Oh the kitties we'll see - Albania
Updated: Jan 12
Cat lover's view when traveling
I figured the further east we traveled the more cats we will see. On our arrival to the carnival that is Tirana, there were lots of things competing for your attention. Even hungry kitties.
On our first evening out we went out for gyros and I felt a rub against my leg. Looking down I see Puss n' Boots in real life. Those large round eyes melted my heart instantly. When I had my own cat I would call that "penny" eyes. I immediately gave him some meat and some pets and so did Eric. We are total suckers.
Puss n' boots cat is pictured above and in the first picture below. In the second photo, is Eric bolder and succumbing to the cat magic giving a pet to a little pregnant momma. She was completely uninterested.
Art and the kitty
Cats are all over the internet and muses for artistic inspirations. In Albania, I've come across some great ones but I especially like graffiti or muralist art. Some say sex sells well ... cats do too.
In my first picture, a silhouette of a cat walking. The cat stencil could almost be missed but is subtly charming. Funnily enough this cat silhouette I've seen several other times in other cities since. It makes me think of all the things I missed before because I didn't pay attention to the details.
In my second picture while traveling to the archaeological site in Durres I passed this wall. Seemingly uninteresting as a whole but it was the small scrawl to the right above "MJAU" and "EL GATO" that made me laugh. Yeah, I guess the irregular shape could look like a cat. Turns out that a few moments later I did see one while taking a picture for my sister.
The third picture was walking around the city of Durres on the coast and seeing this mural. I loved the white cat to the left sitting with the children. I like the play of a mural of a doorway scene on a door. Why don't we have more fun with our doorways in the US?
Animal Welfare in Albania
In Albania and especially Tirana from what I could see the cats needed help. When I read about the services to assist I was disappointed to learn about some mistreatment of stray animals and the absence of enforcement of laws protecting against animal cruelty. They do have some volunteer agencies seeking to correct this injustice and provide refuge for them.
Animal Rescue Albania - https://www.instagram.com/arsalbania/?hl=en
Saranda, an idyllic beachside destination
On a few occasions, we did come across some cute fluffy babies. Below is a video of me interacting with a hungry and adorable tuxedo cat. He cried for food and then gave both Eric and me love through leg rubs. We gave him some "mish", Albanian for meat, and some loving pets.
If you are visiting this beautiful place you can learn more about how they are helping and how you can help the stray population.
My personal goal with each cat is to teach Eric to truly learn to read cat signals and appreciate the wonder that is the feline species. This will prepare him for his true mission to become a cat daddy, (the only way I will settle down in one location).
About the author:
Christy is an artist/creative spirit & blogger/podcaster with a passion for many things especially the arts, nature, and weird things around the world.