ms cat nail bar

By Ms. Cat

For my fiftieth birthday, my eldest niece, Nadia, got me a voucher for a nail spa and so I went for a pedicure this morning. It was a very expensive pedicure (RM75) but seemed no different from the sort I usually have at the salon down the street. (Note to self: If a salon is called Posh!, you can expect high prices for nothing more than ambience, speaking of which, the piped music was embarrassing and included a tinkly version of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.)

I also had the ‘callus heel treatment’, which cost RM70, but I’m not sure I noticed where the pedicure ended and where this treatment began, especially as the former included the ‘removal of calluses’. I must say my heels look and feel smoother than they’ve done in a long time. I’m pleasantly surprised as nothing can usually be done with the cracked and hard skin on the soles of my feet. Perhaps I was paying RM70 for magic!

I usually choose scarlett for my toe nails, but the last time I had a pedicure I picked a dark coral shade. You can see what I opted for this time. The colour is beautiful but, as always, my toes look like slug corpses.

While I was having my hour as a lady of leisure I received a text from the kids saying that my bedroom door had ‘locked itself’ and there was no key to be found. I shall have to call a locksmith tomorrow, but in the meantime, I’ve got one of the condo’s maintenance staff to remove the lock and door knobs and so now the door has to be held closed with a stool. I just thought I’d add that to this post as confirmation that a mother’s day always ends up equal parts bitter, sour and sweet.

Kinda Blue


From Water Rolls, Water Rises, a picture book published by Lee & Low Books, written by Pat Mora and illustrated by Meilo So.

Let’s Stay in Bed

sleepy head by matt blease
‘Sleepy Head’ by Matt Blease (http://mattblease.tumblr.com)

Let’s stay in bed, my body says.

Let’s stay in bed, my head sighs.

Let’s stay in bed, my heart beats weakly.

Let’s stay in bed, say my unseeing eyes.

I am all tangled up in the bedclothes of life.

When is laundry day?

In Which I Come to a Screeching Halt

Debbie George. Lion Jug and Dandelions
‘Lion Jug and Dandelions’ by Debbie George

I am posting this picture because it’s a happy picture: look at the lion’s smiling face; look at the determinedly bright yellow of the dandelions.

I am not happy. Things are not going well. Nothing is certain, although you could argue that nothing ever is. Still, it’s one thing to not know where one is going, but be, nevertheless, on one’s way. and quite another to feel that one has come to a sudden halt, with no prospect of starting moving again. For the first time in a long while, I am not on my way and I am wondering if I ever was. Have I been fooling myself?

I don’t want to speculate on what has been and what might be. Stress does dreadful things to people. It makes them say the silliest, most irrational and rather unkind things. Don’t think about it. Don’t analyse. I will distract myself with happy pictures and the Moomins.

Tove Jansson’s series of books is being discussed by a Facebook group I belong to and I am supposed to lead the discussion on two of them: The Exploits of Moominpappa and Moominpappa at Sea. I thought I liked them the least of the books, but I’m enjoying my current re-read of Exploits. I shall post a review when I’m done. In the meantime, isn’t Edward the Booble the most fabulous name for a ferocious sea serpent?

Edward the Booble from ‘The Exploits of Moominpappa’, story and illustrations by Tove Jansson.




An Erotic Dream World

Visage Leonor Fini


Leonor Fini, who has died in Paris, age eighty-seven could

Justifiably be called the last to go up to a surrealist heaven

Born in Buenos Aires of Italian and Slav parentage

She was brought up in Trieste

In the circle of James Joyce and Rainer Maria Rilke




She moved to Paris in 1931 and quickly was received enthusiastically

Some say that it had more to do with her improper sense of dress than her talent or her diligence

She joined the cafe meetings of

Breton and Cartier-Bresson, Max Ernst, Paul Eluard, Georges Bataille

Their misogyny really irritated her

But she wasn’t one to let it cramp her style




At the outbreak of war, Leonor moved to Monte Carlo

And fell in love with a count who was in the service of the Fascists

She persuaded him to leave and later on she fell in love again

The three of them set up house and lived forty years as friends

leonor fini 10

They say that she created an erotic dream world

Where women are disguised as the sphinx

The image of the female self

Subverting the male’s dialogue with his dick

Leonor (one more time!)

Leonor (go, girl!)


Superb food, prepared by her constant companion, chef and secretary Rafael Martinez

Would be served, also shared with her eighteen exotic cats

All encouraged to roam and help themselves

Woe betide the visitor who tried to intervene

Leonor Fini remained her own person, an independent women of great talent and presence

Until the end.

~ Music & lyrics by Katell Keineg

‘Seven Cats’ by Leonor Fini

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