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Noooo, I’m not going to a bingo night ;) It’s just that I’m rather preoccupied with our sweet tomcat Ringo – and one of his many nicknames is Bingo! :)
Coffee-time tier: mini croissants (inspired by Bentobird) with strawberry jelly. There’s also a small cup of ‘faux sour cream’ in this box for the Mexican beans in another tier.
Fruit tier: pink grapefruit, opal prunes and white berries.
Background tier: rice, chili pepper ‘flower’, frijoles with corn and slices of gerkin, lettuce.
Office Lunch for Tuesday August 2nd, 2011.
Edited to add on Tuesday…
Of course I was not preoccupied with Ringo without reason. Today our adorable shy-guy died; he joined Yoshitoshi to roam the Eternal Graasland. Ringo only got to stay with us for four years but it seems like a lifetime and we enjoyed every minute of it. We were really lucky to find him — ask Juno if you don’t believe us! ;)
To the contrary of what you may think, we did not name Ringo (directly) after that Beatle person with the same name. It’s just a family rule that cats should have a two-syllable name ending at -o and both Mr Gnoe and I love the happy song “Ringo, I love you” by Stereo Total. Bye bye, cute little guy!
So here goes…
The first book you read in 2010: Trespass by Valerie Martin
The last book you finished in 2010: The Christmas Quilt by Thomas J. Davis
The first book you will finish (or did finish!) in 2011: Caos Calmo by Sandro Veronesi
Your favorite “classic” you read in 2010: The Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima
The book series you read the most volumes of in 2010: Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi and Les Aventures extraordinaires d’Adèle Blanc-Sec by Jacques Tardi (both graphic novels)
The genre you read the most in 2010: literary fiction (quite a lot of it being JLit)
The book that disappointed you: The Evenings (graphic novel) by Gerard Reve & Dick Matena
The book you liked better than you expected to: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman by Haruki Murakami
The hardest book you read in 2010 (topic or writing style): The Pillow Book by Sei Shōnagon (struggled with it for months and almost gave up!)
The funniest book you read in 2010: Mutts by Patrick McDonnell
The saddest book you read in 2010: this is a hard one.. probably The Wasted Vigil by Nadeem Aslam
The shortest book you read in 2010: ‘A Steam Whistle in the Night‘ by Haruki Murakami
The longest book you read in 2010: The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
A book that you discovered in 2010 that you will definitely read again: I’m really not much of a re-reader but I know I’ll be picking up David Mitchell’s The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet again: I just won a Dutch copy and because of the games Mitchell played with my language in the English version, I’m curious to know how it was translated. I’ve heard the author say he liked what the translators did, so… That’s why I worked so hard a winning a copy ;)
A book that you never want to read again: Thomas J. Davis’ The Christmas Quilt; not that it wasn’t a cosy read for the holidays, but once is enough
And finally, make a New Year’s Resolution: since 2010 was a slow reading year I plan to read more — in time as well as amount of books; at least 11 more to be precise (Books on the Nightstand +11 reading challenge) BUT I won’t give in on quality over quantity!
And what’s the relevance of cat pictures in this post?
Absolutely none. :)
They’re just my cuties that almost didn’t make it into the new year.
And I’m awfully grateful they did.
It’s December and the gift giving season has definitely started. This week I received my parcel from Lavender Lines in the awesome Great Grocery Bag Exchange that Carin from A Little Bookish hosted. YAY!
Of course we all want to live ‘green’ (right?), so why not Bring Your Own Bag to the store?! Or better still, bring a friend’s bag! The cool part of this international swap is that you get to have a unique reusable bag from another country to lug your groceries back home in :) And mine-came-from-bilingual-Canada. Ha!
Curious? Well, here’s the loot Colleen sent me!
Yep, you’re seeing that right: next to two bags, I also got some special Canadian goodies. :)
Oh, but the cat was not included! That’s our Handsome Man, Ringo. He was curious too ;) If you’re one of those rare cat-haters, here’s a link to a picture without him. :-o
The small red bag came from Claire de Lune, a wonderful Canadian candle shop, as Colleen describes it. It’s cute and it does smell sweetly of candles! :)
The bigger blue bag is from the Co-op grocery store. This bag is truly Canadian in that it has a French, and an English side. I can’t believe how global I’ll look carrying this! :) It’s pretty sturdy and I already used it to bring a bunch of heavy goodies to my aunt.
Please don’t tell anyone but there’s a secret to this bag too… Come closer to the computer so I can whisper it in your ear!
*low volume* There’s a small zipper pocket inside to put my money in! *volume up*
Colleen was so sweet to include her favourite Canadian chocolate bars: Coffee Crisp and mint-flavoured Aero. I visited Eastern Canada in 2000 but I can’t remember having come across them. So they’re rrrrrreally special! I’m saving them for a treat on one of my hikes or to cheer me up when I’m feeling down. Well, if I can resist them that long anyway ;)
I am a bit worried though :\ Colleen writes: I should warn you — they’re addictive!
Before you know it I’ll need to order them on-line in large numbers… LOL
So, a BIG Thank You! to my friends across the Atlantic: Colleen and Carin. I’ve had a great time participating in the grocery bag exchange and will continue to do so whenever I use my bags. Can you picture the jealous looks I’ll get? :)
Pet Pics, Prized Pages and Pachyderm Prose
So, it’s Sunday morning here, 20 minutes past 1 AM. Yes, I’m hanging in there! Doing well with the support of da kittehs — remember I didn’t even think Juno was going to make it until today? This afternoon she came to sit with me on the balcony! My cutie :)
But she’s not the only one keeping me company: our Shy Guy Ringo also spent some time on my lap. As you might deduce from his nickname, that is quite unusual. So I’m having a ball!
I’ve decided to use the readathon to give Sei Shonagon’s Pillow Book one more try. And it’s working! I’ve almost caught up with the Pillow Book Friday read-along at In Spring it is the Dawn (I do not own any shares of that great site, really I don’t ;) Since last status update I’ve read entries 109-142 and now I have only 7 more to go and I’m done for the week. Yay! That’ll count as 1 book for the readathon, don’t you think? :)
To answer the question of Pet Pics, Prized Pages and Pachyderm Prose, one of my favourite animal books is The White Bone by Barbara Gowdy. The main character is Mud, an elephant. So here’s my my’ sentence: Mad Mud makes millions marvel. In contrast I’d like to share a picture of our third and last critter, who is minding her own business, Yoshitoshi. The smallest pet in the house has the grandest name ;)
- What are you reading right now?
Wrote about that just above!
- How many books have you read so far?
- What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?
Probably The China Lover by Ian Buruma.
- Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day?
Yep, had to prepare Mr Gnoe and make sure I had my snacks ready and house sort-a cleaned up, which I would have done on Saturday otherwise.
- Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?
Ha, most interruptions come from the web (twitter, cheering, blogging, mini-challenges etc.), cuddling the cats and eating. Oh and then there’s the trouble with our kitchen plumbing… But I’m just hitting the ‘ignore’ button on that ;)
- What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?
Although it’s LATE and I’m tired, I’m not really getting depressed yet!
- Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
Nope, it’s a ball!
- What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year?
- Are you getting tired yet?
Yep! Had to change my contacts for glasses and I’m looking kind of grey ;)
- Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered?
No. If I think of something later on I’ll add it!
Currently reading: The Pillow Book by Sei Shonagon
Total of time read: 6 hrs 20 mins
Total amount of pages read: 130 pages
Eindelijk hebben we dan een bezoekje gebracht aan het Berenbos in Ouwehands Dierenpark. Dankzij stichting Alertis krijgen circus- en dansberen hier een vrij leven, zonder kunstjes. En dus ook zonder ring in de neus, stokslagen en andere onmenselijkheden.
Ik had me een groter terrein voorgesteld, maar de beren leken niet ontevreden met de hun toebedeelde ruimte. In het wild hebben ze een groot gebied nodig om voldoende voedsel te vinden, maar hier worden de dames en heren dagelijks op hun wenken bediend. En verdiend, wat mij betreft; zij hebben hun ‘herendiensten’ al verleend.
Toch zou het leuk zijn als ze naar een heus natuurreservaat konden. Zoals de dieren die Stichting Aap repatrieert, of de olifanten van Bring the Elephant Home. Hier in het Berenbos vormen de beren immers nog steeds een soort entertainment (dat liefst zelfs geld moet opleveren, uit medelijden of als beloning voor het goede werk). Maar het is een milde vorm van exploitatie én niet het doel van de organisatie. Bovendien is er voldoende plek voor de beren om zich te verstoppen als ze geen zin hebben in pottenkijkers. Sommige deden dat dan ook, maar de beer op de foto vond het duidelijk showtime. Hij kwam aangesjokt en drapeerde zich heerlijk op de stenen naast het water – om naar óns te kijken, leek het wel. Ik had de naam van deze charmeur graag geweten maar helaas ziet iedere bruine beer er voor mij hetzelfde uit. (Hm, waarom klinkt deze zinsnede me bekend in de oren? :\ )
Igor was daarentegen de enige kraagbeer en daardoor heel herkenbaar :) Wij waren nogal weg van hem omdat-ie lijkt op Ringo! Sowieso is Ringo net een beertje vanwege zijn ronde oortjes en hobbelende huppelloopje. Na het Berenbos hoefden wij eigenlijk niet zoveel meer te zien van Ouwehands omdat we prompt heimwee hadden naar onze eigen beestjes.
We gingen dus weer huiswaarts in de wetenschap dat de beren best gelukkig zijn in ons veilige kikkerlandje. Want Ouwehands Dierenpark zal vast niet worden geplaagd door stropers, zoals in reservaten in arme landen nog wel gebeurt. Het zou fijn zijn als de beren daarbij niet te kijk hoefden te worden gezet, maar als dat Alertis in staat stelt haar kunstje te blijven uitvoeren dan is het een small price to pay.
Our handsome guy :)
And already so at home!
We’re just not happy with how he’s exercising on the OUTSIDE window sill :(
Living three stories up you see! :-0
We decided to call Remy Ringo, because we love the song by Stereo Total (Ringo, I love you)! And he’s such a funny happy little guy ;) A bit clumsy too… Dropped off the window sill twice already :\
Why rename him? We’ve got this family law that cats should have two syllable names that end on ‘-o’… Not my idea, but when we don’t obey you can rest assured my brother finds a more appropriate name and everybody will start to call him that. But well, we’ve managed it again! :))
Also, we didn’t particularly like the reference to Hector Malot’s 1878 novel Sans Famille (Nobody’s Boy). Ringo has got us now!