“Jack, paint me like one of your French girls.”

Sweet Blog serves dozens


1 cat left for a year or two to enlarge

1 epic movie full of ‘beautiful people’

1 ‘diamond of the Sea’ dazzling and bright

1 antique chaise longue

1 ill-fated ship

1 English city


Place cat on chaise longue in a sunny New Zealand conservatory and leave to simmer.

In a separate country – England, place the ill-fated ship and ‘The Diamond of the Sea’ and gently stir in the ‘beautiful people’. Leave to stand in iced water overnight or till soggy.

When volume reduces add the chaise and cat mixing gently until you start to smile.

Devour when ready!

…There came a knock at our door. There stood Para and in his hands, he held a tiny tabby. Did we want it? Well, I didn’t; after all, we had a dog and were planning at some stage to move to England. I just couldn’t make that commitment.

I passed-the-buck, so as not to be the horrible one to say “no!” as I watched all six children fawning over the bundle of fur. I turned to the one person who, when it comes to animals I was sure would say “We don’t want it!”


But this time, for the first time, that person, my husband, said…” If the children want it, we’ll take it”. Go figure! I was speechless. The rest is history.

We lived in the rural town of the kitten’s birth for three years. Here, our now grown up bundle of fur, is lying on my chaise longue in the conservatory, looking like an exotic woman in some famous artist’s oil on canvas.



The Clothed Maja. A painting by the Spanish painter Francisco de Goya between 1800 and 1805. This painting is a clothed version of the earlier La Maja Desnuda (nude)


Or maybe

Reclining Woman 1922 by Béla Czóbel, an Hungarian painter, in Budapest.


Or even

Young Woman Reclining (Le Ballet Espagnol) 1862 complete with cat! by Edouard Manet during his Spanish period.


Or, maybe, just maybe, our kitty-cat identified with Rose, from the movie Titanic.

The Titanic left the docks in Southampton, walking distance from where we live, on 10th April 1912.


Today, interested parties can walk to the many places in the city directly connected with the people that sailed, many of them never to return.

The Titanic Trail is a trial of history, tragedy and survival here in the city. A trail of a gut-wrenching tale of over 540 Southampton lives who sailed that fateful April day, as crew.

It is a tale marred with secrecy and doubt, intrigue and conspiracy. Was it an insurance fraud gone horribly wrong? There are documentaries aplenty that can be seen on YouTube containing thought provoking anomalies with serious evidence to suggest so.

We are in England… without our cat.

Life for our kitty back in NZ has been far from the calamity of factious Rose and more the success of the factual, larger than life, Unsinkable Molly Brown.


Here she is giving Arthur Henry Rostron an award for his service in the rescue of Titanic’s few surviving passengers.

Cats, diamonds, ships and paintings, all very normal, usual things that colour our world. But really, they are so much more. They all speak of history, love, adventure and inspiration that could fill more books than we have libraries to house them…

Therefore, worthy of a place in the history of man.

Let me finish with an oil painting I had commissioned when I was a teenager. My childhood cat Chi Chi.


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