I’m full on energy to start the week ahead.
I woke up at 6am on Monday. The sun was shining through the window and I felt a surge of vitality in my veins. I had a good sleep, a good dream, a good feeling. I was ready to face the day and the week ahead.
I had many ideas in my head, buzzing like bees. Ideas for work, for life, for fun. I felt passionate about what I was going to do, what I was going to create, what I was going to achieve. I had a vision, a purpose, a drive.
I looked at my to-do list and it was long. But it didn’t scare me or overwhelm me. It motivated me and challenged me. It was all self-driven, all things that I wanted to do, not things that I had to do. I was excited by it, actually. I felt like I had control over my own destiny.
I got up and got ready. I had a quick breakfast, a cup of cold chinese tea, a shower. I put on some music, some upbeat tunes that matched my mood. I checked my email, my messages, my social media.
I felt alive and happy. I felt like nothing could stop me.
I’m full on energy to start the week ahead.
And you know what?
It feels good.
I miss Tigger. He was my best friend for more than ten years. He was always there for me, no matter what. He had a way of making me laugh with his antics and his expressions. He was a smart cat, too. He knew how to open doors, how to play fetch, how to cuddle when I needed it.
He died four months ago. It was sudden and cruel. I didn’t have time to say goodbye. I didn’t have time to do anything. I just watched him fade away, helpless and heartbroken.
I still think of him every day. I still see him in my dreams. I still feel him in my arms. Sometimes I hear his meow or his purr, and I turn around, hoping to catch a glimpse of him. But he’s not there. He’s gone.
But he’s not forgotten. He lives on in my memories, and in my project. A project that I started actually even before he passed away. A project that I call “Tigger’s World Tour”.
You see, Tigger loved to travel. But he never had the opportunity to do so. There were so many places that he didn’t get to see. So many places that I wanted to show him. So many places that I wanted to share with him.
So I decided to bring him with me, in a way. I made a stack of stickers that look like postage stamps, with his portrait.
Whenever I go somewhere new, I stick one of these stickers somewhere visible, somewhere public, somewhere where other people can see it. It’s like leaving a mark of Tigger’s presence, a sign of his spirit, a tribute to his memory.
It’s also like sending him a postcard, telling him where I am and what I’m doing, telling him that I miss him and that I love him.
Tigger has been to many places since he died. He’s been to the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa. He's also been to Tulum in Mexico, and Santa Monica Pier in the USA. The Hagia Sophia in Turkiye. He’s even been up the Banff Gondola to the Sulphur Mountains. He’s also been to Pike Place Market in Seattle. That's the last spot he visited.
Pike Place is a famous market where you can find all kinds of things: fish and flowers and fruits and vegetables and crafts and souvenirs and more. It’s also where you can find a wall covered with stickers and posters and graffiti and art. A wall that represents the diversity and creativity and history of Seattle.
A wall that has one of Tigger’s stickers on it.
Can you spot it?
It’s not easy to find. It’s hidden among hundreds of other stickers, some old and faded, some new and bright.
But it’s there.
It’s there for anyone who cares to look.
It’s there for anyone who wants to say hi to Tigger.
It’s there for anyone who wants to join me in celebrating his life.
Tigger was more than a cat.
He was my companion.
He was my partner.
He was my world.
May 23rd, 2023
I am standing at the heart of the Canadian Rockies, at the apex of the Columbia Icefield in Jasper National Park. The air is thin here, crisp and cold, as it mingles with the faint scent of glacial ice. It's a magnificent view, the kind that makes you feel insignificant and infinite all at once. The stark white of the icefield contrasts against the blue of the sky, making the scene look almost surreal.
Yet, as I look around, the grandeur of the scene is marked by an undeniable sense of loss. I can see the rate of retreat etched in the landscape, a harsh reminder of the rapidly changing climate. The Columbia Icefield, a majestic relic of the last Ice Age, is melting.
It's another record-breaking heatwave in the region, an unnerving reminder of the extent of global warming. I can feel the sun's intensity on my face, harsher than it should be at this altitude. I hear the occasional thunderous crack of ice breaking away, a disturbing symphony that accompanies the quiet whisper of the wind.
I take a moment to sit on a rock and soak in the reality of the situation. I'm here, in this moment, witnessing the slow demise of a natural wonder. It's a strange feeling, knowing that this landscape, so vast and seemingly eternal, is fading. I feel a pang of guilt mixed with sadness.
Climate change isn't just a concept or a statistic in a report.
It's real and tangible.
It's the receding line of the icefield
The softening crunch under my shoes
The increasing heat at this altitude.
This journey has made it clear to me that climate change isn't a distant problem. It's here, now, changing the landscapes we've known and loved. The Columbia Icefield isn't just a tourist spot. It's a symbol, a glaring testament to the urgency of the climate crisis. The Columbia Icefield is a reminder of the fragility of our world. It's a wake-up call to all of us. The question is, will we answer it?
May 23rd, 2023
The beauty of the journey is often found not in the destination, but in the journey itself. As I drove through the vast, serene National Forests of Canada, I found myself enveloped in the grandeur of nature, and I found solace and enlightenment within its embrace.
Firstly, I am thankful for having the opportunity to traverse Jasper National Park, Banff National Park, and Yoho National Park. Each one is a jewel in the crown of Canada's natural wonders, each unique, each breathing life into the landscape in its own way. The forests, the mountains, the rivers – they all speak a language as old as time, and yet, it's a language we understand instinctively.
The 11km hike up and down Johnston Falls was a challenge, and testing my endurance. Yet, every step brought a new perspective, a fresh vista that filled my heart with awe. The thunderous roar of the falls was both a testament to the power of nature and a soothing lullaby that washed over me, cleansing my spirit.
The journey to the Ink Pots was equally mesmerizing. Each pot, with its unique color and bubbling water, was like a mirror reflecting the vast sky overhead. The sight brought to mind the words of Kahlil Gibran: "You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth." I felt an intimate connection with the world around me, and I was reminded once again of the importance of cherishing these moments of communion with nature.
Driving through the forests and mountains of Canada, I found that the solitude of the journey gave me time to think. The open road, the infinite horizon, and the rhythm of the wheels on the asphalt became my companions. They offered a quiet comfort, a space for introspection, and a chance to look inward and reflect on my journey – not just through Canada, but through life itself.
In these moments of solitude, I was reminded of the importance of gratitude. I am grateful for the privilege to witness such beauty, to breathe the clean air, to listen to the symphony of nature. I am grateful for the strength to hike, to explore, to drive. And I am grateful for the wisdom to appreciate these blessings.
Driving through the National Forests of Canada, I learned that each journey we embark on is a reflection of our own life's journey. Each road we take, each mountain we climb, each river we cross, is a metaphor for our own struggles and triumphs, our own joys and sorrows. And in the end, it's not about the destination – it's about the journey, the experiences, the memories, and the lessons we learn along the way.
As I write this, I am filled with a sense of tranquility and fulfillment. I look forward to my next journey, my next exploration, my next drive. And I carry with me the echoes of the forest, the roar of the falls, and the wisdom of the open road.
Until then, remember: The journey is the destination. Embrace it, cherish it, learn from it. And most importantly, be grateful for it.
Boardgames at Purvis Street
28 Years Later
One More Time
MrWildy's Catsitting Diary
All the Lovely Cats (and furry ones) that I have Taken Care of Before
Having spent much time (and love) with all the furry ones, I thought I should dedicate a blog post to all the cats and furry ones. All of them hold special meaning to me in one way or another, and for most of them, I have grown closer to them through the house visits, and I certainly hope that I would have the chance to meet them again! I try to help cat sitting and cat visits, and you can find me on Pawshake.
Tron, Caline and Speedo
Tron, Caline and Speedo are the friendliest cats I've ever met. They belong to the lucky cat owner Danny, who regularly reaches out to me to help look after his cats. In fact, he's so trusting of me that he has passed me a set of keys to his house and access pass and even registered my car so that it would be easy for me to go to his place to take care of his fur-babies.
Even though Danny did not require me to groom his kitties, I took the effort to give the cats a dose of daily grooming. This is especially so when Tron and Caline are long-haired cats, and they are unable to fully groom themselves. Caline, being the most shy cat eventually got familiar with me with my regular brushing and bonded with me. I think this is the best things about cats - they don't just give you their love and affection as easily as dogs; you really have to earn it lol.
I've done several cat sitting for this bunch of cats, and I look forward to seeing them again. (Danny, please go on a trip soon!)
Siena is a really shy cat who lives at Meyer Road area with her owners. It took me almost a week to get Siena feeling comfortable enough to get close to me, but even so, she's always cautious and hesitant. Because of this, I maintained a comfortable distance to ensure that Siena did not get stressed by me (she was already stressed by being alone without her owners near her). Siena will not say no to treats however, and that gave me an opportunity to get closer to her.
Enzo, Fleur and Cookie
There was a request for me to do regular dog-walking (on a weekly basis) for Enzo and Fleur, a pair of Golden Retriever siblings, as well as Cookie, a Maltese. As I have an affinity for Golden Retrievers, I gladly took on the assignment.
These days, I walk Enzo, Fleur and Cookie on a weekly basis (except when the weather is bad), and I've seen them grow bigger as they mature in age.
Update: June 2022
It has been six months already, and I am still doing the weekly Sunday dog walking with Enzo, Fleur and Cookie. It's something that I look forward to, and both Enzo and Fleur are also big puppies now.
Zuko is a really adorable tabby belonging to owner Daria. The owners were travelling to Germany for the Christmas period, so I had the opportunity to spend some time with Zuko, as well as help to water the Christmas Tree in the house. Zuko is friendly and always come over to me for brushing when I am at the apartment. He has large and round eyes that makes him oh soooooo adorable!
I took care of the really friendly Mochi while his owner was away for a much-needed VTL vacation in December 2021. Mochi was really friendly, and while he was a fussy eater, he never fails to walk over to me for some cuddles and grooming. Because of his thicker fur, some effort is needed to groom Mochi to prevent his fur from matting.
It was difficult to snap a photo of Zorro cos he's always moving around. Rather friendly, Zorro was kindly adopted by Shilpa into her family and is now a happy and loving member of her family. While some Singaporeans shun black cats (because of bad luck?), Zorro is a fantastic case of how we should not be prejudiced by the colour and breed of a cat. All cats are affectionate and are deserving of our love, and Zorro (and Shilpa) is a fine example of this!
Poppy and Winston
Poppy and Winston are two really adorable and beautiful ragdolls of owner Kate. Poppy (the one with the white "socks") being the more friendly one would come approach me while Winston usually hides on the upper level. As their fur require a lot of grooming, I bought a brush so that I could help keep their fur in good order and prevent matting. This wasn't easy, especially for Winston, hence after my catsit period, Poppy was the one with the nicer looking coat. Also, over time, she has gotten closer to me -- and I do look forward to meeting them again. Nice ragdolls!
Doufu is a shy ragdoll with a really beautiful coat of fur. She's a little shy initially and would hide inside her little cot, but once she's adjusted to my scent she would come out to play. Doufu requires much grooming due to her coat, so when I visited her I always make an effort to brush her fur to prevent any matting.
Tiberius is one of the most affectionate (and manja) cat that I've house visited so far (except for Markiz, which was another really affectionate cat). Tiberius would be waiting for me by the door for my arrival, and then from the time that I enter the apartment, till I depart, Tiberius would be all over me, following me wherever I go. Tiberius is a very sociable cat, and when he realised that I was about to leave the apartment, he would rush to the door to block my departure. Such an intelligent cat!
Chi and Gandalf
Chi was a really shy cat and took several days to get familiar with me, and initially I couldn't even get close to Chi. I also helped take care of Gandalf, the Chinchilla living in the glass tank. Fortunately both Chi and Gandalf could get along rather well (as long as they were not left alone in an open space!). Chi has a really demure and gentle character which made her really unique in her own catty way.
Bubba and Padgett
So far, for all the numerous cat visits that I have undertaken, I have always been able to get close to the cat(s) and form a connection with them. The only time that I've failed was with Bubba and Padgette (lol!). Both Bubba and Padgette were really shy cats, and once they hear me arriving, one would hide under the sheets while the other one would make a beeline to the back of the fridge. Because they were rather fearful, I took gradual steps to engage them, but the closest I managed was to take a photo of them without scaring them away. I would definitely like to meet both Bubba and Padgette again.
Chesterfield, Mittens and Paolo
Unfortunately, I was unable to get very close to either of the three cats, as one of them had the tendency to make a dash out of the house. Hence there was great care needed to handle this family of cats. (btw, Chesterfield is a Rabbit).
Boo and Max
I spent a fair bit of time with Boo and Max as well (about two weeks?). Max (the black and white one) is the more friendly and sociable cat while Max is the more wary one. Fortunately, after about four or five days I managed to get closer to Max. They had a tendency to choose on the carpet slippers so I had to keep them out of their sight. Both cats love grooming time and would come to me once I had the brush in my hand.
Nheo, Tho and Ginger Sooke and Meng
I did a short cat visit for 5 cats across 2 homes. As this was a really short cat visit, I did not have the chance to spend quality time with all the cats, and while some were shy and wary as usual, a few curious kitties did come out to greet me, which was nice.
DD, Ah Mei and Orb
This cat sitting assignment was a special one as I was requested to take care of DD, a 20-year old cat (not in the picture, out of respect for DD). DD lives together with Orb (left) and Mei Mei (right). As DD was getting senile, the really caring owner wanted to find someone who was able to come between 2pm and 3pm during weekdays to help feed and care for DD. I decided to take on this responsibility for an extended duration, all the way until DD passed away. This experience of cat sitting was a very special one, as I had built a special bond with DD over the many weeks spent together. When I heard of DD's passing, I did cry uncontrollably, and this is a reminder to myself to never take my cats for granted, and to spend quality time with them.
Trotster and Talent
Occasionally, I do take care of dogs as well. Here, I was requested to take care of Trotster and Talent - both Miniature Pinscher. It was an interesting experience for me as I realised that different skillsets were required for taking care of dogs, which was somewhat different from taking care of cats. In particular, Talent was rather territorial and aggressive to a point too, so I had to be very careful in managing both of them.
Luna and Naomi
I did repeated house visits for both Luna and Naomi. As usual, one of the cats, Luna, was the more gregarious and friendly one and greeted me from the moment I stepped in till I left the apartment. On the other hand, Naomi was the really shy one, and it was so difficult to catch a glimpse of her, that I took me a while to make her warm up to me.
mrwildy's catsit diaries - Mochi
Mochi the Friendly Furry Cat - Dec 2021
I took care of the really friendly Mochi while his owner was away for a much-needed VTL vacation. Mochi was really friendly, and while he was a fussy eater, he never fails to walk over to me for some cuddles and grooming. Because of his thicker fur, some effort is needed to groom Mochi to prevent his fur from matting.
I am MrWildy and I am trying to journal more about my life and also my travels. Find out more about me here.