8 Sept 2012


My son loves to tease his Dad and most of the time with success.
Actually he is with his family in Italy at the Lake of Garda, visiting Mr. G.'s family and friends.

He called me to tell us that everything was OK but if Dad could text him all the cities of the way back, we used to take when we returned from Italy. I found this a little strange because he has a GPS.

Mr. G hates sending texts and it takes him hours to find the letters on the little keyboard of his mobile, but for his son he was ready to type. He sent all the city names in German, because the way was through Germany. München, Würzburg, Frankfurt, Köln etc. and while he was concentrating on the keyboard he swore in Italian because he often made a mistake. When finally it was done he sent the text with a sigh or relief. After a while he got an answer from dear son "could you please text the city names in French". Mr. G without thinking typed the city names in French : Munich, Wurzburg, Francfort, Cologne etc. and pushed on "sent".

Then he got another text : " Could you please sent me the city names in Italian ?" There Mr. G. became suspicious and said "Your" (in bold, each time he does something wrong it's not our son anymore but only mine) your son is crazy ! now he wants me to write all that in Italian !" I started to laugh and couldn't stop and then I said to him "don't you realize that he makes fun of you ?"

Mr. G. started to laugh too, and put his mobile aside !

7 Sept 2012


more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

1.Now that we should go towards autumn, the summer showed its nose which it hadn't done when it should ! When I saw the sunshine in the morning, I thought I should go swimming, which I did although the roof of the pool was closed because the temperature was not high enough yet. But we were only 4 people in the whole huge pool, because school had started and no children classes went swimming this day ! What a chance !

I opened my "outside" office again and "worked" there with my assistant Rosie

2. Again in holiday mood (after all we are retired and are on holidays the whole year) I went with Dominique and Nicole swimming and we had a lot of fun with the 3 young pool attendants who wanted absolutely to make me dive ! I hate water in my face and swim like a girafe if girafes would swim with my head and neck  as far as possible out of the water !

After swimming we went to a little greek restaurant where we had an enormous "Gyros" plate  which we could hardly finish and went then to Nicole and had an ice cream and coffee on her huge deck. We had to open the umbrella again, which she already had prepared for winter !

3. Acqua gym classes have started again, so I went, but from my usual classmates there were nobody, probably next week.

4. I made a new header for my travel blog using the pictures of this year's trips and holidays.

5. I met Ilona at her mother's as she lives here in Waterloo and always loves the company of us 69 year old young girls, as she is 88. She had prepared coffee and biscuits for us and then we talked about all kind of things. She is a person who lives in the present and looks into the future and doesn't talk all the time about "her time" whatever that is or was. Of course we all complained about the increasing prices and especially the property taxes which in Waterloo are amongst the highest in whole Belgium. But we also had to admit that the city does a lot for seniors, lots of activities such as visits to Theatres, Expositions etc with transport included, Yoga, painting and Boccia, groups for playing cards together, or even "Conversation" tables to learn to speak English, German or Italian and many other things for free or just a very small participation. There are also city trips to other countries to very reduced prices. All this costs money and money comes from our taxes ! So we shouldn't complain too much. She also gave me a beautiful Hibiscus plant, which apparently will bloom soon and has orange flowers. We spent a very nice afternoon together !

6 Sept 2012


Jenny Matlock
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday

The first and last time in my life I had to deal with a psychiatrist was more than 20 years ago, when I was treated for depression which had probably been more what we call today a "burn out". After the hospital, they sent me to a psychiatrist.

I arrived punctually at the appointment in his office, which was all in black and white ! Very cheerful for depressed people ! The seats were black, the walls were white, the curtains were black and white and I wouldn't have been surprised to see the doctor in a zebra suit. But he was wearing black.

He was little, bald and round and looked at me with  two question marks in his watery blue frog eyes. I was about one head taller than him and decided immediately that I didn't like him. Good start for a therapy !

He greeted me and I sat down, he took a notebook (I mean one out of paper where you still have to write with a ballpen) and looked at me. I looked also and so we were staring at each other without a word. I waited for a question and he probably waited for a waterfall of words, that he could write down and analyze my interior life. He got more and more on my nerves only by looking at him and this probably was very well expressed on my face !

Finally he asked me "what is wrong with you ?" I said "nothing is wrong with me, and with you ? " His eyes popped almost out of his head and he answered "We can't go along like this" "yes", I said, "I think so too. Thank you very much, I feel already better. How much do I owe you "? He told me the amount (not cheap) I gave him the money and said that he was quiet expensive, but really worthwhile. At least I have learned thanks to him that psychiatrists are not for me.

Fortunately glances don't kill, otherwise I would never have been able to write this post and my ashes would fly in the wind since a long time !

I told my doctor that I never ever go again to a male psychiatrist, so he send me to a nice lady a little younger than I and she was a psychologist. From the very beginning she talked and asked questions and let me talk and helped me out whenever I was stuck. I had the feeling that she became a good friend and she indeed was very precious to teach me how to handle problems. That means that you can't change people, but you can change yourself so it is easier to deal with them.

In short a psychiatrists prescribes you drugs which maybe in some cases necessary, but often it acts like a broom putting all the dirt under the sofa where it stays ! A psychologist, helps you to solve your problems without drugs if possible ! and this indeed lasts longer !

I have read somewhere that psychiatrists have serious problems with themselves and that's why they studied psychology ! I am sorry if ever there is a psychiatrist reading this post, he or she must be an exception !

5 Sept 2012

4 Sept 2012


When you have guests from abroad, of course you show them all the important spots of your city. Which I did with my friends Claudie and Pierre from Southern France. I have to say, I had never been in this enormous church, I only knew it from outside so I discovered something new to me too.

The Basilica of Koekelberg, is a landmark on the Brussels skyline. It is the largest building in Art Deco style in the world, read more  here...

3 Sept 2012


This weekend was a street sale on the main street in Waterloo, I thought to go to the park and take some pictures. The whole main street was nicely decorated with baloons, as you can see on the church picture below.

But there was nothing in the park only things for kids to play.

As the Waterloo Exhibition hall is also in the park, I went there to see what Exhibition was going on !
Modern Art !

The sculpture on the right above, was made by my ceramic teacher and should represent the silence of bubbling water or something like that. I also don't know why I should nail cushions on a wooden plank, although I may seem to be an ignorant, I prefer them on a sofa. Modern Art is more and more inspired by African primitive art or what our ancestors produced in their caverns. That means nothing new ! I almost throw my tissu in the "bin" below, fortunately it didn't work because it represents the nuclear catastrophe of Fukushima ! There was a long explanation hanging on the wall, which I really needed !

The only apparently "real" artwork was showing how one restored old paintings ! That at least was interesting ! Disappointed I returned home, without buying anything but a thermometer showing in and outdoor temperatures.

On Sunday Nicole and I took the bus to go to the Midi market which is reputed to be the biggest in Europe behind Ventimiglia on the Italian Riviera! On average 450 stand holders sell their wares, mainly foodstuffs and clothes of all varieties. It was cool but sunny and a lot of people there ! She was looking for some T-shirts and a coat, I was looking for nothing but cigarettes for Mr. G. If you meet the right person you can get them half price, which is a big saving ! I found a beautiful beige jacket already for the cold season, with a hood, very important for me as I always forget umbrellas, and she found T-shirts for a ridiculous price of 1 € (1.30 $ ) per piece. We also bought some fruits and vegetables also much cheaper than in Waterloo.

While she was turning around still looking for a coat or jacket, I sat on the terrace of a café there and looked for my cigarette man. Two other ladies were sitting at my table and it turned out they did the same. They were typical Brussels' women talking in the Brussels' slang, which sounds so funny in my ears. I learned a lot from them, where I can buy the cheapest fabrics, clothes and other stuff also during the week. They both were born in Brussels and had lived there their whole life. We had a lot of fun together and suddenly the cigarette man showed up, he looked around if no police was near and then put them in my open shopping bag. I payed and looked innocent while he went away. I love to have a little illegal thrill ! Then Nicole returned without jacket and we took the bus back.

Usually it takes 45 min, but this time we spent almost 2 h in the bus !

In one of the little Flemish towns just before Waterloo, there was the yearly bicycle tour called the De Gordel. This is a partly political, partly family cycling and walking event in the Brussels periphery. The event is organised each year since 1981 on the first Sunday of September. It is meant as a symbolic affirmation that the municipalities involved are part of Flanders. It also expresses the solidarity of the entire Flemish community with the Flemish living in these villages.

Depending on the weather, up to 100,000 participants attend, either cycling or walking.

So close to Brussels, and passing through several Flemish towns with French-speaking majorities in some areas, this sports event gains wide television coverage through news reports and serves as a very visual reminder that linguistic and political divisions among neighbouring regions remain alive in the area immediately surrounding Brussels.

The main street was closed and police everywhere fearing that Flemish extremist would cause troubles. So our bus took us on a "sightseeing" tour all around the little city and finally arrived on the main street again leading to Waterloo.
Knowing that Mr. G. wouldn't miss me at all because he was glued to the TV screen watching the Formular 1, Nicole and I  had a sandwich together before both of us returned home. What an adventure I was half dead when I came home around 4 pm (I had left the house at 10 am)!

For supper Mr. G. had prepared fresh tagliatelle with pesto and shrimps which was very good and then Dominique came over for our "Midsomer murder's" evenings in company of Inspector Barnaby ! This time we reached the average murders of 3 persons !

2 Sept 2012


One Sunday morning I went into the kitchen, to prepare my first cup of coffee, which would be followed by many others during email reading. But what did I see ? A mouse head, facing the cat food bowls as if it wanted to eat ! But where was the body ? I mean a mouse should have paws a body and a tail, but here I only saw the head, thoroughly disembodied from the rest ! A murder had happened in my kitchen and needed to be solved.

I thought to call the Waterloo CSI staff, to analyse the head, but then I thought it is not necessary because it seemed that the mouse smiled and still wanted to eat, all signs that it died happily. I would solve the crime myself in my Miss Marple way.

There were no bloodstains on the floor, it all seemed to have been cleaned up ! I

Who could have done this atrocious murder ? Mr. G. ? he denied ferociously and said he had no knife which  was so sharp to do such a good surgical work !

After having excluded as culprit cat Pookie (too lazy), cat Arthur (too slow) my eyes turned to this one !

Rosie was the killer ! I was sure ! when I told her what I had found, she gave me this innocent look and then went to bed to have a good nap ! How can such an innocent looking girl be such a killer ?

There is no law which says to sentence a cat for killing a mouse,  although it was a planned murder, therefore Mr. G. threw the mouse head in the bin and I finally could drink my first coffee !