Monday, June 10, 2019

Day One: Tbilisi

This past Tuesday we were winging our way to Tbilisi, Georgia for the holiday of Eid Al Fitr that marks the end of the month of Ramadan.
The forecast called for rain and a heatwave the 4 days we were there, but fortunately, we only saw rain on the drive from the airport to our hotel; and the heat wasn't really what we would consider overly hot.
Our hotel was right across the street from the Kura River and was an easy walk into Old Tbilisi.
We crossed Baratashvili Bridge where there's a sculptural composition of bronze figures entitled "Youth" by Georgi Japaridze.
And explored a bit before deciding to eat at Stelzen Haus which is a German-Georgian restaurant.
My friend Mini at MinizDiary (who is vegetarian) visited Tbilisi last year and wrote a blog post about the food so I had an idea of some of the traditional dishes I might be able to try.
Badrijani is eggplant and peppers stuffed with walnut pate and Phkali is a spinach mousse with walnut paste and traditional herbs.
My husband had a vegetable soup and I had a salad of cucumber and tomatoes with walnut paste, so by the time the Lobiani arrived (bread stuffed with kidney beans) we were already feeling pretty full.  We only managed to eat a few pieces, but it was so very good and if I had known the portion size, I wouldn't have ordered the starters.
After dinner, I did some wine tasting and bought a bottle to take back to the hotel.
Then we walked across the Bridge of Peace over to Rike Park.
Unfortunately, it was cloudy and starting to get dark so some of my pictures aren't so clear at this point.
Lavender in bloom that smelled so good.
Walking back to our hotel for the night.
Day two included lots more walking, a cable car ride, the botanical garden and Narikala Fortress.
More next time.

Wishing you a great week.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Along the Corniche

Smell the sea,
and see the sky,
let your soul and spirits fly.
(Van Morrison)

Another seaside walk today with a view of Kuwait City in the distance.
There was some trash collecting as I went along.  Even though there's many trash containers out there, some people just can't bring themselves to use them.  A couple of fisherman were making quite a mess, so I asked them to clean up the area before they left and they did so without hesitation.
Grateful for trees and green spaces.
 Have you ever seen a crab spider?
I've spotted so many of them this year.  They get their name because of those pincerlike legs.
This colorful little insect better be careful or he might be a spider's lunch.
Even though there is still lots of green space along the walkway, I was disappointed to find that an area had been cleared and the path was blocked because of destruction and construction.
A large grassy area and many, many big trees taken down.
It's quite depressing because there is just way too much of this going on right now.
Apparently the Scientific Center is expanding.
But when is enough, enough?
Met this sweet little kitty while out there.  Gosh, the coloring on it was so gorgeous.  Gray and black with splashes of ginger thrown in.  And so very sweet.  I wonder if it was recently dumped because it is just too clean and was purring like crazy.  It breaks my heart to walk away but all the rescue groups are overrun so there's not much I can do.  There are people who go out there every day to feed this group of seaside kitties.
Sending love across the world.
Sunday blessings,

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Saturday Seaside

Although the beach is just a few minutes away from me, I don't go there very often for this very reason.
Garbage, single-use plastics. plastic pollution ... left behind by lazy people who can't make use of the many trashcans found along the corniche.
Today I even found several diapers.
I'm sure the half-full iced coffees were strategically placed for a nice photoshoot and unfortunately that's where they stayed.
It makes me very angry.
Someone left all their toys behind, thankfully far from the shore, so I gathered them all together and left them there.  But the underwear went in the trash.
It's very easy to find empty shopping bags floating around so today I was able to fill two.
I will never understand why people want to enjoy the sea, but are not respectful of all it has to offer.
 The good news is that every time I put myself out there, I do have some really lovely encounters.
Like today when I said hello to the lady feeding the fish.  We chatted for a little bit and I found out she is an art teacher, so now we follow each other on Instagram.  She thanked me several times for cleaning up the beach.
I also said good morning to the lady who showed up with a big bag of food to feed the seaside kitties.
This guy seemed a little sad.  Poor baby.
And this one wanted all the attention.
 So despite the garbage, I'm glad I went.
Really love all the cool formations in the rocky shore.
Happy Saturday!

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Flowers for You

I only have to walk a few blocks to find a variety of gorgeous flowers thanks to neighbors that garden.
I saw a dragonfly, moth and two types of butterflies but none of them would sit still for very long.
Bees might be busy but they are much easier to capture because they have a one track mind.
A little ways up the road and there's a lovely row of sunflowers that continue to bloom with each passing day.
They are certainly a bright spot along the way.
I took the pedestrian bridge up and over the highway so I could do some grocery shopping and get in a little walking.
Left a little heart behind;
and then found a heart-shaped rock on the other side.
Happy Mother's Day and Sunday blessings!
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