17 Sep 2011

FINALLY A SOLUTION

It's nearly impossible to explain Belgian politics to other countries. We are the first and unique country which has been without an elected government for 15 months and honnestly we the ordinary citizens didn't notice anything in our daily lives. We even had the impression that everything went better.

Our dear politicans all together 8 parties, couldn't find a solution to especially one sticking point, a dispute over Brussels-Hal-Vilvorde (BHV), a district covering the capital and the suburbs.

BHV is the only district officially bilingual rather than French- or Dutch-speaking.

The 8 eight parties which gathered around the table to keep the country together, finally managed to find a solution for the disagreement centres on electoral boundaries in the linguistically divided Brussels BHV region.

8 parties is not bad for a country of 11 millions inhabitants ! Even the USA have only two parties.

The solution is called "a solution à la Belge" which means that everything stays more or less the same, but both parties the Waloons and the Flemish have the impression that they both winned. And that is what counts. Now they can continue on more important things like social laws, health services, pension increases, etc. which is of much bigger interest to the population and form a new government.




2 days ago


Yesterday

16 Sep 2011

FRIDAY's FAVE FIVE



more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

1. Nothing special happened this week. On Monday I couldn't go to my acqua gym because I still had a little sore throat and I thought it was too risky. So I stayed home

2.



My neighbor's roof is almost finished, and I hope the daily hammering too !

3. I had to buy a new spare battery for my little camera, as I had kept both in a wallet which had been stolen when I was in Brussels at the Bruegel festivities. Fortunately my camera was in my hand. But still it was annoying because these batteries are quiet expensive.

4. A sudden cooking euphoria took me for once and I made a couscous with fresh vegetables. I thought it was for the whole week but Mr. G's appetite was similar to a starving lion and I have only two portions left which I will put in the deepfreeze.

5.



During our painting course two responsibles from the Waterloo city came and selected the paintings we had made for the exposition of Victor Hugo's "Les Misérables" . The exposition will take place in December but meanwhile there are lots of festivities going on for the 150 years of Victor Hugo. He wrote part of this book here in Waterloo. (my painting is the blue and white girl with starving cat).

And this "eventful" week ends with mowing the lawn !

15 Sep 2011

THE VASE

Jenny Matlock
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday


letter V

Looking in my cupboard for a vase, I found a very old one which I had almost forgotten and which I never use because of its history. I was born in Frankfurt Germany in the middle of WW II in 1943. My mother could move to her parents in the country, because she had a baby. Mothers with children were allowed to leave the severely bombed city, the others had to stay and work.

My father was still working in Frankfurt and lived alone in their appartment. One evening when he came home the street didn't exist anymore the whole district had been bombed and was in ruins. He went there where their flat was supposed to be and amongst all the rubble found only one thing which had survived the bombing without any damage :



this vase

All other things were distroyed and nothing left. He took out the vase and left Frankfurt too. The allied airforces had dropped 12.197 tons of explosives on the city and about 5.500 residents were killed.

I am not a person to keep old things as souvenir, I rather throw them away too quickly sometimes, but this vase I couldn't throw away when my parents had both died it's part of history and it is so amazing that it still looks like new !

13 Sep 2011

OUR WORLD - Brussels Bruegel Festival






Each year at this time the Bruegel Festivities take place in the heart of the Marolles which is an ancient district of Brussels, situated between the Law Courts of Brussels (Palais de Justice) and the Brussels-South railway station.
read more here

12 Sep 2011

WHAT DID YOU DO THIS WEEKEND ?



Helps you to remember what you have done on the weekend of September 3. You never know if you need an alibi ! If you participate please put the little logo on the top of your post and leave your link.

The whole week it was grey and rainy and rather cool 15° (59 F) then on Friday suddenly we went up to 25° (77) and Saturday even 33 ° (!) (91) and now on Sunday again back to only 18°C (64). Of course I catched a cold, as I probably didn't dress accordingly to this roller coaster weather. So I felt rather lousy took some medication and wanted to rest in my bed.



No way to rest ! Our neighbor has big works going on by adding a second floor to his house ! The whole day they hammered and my other neighbor had new windows put in, which fortunately made less noise ! Finally I hid myself behind the TV and watched crime stories, I thought maybe some little murders will let forget me my cold. At least I didn't hear the hammering because our living room is on the backside of the house.

In the afternoon I felt a little better and thought I'll quickly go to the "Environment festival" which took place in the park of Waterloo. It was hot and sunny and I took some pictures



when I suddenly felt that something strange followed me ! I turned around, saw nothing and then at my feet a robot ! A lawnmower !! I thought it can only happen to me to be persecuted by a lawnmower ! I found this thing very practical and observed it for a while, indeed it mowed nicely while you could sit in your chair and read or go shopping. Coming home I informed Mr. G. that in the future I want to buy one, for our little piece of grass it would be ideal. The rest of the day I was suffering from the heat it was humid and I just hanged around between Computer and TV.

On Sunday I thought I went crazy if I don't go out and I also absolutely wanted to take pictures of a folklore festival in the heart of Brussels. I thought I won't stay long and I was lucky to arrive
just in time when the giants were walking through the street.



Despite the bad weather it was very nice, but I will tell more about it in "Our World" on tuesday.

Still I managed that my wallet was stolen out of my purse with 7 compartments and zips ! Apparently I had left one zip open and that was enough. These pick pockets are real artists. Unfortunately for him this wallet I only use as case to keep my camera in it, so the poor pick pocket got nothing but an empty wallet ! My camera was in my hand, fortunately ! Good for him !

11 Sep 2011

A THOUGHT TO THOSE WHO SURVIVED

Today is September 11, 10 years later. It's impossible to ignore this day. Also outside America, all medias are talking about and remember this day with videos, witnesses etc.

Comemoration services are held for those who died. On brasses the names of the victimes are engraved. Firemen who saved lives and died are declared as heros. Dead people are honored and Ground Zero has become a tourist attraction.

But what about the once who survived ?? Up to 80,000 people - including firemen, police officers, emergency workers, contractors and cleaning staff - are believed to have been present in the aftermath.

Soon after the attacks people reported what became known as "World Trade Center cough" but symptoms have since become more serious. Nobody talks about them or only a little. Alle these firemen who now have burnt lungs, suffer asthma, got cancer not to talk about the psychological damages ! They are unable to work anymore or had to change their work completely. Some of them died but later so they don't belong to the September 11 victims. I think they are also heros. They also saved lives and what did they get as a thank you ? The September 11th Fund was closed in December 2004. These victims had to go to court to claim for at least their health costs. I have seen a reportage on Belgian TV and was rather shocked.

They had the chance to survive, but under what conditions ?

I think those people should also be included in all our thoughts today.