Thule as Tile on the Carta Marina of 1539 by Olaus Magnus, where it is shown located to the northwest of the Orkney islands, with a "monster, seen in 1537", a whale ("balena"), and an orca nearby.

Ancient Word of the Day: Thule

Thule or Tile is a legendary island in the North Europe, which was first written about by Ancient Greek Explorer Pytheas of Massalia during his travels between 330-20 BC. Later, a Roman citizen named Strabo wrote about Thule in his treatise named Geographica c. 30 AD. Thule - is the great unknown. The land of…

Captain Seeks a Sea-Going Cat to Sign on for a Trip Around the World, New York Times (1922)

Captain Seeks a Sea-Going Cat to Sign on for a Trip Around the World, New York Times (1922)

Captain Edwin Dyason, master of the freighter Woodfield will welcome any ablebodied seafaring cat wishing to join the crew of his vessel, sailing today for Manila and China. "We missed the ship's cat shortly after we put into port here," said the Captain. "Her name was Cleopatra. She joined on in Fremantle, Australia and did…

Exquisite Japanese paintings of an enchanted forest by Hirō Isono (1945-2013)

10 Quirky Things I Found on the Internet this Week #16

Max Frey's Magical Monsters Max Frey (1874-1944) was a German painter and graphic artist associated with the Symbolism and New Objectivity movements. His work in 1920s and 1930s is particularly inspired by Magic realism. Five of the world's weirdest wild dogs I discovered a nice blog run by a pet shop and pet supplies business…

Hold the shell of your consciousness to your ear

Wherever you are, whatever stresses you are feeling, just remember the free and beautiful moments and memories from your world, relish and collect them and hold them close to you. They will sustain your heart when it feels fragile and sustain your soul when you are riven with fear. You have oceans of love inside…

Book Review: Island of Wings by Karin Altenberg https://wp.me/p41CQf-KRb

Six Exciting Frontier Novels Set at the Extreme Edges of Civilisation

Sometimes you want to be right there at the edge of an icy cliff staring death right in the face. But not really, just in your imagination. Here are some poetic, beautifully written and profound adventure and survival stories that will take you to dangerous places, without having to leave your sofa. To the Bright…

Kyoto river boat ride adventure by Content Catnip TV

Kyoto river boat ride adventure by Content Catnip TV

Arashiyama is a charming little town just on the outskirts of Kyoto that features a lot of highly regarded UNESCO Heritage sites such as the Kinkaku-Ji temple. Although we found that surprisingly the most enjoyable activity was simply floating along the river in an old wooden boat and being guided by two funny guys, along…

Mushrooming in New Zealand: a cautionary tale

Mushrooming in New Zealand: a cautionary tale

This evening we went walking on Mount Kaukau and found some mushrooms. Although in New Zealand there isn't much of a mushrooming culture here compared to Europe. In the past, foreigners have died as a result of poisonous mushrooms in NZ. So many local people just leave mushrooms well alone here, scared away by times…

Book Review: She Rises by Kate Worsley

Book Review: She Rises by Kate Worsley

*Contains no spoilers. She Rises is an erotic, sea-faring adventure by debut novelist Kate Worsley. Under the tutelage of mentor and maven of the historical novel Sarah Waters, Kate Worsley has created a beautifully sculpted jewel of a novel set in an Essex fishing village in 1740. A word to the wise, the book is…

Travel: Weird subway ads in Japan

Travel: Weird subway ads in Japan

On a recent trip to Japan I took mountains of footage.  Advertising is totally out of this world and so I created this homage to Japanese ads, on trains, JR stations, the streets and so on. I created these gifs with colour distortion to properly convey the feelings you have in situ. Initially,  after a…

David Bowie’s Top 100 Favourite Books http://wp.me/p41CQf-3R

Starman, Bowie and the symbolism of SpaceX’s new world

Bowie needs no introduction in his ability to induce wonder, awe and beauty in anyone he touches. And now even after death, his legacy lives on in the form of a mannequin Star Man set to take a silence-filled orbit around our dark solar system and towards its final destination of Mars. The poetry and…

Travel: Maori waka ama (racing war canoe) on Auckland Harbour

Waka Ama is a sport akin to outrigger canoe racing or group rowing. It's based on traditional modes of Polynesian sea travel which relied upon celestial navigation. Since the 80s and 90s high-tech canoes of Hawaiian or Polynesian design have become hugely popular as a sport among Māori, often performed as part of cultural festivals held…

An excellent MTB adventure in Huka Falls, Taupo

An excellent MTB adventure in Huka Falls, Taupo

This 17 km track located close by to the town of Taupo is a scenic loop crossing Huka Falls initially then continuing north along the Waikato river. There are some great panoramic lookout points along the way which feature the powerful Waikato river, bright green belts of forest and tracts of farmland. From atop high…

On embracing restlessness

One of the dumbest things you can do is sit in one space and let the world pass you by. — Bob Propst, inventor of the office cubicle. It's important to not be boxed in, for all its literal and metaphorical senses. We need to be careful that we aren't going to work in a…

Five Creepy Islands in Sydney Harbour http://wp.me/p41CQf-97

Five Creepy Islands in Sydney Harbour

Sydney has some nefarious and idiosyncratic history. Nowadays it's presented with a shiny, modern patina of progress. Although little more than a century ago the story was less chirpy and cheerful and more like a bad episode of Survivor. 1. Cockatoo Island This island has a somewhat grim intriguing history, matched by its demeanor –…