested.

View of the Garden Bridge and our hotel Broadway Mansions.
Luckily, I had brought a small bowl with me and I filled the bowl with a few Temptations for Chuck to snack on.    
We headed past the Bund, located on the banks of the Huangpo River, noted for its buildings and structures of varied architectural styles--neoclassical, art deco--the Peace Hotel, but this too meant nothing to Chuck who barely glanced at the magnificent display as we road by.  I mentioned to Chuck that a new hotel had just been opened--the Peninsula Shanghai, very expensive and very swank, which included an entire mall of stores in the front section of the hotel. So you no longer had to leave your hotel to shop. There was also an immense food court a short distance from the hotel lobby. 
  Food? I sprinkled a few more Temptations in the bowl and the kid was happy.
Well, from the Bund, we headed toward the former foreign concession areas on Shanghai.  I wanted to show Chuck the French Concession because it was here that the First National Congress of the Communist Party met.  In other words, this is where China became a communist country.  Imagine what the world would be like if that were not the case today.  The house where that momentous event took place is now a museum.  Free admission.  No photos allowed, except in the dining room.  There are wax figures of the major players set up to illustrate who signed the agreement.  I suppose this is tantamount to our First Continental Congress meeting or the signing of our Declaration of Independence.  It kind of takes your breath away.  

In the French Concession, near where the First Continental Congress met

View of the French Concession

        The French Concession now is very upscale with shopping malls and boutiques and restaurants.  It is the chic place to live in Shanghai.  How ironic that it was here that communism got it's footing.  

A sample of the small boutiques that abound in the French Concession area today

Of course, there were more snacks for the kid.
We turned back toward the hotel and decided to revisit the historic part of Shanghai.  We passed the Yu Garden, which Chuck and I had both visited and walked and tried to find some peace.  
By this time, the sun had set, and Shanghai came to life. 
Shanghai, in case you don’t know this, is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper by population in the world with 23 million people.  It is considered a “global city,” very westernized, a major financial center and port city and the “showpiece” of China’s booming economy!  
I explained all this to Chuck, but all he seemed to care about were the lights and the continuous supply of snacks that he chomped on as we road along Shanghai’s streets.

Shanghai at night

Shanghai at night

Until . . .
I heard Chuck burp.  
And I suppose if a cat could turn pale ( as in he didn’t feel well), Chuck turned pale and had that look on his face which told me he’d eaten entirely too many snacks.  
I shook my head. “I had such plans for you tonight.  For us.  This is our last night in Shanghai.”
But the poor kid looked like he wanted to . . .
We turned the car around and headed back over the Garden Bridge, back to our temporary home at Broadway Mansions.  
Back in our hotel room, Chuck passed out, I mean fell asleep almost immediately.
And we were tuckered out, too.  

If you would like to read more about Chuck and his adventures, log onto www.katelutter.com.

My paranormal romance, Wild Point Island, is now available in paperback and ebook from amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com.



  1. cky15: I am glad that I get news letters which has new authors and excerpts to enjoy.
    I sure like your book Wild Point Island. It sure caught my eye with the cover and to read what it is about. I am going to read this thanks for sharing it.

  2. Thanks for your comment. I hope you enjoy Wild Point Island. Please let me know after you finish reading it.