‘Winters Tale’ by Valeriy Maleev.

Winter’s Tale by Valeriy Maleev (Russia)
Maleev spotted this Pallas’s cat while it was hunting in the Mongolian grasslands.
It was bitterly cold day but the fairytale scene cancelled out the cold.
Pallas’s cats are no bigger than a domestic cat and they stalk small rodents, birds and occasionally insects
Image Credit: Photograph: Valeriy Maleev/2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Source: Wildlife photographer of the year: Lumix people’s choice shortlist 2019 – in pictures | Environment | The Guardian

Otherworldly photo – of an Arctic city.

People in Norilsk, Russia go ice swimming even on days when the air feels like -40C – warming up in spots heated with steam from the power plant.
Norilsk is located above the Arctic Circle, east of the Yenisei River and south of the western Taymyr Peninsula. It has a permanent population of 175,000. With temporary inhabitants included, its population reaches 220,000. It is the world’s northernmost city and the second-largest city (after Murmansk) inside the Arctic Circle. Norilsk and Yakutsk are the only large cities in the continuous permafrost zone.
Norilsk was largely built by the forced labor of the Soviet-era Gulag system. The nickel deposits of Norilsk-Talnakh are the largest-known nickel-copperpalladium deposits in the world. The smelting of the nickel ore is directly responsible for severe pollution, which generally comes in the form of acid rain and smog.
Image Credit: Photograph by Elena Chernyshova
Source: BBC – Culture – Norilsk: Otherworldly photos of an Arctic city

Sputnik 1, launched on 4 October. 1957.

Sputnik 1 was the first artificial Earth satellite.
The Soviet Union launched it into an elliptical low Earth orbit on 4 October 1957, orbiting for three weeks before its batteries died, then silently for two more months before falling back into the atmosphere.
It was a 58 cm (23 in) diameter polished metal sphere, with four external radio antennas to broadcast radio pulses.
Its radio signal was easily detectable even by radio amateurs, and the 65° inclination and duration of its orbit made its flight path cover virtually the entire inhabited Earth.
The satellite’s unanticipated success precipitated the American Sputnik crisis and triggered the Space Race, a part of the Cold War.
The launch was the beginning of a new era of political, military, technological, and scientific developments. Tracking and studying Sputnik 1 from Earth provided scientists with valuable information.
The density of the upper atmosphere could be deduced from its drag on the orbit, and the propagation of its radio signals gave data about the ionosphere.
Sputnik 1 was launched during the International Geophysical Year from Site No.1/5, at the 5th Tyuratam range, in Kazakh SSR (now known as the Baikonur Cosmodrome).
The satellite travelled at about 29,000 kilometres per hour (18,000 mph; 8,100 m/s), taking 96.2 minutes to complete each orbit.
It transmitted on 20.005 and 40.002 MHz, which were monitored by radio operators throughout the world. The signals continued for 21 days until the transmitter batteries ran out on 26 October 1957. Sputnik burned up on 4 January 1958 while reentering Earth’s atmosphere, after three months, 1440 completed orbits of the Earth, and a distance travelled of about 70 million km.
Source: Sputnik 1 – Wikipedia

The Neotype, a Soviet copy of the Linotype.

If Neotype is what I think (a Soviet copy of Linotype / Intertype), then it’s still pretty popular in former Eastern Bloc countries.
The Book Art Museum in Poland has one (model N114 if I remember correctly) and an operating manual as well.
They were made in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg).
Peter the Great, who established the city, originally named it Sankt-Peterburg.
On 1 September 1914, after the outbreak of World War I, the Imperial government renamed the city Petrograd meaning “Peter’s city”, in order to expunge the German words Sankt and Burg.
On 26 January 1924, shortly after the death of Vladimir Lenin, it was renamed to Leningrad meaning “Lenin’s City”.
On 6 September 1991, the original name, Sankt-Peterburg, was returned.
Today, in English the city is known as “Saint Petersburg”.
The factory also made lead and rule casters and headliners, and possibly type casters for old-school founders’ mats.
There was even some work to copy the Monotype system, but the precision required to make the casting machine/mould was so high that the Russians couldn’t do it.
Rumour has it that they managed to make a keyboard (typesetting machine), but I’ve yet to know the details.

Source: Jim King R.I.P. – Photo Memorial – Help Needed

‘You looking at Me?’

A sphynx cat perches on its owner at the Grand Prix Royal Canin international cat show.
The Sphynx cat is a breed of cat known for its lack of coat (fur). The Sphynx was developed through selective breeding, starting in the 1960s.
The skin should have the texture of chamois, as it has fine hairs. Whiskers may be present, either whole or broken, or may be totally absent.
Their skin is the colour that their fur would be, and all the usual cat markings (solid, point, van, tabby, tortie, etc.) may be found on Sphynx skin. Because they have no coat, they lose more body heat than coated cats. This makes them warm to the touch as well as heat-seeking. – Wikipedia.
Image Credit: Photograph by Sergei Savostyanov/TASS
via Cats on show and Melbourne protesters: Monday’s top photos | News | The Guardian

The Cave City of Crimea.


Photos: Dementievsky Ivan
Eski Kermen is a medieval town located just 6 km from Mangupa, in the Bakhchisaray region in Crimea.
The town is located atop one of the flat-topped mountains called mesa, which are normal for this part of Crimea, and is famous for its more than 300 caves.
The caves were built in the 6th century and was used for human habitation because of the safety they provided and the shelter that they offered from the elements.
Over the centuries the dwellings grew and housed several hundreds of people at one time.
eski-kermen-7[2]Religious life was important to these people who had a few temples and churches built in the caves.
One of the churches still has frescoes that depict Christ and Mary, although the frescoes are beginning to show the wear of the elements.
The “cave city” was inhabited until the arrival of the Mongols in the 13th century.
Due to the mountainous terrain, the town is difficult to reach and was therefore one of the last to succumb to the Mongol onslaught.
After the caves were abandoned by the residents, for a brief period, the neighboring villagers began to use the caves for commercial purposes.
Today, the caves of Eski Kermen makes for a great day-trip and for hikes.
See more via Eski Kerman, An Ancient Cave City in Crimea | Amusing Planet.