Prospect Park Zoo & Lakes


The main reason I visited the Prospect Park Zoo on my day off was to see the Pallas Cat, a species which hails from Central Asia. Cute, fluffy and small, its accompanying descriptions had to reinforce the fact that the breed is far from a domestic cat, and definitely a wild one — but I still admired the seemingly pensive feline, and its wise stares, nonetheless.

IMG_1051[1]I made some new friends, though, with the more domesticated creatures. Although I think this one’s love is conditional, based on the presence of goat feed in my hand.

IMG_1042[1]Not all attempts at friendships worked.

IMG_1040[1]But you can still admire a peacock’s color scheme regardless of your personal encounter.

IMG_1050[1]This one is a type of pigeon that dwells in the tropics. Perhaps they placed him there to provide viewers perspective on the common urban pigeons we see here.

IMG_1049[1]Red panda, startled.

IMG_1053[1]Out of the zoo and near the Audubon Center, branches made interesting formations in the water.


IMG_1057[1]If the melting ice and cold weather weren’t telling enough, park keepers make sure to float buoys in the water to tell you not to enter the wintry lake.

IMG_1055[1]At least pedestrian bridges were erected  in the 1800’s to solve that problem.






Asian Cat Photography

Cat cafe on a winter day, Ulsan, South Korea.

A leashed kitten in Ulsan, South Korea.

An Indonesian biker kitten.

Black cat on the streets of Tokyo, Japan.

Kittens cooling off under a bench in Malacca, Malaysia.

Fluffy cat battles fluffy toy in Taipei, Taiwan.

Cat resting in a restaurant booth in Taipei.

Friendly calico in the Philippines.

Variations of the same cat in Lake Toba, Indonesia.

Three kittens in Penang, Malaysia.

Cats forming a pleasing color scheme in Penang.

Sometimes, they reposition.

Tabby cat resting by newspapers in Penang.

Cat bored by the nighttime street action in Bangkok, Thailand.

Cat trying to sell some bootleg DVDs and microphones in Bangkok.

Cozy black kitten in southern Vietnam.

Laotian cat resting on its dirt floor, and simultaneously matching it.

Philippines Photos

This is the beach behind where we stayed in Moalboal, Cebu. You can make out the next island, Negros, in the background. Most people travel to this city for scuba diving, but as I don’t practice that sport, I spent most of the time dazing away at beaches like this.

Here’s a lake up a volcano in Negros, the next island. It’s a refreshing break to go up in elevation and escape the intense heat and humidity.

The jungle road on the way back down to town. Half of it is paved, half is not, so it can be quite bumpy, then smooth, then bumpy, but full of tropical plants the whole ride!

These lazy bum cats lived on our porch in Boracay. They would meow on and off all day to be fed, and whenever we’d go outside or open the door, they’d run into our place like they owned it. If we ever went outside with food, they’d start jumping up and try to bite it out of our hands, before we’d brush them off. They were friendly company, nonetheless.

As the Philippines is a country of thousands of islands, a popular mode of transport is by ferry. Bridges are not very common, so travelers will usually end up on a boat at some point or another. Some are big, some are small, some are sweaty, some are air-conditioned. Some are built up well, but others make it so you get splashed with ample seawater during your ride.

Vigan sausages are not vegan. They are made of pork, like most of the food in this country.

The vans are known as Jeepneys. They are a common way to get around in a city. They are kind of like a collective open-air van taxi, bigger than a car, smaller than a bus. Many of the drivers paint their Jeepneys in their own fashion. Some are very colorful, and many have Christian sayings like “God-powered” or “Jesus is lord”.

Another popular mode of transport is the tricycle. It is a motorcycle attached to a cart that has a wheel underneath. These are cheap to ride, but you’ll usually have to talk down the initial price offer with the driver if you’re not a local.

This bell tower offered a delightful view of a cemetery and mountains off to the east. This window was about one story high, so it was fortunate to have such a window not be screened or barred off from the outside. One must be careful to sit there and not fall, naturally.

An old mansion with antique furniture, also the site of some Tom Cruise movie.

Cat Cafe

I went to Seoul for the lunar new year this break. Though many businesses were closed for this holiday, it is one of the biggest cities in the world, so naturally there is still a lot to do.

One of the highlights of my trip was going to this cat cafe, Cats Living, which is located in the Hongdae district. I’ve been to one in Ulsan and in Daegu, but I’d have to say this one is the best.

All kinds of cats were there, from folded-ears, to short-haired, to long-haired, to Persian, to domestic, to striped to solid. It was quite the place to get the samplings of cats. Some of them were lazy, but some ran around the entire place, being finicky and picking fights with their feline companions.

At a place like this, one can pick up one of the cafe’s many toys and try to play with the active ones. Another option is to just sit with the mandatory beverage you must consume to be at one of these cat cafes. Or, you can just sit around at a table or the floor, and wait around for one of the cats to make its way towards you for some stray pets.

I really felt like I was in my natural element. It is certainly one of the best features of living in Asia.


Don’t you just wish you could be your cat sometimes? All they have to do is look cute and you feed and shelter them. Then they have no concept of earning money, trying to learn new languages, buying plane tickets or mending fabric. Their version of doing paperwork is making sure to lie down right on top of your pile of documents when they see you are concentrating.

You put a new piece of furniture in your room and all they can think of is how nice the texture is when they rub their head against it.

You think of how much of their winter coat they are leaving everywhere.