21 Jul 2017

FRIDAY's FAVE FIVE - FIVE ON FRIDAY

1. Our weather up and downs continue and the week started hot ! The only thing I did was driving to a store and buy two garden chairs, as my son had broken one and I the other. They were on special price and really cheap and when I came home Mr. G. asked me why I hadn't taken 3. I told him that there was only one left, so he took his car and off he went and got the last one.

The rest of the day I spent sitting on the new chair and working on my computer.

2.


The next morning I found a squatter in the new chair, fortunately I had left a scarf on the cushion, because Rosie had used it as bed over night and was still asleep when I discovered her.

3. Our gardener had come despite the heat and trimmed the scrubs and hedges, apparently it didn't disturb him at all. Now our garden looks clean again. I was sitting there and didn't move besides my fingers on the keyboard.

4. As each year I wanted to go to Egypt to the Red Sea for two weeks, and two of my friends too. The winter catalogue had come out and Nicole and I decided to make an early booking because we are sure to go. As earlier you book as better are the prices. I had to change my clothes 3 times. In the morning it was very warm. A  light T-Shirt was OK. Then it cooled down for no apparent reason and I had to put on a long sleeved pullover, two hours later when I wanted to join Nicole at the travel agency it was so hot that I had to change again into a summer dress ! That's crazy,
 
We booked our two weeks for the 29th of November were happy about all the reductions we got and went out to celebrate that with a drink in a nearby café.

5. It was my turn to receive our scrabble group.



We could play outside, and had a lot of fun as usual. Cat Arthur was happy to have so many ladies around him, he is very social. And when we had cake with whipped cream, he loved us even more !

I lost, Mireille who just plays here on the picture,  has always to bend over to see better, because she is half blind but she always wins !! She is such a courageous woman that sometimes we forget to help her and guide her, she never complains and tries to make the best out of her situation.





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19 Jul 2017

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY - WEDNESDAY HODGEPODGE







Seen in Killarny (Ireland)

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1. Growing up, were you close to your grandparents? Tell us one or two specific things you remember about them.

I was more than close to my grandparents, I lived with them until the age of 6, when my parents took me back because I had to go to school.  My grandma was and is an example to me, the way she was, we were very close and my grandpa took me in the woods and explained nature to me, and built toys for me. My father never played with me.

2. What's an item you were attached to as a child? What happened to it?

Can't remember anything I was attached to as a child.  Nothing.

3. When you look out your window, do you see the forest or the trees (literally and figuratively)? Explain.

That question makes me laugh. When I look out of my window I see my neighbour's house and her hedge, a weeping willow and the street. But on the other side I used to have views on fields, now there are houses too. Figuratively I see nothing only the truth.

4. Do you like sour candies? Which of the 'sour' foods listed below would you say is your favorite?

grapefruit, Greek yogurt, tart cherries, lemons, limes, sauerkraut, buttermilk, or kumquats

Have you ever eaten a kumquat? What's your favorite dish containing one of the sour foods on the list?

I don't like candies in general. But all the food listed I like, I probably have eaten kumquat, but I don't know exactly. My favourite food would be sauerkraut. 

5. July 1st marked the mid point of 2017. In fifteen words or less, tell us how it's going so far.

So far I can't complain, decent weather, some holidays,  no serious diseases in the family

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I have a decision to take ! Do I join a walker group or not. I am rather lazy just to walk through the world only for walking, but I like walking and take pictures and look around me. This is probably due to my childhood where I had to walk with my parents each Sunday because it was healthy to walk. It was so boring ! Now in Ireland where I had to walk quiet a bit to join the others and not always be the last one, I walked and the next day I felt it in my legs.  I think I will give it a try, apparently the group is so nice according to my friend Nicole who is already member. 







18 Jul 2017

DERRY OR LONDONDERRY

The names of the city and county of Derry or Londonderry in Northern Ireland are still the subject of a naming dispute between Irish nationalists (mostly Catholics) and unionists (mostly protestants). Generally, nationalists favour using the name Derry, and unionists using Londonderry. Legally, the city's name is Derry. But apparently the dispute about the name is still not finished because both names are used. To me it always had been Londonderry as the UK calls it and now I learned something new, but it is still confusing, even Wikipedia is not sure, if you ask for Londonderry, you get "Derry". Read more here




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17 Jul 2017

WEEKEND NEWS AND MEMES

At this time last week I was sitting in the airport in Dublin and waited for my flight. Now I am home and it seems to me that my holidays were 20 years ago !



I took these pictures out of the airplane window and I think nowhere else in the world you can find these charming patchwork landscapes like in Ireland and England.



I had also been in a fairy village, but not for long because we all realized that it was for children.



I am proud of myself, I don't fear horses anymore ! I even petted this one. That's new for me a couple of years ago I wouldn't have approached a horse !

We were invited Saturday afternoon and our friend served us a gooseberry cake, which was delicious and I hadn't eaten gooseberries for years ! Our friend wanted to see a few pictures from Ireland which I did. We had a nice afternoon.

Sunday there was a special event at our Waterloo Lion's battle field (with the Irish accent "bottle field") volunteers carried handicapped people who were unable to walk and climb the 253 steps to the Lion. It was a hard job



but they managed it. Unfortunately I couldn't take any pictures it was too far away from the entrance. I think that was really nice to organize such a thing, the view over the fields is very beautiful.

It was a rather quiet weekend.

For Macro Monday



I have this flower photo which I took in a park in Ireland.



and for Mellow Yellow this nice Irish Pub





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14 Jul 2017

FRIDAY's FAVE FIVE - FIVE ON FRIDAY

I returned from my trip around Ireland on Sunday evening and then I started the week with :

1. Trying to think about all I had seen and in which order because in my head it was a big mess. As there was nothing to do in the household, besides baking a bread which the machine did, and I only had to push on the button, I tried to sort out my photos and gave some phone calls to tell that I am back. 

After lunch I had enough and went to Nicole to tell her about my trip and to get updated of the happenings during my absence.



Of course I told her about my international group which was so nice and the fun we had. We were coming from all corners of the world, Australia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, Thailand and even 6 Europeans including me. Below left in the striped T-Shirt is my room mate from New Zealand.

2. The weather had been quiet nice in Ireland, but back home it rained. I wasn't disorientated at all ! Apparently Ireland is worse than Belgium because at least here it can get into the 30° while there a heat wave starts at 25° !  I worked on my photos and created folders. In the afternoon I went to Ilona and we could sit outside the sun had come out.

3.



When I saw my photos of Belfast I thought how sad it is that even more than 40 years after the "war" between Catholics and Protestants you can still feel the tension. There was a wall full of graffiti which separated the Catholic part from the Protestants. We had gotten a pen to write something on the wall. I thought the Muslim extremist could join them, maybe that would give a balance !

4. Physically I was home and did what I had to do, but mentally I was always busy with my tour !
Ilona was occupied with paperwork, notaries and all what comes up when somebody passed away. In her case her mother and as it often happens when there are more than one heir, disagreements come up although everybody had thought that would never happen. To cheer her up we went for lunch together and had mussels with "French" fries, the Belgian National plate. It was very good.



I told her that on my to do list is written that I want to ride on a horse. I was always afraid of horses and now I am not anymore !

5. Since the 1st of July Belgian started its summer sleep. School holidays for 2 months. And so is the government and most of the companies and it's better not to be ill in this period. Lots of shops are closed and of course I have no aqua gym and no painting course neither !

The only thing which remains is our scrabble ! We put it on Thursdays instead of Mondays during the holiday period.



The sun was shining and we scrabbled our heads were smoking ! We had a coffee break with delicious cakes and then continued ! We had a real nice afternoon. Next week it will be my turn to receive the girls.









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12 Jul 2017

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY - WEDNESDAY HODGEPODGE



Nice place to eat


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1. When was the last time you chatted with a neighbor? About what? (sharing that last bit is optional)

Yesterday, of course they asked me to chat about my tour around Ireland

2. River, lake, ocean, or waterfall...which one are you most like and why?

That's a difficult question I love them all equally, a river because I love to watch the running water, a lake because it's so peaceful, an ocean because you look over it and there is no limit. 

3. July 13 is National Delaware Day. Ever been to Delaware? Delaware is called 'the first state' because it was the first to declare independence from the British. What's your state's nickname and does that moniker make sense to you? If you were in charge, what nickname would you give your home state?

Yes I know where Delaware is, I am not like a certain Mr. Trump whose knowledge in geography is rather limited. Ever since I was in Ireland I would call my city "Bottlefield", as the Irish guide pronounced "Battlefield". And I live on Waterloo's battlefield.

4. What dish did you contribute to the last pot luck meal you attended? Do you have a go-to recipe for pot luck suppers?

Usually I make a pasta salad, everybody likes it and I have different recepe

5. What is your number one tip for a brand new parent?

None, they won't listen anyway

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I have the impression that in my head there is a big mess. 7 days travelling around Ireland and then sort out your pictures, is quite a challenge. Fortunately I had named them, otherwise I would never find out which rock belongs to which place as it was mostly the beautiful landscapes we saw.









11 Jul 2017

MY IRLAND TOUR IMPRESSIONS



My 7 day tour is over and I am back home now. It had been a wonderful trip, also thanks to all people in our group. We didn't know each other before, came from different continents and became almost a family !



Here we are all together. I think the picture was taken in Londonderry but I am not so sure.

We have seen such a lot that it will me take a moment to sort out all the pictures and get my memories together and in order !




Here we are visiting everything to be seen from Derry to Galway and  Killarney, were we stayed over night. The hotels were all very pretty and comfortable and I tried to eat Irish food, which in my opinion is very similar to a southern area of Germany.

I also had to get used to the Irish accent and to the different English accents in my group, the American accent I knew, the Australian I found very similar to English, but the New Zealand accent was a bit different, because instead of bread I heard breed.

We also had a lot of fun  in the bus playing quiz and sometimes the answers were hilarious ! 



The last evening we spent in Killarney were we stayed for two nights. In the evening we went out all together for a dinner with an Irish step dancing show. (I had already seen Michael Flatley in Riverdance  in Brussels). It had been great fun, except my meal, I had ordered a bacon steak, which should be the Gammon, and yes it looked like but it must have been a grandma pig, because it was so hard ! That was the only time I wasn't happy with my meal.

Ireland is a very beautiful country, the only bad point is the climate ! That's because the grass is so green !



The first time in my life I saw trees with crocheted stockings !!



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9 Jul 2017

IRELAND HOLIDAYS THE END



The last evening we had a supper with an Irish show all together ! What fun !



And now it's over and with a heavy heart but the promise to meet on our especially created Facebook page !

We all live so far from each other except the once from the UK

7 Jul 2017

IRELAND HOLIDAYS NEARLY THE END



Today is our last day of my tour around Ireland. For 7 days we had a wonderful time and saw a lot of course. It gives you a nice idea of what Ireland is looking today !









We have seen so many things that I first have to sort out my pictures and write about my trip more in details. Anyway, we were a very nice group of 38 people. And once again this trip confirmed what I always thought, from whatever continent we are coming, whatever nationality we have we are all the same. Maybe our style of life is different, certainly the clima too, but the people themselves they could be your neighbor in your country.

We were only 6 from the European continent. British and I. The others came from far away, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, America, and even Thailand. And we had so much fun.The pictures above give you an idea about our trip;

I shared my bedroom a few nights between a New Zealand lady and a young woman of 28. It all went very smoothly, although we never had seen each other before. It proves that there is no problem to travel "alone" you will never be alone if you are in a group.

The Irish accent made us laugh especially me when a man explained the history of a "bottlefield" and it took me some time to realize that he meant "battlefield". From now on I will call the Waterloo battlefield "bottlefield".

So now I have to join the others and we continue our bus tour direction Dublin, where the tour ends tomorrow !






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2 Jul 2017

IRLAND HOLIDAYS DAY 3

Today I had to leave my hotel where I stayed for two nights and had to move over to the "Red Cow" ! I hadn't unpacked my suitcase so I only had to take out something new to wear. For the last time I had my special breakfast a scone with cream and fresh blueberries and coffee, while the majority was busy with the English breakfast. For me it would have been a lunch.

A taxi took me over to the Red Cow it was not far away but I didn't want to pull my suitcase over several km.  I arrived early, already around 1 pm and got a single room ! I had payed for a double room, so I was pleasantly surprised. Maybe I have to share my room with somebody else later on the tour.

I haven't met a lot of people yet, apparently we are 38. Our tour guide is a young man called Mark.



I like the hotel, it looks very English, in its style, at least it is not "zen" in black, dark grey and white ! I prefer it cozy and not zen !

I like to drink alcohol free beer, because I don't like sodas, they are all too sweet. As I don't drink any alcohol, I have no choice but water. But here in Dublin they had a brand called Erdinger, wherever I went for a drink. The only problem was the bottle was huge ! The first time I ordered alcohol free beer they asked me if I want a glass. Now I am a lady at least I pretend to and don't drink out of a bottle. To my surprise I got a glass full of ice cubes ! Ice cubes in my beer ? Impossible. I asked another glass and enjoyed my beer without ice.



And that happened everywhere ! Finally I asked why they put ice cubes in beer ??? And I was told that a lady is served in a glass and therefore with ice cubes while a gentlemen drinks out of the bottle !! Other countries other uses ! Now I pay attention and always ask without ice.

The weather still behaves good, sometimes even the sun came out, as long as it doesn't rain there is nothing to complain.

Tonight we will have our first supper together and meet each other and the next day we drive to Belfast !

1 Jul 2017

IRELAND HOLIDAYS DAY ONE AND TWO

On Saturday morning I got up surprisingly rather fresh and Mr. G. drove me to the airport. Despite the fact that it was so early there were a lot of people underway and there already was a little traffic jam because of works on the road. The check in went quiet smoothly, we had our pictures taken again but this time I made a big smile because I knew when I put my passport on the scan the picture would be taken. The flight was on time the only hic was that I was sitting in the middle besides a girl who slept during the whole flight and a middle aged man who smelled very badly out of his mouth and I nearly fainted when he yawned. I couldn't even offer him some mint sweets because I had none. But I survived and didn't suffocate.

I arrived in Dublin at time and asked for the Aerbus which should take me to the Hotel. The information was wrong and after erring around for half an hour and my arm nearly dropped off because of pulling my suitcase, I finally took a taxi before I died. It was quite a long ride, far longer than it looked on the map, and that was because there was a highway and you couldn't jump over it but make a tour around.



My hotel turned out to be very nice and the view out of my window was it too. Nothing to complain. I rested for a while and then I had some tea with a scone. The people are all very friendly and when I had my supper, very well served, I chatted a bit with a lady who had a terrible Irish accent and I hardly could understand what she said.  I was so tired that at 8 pm (for me it was 9 pm) I went to bed and watched a movie on my computer, there was nothing on TV. I fell asleep, so I switched off everything and slept 12 h ! Probably all the stress from the last weeks came out and I felt on holidays.



After breakfast I wanted to go to Dublin and make a sightseeing tour, which I always do when I don't know a city and want to see the most important things. The hotel is quiet outside of Dublin and I was told to walk for 10 min (which was already a lot but in reality it was 20 !) to the tram station. Because Dublin has trams. I behaved very stupid because I didn't know how to take the ticket out of the machine, although we have the same system in Brussels, but I am always by car ! A young man helped me explained on which side I have to go because in Ireland too they drive on the "wrong" side and nearly put me in the tram. After 15 stops I finally was in the Dublin city center and another young man indicated me the way to the Tourist office. I don't know why in Dublin young man help me while in other countries they are always elderly women or men. Maybe I looked especially lost.

The tour was interesting I was a bit disappointed I thought it would be a little more old, but here too they play "little Dubai" destroy old buildings and replace them with glass boxes. A part of the city was dominated by Guiness, it was huge ! I don't remember the amount of liters which are produced here daily but it was enormous. That's why probably we also saw two beer corpses laying across the sidewalk.

After the sightseeing I walked a bit through the main shopping streets where no cars are allowed, but didn't find anything special.. When a few drops started to fall from heaven I tried to find the tram stop back, which of course was on the other side now, but where ? Apparently I looked so lost that another young man remembered his grandma took me under his wings and showed me where the stop was, and also bought my ticked (but I paid it of course) when I arrived safe and sound at the Red Cow stop (what a name) I walked my 20 min back to the hotel where a group had arrived and the hotel looked full. Tomorrow I will join my travel group in another hotel guess the name ..... The Red Cow !

Suits me well !

30 Jun 2017

FRIDAY's FAVE FIVE - FIVE ON FRIDAY

1.

We started the week with our Scrabble group, this time we went to Ilona. The weather cleared up and it became warm so we could sit outside and enjoyed her garden.

2. I helped Ilona to bring cartons and clothes to the charity shop in favour of battered women. Slowly her mother's apartment is nearly cleared out, she had so many clothes ! Like a film star, being so coquet at 93 is wonderful ! For the furniture somebody will come and take everything, the children and grandchildren didn't want any, antiques are not in fashion at all in the younger generation.

3. I did my last shopping for things I need for my trip to Ireland. It rained and the nature was happy, all flowers, plants and grass needed water badly.

4. We also had our last painting class with coffee and a cake and decided that we will continue to continue to paint without teacher during the holidays if the room is free. Otherwise 2 months is a long time. And then we love to be together. After the painting course 4 of us went to a restaurant, where the first mussels had arrived. We all had our mussels with chips the traditional Belgian plate. It was really delicious. The mussels were quite small this year but very tasteful.

5. When you are reading this I am on my way to Ireland. I have never been there so it will be quite an experience. The worst is the luggage as with Ryan air I am limited to 15 kgs in total, and I have to take warm and cool things with me as the weather is not stable at all ! I always hope that the weatherman is wrong. Here is a picture of the tour I will do.



I will post whenever I can, I take my little travel computer with me as always and will do a diary !






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28 Jun 2017

27 Jun 2017

A SUNNY SCRABBLE AFTERNOON

Nothing special for Our World in my world, but a very nice Scrabble afternoon. It was quite a while we hadn't scrabbled together, because two were on holidays, Ilona was occupied with the passing away of her mother and I hardly could play alone and my cats refused.

This time it was Ilona's turn and as the forecasted rain turned into a wonderful warm and sunny weather Ilona had installed the scrabble table on her patio and sitting under two umbrellas it was real nice.



Her house had been a council house before WW II and ever since people had bought and transformed them into very nice little houses. With the palm trees and the yellow lawn because of the dry weather we almost thought to be in the South of France.



my scrabble girls,  Mireille who is half blind because of this awful eye decease "Macula", but nontheless always wins, Ilona and Nicole



The sky was full of fluffy little sheep



Ilona loves gardening and she has beautiful plants everywhere



Resie the cat kept us company







Scrabble finished we had a cup of coffee and a long chat.


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