All posts by Paul Cipywnyk

Maiden in North Vancouver

Oh my gosh, so cool! We ran across Maiden on our visit to Vancouver’s north shore today.

All woman-crewed around-the-world sailing race competitor in 1990. I had not been aware of this!

They faced so many doubters and obstacles, and prevailed. And now she continues as a beacon for educating disadvantaged girls around the world.


Wonderful to see a flotilla of First Nations canoes welcoming, honoring, and visiting. I hope I’m not intruding when I say FNs in general, and FN women in particular, deserve such support and recognition.

Maiden north Vancouver

New Kitty Still Hiding, But Play Brings Her Out

When new kitty is still hiding, it’s time to go fishing 

After half an hour of play, dunno who is more tired, me or her, but I know damn well she’ll be raring to go again soon!

new kitten sora at play
Got a bite!

Mmm, yummy fake feathers. . . ?

Good way to get her on the cat tree — she still hasn’t been bold enough to try it on her own. Now she knows where it is, and is eyeing it appreciatively though it’s still too exposed for her comfort.

Look out, Yumi’s heron is going to get you!

Welcoming New Kitty Into Family

We picked up Binky, a fixed 10-month-old female from the Vancouver SPCA today. We fell in love with her on a visit yesterday.

She’s a lovely grey, and we’re still debating what to call her. One option was Goma-chan, goma being Japanese for sesame, since her fur has that grey-blue sheen of ground black sesame seeds.

Another possibility is Sora-chan, or Sky.

“Chan” in both cases is a diminutive used in Japanese for children and close family, usually by seniors to juniors.

We’re leaning toward Sora-chan as it sounds softer.

Anyway, poor Binky/Goma/Sora is still freaked out after about six hours at our place. We were warned she was very shy, and while she was friendly and accepting to us in the shelter yesterday, I guess the trip and new surroundings frightened her.

Sounds like she’s had a trying life, passing through several SPCA shelters across BC before we scooped her.

We’re letting her be, not trying to pursue her or pick her up, and just letting her get used to us, and our home.

To give her time and space to acclimatize, we initially left her in the downstairs bathroom where her litter is, and even in there she kept trying to hide whenever we’d gently check on her, even disappearing into the washing machine. Yikes!

Eventually she made it upstairs on her own, and poked her head into the living room, saw us, and slunk off into the kitchen where she squeezed in between a buffet and a corner wall for an hour or two.

Now she’s hiding under my computer desk in my office, and I’m quietly talking to her as I write this post.

We know she’ll come around, but are admittedly a bit taken aback at how frightened she got.

Take your time Sora-chan. We know you’ll warm up and become a welcome addition to the family.

NOTE: I’ve been careful to take these photos as non-threateningly as possible, and closeups are with a telephoto.

sora cat home from spca
Can’t see me!

Where are you? Oh!

Look at this beauty. . .

Made it up the stairs and into the kitchen on her own steam, but slunk off behind a buffet as soon as she saw that we saw her.

Didn’t want to come out, but enjoyed chin scratches back there, with no meowing, or hissing. There was even a bit of purring.

This is a big step for us, we mourned the passing of our dear Choco nearly six months ago for a long time. But we’re elated to have a new kitty in the house, and look forward to years of burgeoning love and affection.