Sunday, November 29

animal planet

This wonderful portrait was created by Harald Löffler at Eye Of The Tiger, a very talented photographer who once created an amazing calendar and sold it in aid of 21st Century Tiger.
Here is his story: "Once upon a time there was a national park in India. For a long time there lived a healthy Tiger population in this park. In 2005, during a very short period of time (about one month), all the Tigers fell prey to poachers. When I heard about this horrible incident I decided to create a limited edition of my “Cats Unlimited 2006” calendar"... Read further.

Monday, November 23

challenging months

I’ve been out there teaching again after a year break.

These three months have been the toughest ever! I seemed to have never taught before. The knowledge obtained at the teachers training college, the university and eight year experience of teaching disabled kids, handicapped kids, normal secondary school kids, weird teenagers, talented teenagers, really hard-working guys and a few grown-ups DID NOT help. I had found myself absolutely frustrated by the end of the first two weeks of teaching at a primary school.

There are two classes that specialize in languages, so the children have been learning French 5 (!) times a week since the first form.

I “inherited” the third formers and the fourth formers. Both of the classes had never written a single sentence or a vocabulary test and their previous year activity books had been almost empty. Therefore my challenge number one was to teach them a little Writing and Reading. The children were as shocked as their parents when I made the pupils write new words in vocabularies, sentences in activity books and even *huge* compositions of 4-5 sentenced .

The second challenge was Testing. Another shock arrived along with the first vocabulary test, which was a total failure. It took me and the children a few days to recover and then I kept on pushing. They must hate me by now, BUT I’m looking at it from a different point of view:

-My pupils are now able to work in pairs,
-create compositions of 5-6 sentences,
-Talk on two serious topics: “my family” and “my home”.
Moreover, they actually know many words by sight not by ear, as I’m not always around to pronounce the words so that the pupils guess the meanings.

Am I an evil teacher? Could be, but foreign languages are vital nowadays.

I also teach second formers. Their class specializes in something else and it is their first learning-a-foreign-language year. It’s so cool and so much fun! We sing and dance, learn alphabet and transcription symbols, paint and what not. On the way I teach them a bit writing, reading and speaking so that they will not be too stressed when serious stuff begins.

Tuesday, September 15

back to school

Yep, after a few months of a translator career I’m back to teaching English as a second language.

What can I say; I missed the drive and the extreme of school life... and got a huge doze of it on day one. There were no books to work with. The administration was kind enough to order new student’s books for each and every pupil but didn’t purchase a single one for teachers!

On the 1st of September I had neither textbooks nor teacher’s books and a crowd of well-equipped pupils. It was okay at first, as we just got acquainted I explained the classroom rules and dictated the list of required stationery. Then I launched a summer holiday survey to get the pupils speaking. By the next lesson I had downloaded exercises from the Internet and devoted it to grammar revision. So far, so good.

The second week went smoother as some teachers’ sets of books had been delivered. There are also some student’s books available on the Internet. They help me keep the students occupied.

God bless the web for a huge amount of downloadable materials, I would have never survived the past two weeks without them.

Monday, August 10

Wednesday, July 15

to go or not to go

The issue of utmost importance now is a possible moving in another country. My fiancé insists on living in his motherland, because everything is settled there: he has a job, an apartment, a summer house and a teenage daughter to look after. While I will be a unwelcome emigrant, who has no job, no citizenship and speaks a local language badly. Sounds exciting, isn't it.

I’m now considering if I can survive without my beloved family and friends and if I manage to stay sane there.

Besides, the whole citizenship status thing thrills me, as it requires too much time, efforts and bureaucracy. And I hate waiting in queues and gathering papers from the authoroties.

P.S. This whole situation reminds me "Mistery" by Hugh Laurie

Monday, July 13

new job

I'd been dreaming about a regular job for a few months and finally got it. Hope, I will survive two months of probation.

The office is a lively place filled with sales managers, who are distributing marine equipment and I’m to translate every document that all these guys feel like giving me. For two weeks I’ve been working on translation of technical specifications, brochures, information notices, drawing, what not, which is quite exciting. I have never translated anything on this topic ever (!) and now learn more and more useful vocabulary. I know I’m going to like all those ships, pumps, navy planes, towboats and so on.

Two sales managers of maritime equipment are sharing desk with me. They are quite peculiar personalities. The guy is a short fat fun-loving fellow, who jokes and laughs all the time, comments any remark heard in the office, mocks on stupid clients, green translators, received e-mails and so on. In the evening he quarrels with another guys in the office claiming that the other guy is lazy and bolder than himself, that this guy has stolen his magazine, talks to much or to little and is an ugly one in general. While the lady is a tall, middle-aged, strict Madame, who is always tired, sick and annoyed with overwork, stupid clients and customers, her desk-mate’s comments and “this whole thing”. She rarely smiles and always complains. Her assistant is a twenty something fellow, who works really hard, is uptight and feels uneasy if there is nothing to do. At the same time he watches working hours, comes exactly at 9am, leaves exactly at 6 pm and has a late lunch out of the office exactly from 1pm to 2 pm.

Watching these guys I do my best to concentrate on translating.

Saturday, July 11

animal planet

"Teach your children to honor themselves with integrity and you will teach them to honor your love."

Wes Fessler

Sunday, June 21

Sunday, June 7

animal planet

"Beauty without grace is the hook without the bait"

Tuesday, June 2

this is my life

One of those days filled with blues that makes me realise how wonderful life is.

Sunday, May 31

animal planet

"The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dreams shall never die".

Edward Kennedy

Friday, May 29

Frozen River

I’ve finally watched “Frozen River” and was very impressed by the straight-forward story of two single mothers that reveals harsh and barren life as it is.

The upright film tells about Lila, a widowed Mohawk, whose child had been taken away. Her relatives didn’t want a child to be brought up by a smuggler; and Ray, a mother of two, whose gambling-addict husband had recently taken off with the down payment for their new trailer home. The two desperate women were forced to earn living on their own. They joined in an illegal venture of transporting immigrants into the USA across the Mohawk territory, quite successfully.

With the money enough to pay their bills the women were determined to make one last run. However the circumstances spiraled out of control and the two women had to make life or death decisions based on their friendship and love for the children.

Though the film seemed to be very slow-moving, the story itself was involving. The women’s desperation knew now borders. They were both quite experienced adults and realized how dangerous their occupation was and what kind of consequences there may be. Nevertheless they took up it and when the time came to answer for the consequences, they didn’t run off. They paid the bill even though it was painful. I was amazed. There were not many characters in films that made up their mind to surrender to the authorities and to be punished.

To my mind the film submits the values that have been long forgotten. The importance of a family, self-sacrifice for the sake of some one else’s well-being, sympathy and empathy. While the most important message of the film is that a crime is followed by a proper punishment. The option that has been long forgotten in most films of today.

Tuesday, May 26

a thank you and an award

First of all I would like to thank Kasia at Clockwork Orange and Dan at Wood and Pixels Narratives for the lovely messages, which they sent while I was away. You made my day, dear blogger-mates.

One more Thank you goes to Jane at Gaston Studio . She has surprised me with a lovely Great Blog Award, created by Jason, a 14 year old in Louisiana. The award has to be passed to five more bloggers of my choice.

The bloggs that are great in general are the following:

Laverstone Tales, a great collection of lovely stories.

Writer's Musings, a great collection of notes of Afganistan and its people.

Lake View Photography blog, a collage of wonderful portraits showing love as it is.

Wood and Pixels Narratives, a great collection of fairy-tale photographs and beautiful thoughts.

Today's Chicago Blues, everything you would like to know about Blues life of Chicago and more.

Monday, May 25

hi there

After two month of a desperate job search, complicated love affair and a couple of short trips to Finland and Estonia I'm back to blogging. There is still no regular job. Love relationship is more complicated than ever. The next short trip to Spain is not scheduled yet, but it will happen... Someday.

Life goes fast forward and I have very little time to look around and review whatever is said and done. Hope Blogger will help here.

So... Hello again! What have you been up to for the past two months?

Sunday, May 24

animal planet

"From birth, man carries the weight of gravity on his shoulders. He is bolted to earth. But man has only to sink beneath the surface and he is free"

Jacques Cousteau (1910-1997)

Monday, March 23


Birthdays! I love birthdays: drinks all around!

Most members of my family managed to be born in spring, that is why March and April are the most festive months of the year here. We used to organize thematic birthdays parties, masquerades, family sports competitions and so on. Those parties were hilarious.

Later various diseases started to take us down one by one. So those, who are still alive, have learned to treasure the rare occasions of just gathering around the table talking, sharing recent news and photographs of the past and present.

Somehow birthdays have turned into tributes to those who passed away. There is a tradition to propose the second toast to the birthday girl's or boy's parents. The parents are not with us any longer, and these moments are the most intense and sad.The toast is usually followed by a silence, as everyone goes back to the past mentally for a few moments to meet the dearest ones again. These were the days we thought would never end...

Then I slip into the present and see the little ones fooling around, playing and amusing themselves. They still believe that a birthday is a day of fun, presents and laughter.

I wish they had more happy birthdays than we do.

Sunday, March 22

animal planet

"The start of a World Cross Country event is like riding a horse in the middle of a buffalo stampede. It's a thrill if you keep up, but one slip and you're nothing but hoof prints".

Monday, March 16

weekend post

The forecast promised sunny weekends, so I invited the guy to have a walk in one of my favourite suburbs. He had never been there before, so we had a tour around the park and the palace wondering how inconvenient living there would be.

The guy pictured how complicated it would be to run around the house palace if the bedrooms were in the left wing of the building, the kitchen were in the right one and the living-room -somewhere in the middle. He would watch football and ask me nicely to get him a beer from a fridge. I tried to explain that the match would have been over by the time I fetched a beer from the kitchen. To that he promised to buy a bicycle so that I could go around the place faster.
What a nice guy, you'd think.

Anyway, we walked down the park paths, skated on the frozen lake and had a lovely dinner later in the evening. All weekend long the song "Strangers In The Night" was playing in my head...

It was just one of those days to remember.

Sunday, March 15

animal planet

"A lion's work hours are only when he's hungry; once he's satisfied, the predator and prey live peacefully together".
by Chuck Jones
The photographer's site is here

Friday, March 13

trip to the Happy Land

Once again children have reminded me that life is a gift, which is to be treasured.

I have been to an amazing exhibition called "We are different, but we are friends" that presents more than 700 works created by handicapped children from dozens of orphanages and compensatory kindergartens throughout the country.

The children have created a lot of colourful and very talented works in various techniques such as painting, graphic arts, makrame, patch work, engraving, applique' work, origami, herbarium, embroidery, beadwork, stained-glass, lace trimming, batic, stuffed toys and so on. I was astonished by very high quality of their arts and crafts and by immense joie de vivre radiating from each and every creation.

It was a fairy-like trip to the Happy Land that only children could enter and understand and I loved it.

Thursday, March 12

about women

"Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater.

If you give her sperm, she'll give you a baby.

If you give her a house, she'll give you a home.

If you give her groceries, she'll give you a meal.

If you give her a smile, she'll give you her heart.

She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her..

So, if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit".

Wednesday, March 11

weekend post

The beauty of freelancing is flexible working hours and an opportunity to flee any time. That was what I did last Friday. I got a return ticket to the capital and gone to see my friends.

On Saturday we visited a well-known picture gallery to look at the paintings of late 19th and early 20th centuries. The canvases took me in the past and I had a walk down lovely Paris streets, New York broadways and tiny Moscow alleyways. We also spent a couple of hours at impressionism halls, as I'm a huge admirer of this art movement. I love impressionists' boisterous and lively painings, because they are full of life and sunshine. I always feel a little happier after visiting these exhibitions.

On Sunday I managed to see almost all my friends. We went to my favourite blues bar "Road House" to listen to the most outstanding bluesmen and sing a few songs along. I performed "Wild Thing" right at the stage. It was a blast! What a wonderful night it was.

On Monday we just walked around the city, skated at a local park and talked and talked until my train left at 10 PM.

I'm going to miss my friends.

Sunday, March 8

animal planet

"There is no surprise more magical than the surprise of being loved. It is God's finger on man's shoulder".
~Charles Morgan

Friday, March 6

16 again

Spring is everywhere and my head is full of flapdoodle romance. The guy from "Liverpool" and I met a couple of more times. We walked, talked and laughed a lot.

The guy snows me in with compliments and I just can't keep concentration on anything at all. At his age (47) he sends lovely text messages such as "Pleasure of learning to know you is beyond my oral description. Thank you for your lovely company. I am looking forward to seeong you at your earliest possible convenience" or "Dear Sunny, spring is coming, Mother Nature wakes up from Her deep winter sleep again starting to blow life and joy to the flowers. Even the flowers are so beautiful they never can be in that full bloom being able to challenge your beauty and charm. I want to congratulate you for your day today". I have never received that long messages on the phone in my life.

I feel 16 again. Crazy!

Happy Weekend to all of you out there!

Wednesday, March 4

at home, finally

The major repairs are over in my appartment, so I'm back and very excited about it. There are still some minor things to do. Fortunatelly, they can be done while I'm around.

The bathroom is now of a lovely sky-blue colour and the restroom is in emerald one.

The room is still under reconstruction. As soon as the walls are ready I'm going to glue the wallpapers of a deep orange colour and hang curtains with some ethnic pattern. I have also found a huge bookcase in an incredibly beautiful mahogany color, which has enough space for all the books I have and a room for those to be bought. The plan is to turn my roon into some African landscape (see the pic). Hope it will work out.

*sign happily* It is so good to be back home finally.

Monday, March 2

a weekend post

Saturday night was not the lonliest one of the week. I persuaded one of my former college friends to go out.

We went to one of the best bars in the neighbourhood called "Liverpool", had a few mojitos, lots of chatting and even met a couple of nice guys. The guys were rather drunk and burst into songs from time to time. I liked one of the songs so much that decided to find out its title to download an original version later. My friend just shook her head, she knew it was not only the song that I liked.

The following day one of those guys and me had a lovely walk down the river recollecting countless jokes and anecdotes, talking about the differences between cultures of our countries. Speaking of the differences. The guy told me the following story:

An American and a Russian farmer had a few shots at a bar and started to boast.
The American farmer said: "My farm is so big that it takes a day to drive around it by car".
The Russian farmer responded: "Yeah, our cars are as bad as yours".

I just loved this example of cross-culture communication.

Sunday, March 1

animal planet

"Freedom is the oxygen of the soul'
~Moshe Dayan

Thursday, February 26

a better day

Yesterday's evening of moving the furniture around my “garret” (as Sacha van Straten has called it) to clear away more space for a plumber to change the pipes in the room cheered me up. I never realized that I’m strong enough to move sofas and a piano.

The night was wasted on watching House MD season 4 and the most recent NCIS episode that immediately raised my spirits.

This morning I had a lovely stroll down the river to the gulf watching ships in graving-docks, where the most talented shipwrights were getting them ready for deep waters later in March. The sun was shining brightly. Snow was crunching under the feet. The ice on the river was cracking and the whole world seemed to be smiling.

Spring is definitely in the air!

Wednesday, February 25

Wordless Wednesday

Hope your day is much better than mine.

Tuesday, February 24

a weekend post

Melissa Leo didn't get an Oscar as I hoped. Well, at least she looked gorgeous at the ceremony. Maybe she will be offered more leading roles in the future.

The guys, who are working on my apartment, have finally installed all necessary pipes. They are neatly built into the walls, so they won't be visible under the tiles. The photo to the right shows my bathroom before the pipes have been replaced. That is really cool!

Some of the new pipes are smaller than they should be, so I will have to use them more carefully in the future.

In other news, those blues are on parade again and are difficult to fight back. Even skating on a frosty and sunny day didn't help much.

I have also finished reading a cool novel by D.Baldacci called "Last Man Standing". The novel is packed with action, tough guys and big guns. It was a very good read! Even Dr Gregory House reads his books.

Monday, February 23

sporty tag

Stay at home mom Maria dreams of Bugatti Veyron and tagged me to write about my dream sports car.

The rules:
1. Just state what kind of sports car will you buy if you have a ton of money at the moment.
2. Don't spoil the fun guys, please get back to me if you are done posting it and leave a comment stating the name and kind of the vehicle.
3. If you could link me to the post, it would be awesome!

Unfortunately, I do not have any. Though, there is a car I would like to waste my money on. Bentley 4 1/4 Litre, released in 1939, was perfect for comfortable long distance Continental touring. The Bentley is incredibly elegant!

Later I googled for top 10 sports car to see if I actually like any. Well, none caught my eye, because apart of being fancy they are actually small and inconvenient.

After reading a dozen car charts I came across the photo of Aston Martin Vanquish with really cool paint job! So that will be my car of the day.

Now, I'm taggin' Southern Sage, Cowguy, Irish Gumbo, VodkaMom , Beth and everybody who wants to share his/her secret dreams.

Saturday, February 21

animal planet

“An acquaintance that begins with a compliment is sure to develop into a real friendship”

Oscar Wilde

Friday, February 20

at the post office

There was that guy at the operator’s window asking for an envelope. The operator asked what size of the envelope the client wanted. The guy was surprised to know that the envelopes can be of different sizes.“The smallest one”, he said. “I’m going to send my sister this SIM. She has forgotten it”.
Now it was the operator to be surprised: “You cannot send a SIM in an envelope, you must send it in as a registered postal packet”.
“No, I don’t. SIMs are not on the banned list”, the guy insisted.
“You see, you may send only paper items in an envelope”.
“Oh, come on. I’m sure it’s going to be fine. No one is going to check the contents, and my sister desperately needs this SIM”…

Their conversation lasted a few more minutes, the queue behind grew irritated. I was standing in it, amused. If I ever forgot a SIM in another city I would just go to the nearest service center of my mobile provider, block the lost SIM and get a new one with the same phone number and data. It is as simple as that!
So, why waste his own time, mine and all the others’ in the queue at the post office?

Eventually, the operator persuaded the guy to buy a greeting card, hide the SIM inside it and then put in the envelope.

"Next one!"

Wednesday, February 18

home sweet home, i miss you.

Excitement over annoying my stepfather with girl's stuff is wearing off. I have grown accustomed to Mum's extreme care and don't go crazy anymore when she meets me at the doorsteps: "Hello, honey. How did your day go?"

Nevertheless I still keep to myself, because time on my own is precious after a working day. I walk  the streets, do freelance on my laptop in cafes or blog work on PC at home postponing visits to mum's. I only shower and sleep there, while mum would like me to be around more often. She even promises to buy DSL. That's really nice of you, but... No, thanks my satellite is fine.

Sometimes I stay at *home*. It does not feel like home though, as hot/ cold running water is still off and the fridge does not work. The computer is in the only room of the apartment that is not under reconstruction. Actually all my belongings are now stored in it leaving a tiny square space near the computer.

Besides, I don't have much furniture, so I blog work staying on my knees in front of the screen and look very much like a heathen at the foot of an idol statue.

Good news. The workmen say they will have got the bathroom into shape by the end of the month. *fingers crossed*

Tuesday, February 17

S for Sunny

Mich, a wonderful bloger at Who is Mich? has picked a letter for me, which happens to be “S” for my nickname. I have to write about my top 10 favorite things that start with the letter “S”.

There they go in no particular order:

1) Snow, as it snows off all troubles revealing sparkling nature's beauty. Besides, I love winter fun, snowballs fights, skiing and sledging.

2) Scotch whisky on rocks is the best remedy from low-spirits and depression.

3) South Africa, my dream holiday destination. Though, I'm looking for a job there too.

4) Sense of humour. It may be weird, stupid, English, great, but it surely helps to survive in our crazy world.

5) Southern Sage's collection of dirty jokes and funny stories about relationship makes the whole men-vs-women thing look less complicated.
Don't take life too seriously, nobody gets out alive anyway.

6) Savage chickens, there is so much common sense in the cartoons.

7) Sunshine, it gives life to everything.

8) Snail mail, an old-fashioned version of gchat that I still use to the full and love every moment of it.

Note: it is not an advertisement, I'm just saying:

9) Shampoo "Phytum Actif" by YR. It turns hair into ultraglossy soft silk.

10) Sally Hansen's nail care products and nail polishes.

Now, if you feel like joining in the fun. Leave me a letter request in the comments and you'll get your letter in no time!

Monday, February 16

weekend post

Valentine’s was very nice. I woke up late to greet a snowy sunny day.

It started with a phone call from the man of my dreams (What a surprise!) who congratulated me swiftly and then talked for 25 minutes about his recent activities. I tried to response for the first few minutes, but he was so eager to speak that ignored any comments. He didn’t even suggest sex on the phone! That’s why I just put him on the loud speaker and took up polishing nails mumbling on the cell: “hm.. wow… I see” .

In 25 minutes he said that it was nice to have a chat and hung off. Well, at least my nails had been perfectly pink by that time. Besides my beloved siblings presented two huge dark chocolates accompanied with a CD of 24 beautiful love songs performed by a famous Philharmonic Orchestra. So I totally forgot about the guy.

Later the family got together and we had a delicious dinner followed by wild dancing. I have to admit, that a lot of Tom Jones’ music and red wine works much better that sex on the phone.

The conclusion of the day was that I have to find another man of my dreams in the neighbourhood, because long distance doesn’t intensify love at all. It destroys it and turns into indifference.

P.S. Here's some sweet love story about long distance. It may have a happier end than my and the man of my dream's one.

Sunday, February 15

animal planet

“So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important. This is because they're chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.”

Morrie Schwartz

Friday, February 13

family issues

The repair of my apartment is in full swing. I called on to see how much of the apartment had already been torn down. To my surprise little was done. The old tiles were removed, the floor and the walls were leveled off, the doorways were widened and new door studs were installed; they even started to glue new tiles. However the pipes have not been replaced, the batteries have not been unpacked and the bathtub is still in the hall, which means I’m to live at mum’s for a couple of weeks more. That’s not cool!

You see, since I started to live at mum’s, she’s been treating me as her little girl. She worries if I’m not at home by midnight, she asks if I eat well at work and why I don’t dine at home. A couple of days ago I slipped on an icy road and limped home half-covered with snow, so mum wanted to make sure that nothing had been broken. She even fills me a lunchbox as she used to when I went to a primary school. It’s crazy!

I have been living on my own for almost eight years now. I have learned to take care of myself and developed certain habits, most of them are outdoor activities. So it’s okay for me not to be at home early, not to eat regularly or fall off the bridge on a regular basis. Mum has been comfortable with it for the last eight years, and I’m wondering why she just can’t behave the same way, while I’m at her place.

I’m not unhappy about bunking down there. I’m glad to have a chance to spend more time with mum, to help her around the house, to chat about my apartment repairing, the parents’ country house decorating and so on. It’s just weird to receive phone calls in the middle of the night requiring where the hell I am. Trust me, mum, there are places you wouldn’t like to know about!

Anyway, I’m spending the coming V-Day with my family at our country house, because the only true love I’ve ever experienced is for my parents, siblings and grandparents.

Happy coming Valentine’s Day to all of you!
Love and be loved!

Thursday, February 12

today's Sister Day

This e-card's just hilarious!

Happy Sister's Day!!

thermoelectric power station?

So much for the blogging addition. I did miss two wonderful days of posting, because in between all the fun of blogging and watching House MD and NCIS I have to make a living.

Monday evening I was offered a translation job, which was so handsomely paid that I accepted it at once. It appeared that there was 10 pages of blueprints and 33 pages of whiteprins of some super powerful thermoelectric power station, which had to be translated by 12PM Thursday. That was tough, as 43 pages of technical vocabulary are quite a challenge for a minor translator of teenage horror stories like myself.

The battle with all types of valves, heat exchangers, various circuits and what not had been going on during most part of Tuesday and for the whole Wednesday. Eventually, I nailed both blue and white prints on time, having learnt a lot of useful words on the way. Exciting!

Now I'm back to NCIS and Blogger.

See you on-line.

Tuesday, February 10

addicted to blogging

I have been spending a lot more time reading and commenting other blogs since I got fired. I even plan my posts sometimes. The thing I have never done before! I used to let my mind go and type whatever there was. Now, things are different.

Day by day I'm becoming more and more addicted to Blog-land, as your stories, memories, photograghs and tags are so much fun! Blogging also deprives me of sleep and I've started to suspect a fatal blog virus in my head...

Fortunately, Definelife has just posted a test on Blogging Addiction, which diagnosed me only 67% crazy. That's good news.

67%How Addicted to Blogging Are You?

So I'm off to read and comment a few more blogs. I love you, guys!

Monday, February 9

Tag - I'm it... weird

Fabulous blogger Maria at Maria Went to Chicago has tagged me to write 6 weird facts about me.

The rules: write a blog post of 6 weird things about you, choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you are tagged" on their blogs.

1. I'm a huge fan of the "The A-Team". George Peppard, Mr. T, Dirk Benedict and Dwight Schultz rocked and will always be. Besides, I love it when a plan comes together as much as the A-Team members. Besides, I'm on the jazz most of the time.

2. I used to like green colour so much that had my room at the parents' house painted in green and my kitchen furniture was green. I wore only green clothes, used green copybooks, pens, soap, toothbrush and so on. Fortunatelly, the greenfever is over now.

3.I usually give pets a different name. Once a friend bought a cat, which had changed several names until "Zorka" was established. However I still call the cat its second name "Guatemala". The parents's husky was called "Carma", but for me it had always been "Candy" till the last day of her life, because she was the sweetest and the most kind-hearted dog I'd ever seen.

4. I love eating snow. The habbit has developed since my recent trip.

5. My first e-mail address was Pink_Cloud.

6. I'm still fond of colouring Barbie colouring books.

The tag goes to a bunch of really great bloggers. They are Sarah, Henry North London, John Finn, Janie, Mariah, Jordanka.

I'd love to know more about you, guys!

Friday, February 6

animal planet

"There is nothing we like to see so much as the gleam of pleasure in a person's eye when he feels that we have sympathized with him, understood him. At these moments something fine and spiritual passes between two friends. These are the moments worth living".

Don Marquis

Thursday, February 5

family issue

The piggy's adventures at mom's place are in full swing.

Mom's poodle has recently developed a crush on it and even attempted to kidnap my lovely toy. I rescued it twice from his teeth and once retrieved it from the poodle's secret hide-out in the living room. Piggy was so dirty that I had to wash it and then blow-dry.

My step-father got intrigued by the piggy blowdrying and sneaked into his study aka my room. He gasped at the sight of it: his beloved bookcase was now filled with colourful tubes, bottles and tiny cases, the aroma of Kiwi (eau de toilet) used as airspray flying around, some nailpolish was half-opened on his computer table and... there was me drying the piggy with his hairdryer. It was too much to bare.

He muttered "sheer lady" under his breath and left.

Wednesday, February 4

Tag- I'm it.

Thanks Bambi at

I'm to post six random things about me following the rules:

1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them.
5. Let each person know they’ve been tagged and leave comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

1. I learnt to swim at the age of 12 (!) That day I slipped and fell overboard. I panicked and instead of clutching at the side of the boat dashed to the shore. It took me 400 metres of waters to understand I could swim.
2. I speak four languages, write in six languages and do typos in all of them.
3. I'm an Yves Roche fan, as cosmetics is of high quality there and is kept in colourful tubes. Besides, Yves Roche is nature friendly
4. Dark chocolate is the only item I may trade government secrets for.
5. Most drastic decisions in my life were inspired by books.
6. I'm a huge fan of the Beatles, so is Bambi. I have their Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band poster, T-shirts, books and Paul's and Ringo's autographs!

Now... Kasia, Ash, Polergirl, Milltini, Beth, Maria I'd like to know more about you :)

Tuesday, February 3

family issue

Due to serious repairs in my apartment I had to find a current place to live in. There were several options: grandparents', dad's, or mum and step-father's place.

The grandparents live too far from the city centre. My sister is currently stationed at dad's, so I'd better not go there, as she is a lazy teenager and I'm an ex-teacher who has been telling off lazy teenagers most of her life. I'm sure dad will involve me into upbringing the sister, so I'd rather stay away. Thus the only refuge is mum and step-father's place, which is in two-minute walk from my own apartment, close to the city centre and doesn't contain a crazy teenager. Don't get me wrong I love my sister. I just prefer spoiling her to bringing up.

Anyway, yesterday I collected living essentials, tons of cosmetics and headed to mum's apartment. The step-father answered the door. His jaw dropped when he saw me cuddling my stuffed piggy and clutching a huge bag of cosmetics . He was too startled to say anything. I made my way inside.

Mum and the step-father had prepared their study for my bunking down for a couple of weeks. And I'm now living in a tiny study surrounded by a computer, a huge plant and an empty bookcase that serves as my dressing table. Lovely!

Mum is so excited about the whole thing that even cooks, while the step-father complains that she never gets into so much trouble to feed him. These two are so sweet!

I do feel that three is a crowd at their place. Therefore I'm looking forward to the repair to be completed, so I can go back to my little universe and leave mum and the step-father in peace.

Premio Dardos award

Bella@That damn expat awarded Premio Dardos to me. Thank you, Expat!

Premio Dardos' significance is the folowing:
"With the Premio Dardos is to recognize the values that each blogger uses to transmit cultural values, ethical, literary, personal, etc.. that, in short, demonstrate their creativity through the thought that is alive and remains intact from their letters, between his words. These stamps were created with the intention of promoting fraternization between bloggers, a way of showing affection and gratitude for a job that adds value to the Web.

The rules for receiving the prize are:

1) View the image of the stamp;
2) Link the blog for which you received the alert;
3) Choose 15 other blogs to those who receive the Premio Dardos.
4) And tell everyone, of course

...and the Winners are

365 to 42


Cheri Block Sabraw


Dan Felstead

Diary of Pienovsky

Hitch Writer

Irish Gambo



Mahhattan Transfer


Superficial Girl


Working Girls

Monday, February 2

the Fourth Annual Brigid in the Blogosphere Poetry Slam

Happy Feast of Brigid, aka Groundhog Day!

As promised, here comes one of the most life-asserting poems by Josiah Gilbert Holland

A Song Of Faith

Day will return with a fresher boon;
God will remember the world!
Night will come with a newer moon;
God will remember the world!

Evil is only the slave of Good;
Sorrow the servant of Joy;
And the soul is mad that refuses food
Of the meanest in God’s employ.

The fountain of joy is fed by tears,
And love is lit by breath of sighs;
The deepest griefs and the wildest fears
Have holiest ministries.

Strong grows the oak in the sweeping storm;
Safely the flower sleeps under the snow;
And the farmer’s hearth is never warm
Till the cold wind starts to blow.

Day will return with a fresher boon;
God will remember the world!
Night will come with newer moon;
God will remember the world!

Friday, January 30

animal planet

“There is an old Cherokee story about a grandfather who is teaching his grandson about life. He says to his grandson, ‘A fight is going on inside me. It is a terrible fight between two wolves. One is evil; he is anger, envy, greed, arrogance, self-pity, resentment, and superiority. The other is good; he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, generosity, and compassion. This same fight is going on inside you, and inside every other person, too.’

The grandson thinks about this for a minute and then asks his grandfather, ‘Which wolf will win?’

The old Cherokee simply replies, ‘The one we feed.’”

from Zoe Weil’s book "Most Good, Least Harm"

Wednesday, January 28

dog matter

Since the death of our beloved husky named Candy my parents had been reluctant to buy a new dog for almost half a year. They finally recovered three or four month ago and googled for a dog of some other breed. They wanted a fun-loving, kids-friendly dog that would not stink and shed hair. The search took a while.

Then one day I received this photo and a short message from mother: "That's our future dog's dad. Do you like it?"

Of course, I do. It is cute, fluffy and will make my parents happy. Besides, according to Wikipedia Great Japanese Dogs are clean and odorless. They are very devoted and gentle with its owners and usually do not show affection on an outsider.

Dog-breeders say that a typical pet Akita (another name of great japanese dog) will follow you from room to room, yet has the uncanny ability not to be underfoot. Your Akita lives his life as if his only purpose is to protect you and spend time with you.

Having received my official approval the parents are now looking for our future dog's mom. So all we have to do is to find a mom, to make the future dad and the future mom date, wait for several months and the dog is ours. Piece of cake!

Now, tell me Dear Bloggers, do you like the DAD?

Tuesday, January 27

meme me interview

Reading an interview with Peudonymous High School Teacher was really interesting so I volunteered to be interviewed too.

1. If you could time travel back in time or forward in time for an afternoon of hanging out and chatting, what time period would you visit and who would you visit with?

If I could travel in time I'd go to Ancient Rome to talk to Marcus Tullius Cicero, because he was interested in philosophy as much as I do, and because his ideas may be applied nowadays.

2. You are going to be given one superpower. What do you want and why?

An ability to shift to anyplace anytime, because traffic-jams and many cases of emergency require travelling at speed of light.

3. You are housesitting for a friend and you are far from the store. As you open the pantry or fridge, what five items do you hope is stocked there for you?

There is always flour, eggs, milk/ yoghurt, a lot of dark chocolate and some "kitty cat", so I can always bake a cake.

4. If you were able to magically change careers now and be transformed into a wildly successful and fully trained anything-other-than-a-teacher...What would you be?

I would be an interpreter working at international conferences or on some super-secret projects of Ministry of Defence. I've been dreaming of that kind of work since childhood, as I was and still am a fan of spy movies and world military history. Besides, I once worked for an aviation company. I translated a lot of working drawings, articles, lectures and meetings. Aviation thrilled me. I even learnt how to fly and how to do some minor repair job. The experience I'd never forget.

5. What is your favorite vacation you have ever been on?

Three years ago I travelled to Italy on vacations. I went to Rome, Venice, Napoli and Florence. Florence appealed to me most. I loved walking tiny streets, smelling leather, dining at small cafes and chatting away with locals.These were lovely days.

And now the rules for this little meme, which is a challenging one by the way cos you just don’t know what’s coming your way.

If you want to participate…

1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.”
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. (I get to pick the questions).
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

Monday, January 26

ok day

The bad day turned into an okay day yesterday, as I broke a cup, cut a finger, had a headache and watched BBC film "Murder in Rome". The film inspired me to wonder about the purpose of my life, which was definetly not doing the job I'm busy with now. So when the boss reached the office today and officially fired me I kept calm.

This week is officially my last one here. So far so good.

Saturday, January 24

animal planet

"Hear! hear!" screamed the jay from a neighboring tree, where I had heard a tittering for some time, "winter has a concentrated and nutty kernel, if you know where to look for it." ~Henry David Thoreau

Friday, January 23

tribute to Melissa Leo

The 81st Annual Academy Awards is on the 22nd of February and I'm overexcited, because one of my favourite actresses Melissa Leo has finally got nominated as Actress In A Leading Role.

She plays Ray Eddy, an impoverished mother who becomes involved in a smuggling ring in an attempt to avoid losing her home. The film is called "Frozen River".

That is Melissa Leo's first Academy Award nomination and I'll keep my fingers crossed for her.

Melissa has been acting for more than 25 years. She started as actor's actor and never became really famous. Most of her roles were and still are supporting or bit parts, and she merges into each and every of them really well.

In the 90ies Melissa performed wonderfully in "Homicide: Life On The Streets" as Sgt. Kay Howard. I remeber watching the pilot. That beautiful detective looked up from the papers and said to a newbie "Homicide, we work for God". There was something in her voice that got to me and kept me glued to the tv-show for years. Homicide detectives worked for God, as the God himself was too smart to come 'round Baltimore streets.

Later she took part in "21 Gram", one mesmerizing movie. That was a story of four gentle persons, who would be brought together by a terrible accident that would change their lives. By the final frame, none of them would be the same as they would learn harsh truths about love, faith, courage, desire and guilt, and how chance could change their worlds irretrievably, forever. Melissa's performance was stunning in this movie, and once more I exclaimed that she should be nominated for Best Actress.

This year she is and I'm rooting for her.

Thursday, January 22

"Woodstock" & my college years

I’ve recently laid my hands on a copy of “Woodstock”, the Academy-Award-winning documentary about the first rock festival ever. The press called it “Disastrous Zone” while these were three days of Peace and Music. I’ve never seen a crowd that huge, which managed to get along and behave themselves so well.

The documentary covered all aspects of the event. It interviewed the kids around to find out the cause of their arrival. Some of them wanted to get answers to their lives in music, which seems very weird to me. Music may heal soul, inspire vigour, reflect emotional states, but it is hardly able to give answers to where the road of life is going to. The other young people came to hang around and become a part of whatever it was going to be. Finally, there were people who actually paid for the concert and intended to listen to the music.

Janis Joplin, the Who, Joe Cocker, Santana (to name a few) performed at the festival. They were skinny kids themselves, filled with right ideas, radiating energy and love. It was an amazing gig to watch even on a dvd.

The documentary took me back to college years, when I attended an event of the same sort for the first and the last time. The rock festival I went to was far less peaceful: the kids were rather aggressive after hours of rock music and bottles of beer. It was rainy and the kids dirt-bathed. I remember sweaty and smelly bodies around singing rather well to the bands on the stage. I remember the music affecting me more than any drug exist, I was stoned with rock power. The festival was the most disgusting and the most thrilling experience ever.

I wish I had been at Woodstock festival rather than at the local one.