The bond between us and our non-human friends

Waking up in the morning to the sound of a ‘meow’, to a wet nose, to a lick on your face or hand or to any kind of greeting from your non-human friend can be an amazing way to start the day. The relationship between a person and his or her furry friend goes both ways, it is a relationship of mutual benefit and equal bonding. If you ask me, I also consider that human and non-human animals have equal rights on Earth and should be regarded as having an equal status and the same importance as a human being. Nowadays, domesticated non-human animals rely on their human friends for food, water, shelter and welfare. On the other side, people also gain a wide range of benefits from their companion animals, such as lowering blood pressure, alleviating the overpowering feeling of loneliness, reducing stress, raising blood oxytocin levels and sometimes, even reducing direct physical pain.

How far does the connection between people and their furry companions go? To start with, we know for sure that dogs were domesticated twice, once in Europe, about 16 000 years ago and once in Asia, 14 000 years ago, from two distinct wolf lineages. The purpose of domesticating dogs was for hunting and protection purposes. Another interesting fact that showcases the connection between dogs, cats and humans is that as far back as 12 000 years ago, human and non-human animals were burried together. Approximately 8000 years ago, when humans transitioned from nomadic hunters to settled farmers in the Fertile Crescent of the Middle East, cats became increasingly useful for dealing with rodents and other troublesome pests.

In ancient Greece, dogs were believed to ward off or prevent death and in many cases they were kept around temples and used as co-therapists because of their perceived ability to cure sickness. Pet ownership might go as far back as ancient Egypt, where pharaos were depicted in murals together with their animal companions. Scientific research does not show with certainty when non-human animals started to be kept as pets and became our closest friends and companions.

The truth of the matter is, that non-human animals have always played a significant role in our lives and archaeological findings are proof of that. These days, our furry friends might live in our houses, at farms or gardens, but regardless of their contribution to our society, they mean us no harm and they surround us with love. Thus, we owe them protection and respect.

The most foreward regions of the world to come up with animal protection laws, were Ireland in 1635, that sought to regulate the treatment of sheep, and Massachusetts Bay Colony, which regulated against cruelty towards domestic animals. In 1992, Switzerland becomes the first country that includes the protection of animals in its constitution. Five years later, in 1997, the European Union adds to the European Community Treaty an appendix on the Protocol of Animal Protection. The international law for the treatment and rights of animals has evolved considerably, and even though it varies from country to country, non-human animals have started to be protected against cruel lab experiments, cosmetic testing, direct physical violence, the sale and manufacturing of fur, depriving animals of freedom for shows and touristic purposes, caging and breeding animals, etc. The reality that each and every one of us should acknowledge is that non-human beings are sentient beings that deserve to live amongst us as equal beings, protected and loved.

Now, let’s direct our attention to Romania and to the defective system of animal protection. First of all, the laws are only valid for and refer to abandoned and stray DOGS, without any of mention of other stray animals. Secondly, up until this year, there was no specific authority for the protection of our companions, cases of cruelty and mistreatment of animals being directed to the local police force. Needless to say, fining or punishing the psychopaths or the careless individuals that hurt animals in any way whatsoever, is not a priority or never happens at all. Apparently, a separate Animal Police Force has been officialy established, but until we can rely on them,we should all do our best for the animals on the street and for all the animals that we come in contact with. I mean, how can two veterinarians in the police force manage all cases of animal cruelty and mistreatment in one entire county? That’s if they have the intention of doing their job at all. Meanwhile, stay strong animal lovers! For the others, let’s solve the problem of stray dogs and cats, neuter our furry friends, cooperate with legit NGOs (do your research beforehand), work with fellow animal lovers, be kind to animals and help those in need find a forever home. If you can’t or won’t do any of the above, at least don’t do any harm to non-human animals, who have been our companions for millenia.

Respect and love animals, save animals and in order to decrease the number of stray animals, neuter, neuter, neuter!

The art of loneliness

The immaculate, white wall of the sanatorium,

the fleas, the bugs, the absence of rugs,

the lack of sounds,

or the rat-a-tat-tat,

constantly penetrating

the enclosure of the lonely,

the peace of the one and only.

In the garden of solitude,

Where her and his only companions

are fleeting thoughts and sentient beings,

Loneliness becomes an art

and the vacant space

enough to fill the heart.

Is she lonely?

Is he alone?

They might be,

but vibrate in silence.

Hush…

For it is the art of loneliness!

Ashes, ashes…

Note to self: The more I age, the more I feel lost and unequipped to live in the world. When I was a kid I ran around and chased after butterflies. I used to be idealistic and I think that is what was exceptionally beautiful about myself and about the imaginary world in which I have lived for a considerable period of time.

The universe that I have been inhabiting for the past 5 years has completely vanished: a strong relationship, that in my mind was a future marriage, a possible career start, a country of my choice for settling down. All of a sudden, I found myself without a relationship, in a country I wanted to escape from and with no career. Where am I now? In my home country, Romania, a place I keep coming back to as a refuge, but maybe I should start considering it as part of the solution and as a possible key to moving on. I am lonely and alone because my spirit has been murdered. My inner child has forgotten how to feel happiness, enthusiasm, bursts of energy and passion. I feel vulnerable, dependent, immature, malfunctioning, unequiped to live in a world of adults, in a society that demands only reasonable acts and logical, smart decisions….In the past, I made choices by following my heart and I was deceived. I chose to bounce from domain to domain in my career and from study to study. It was a rewarding and an intellectually challenging experience, but one that delayed or entirely interfered with the evolution of my career. And while I pour my heart out as in a personal diary, I am trying to take a baby step to heal, because I am hurt.

I am 30 years old and up until this moment I felt like I have nothing, no job, no career, no relationship, no material possessions, no clue about my future path. I am still a child who doesn’t know, where and when, her most valuable posession, her spirit, has been lost…and more importantly I don’t know how to listen to myself, how to recover from the pile of ashes I have become.

As the nursery song ‘Ring around the rosie’ might actually come from the terrible period of the Black Death in London in 1665, I also feel like me and all my possible selves, might all fall down. Apparently, this soft-sounding nursery song should calm babies and put them to sleep. On the surface, I have a shred of hope or belief that I might fall asleep peacefully when listening to ‘Ring around the rosie’, but deep down, the dark undertones of the song comfort my extinguished soul…I see myself in the ashes, in the darkness, in the fog, reaching out for other miserable souls…misery loves company, after all.

Down on Earth

Down on Lonely Avenue

I tripped

On a hell of a shell

And I fell

Me, an urban hippie

My floral gown, ripped…

Down in the void

A misfit, a rugged bearded man

Escaping, condemning society, materialism

Created his den

An onion, maybe ten

Layers and layers of Zen

Down on Lonely Avenue

My bloody knees

I lost my keys!

I might even have a kidney disease

Please… freeze, or maybe sneeze

To be accident-prone used to be fun

Like a pun

Now, it’s just a bull run.

Down in the void

I try to hold my own

Away from it all

At times, a Buddha in my soul

Seldom, as mad as Sigmund Freud

It’s quiet and free

under this Banyan tree

It’s lonely

only me and the green tea.

Down on Lonely Avenue

I crawl on concrete

I almost lost my wit

Everyone’s laughing at my outfit

My pain, my care

I wanted to transmit

Yet… the masses only perceive

that my cardigan is vintage and double- knit

Down in the void

The retired fellow

On a pension scheme

Of one and a half marshmallow

Banished himself and his cello

to this world of mellow

down bellow.

He renounced the sun

and all of its yellow.

Down on Lonely Avenue

The cruel with all their expensive fuel

Invaded the street

Their feet clad in meat

They bargain and tweet

I admit my defeat

Descend in the void

Oh, wonder!

Who is this other humanoid?

Creepy dolls, interesting exhibition

Curiosity has been defined as ‘ a desire to know, to see or to experience, that motivates exploratory behaviour directed towards the acquisition of new information’. Curiosity is something that we all experience at a moment or another in our lives and we perceive it as something absolutely normal. Curiosity drives us to explore, to learn and ultimately to improve ourselves. However, when a curiosity for morbid, scary, obscure and creepy objects, events, places or experiences arises things start to become more interesting. I remember that, since childhood I was drawn to abandoned places that had an aura of mystery. I used to enjoy late nights in the countryside, in complete darkness, near hills and forests filled with the shrill sounds of wolves howling and intense stories of ghosts, werewolves, witches, mysterious happenings, devil possessions, the evil eye and so on. There was this dual feeling of fear and fascination that fed the desire to gather every night and continue our horror genre storytelling. The attraction for the obscure and gruesome spills into teenagehood and both novels and movies of the horror genre light our imagination .We tremble at the idea of seeing somehting so horrendous that we might freeze, we vibrate and the suspense almost silences us when the soundtrack of horror movies increases our inner tension. Due to my vivid imagination and my most creative nightmares I am not able to watch horror movies any longer. Yet, I am still drawn to dark places where murders or unspeakable acts of horror or strange events happened. Dark tourism with its allura of history and mystery fascinates me. Add to that all the coverage in the media about school shootings, serial killers, abductions, paranormal phenomena, unknown and too well-known acts of violence. I wonder what sparks our curiosity, our morbid curiosity? Is it an attraction or a fascination for the ghastly acts that we see, for the dark side that might be in lockdown inside all of us? Are we captivated by the idea of ‘the other’, the monster that can commit appaling acts? Or are we charmed by the idea that we all have our inner monsters deep down and that something could trigger a fundamental change in us? The unknown, the unexplored, the creepy,  the macabre lurking in the shadows of our souls. Maybe the darkness inside projects itself onto the world and seeks to connect to display its true nature.

Creepy dolls is a topic that provokes me and stimulates my morbid curiosity. The Gremlins, the famous murderous doll Chucky,  the eerie ventriloquist doll from Goosebumps and other maniacal puppets in movies and novels are absolutely delightful and my lure for them will be eternal. I wonder what is it about creepy dolls that makes them so beguiling? Maybe it is the duality between the humaneness of a doll, its kind and cute aesthetics, its playfulness on one side, and the evil look in its eyes, a misshaped smile, faded paint, broken or lost members, on the other side that makes a doll both creepy and alluring. I have had this intense desire to visit and explore ‘La Isla de las Munecas’ near Mexico City for a long time now. It is a sinister island where creepy dolls greet you at each step. Due to circumstances I haven’t made my way there yet, but I stumbled upon the next best thing, a fairly large exhibition of creepy dolls in Shanghai.  I was awestruck when walking through this land of creepiness and I wanted to share it with everyone! Stay curious! Delve deep into your morbid curiosity!

WeChat Image_20200525205243

WeChat Image_20200525205303

WeChat Image_20200525205311

WeChat Image_20200525205334

WeChat Image_20200525205342

WeChat Image_20200525205357

WeChat Image_20200525205404

WeChat Image_20200525205423

WeChat Image_20200525205430

WeChat Image_20200525205440

WeChat Image_20200525205446

WeChat Image_20200525205453

Love Metamorphosis

 

Love,

Simple,

Peaceful and fulfilling

For some, for most.

Love,

Multiple personality disorder

Or possibly,

Borderline personality disorder

For me.

 

A voice that speaks sublime,

That chants his name to the sky

But suddenly, a makeover!

The lucky clover turns to ash

And belladonna comes to crush

Fragile, the soul exposed

You flush!

Fragile, naked to the eye,

Your essence unveiled

Free and available

To users and abusers.

The skin, so soft, translucent

Trembles under his fingertips

And then it cracks.

You blush!

Passion is a rush

Take the stash

Of distorted voices, of conflicting emotions

And make a run for it

Never to come back!

Of women and doppelgängers

Woman

angelic, but

daring. Complex and

pragmatic. Clever and dreamy.

A being, to respect and whorship

never static, a manufacturer of zeal

Yet, subdued, forgotten, broken, hurt!

Your fiery nature extinguished

by a culture of scarcity

by expectations

by: I ought to

I should, I have to

I need to, I must, I could,

by: You had better, You might want to

check your sanity, lose a little weight, become a mother

be more curvy, have a girl, then a boy, a hybrid if need be

cook like a chef, fuck like a pornstar, have a perfect family

become famous, look incredible, have the ideal job

hike and give speeches, be sexy and assertive

hit the gym 24/7, clean the house, do yoga

be diplomatic and sensitive, get a boob job

volunteer, write a book, get fuller lips

be self-confident, be a natural

but be perfect, bitch!

don’t try too hard, though

be yourself

forge dopplegangers.

You’re never enough

and you can never be

in this society!

A storm’s charm

storm-windmills

Through the storm in our hearts

Through the veil in our minds

Through the blindness in our eyes

A body of storm cries.

Fearful, yet fascinated

Isolated, yet captivated

Contemplating,

Pulsating

With the rage, awaited.

 

 

Through the blinding, scathing winds

Through the loud and gusty grinds

Through the startling, instant thunders

A soul, tormented

Becomes contented.

See the lightnings penetrating

The world, outside!

Safe and sound in the shelter

Inside, a wise elder

Is and flees from, concurrently

A thunderstorm.

 

My online fundraising campaign to fight COVID 19

Hello everyone, I haven’t posted anything in a while because I have been quite preocuppied with the spread of COVID 19 throughout Europe.

Is has reached my home country, Romania, and we were not prepared and we are still not prepared. The biggest danger is that the much needed protective equipment for doctors and nurses does not exist and our front line in this battle, the medical staff, are completely exposed to the virus.

I have no idea what the authorities are doing or what other associations, foundations, NGOs are doing, because, in my home city most hospitals still lack the equipment recquired when working in a contaminated environment.

Thus, I have decided to start an online fundraising campaign to buy goggles, surgical masks, N95 masks and protective overall suits. Check out my campaign here: https://gogetfunding.com/covid-19-help-for-medical-staff/

And if possible donate as much as you can and want! Thank you in advance!

Moments like these

A_History_of_Regret-819x1024

 

There are mornings when the sky is crystal clear, when you open the windows at dawn and you can hear the birds chirping pleasantly. You welcome the first rays of the sun and they delicately caress your face. In moments like those you can feel the peace that floats around you, you can sense that there is purity and gentility inside of a human being, similar to the soft vibrations of nature and its freshness. A cup of coffee, the humid fragrance of last night’s summer storm, the crumbling, yellow pages of a rare, vintage book, your favourite crimson-velvet armchair and all those little things erase the unsolvable complexity of life, and the gigantic questions that can permanently trouble a forever-seeking mind. However, when darkness comes and settles inside the human mind, tension fills the environment, homes, cafes, parks, hearts and entire lives. This overwhelming darkness attempts to let anxiety and fear sneak inside your bones. The serenity of nature that stemmed from your spirit is overtaken by obscurity. In moments like these, the obscurity reveals the rotten and scattered pieces of ego and insecurity that lurk in the tiniest of cells. Darkness seeks to break you. In moments like these, you ponder at everything that led you to where you are right now and you question every choice you have ever made. And sometimes, the voices you hear and the answers you receive are terrifying. They are a proof and a constant reminder that you are failing yourself because you have walked down mistaken paths. More often than not, the whispers that torment you are the fragmented, secret voices of your consciousness that seek to blame you or provide an answer. Either way, the voices are never satisfying enough and regrets appear.

Regrets of things done, of paths taken, of choices made or just the opposite, the bitter, burning taste of ashes in your mouth, the reminder of everything wished and never achieved…glimpses of what could have been, would have been rotate behind closed eyelids. In moments like these, dreams of repressed desires become nightmares and welcome mornings and awakenings with tears and sadness. How do you know you are living the life you are supposed to be living? You often feel trapped in a never-ending routine, an endless cycle of predictable bullshit…eat, sleep, repeat. In moments like these existence seems dull, useless and it keeps spinning inside the same, grim wheel of destiny. The hell of never-ending routine, of isolation, of spontaneity gone awol, of joys and fantastic realms smothered, of unfulfilled purposes and of ardent wishes and desired love lies abandoned at the bottom of the sea. What hurts the most is that regrets or the dire situation of purely surviving and not rejoicing at life’s endless possibilities are entirely of your own doing. You are the only person who is responsible for where you are right now. And sometimes, you just have to take a stance and choose between the roads less travelled by and the beaten track. And yet, you levitate in the ‘Kingdom of Midway’, you struggle and you walk in-between. You play it safe by taking the road that is not predictable, but that it is not entirely unknown either. You are indecisive about your own life and you wait for the winds of change to steer you into the right direction. Two turns to the left, three turns to the right, moving forward for a bit and after, going backwards.

A life full of spontaneity would be intense and risky, but probably worth it. An entirely rational, planned existence would be safe and comfortable. The classical dilemma: Would you rather live an intense and passionate life that is short or a monotonous, long life? I am and I will always be just a kid that can’t decide which cake to choose.

 

P.S: I always had half of my cake and half of one of my parents’ cake!