Monday, May 31, 2004

Mr. Teacher would like this one. As I have a student who desperately needs lessons before an important exam, I stupidly agreed to give her two hour lesson this afternoon, which is a holiday. I took Rob into work this morning as there were no buses and I needed the car Dominique had to walk about two miles to fetch her friend, who has come to stay. We ate lunch early so that I’d be ready to go in time I walked across town in the pouring rain and waited for half an hour before coming home. I’d even tried to phone her after 20 minutes to see if she would be coming, her phone was off.

If anyone ever urgently needs lessons on a bank holiday for an important exam again; the answer will be NO!
Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Lover:: Friend
  2. Ridiculous:: Silly
  3. Oscar:: Louis de Funes
  4. Tennis:: Elbow
  5. Account:: Balance
  6. Hickey:: wood?
  7. License:: Plate
  8. Breathmints:: Hot
  9. TexMex:: Hot evenings
  10. Stepmother:: Poisoned apples
Peter is back.
It's a holiday today!
Hope everyone who's got one has a good one. It's raining here at the moment, oh well....
Sad weekend
This weekend there was a rather nasty road accident not far from a school I used to work in the North of the department. Five young people dead but the driver has survived. No alcohol was involved but first tests show that the driver was under the influence of drugs. He fell asleep.

Sometimes I’ve come across talk on drugs on the blogs I’ve visited. Often there is a comment that people should be allowed to do what they like with their bodies, what about the bodies of your friends? What about your parents, children, brothers and sisters? Okay, you can do what you want with your body on the condition you have no relatives of friends.

And what about all those babies that are born heroin addicts? I heard an ex-addict talking the other day on the radio. She said that you’re not really interested in sex when you’re addicted so you don’t bother about contraception………

Sorry, I have to have a little rant from time to time.

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Where is the blogroll?
Blogroll seems to have dissapeared this morning, I used my bookmarks which made me realise I've got a lot more sites to visit. Some of them I shall add so that I can share them.

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Words of wisdom
For some time now rob has been having problems with a tooth. He’d been to the dentists a few times and thought it was sorted out. It started to hurt again on Wednesday so he took some strong pain killers before going to bed. By one o’clock he was desperate, so he went off to the emergency department of the hospital. (In France they don’t seem to have heard of emergency dental services.) The couldn’t give him any thing for the pain as he was up to the limit already. Not being dentists, the two doctors he saw said they thought that he had a wisdom tooth coming through. He’s nearly 44! Neither of us slept for the rest of the night.

He couldn’t see our dentist on Thursday as it’s his day off, the same with our doctor, he got an appointment with another doctor who prescribed different pain killers. Yesterday, (Friday) he finally saw our dentist who told him he has an abscess. So now he’s taking anti-biotics. Next Friday he’s going for an X-ray and it looks like all four wisdom teeth will have to come out. At the moment he can barely eat anything solid and drinks through a straw.
Au Revoir
On Thursday chez Zoe, I read that Peter had hung up his keyboard for the time being, hopefully not permanently. Naked Blog was always a good place to visit, a mix between “The News quiz” and “I’m sorry I haven’t a clue”.
Busier and Busier.
I really haven’t been near the computer most of the week and it’s going to get worse. Lionel chased me down the street (I was in a hurry to catch the bus) on Thursday with details of three new students, all three needing urgent lessons within the next month. Why do they leave it till the last minute? I spent Thursday and Friday afternoons preparing lessons. I think that I said it before, I was hoping that May and June would be quiet months. I was planning on decorating the hall and kitchen. I should have known not to be optimistic. Last time I tried to paint the hall I got a phone call from one of Rob’s ‘friends’ telling me that the four of them were on the way for a long weekend. The hall has been half painted for four years.

Monday, May 24, 2004

It's quiz time again folks!

What Color is Your Brain?

brought to you by Quizilla

At work or in school: I like to be with people, sharing with them, inspiring them, and helping them. I work and learn best when I can take into consideration people and the human element. I flourish in an atmosphere of cooperation.
With friends: I always look for perfect love. I am very romantic, and I enjoy doing thoughtful things for others. I am affectionate, supportive and a good listener.
With family: I like to be happy and loving. I am very sensitive to rejection from my family and to family conflicts. I really like to be well thought of and need frequent reassurance. I love intimate talks and warm feelings.

Found chez Larry

This was taken about 12 years ago at my mother-in law's house. I wonder,what were they up to? Posted by Hello

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Yesterday evening I suddenly started thinking about Mary Poppins. I loved the film and still do. I even had cardboard dolls with clothes that you could cut out. I wonder where they went? We also owned the first Mary Poppins book. There were several, I can’t tell you how many because I thought I knew where the book was, but someone’s moved it. The book is better than the film and there is more in it, like the two ladies who go out to clean the stars at night and the cow who jumped over the moon and why she jumped.

I also liked ‘Hazel and the Well Dressing’ which was about a group of friends who revived the old English tradition of dressing wells with flowers in spring the say thank you for the gift of water. Another was ‘The Key to Rose cottage’ in which three teenagers almost starve to death because they go to the wrong Rose cottage. They smell a rat at the beginning when they find a store cupboard full of cans. This is odd because their Aunt, who owns the cottage, is a cookery teacher and wound NEVER use canned food. Remember in the early sixties, girls were encouraged to aspire to keeping their heads above canned food.

From my Grandmother’s house I still have ‘Jeremy’ by Hugh Walpole and ‘Esther Reid’, a Sunday School prize. We also had and loved ‘Mary Plain’, my Mum leant it to a neighbour who never returned it. I remember Mum reading ‘Peter Pan’ to us and a ‘Christmas Carol’ which was a Christmas present she had been given during the war.

I still go back and read my favourite books from time to time and some of them I’ve read to my children. I think it is interesting anyway to go back to certain books at different times and see how the perception of the book changes as I age.

What were your favourite books as a child and have you reread them as an adult?
Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Finale:: End
  2. Martial arts:: Kung Fu
  3. Flirt:: Skirt
  4. Energy:: Not a lot
  5. Flavor:: Lemon
  6. Guess?:: What?
  7. Accomplishment:: Job well done
  8. Prom:: menade
  9. Diploma:: Pretty paper
  10. Bloody:: Hell!

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Just in case it rains chez vous
A whole load of great games. In case you've got nothing better to do. I'm sorry, I don't remember where I found them, I hope I haven't trodden on anyone's toes.
Have a good weekend
That's all I can think of for the moment. The sun is shining, perhaps I'll do some gardening.

Friday, May 21, 2004

Stormy weather
Last night I was woken at 3 o'clock and 4 o'clock by thunder. It had taken ages to get to sleep because it was so hot, them Olivier came in and woke me up because he couldn't sleep because it was so hot. Fortunately, today is a lot cooler, more storms are forecast though. The garden looks better for a drop of rain.
How does your garden grow?
The love-in-a-mist is in flower now. I have also got a peony opening. I think it's going to be the best year yet for them. I know I'm supposed to split them up after ten years but I can't remember when I bought them.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Do you remember Laura?
Her site appeared on all the blogrolls. Good news, she had a baby daughter, Mckenzie, on May 8th. Congratulations to Laura and Tim!!

I'll have to find a real one of my own to post. Dom is still out. I've set this up all on my own. Posted by Hello
Robinson Crusoe
When I was a child I watched a TV series based on the book. Last week I heard the theme music played on 'Desert island discs'. I cried when I heard it. It was screened in the US too. It seems that I wasn't the only one to be moved by this beautifully filmed series. I found this site this afternoon, the theme music is there too! As far as i'm concerned David deserves a big hug!
Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Playoffs:: Football?
  2. Morris:: Dancing
  3. Break up:: Heart break
  4. Eggs:: Omlette
  5. Parker:: Miss
  6. Hardy Boys:: Adventure
  7. Deluxe:: Richou
  8. Protection:: fence
  9. Girl Scout:: Blue
  10. Salsa:: Dance
When I lived on my own, this is one of the songs I used to put on when I went to bed. I used to be lulled to sleep quite quickly. Unfortunately, the cassette player would wake me up again when it clicked off

Written By Jimmy Webb


How delicate the tracery of her fine lines
Like the moonlight lacetops of the evening pines
Like a song half heard through a closed door
Like an old book when you cannot read the writing anymore

How innocent her visage as my child lover lies
Pressed against the rainswept windy windows of my eyes
Like an antique etching glass design
That somehow turned out wrong
I keep looking through old varnish
At my late lover's body
Caught on ancient canvas
And decaying...disappearing
Even as I sing this song

How secretly and silently my sorrow disappears
You can't see it with your eyes or hear it with your ears
It's like a Watermark that's never there and never really gone
I keep looking through old varnish
At my late lover's body
Caught on ancient canvas
And decaying...disappearing
Even as I sing this song
Even as I sing this song
Even as I sing this song


Simply The Best Album
1998 - Sony Music Entertainment

The Art Garfunkel Album
1984 - Columbia Records, Inc.

Watermark Album
1978 - Columbia Records, Inc.

I found this here.
A little bit of Natural History
Near to our house over the marsh is a kind of hill. This hill is now a nature reserve and had views across to Vendee. It's worth the effort to go and have a look. Olivier would like to go this afternoon as there could be some orchids in flower. We missed them last year.

Forty years ago, the above mentioned hill was the local rubbish tip! Untill one day millions of flies hatched out at the same time and invaded L'Houmeau. I've heard some of the natives talking about the invasion, they tried to close the shutters and they crunched as hundreds of flies got crushed. They were everywhere.

I think that it's lovely today that we can go up onto the hill and appreciate the beauty of the place.

Do flies 'hatch out'?
Another holiday
Today is a holiday in France. Rob is working, the monuments are full of tourists now. Dom has slept over at a friends. There is just Olivier to fight with over the computer. There is a little blip, as I've been so busy there is a lot of washing, ironing etc to catch up with. I haven't visited a lot of you for over a week, I feel so left out. I've got an action packed day ahead of me, after all.
Rob decided to surprise us by installing AOL 9. There is too much change going on at the moment! It's very good about loading itself back when it disappears. It even tells you what the problem was. Of course it's in computerspeak and I don't understand a word. Next time it happens (probably before I finish writing this and I'll have to start again), I'll copy it and perhaps one of you clever bods will tell me what it means.
Recently on French television and the BBC radio we’ve had reports about the invasion by these insects who sleep for 17 years. During the French report we met a French man who lives in the USA and eats them. He ate one live to prove it. A Frenchman who lives in Washington DC was interviewed by the BBC. I presume it was the same Monsieur. For the benefit of English listeners he described how he cooks them ‘like snails’ in garlic, butter, herbs and shallots.

If anyone concerned would like to try this out, please let me know how you get on.

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

What's happening
A little bit of excitement during a statistics exam. There were two of us supervising 50 students in a amphitheater. My colleague noticed that one of the students was hiding a ruler underneath his paper. After observing for a while, he decided to take a closer look. The ruler was stainless steel and on one side it was covered with maths formulae written in pencil. Quite a shocking discovery. The student was withdrawn from the exam and taken to see the director. Other than that, nothing to report. It has been very difficult to stay awake during all of this heat. Next week I have exams on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning.

My retired lady has gone off to a Buddhist retreat for a few days. As for me, there’s a huge pile of ironing mounting up.

Lionel phoned a couple of minutes ago. I have a new pupil on Tuesday mornings (Though not next week) for ‘commercial’ English. When I asked her what her level of English was she said “Nul” (no good). Don’t tell anyone but I shall be learning about commercial English as I go along. I’m not looking forward to this one at all.
Happy Independence day (yesterday)
If you happen to be Norwegian. Not much time for blogging again this week.

Last week we had an examination cancelled half way through because of the noisy path laying taking place out side the amphitheaters. My retired couple have turned into just one. The husband is partly deaf and wears hearing aids in both ears, he just couldn’t follow and understand some of the sounds. His wife is a very keen and serious student. We get on well so the lessons are very enjoyable.

Rob is going to work on his bike today. A few years ago he used his bike, whatever the weather. Then one day he came off and broke his elbow. He was riding through a street where there are lots of restaurants and there was cooking oil on the road!! Fortunately for him it was considered as a work accident as he was on the way to work. He was off for two months and later that year a few more weeks when they took the pin out of his arm. After that he lost the habit. The weather is very good at the moment, we could even say hot!

A little PS to the story of Rob’s elbow. The day after he returned to work he had to go to school and collect Dominique. She was in sport and some one had done an illegal rugby tackle on her. She broke her….. elbow. The people in the elbow department of the hospital thought this highly amusing, in the nicest possible way. At least they all knew how to spell our surname.

This week is busy again. Thursday will be a holiday, hope the weather continues to be hot and sunny. By the way, my garden was all my own work. It was left in a bit of a mess by the builders and I cleared it up and planted things myself. I used to get exhausted, I knew that gardening was good exercise but not to that extent. Then I discovered I was pregnant.

Olivier is off school today, pains in his stomach. Hopefully it will pass. He’s going to be on his own till at least six-thirty this evening. He has been warned!

I posted this post yesterday but it didn’t work

Friday, May 14, 2004

Unconscious Mutterings
A little late this week

  1. Vagina:: Woman
  2. Racism:: Hate
  3. Mother's Day:: Violets
  4. Fire alarm:: Empty
  5. Elvis:: Costello
  6. Pregnant:: Big
  7. Vacation:: Holidays, yipee!
  8. Waffles:: Quickos
  9. Perpendicular:: Horizontal or vertical?
  10. Hospital:: No

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Happy blog birthday to me!
Yes, it's a year since I got started. It's not been without it's blips. Thank you to all of my visitors.
Our garden
This is what our garden looked like last spring. Unfortunately, it's all dried up by July.

Has changed, I know it's been a few days, but it's the first time I've seen it. I know I'll grow to like it, eventually.

Sunday, May 09, 2004

A worried man
Rob is worried about us downloading music, as if we would? He's got rid of all the Mah Jong games on the computer (tee hee).
Sometimes I really have to coax Olivier to do his homework. Twice recently he's been given exercises they've already done. Go back to your corner Maman.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

After dinner conversation
I cooked roast pork this evening with Yorkshire pudding and vegetables and now Rob is drinking his coffee so I’m hoping I’m not disturbed till I’ve finished writing this. Between us all we’ve often talked about the pleasure of visiting our blog friends. This time I’d like to talk about the appearance of blogs. Do you think that they resemble people’s houses? For example, we live in a modest bungalow and are not at all good at or inclined to do great alterations. The house is a bit (!) messy because I’m just not interested in how shiny I can get my floor. I think my blog reflects this. Very basic and there are parts where I could work on improving things: What about yours?
Somebody must like me

You are a freeform writer. Individualistic with a
sense for the different and challenging, Walt
Whitman and his poetry lacking meter and rhyme
is just what the doctor ordered. You're quick
to write something that the rest of the world
doesn't accept as poetry, quick to separate
yourself from the average joe. An author with a
true sense of self, you have confidence in your
abilities and aren't afraid to show it. :) GO

What's YOUR Writing Style?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thanks to Mary Lou
Life is good
I’d just like to say that at the moment in blogland, life seems to be looking up for a lot of you. It’s good to read the lovely things that are happening. Happy Mother’s day tomorrow to those that are celebrating. I’ve got to wait for another month in France!

I don’t know how much free time I’m going to get in the next three weeks. I’ve got a few hours at the Ecole Superior du Commerce and some more hours at City Center. I feel exhausted just thinking about it, there will be a lot of toing and froing to fit it all in

Friday, May 07, 2004

I like this game

Invent a memory of me and post it in the comments. It can be anything you want, so long as it's something that's never happened. Then post this in your journal so that people can invent memories for you. (I consider the last bit optional if you’d rather not use it in your own blog.)

As played by Busy Mom and Wind Spirit
Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Sexy:: Lady
  2. Clique:: Gang
  3. Pledge:: Polish
  4. Carbs:: potatoes
  5. Dream Job:: That would be telling
  6. Sweeps:: Chimney
  7. Soundtrack:: Mayerlings
  8. Hero:: No more
  9. Shave:: Close
  10. Christina:: Flambards

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Tired of buying bigger clothes and pants?
I've just received the same spam twice in a row. Right, who told them?
This 'n that

All I seem to have done recently is work. I’m not used to that, I like blog walking; I feel that I’m missing out on what’s going on in the world. I haven’t missed what’s going on at A Beautiful Revolution (wink).

This afternoon was quite interesting as afternoons go around here; I went into town in the pouring rain and gale force winds to help some students make a film. Not exactly the weather for it, but they seemed pretty pleased. I was only needed for 10 minutes to answer questions on the towers in English. I’ll send you all autographs by e-mail if you like. But I’m not as famous as Peter, who has a luverly voice.

Back to school went okay, considering nobody wanted to go really. Talking about school the subject of gifted children refusing to go to school came up on the news. They talked for about a minute and offered no solutions or information about where to go for help. It made me cross, very cross indeed. Dom’s math’s teacher commented on how quiet the class had been without her. She hit him. (It’s okay he’s a ex-colleague of mine)

Saturday, May 01, 2004

Up to date
I was so tired on Thursday evening, I was in bed asleep by half past eight. I’ve had no time to look at what you are all doing. I hope that I haven’t missed too much excitement. Next week I’ll be teaching a retired couple English from scratch. They want to visit one of their children in China and have decided that they will get by with English.

Dom wants to go back to Russia. She had such a great time. The family she was staying with made me some place mats and lace doily’s. They also sent us some liquor, Balsam(?) which is very strong and is lovely in coffee.

Other than that, the weather has disintegrated again. I will bore you all the story that we went for a swim the first year we lived here on May 1st. It was too hot!

I almost forgot, it is my blog birthday soon. I’m not sure of the date because some of my posts were lost when we tried to put comments boxes on the blog for the first time. How simple that job would seem now. The first post is dated 12.05.03 so I suppose that will have to be my blog birthday.