Sunday, October 30, 2005

I picked this up while surfing on Blogexplosion

You are Galadriel, Lady of Light. You like nature,
especially trees. You are wise and people come
to you for advice. You are friendly to other
people, even strangers, even though the movie
made you seem like a monotonous dud, as far as
personality goes.

Which Middle-earth maiden are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Dear Phyllis,

I'm writing to let you know that your comments have disappeared and I couldn't find your e-mail address. I did enjoy reading the Halloween post, now I have good excuses for not going trick or treating

Lots of love


Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Check up
I had my flu vaccination yesterday evening. While I was there I picked up a new prescription for everything else I need. I asked if I could stop the anti cholesterol medicine as I'm checking what I eat so carefully and the doctor said yes. Blood pressure normal (so it should be with the beta blockers!).
A tale from a small village
As you’ve probably gathered if you read regularly, L’Houmeau is a small village. We have two bakers, two hairdressers, a chemist, a lady who does dressmaking, post office newsagents/tobacconist and a small supermarket (four yogurts on the dairy shelf, if you are lucky). Having said that, not everyone knows everyone else.

Olivier and two of his friends were in the newsagents the other day looking at magazines. The owner of the newsagents doesn’t mind them browsing and keeps an eye on them If Olivier sees something he wants he comes home to collect his money (He lost his lost wallet before the summer holidays). A woman stormed into the newsagents and asked the boys if they had any money to pay, they answered no they didn’t have any money, so she ordered them out of the shop. Olivier asked her what the problem was and she told them crossly that they had stolen drinks from the supermarket. So the boys went to the supermarket to see the owner (they do go in there frequently to buy snacks and drinks) with the woman following. The owner of the supermarket turned to the woman and told her that she was accusing the wrong boys. Fortunately she had the grace to apologize.

I was pleased that Olivier had the courage to sort it all out. I told him that when I was 14 we were all expected to be football hooligans. Things don’t change much.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Infiltration:: leak
  2. Nice person:: Me!
  3. Debt:: owe too much
  4. Settle down:: find a girl, if you like you can marry.
  5. Thomas:: The Tank Engine
  6. Unforgivable:: broken promise
  7. Medicine:: science
  8. A year from now:: future
  9. Neighbors:: friends
  10. Dripping:: tap
Magic pencils
Olivier and I went to have our eyes tested yesterday. Olivier’s eyes haven’t changed, he just wears glasses for the TV, computer etc. I now need glasses that see close to and far, although I don’t have to wear them all the time.

While we were at the bus station I saw a woman in a bright purple suit and a crimson red scarf. She reminded me of the crayons we used to get when we were small, they were called magic crayons or pencils, I don’t remember which . The crayons were double ended with a different colour each end, you had to dip them into water and you could ‘paint ‘with them (people in those days used to think children were stupid). Lack of jam jars meant we used to lick ours. My favourite was the crayon with purple and pink. The purple suit and red scarf reminded me of those crayons.

I found this afterwards, is that why they were so tasty?

Friday, October 21, 2005

Project for the weekend
The coca cola recipe, infact there are a few. Let me know how you get on.
As found by Linky and Dinky
Star gazer
On clear nights I can see a very bright star, it’s to the south west and quite low down in the sky (don’t forget I might not be looking from the same position as you). Does anyone know what it is?

Thursday, October 20, 2005

We finally watched the film. It was good, I didn’t even fall asleep, though we watched it in two sessions. However, I was left with some unanswered questions.

1. What background did he come from in order to have been educated in England?

How long was he in prison for?

You know where I’ll be checking out the answers.

1. his Father was a chief minister

2. He was imprisoned many times, but no longer that two years at a time.

( can't help thinking it's a good job he looked like Ben Kingsley)

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Some one clicked 60 times on each of my ads in the sidebar yesterday. Whoever you are, please don’t do it again. They turn up as invalid clicks anyway. One click is enough.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Please help
I had my favourite pupil today, she's been absent for three weeks suffering from shingles. She came armed with questions and two of them I'm not qualified to answer as they are about American English.

1. Do you say CV or do you call it something else?
2. Coyote; do you sound the e at the end ( ex: coyotee)?

Thank you
Rainy Saturday
We went into town for breakfast on Saturday (in the rain) and then went to the Lantern tower as Rob had to collect something. Unfortunately there was a staffing problem so Rob had to put his ‘union secretary’ hat on and try to sort it out. Olivier and I looked around some of the exhibits to pass the time. There was an illustrated display about the slave trade which we looked at and discussed. La Rochelle made a lot of money though the slaves. I wish that Olivier was a ‘reader’ because I’m certain that he would enjoy reading ‘Roots’.

We left Rob to it and came home. Rob got home for lunch and them spent the rest of the afternoon and up till three in the morning sorting it out writing reports etc. It was still raining.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

In the French education system dictation has become fashionable again. I remember dreading dictations, but it really is a good way to learn difficult spellings. Some dictations are on the spot, some are prepared and at primary school my children had to learn auto dictations. A piece to be learned by heart and written out from memory, spelling and all.

I remember spelling tests, we were given ten words on Monday to be learnt by Friday. We even had a special thin exercise/copy book to write spellings into. When I went to secretarial college we had 10 short forms to learn every day (remember shorthand?). If a word was wrong it was added to the next days list, this made the wrong doer unpopular with the rest of the class. As I was hopeless, my classmates soon hit on the plan that I was to lie about all the words I had got wrong. Fortunately I only stuck there for one term. I’ve also used this system for teaching the dreaded irregular verbs.
Just what season is it?
In La Rochelle the workmen have already started to put up the Christmas lights, a real sign of winter. A local journalist has noted that they were all working in T-shirts!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Two very different books
I read ‘Plain Truth’ by Jodi Picoult and then followed it with ‘The Pianoplayers’ (no, not Piano Players) by Anthony Burgess (Can't find a link with a pic). I enjoyed them both, but I was suffering from culture shock afterwards. ‘Plain truth’ is about the Amish community and what happens when a dead baby is found, there is also a love story to keep the romantics amongst us happy. A beautiful book which I learnt from. ‘The Pianoplayers’ was a very English book. Do people use the word bawdy these days? About the early life of a prostitute with her pianoplaying father. You can learn how to play the piano with this book too.

I might be a bit quiet for a while as I’ve just started ‘The Complete Sherlock Holmes’, all 1122 pages of it in very small print, as it happens I’ve got an appointment for an eye examination at the end of the month, I think I might need it.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Don't go away!
The Unconcious Mutterings you can see under this post aren't the same ones, there are some new posts underneath.
Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Quirk:: tick
  2. Crystal:: ball
  3. Pet Peeve:: dried up cereal bowls!
  4. Cuban:: heel
  5. Breasts:: woman
  6. Whispers:: whiskers
  7. Complicated:: life!
  8. Promise me:: I never make promises because I think they should never be broken
  9. Murder:: news
  10. Filament:: shooting star
All our yesterdays
I just went and looked in the archives for two years ago. We got broadband in October 2003 and then had to upgrade the computer which caused the most terrible problems. Olivier had to have two milk teeth out that were stuck (I don’t remember that at all!). I seemed to have a lot more to say then, perhaps I’ve got blogger’s block.
The inauguration if the walk we went on last weekend took place on Saturday. There were lots of speeches from all involved; district, department, village and mayor. Fortunately the sun was shining and it was quite hot; After, we all went for a ‘vin d’ honneur’ and to look at old photographs of the village. On a large table the drinks were set out in the shape of the map of the walk, those on the coastal side containing a blue cocktail. It was a pity to spoil all the hard work. About 150 people tuned up, mainly the older people of the village. Perhaps it’s because younger people don’t consider walking as useful exercise.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Unconscious Mutterings

  1. Quaint:: old
  2. Rind:: bacon
  3. Disease:: illness
  4. Queer:: strange
  5. Pork:: pig
  6. Soaked:: wet through
  7. Skeleton:: bones
  8. Mold:: musty smell
  9. Finished::over
  10. Buffalo:: girls
All organized for nothing
I got all of my papers, questions and identity together, so that I could find out about funding for the studies for the exam I’d like to do. I took two buses across town to the unemployment center where I thought my file was held. The center has closed down. So I take the same bus (by coincidence) all the way back to the beginning of the route to the center which is open. It is closed on Thursday mornings. The only good part is, that it was only 15 minutes away, on foot, from where I left the car.

I set off again this morning all hopeful. They haven’t been funding studies since 2001 when the payment system changed. The lady was really nice, especially as my information book was printed in 2005! I managed to find out how much all this is going to cost. Rob and I will have to talk about it tonight.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

After a rest and a cup of tea
We went off to the bigoudène, which is our favourite crêperie. My birthday meal at last! I wish I could find a picture of what we ate. I thought about taking a photo but it was very quickly too late….. Rob booked a table outside, which started off okay but became a little chilly towards the end of the evening.

During the war the Germans built many blockhouses along the west coast of France, this one has now been turned into an observation point.

The old mill, the oldest remaining building at the port.

Two thousand years ago the Romans constructed an aqueduct here. You can’t see much of it today. It’s been covered up to be looked at in the future. Most of it has possibly been destroyed the weight of agricultural machinery.

Pilgrims used to stop here. This has the traditional head gear worn by women in L’Houmeau up to the beginning of the 20th century

The same view of the church today

The great uncle of Antoine de Saint Exupery , author of “The Little prince”, was mayor of L’Houmeau for a while.

Around the village
It’s become the fashion around here for the villages to set up discovery walks. Our village has just put in place the information for a 9 kilometer historical tour.