Thursday, June 29, 2017

Old news from Crete

I have been so busy with the new book and the new cat that I have neglected to post about my trip to Crete. I have been enjoying the views with my parents for 8 days.
Anyway, lots of photos again. 
I also did some photo hunting of the local cats.
Above-the ancient canon balls at Koules fortress in Heraklion port.

With mom.
The classic colors of Crete... And the beautiful bougainvillea, of course!
Sometimes one couldn't spot the goats or the sheep, but their bells were heard everywhere. Such a lovely sound. Listen to it here.
The natural sponges in a shop. I was told, the darker ones last longer...
The cacti and succulent showers were on every corner!
Even if you don't hunt for cats, they end up in the photos anyway.
I got a few pieces of the fish bone cactus (Selenicereus anthonyanus)! And I can already see the roots emerging. Yay!
And I hope you enjoy the cat portraits. Some animals were in a bit poor health and difficult to look at when having a meal. Very punctual animals, always arriving in time for breakfast and dinner.

We went up the hills to drive around the Lasithi plateau. All the towns around it were very tourist conscious :-)
I tried to persuade my parent to do some mountain climbing. We didn't go very far. I spotted a tiny tiny grey mantis and some fun looking plants. 

I think I have visited every plant shop on our way.

Somebody thought it's nice to have a Monstera deliciosa in the parking.

Crete was submerged in pink and yellow flowers of oleanders. Beautiful, but poisonous from top to root.
Cretans love their birds.And are proud to tell you they have caught the animals themselves. I have seen many Gold finches living in captivity. Some restaurants even put a cage with a canary bird on a table to entertain the dining kids.

That's not even a studio apartment cage!
Do not cross the white line! Just a street...

The beautiful Rethymno.

I wanted to hike St. Anthony gorge so much. But maybe next time, when there will be less rain. This year it was a bit of a freak spring. It rained a lot, when there should have been no rain at all.
There was a cave chapel in the beginning of the gorge. The walls were covered with wishing medal ions.
And some crevices were full of left behind crotches. All miracles?!
If you wish to see more, visit my Instagram...

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Scary books

Oh no, I forgot what books I have been reading. So here come the ones I've read recently.

"Stories of your life and others" left a really big impression on me. Wonderful fiction, with most short stories in Sc-Fi genre.
My favorite was "Seventy-two letters"-about a parallel science world to ours, a steampunk biotech, with a good dose of ethical dilemmas. 
By the way, the film "Arrival" was based on the "Story of your life"... 

I have always been fascinated by monsters, disease and apocalypse. 
So somehow a few unpleasant books found their way into my kindle.

And "The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World" title says a lot. Just to add-it's about cholera.

"The handmaids tale". Another dystopian novel. Set in a near-future New England, in a totalitarian theocracy that has overthrown the United States government, the novel explores themes of women in subjugation and the various means by which they gain individualism and independence. 
There's the new series for your liking!

"The hot zone" is a  nonfiction thriller by Richard Preston about the origins and incidents involving viral hemorrhagic fevers, particularly ebolaviruses and marburgviruses. A really terrifying and fascinating book.

I am still on this gigantic, never ending "Seeing further: The story of science & the Royal Society, edited by Bill Bryson" book. Truly curious stories of how people perceived world and how the science evolved. Many ridiculous things, I promise!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Our cat Vambola

 Hello, meet Vambola. Our Cornish rex 4 month old kitten. 
She came back with us from  AstraRex kattery in Kaunas, Lithuania, together with two more birds-Society finches.
 Vambola is an old name for a man, but our cat is a girl. I like how the name sounds and I think the cat really doesn't mind. It's just funny each time we call it out loud.
I really wanted to have a dog and tried all possible breeds, but my allergy is equally bad towards all of them. 
This particular cat breed is very dog like. Perfect for me, as I wanted a real companion, even when it is older. Cornish rexes keep their kitten attitude all their lives.
 And my favorite dogs are sight hounds, so this cat is like a whippet of the cat world. Also, it's fur is amazing! So soft, I constantly want to touch it. Which is perfect as Vambola seeks contact a lot.
 Her favorite place is on top of the orchid lamp, naturally.
And it seems all our animals have matching colors. Even the birds, except for one dark society finch. And the insects, of course.
When the guinea pigs are not running around, the cat uses them as pillows. The piggies in turn, lick cat's paws. 
But as soon as the pigs are on the floor or in their cage, I can see the hunter instinct awaken.
Birds are also in danger, but so far, the cat responds well to water spray technique :-D

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The knitting cats

 So, it seems I am into the cats now. I never ever would have imagined I would become a cat person.
 So, this big watercolor painting is for a very special little girl in Vilnius.
The painting also has details in colored ink. 
 See that spotted leaf above? This is stylized Begonia maculata. Oh, I hope I will own it in future. Unfortunately it is poisonous for pets.  Though I hope when my cat grows up it will ignore most of my plants as I have so many. I also plan to always grow cat grass!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Dangerous pets

I Googled "Dangerous pets". Some unexpected results popped up. Who calls an ostrich or a camel a pet!?

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Home is where cat is...

Have you ever heard the expression: home is where the cat is ? Well, I can definitely add, it's where the plants are.

It seems I am incapable of stopping painting cats in vegetation.
I will for sure try to paint some dogs among house plants too, just there are too many breeds to choose from, ha ha!