11 Apr 2014


1. The week started rather bad ! I was in war with my new Window XP installation in French, the original was in English and the one who had translated these technical terms must have had some whiskies too much !

You really need a lot of phantasy to understand the translations ! Fortunately I know where the places are otherwise with a dictionary I would never have found out. "Settings" for example was translated by "parameter" ! On top of that Picasa went mad and exported my pictures to an unknown place called "Images of the administrator " (in French) instead to "My Pictures" and I had to call Mr. G. for help as he knows all these technical terms in French, which ended up in arguing again, because men and women have a different logic !

2. Our water softener had its yearly check up and the guy should come Tuesday afternoon, which meant that I was stuck home, because I didn't know when he would come ! And if you are not home you have to take another appointment which can be at a time in the blue moon ! Tuesday is also the only day in the week where Mr. G. doesn't stay home with his cats, but goes out to play "Whist" (a card game ) with a group of retirees. So I continued with my French Window XP and found other things which didn't work, I just could pull out all my hair, but the fact that my head is not made to be bald it's not round enough, I refrained. Finally the guy arrived at 4 pm, cleaned and worked on it for an hour, assisted by cat Arthur who loves mechanics. He sneaked around, put his nose in the utensil bag to check what was in there. Fortunately the guy loved cats and we had a long chat about cats !

Arthur sitting on my car and supervising the work !

3.Our son announced his visit with Toby, my grandson, for this weekend, and had suggested that I buy some Easter stuff, as we won't see them on Easter. As Easter is only at the end of the month I hadn't thought about that at all. I went shopping. I was in 3 shops and none had not even a Easter bunny or little baskets, there was nothing left anymore or not yet there ! I hope I still have some things in the basement as most of the Easter stuff I had brought to Amsterdam 2 years ago when we had celebrated Easter together. I found some little things to hide and I think that is the most important thing for a 3 year old kid. The poor thing is very allergic to nuts and all little chocolate eggs I found contained nuts or "may contain nuts"  ! My eyes burnt from reading all the labels ! Next time I take a magnifier glass with me.

4. I was invited by a friend whom I hadn't seen since at least 7 years, somehow we had lost contact. She had remembered me because she needed some support for her oldest cat who is now 19 years old.

Mother and son, the little one is the mother, the son is 18 !

When I arrived I saw a little cat very skinny and she weighs only 2 kgs ! She also has troubles to walk. I think it's only a question of days or maybe two weeks, with cats you never know, and it will be the end. She won't let her suffer and ask the vet to put her asleep when it is time. Then we had to catch up on what happened during all these years and how it was possible that we lost contact. We decided that this would never happen again and will see each other from now on regularly. She is Belgian and her husband is German and was delighted to speak German for once !


Rain was announced for the whole day, and as usual when it should rain, the sun was shining as if payed for ! It had been quite cool and we arrived at Nicole's with thick pullovers ! But on her terrace it was so warm that we had to striptease off one layer after the other and Nicole had to give us sunhats ! We enjoyed a cool drink and had this beautiful view. Her neighbor beneath is a 82 year old lady who mows her rather big lawn alone she was just busy ! I was already tired when I only saw her !

more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.


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10 Apr 2014


From childhood on, I hated men in uniforms, especially soldiers. It probably stems from the time I lived with my grandparents just after the second WW. My grandma had also told me that all men wearing a uniform are bad and/or stupid.

When I was maybe just 3 or 4, I saw the first soldiers in my life and these were the Americans who sat on huge tanks crossing this little town in the middle of the country side, leaving deep holes and traces in the main street. I still can hear the noise it made when the asphalt broke under the curb chains. Although they were waving friendly to the watching population and threw sweets for the children, I was very much afraid.

Each men wearing a uniform, was either bad behaving like the Russians who raped all women in their way and took toilets for machines to wash potatoes, that's what my grandpa had told me. The others were coming back from prison camps looked sick and swollen up like balloons and were all wrecks !

All my little friends had fathers where something was missing. A leg, an arm, an eye, and all that because they had worn a uniform. I grew up seeing them wearing prostheses, and sometimes when I stayed at a friend's house overnight, I saw a leg standing around or an arm laying somewhere and once even a glass eye which stared at me in the bathroom. Therefore with the logic of a child I was convinced that uniforms are equal to war and war to destruction, and if nobody would wear an uniform there would be no war either.

When wars were still a question of men fighting against men, the uniforms were colorful and especially red colors were a nice target. One could see the other from far ! Children, women and the old people weren't damaged the battle fields outside towns.

Over the years the uniforms became more and more ugly and lost all colors. They were made not to be seen. Battle fields disappeared, countries became the battle field with no concern for the population. There were no longer fights with swords, and the first guns which were used often only had one bullet. Today in their camouflage uniforms they have machine guns, shells, bombs and landmines. Whole cities were or are destroyed and millions of innocent people killed.

Actual wars which are going on are later a nice subject for Hollywood films like about Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, former Yugoslavia, etc. And now there are new films in view about Syria for example. At least the film industry has some profit with people wearing uniforms !

Jenny Matlock
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday

9 Apr 2014


Wordless Wednesday
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8 Apr 2014


At a stone's throw from the center of Brussels, Brussels Woluwe site takes a rural aspect. The University ground contains 52 hectares including 4 green spaces, academic buildings, clinics, shops and housing, it is an amazing village in the middle of the city.

The Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc (University clinics of St. Lucas), which are also on this ground is dedicated to health sciences. Pedestrian zone, it offers 26,000 people who attend every day - students, researchers, doctors and patients of clinics - a breath in the hustle and bustle of the European capital.

The grounds of the UCL is not left in the field of cultural openness and relaxation. Research institutes that are implanted drain researchers of all nationalities. Students weave a network of solidarity and animation to the project and student associations organize conferences, concerts, exhibitions, etc..

This photo shows gives you an overview of the whole complex.

There are quite a lot of buildings

A direct subway line from Brussels'center to the campus

Several little restaurants and shops

The Stella Artois (Belgian Beer) sign, just besides the indications to the different buildings

At the entrance of the park is a huge medical herbs plantation, plants which are also used for researches

A long way through the park leads to the University buildings

Students and teachers are enjoying the quietness of the park, for studies, relaxing,  a sunbath or just some chatting.

There are also sculptures exposed from various international artists. Honestly they didn't really attract me and the titles were rather strange. I wished I could see the artist life who created his selfportrait !

7 Apr 2014


Punctually when I needed my computer badly to write and publish my posts, it gave up its soul ! Nothing to do, it wouldn't load anything and the screen remained black with some white scribbles on it. I screamed for help and Mr. G. came vintage style running to see what happened.

Then began the best show of the year. Unfortunately the invisible camera was not here. He tried repairing, by all means, helping himself with a wide vocabulary of not so very nice Italian words. Finally he called a friend, dismantled my whole computer, put it in a bag and disappeared.

Near a nervous breakdown, with a deep sigh of relief I took my little travel computer and ended my work in peace. Then I got a phone call, telling me that they had to take out everything and reinstall a new Window XP. Fortunately by coincidence, as if I had smelled the disaster, I had done a backup two days before ! At least nearly all my pictures where saved ! The next day I got my computer back and then began the second part of this event, which was even worse. Mr. G. had saved as much as he could of the files and folders etc and now had to reinstall the whole stuff. I would have liked to do it myself in my way, but of course he thought I was not able to do this which ended up in a nice verbal fight.

Fortunately our house is detached and we don't live in an apartment, I am sure the neighbors would have called the police, we both have quite some temperament. We are like two volcano with a spectacular eruption and immediately after there is nothing anymore.

The afternoon I went to Ilona, and while we took a sunbath and had some fresh homemade apple juice, I distressed and relaxed, it was really necessary !

Now my computer works very well, like new, but there are still some items missing and the worst thing is everything is written in French and I am not at all used to this technical vocabulary, after doing it in English for 7 years ! Now I have to "copier/coller" instead of "copy and paste" etc ! The worst is when it comes to settings !

Sunday morning while I answered my emails I had a nice street view, some people gathered in front of our house, probably some who did their Sunday walk and met by coincidence.

Then I took the bus and went to the midi market which was packed as usual, even the police was there, probably because of the many pick pockets who are working here.

We always had a large Moroccan community in Brussels, but I had never noticed so many women wearing a scarf. The best is when they also wear very short mini skirts ! Fashion is fashion and not always religion.

On my way back sitting in the bus I saw a large flock of pigeons flying over and over and then suddenly all landed on the roof of a hospital. It looked quite funny.

In the nearby park people started arriving with blankets and pick-nicks, enjoying the warm weather.

Behind me in the bus were 3 Japanese teenagers sitting and chatted. As I didn't understand a word I felt like sitting in a chicken coop for 45 min, and my head was exploding. Promptly I fell asleep while watching TV. 

In the afternoon, I still had things missing in my computer and suddenly Picasa in French ! I couldn't find the place from where I had to download my photos etc, etc.

Tomorrow is another day !