9 Mar 2019


After high school I went to a business school in Brussels. In Germany I had English at school but no French and when my parents moved to Brussels to finish high school I went to the German school.

The first year in the French speaking school was awful, because I couldn't follow at all. The only class where I was very good was where we learned typwriting and I used to bash everybody out on a manual typewriter.

It looked like this, the keyboard was covered so that I couldn't see the letters. That way I learned "blind typing".  Fortunately later I didn't have to bash on the keys, I had an IBM typewriter with a ball, I typed so quickly that the ball always jumped out and rolled through the office. My peers complained because they all ran behind the ball and asked me not to type so fast. When I look at this typewriter today I feel like an antique ! What progress had been made since I started working !

The Business school was very famous in France and Belgium and located in an old manor house ! Our classes were in all available rooms which had been converted into to classrooms. Even the kitchen ! The house was high and narrow and we had to climb the old creaky stairs up and down to join the classes !

It was a rather old fashioned school in my eyes, because I wasn't used to uniforms at school, no school in Germany had uniforms anymore after WWII apparently they had enough of uniforms. But here the girls had to wear blue aprons ! I had never worn and apron either and found it very funny !  The students were all very nice to me and helped me with my language difficulties.

I head to repeat my first year because I had only learned French, but meanwhile I understood enough to follow the same class again and of course I had a better bash this second time !

The good thing was that when I had my diploma in the pocket I found immediately a job as translator. Companies were looking for German and English speaking people. The UK was not in the Common Market yet (today European Union) and it was difficult for them to get a work permit.

I wonder now, with the Brexit, how British employees will be able to continue working in Belgium they would need a work permit. They will probably be replaced by Belgians, meanwhile a lot had learned English. Of course it also depends on the position of the employee. I have heard in the News that 2700 British have already become Belgians because they have their life here.

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My cats and funny stories here

8 Mar 2019


The week began with a terrible storm during the night and in the morning I checked around the house if something had fallen, but besides a flower pot and the plastic cover over the garden furniture there was nothing else. Others were not so lucky, trees had fallen and roofs blown away. It was still very windy and cold and I had to put the heating on again, so I stayed home and did some computer work and sorted out some old pullovers.  Now I have two bags full of clothes to give for the homeless and poors.

The kids had started their Carnival holidays and really have no luck with this bad weather.

Our Scrabble was at Ilona's who lives 15 km from Waterloo, and it was cold this day, but she lightened her stove and it quickly became warm.

This time I was second out of 5 which was very good for me, as usually I am always the last one, or nearly.

I was forced to go out because I had to pick up a fluff razor which I had ordered on Internet, because the armchair had been used as scratch post for one of my cats and a lot of fluffs were hanging out. That thing works terrific, the fabric looks like new !!

And as I was already out, I filled up my stock of cleaning products, a new computer wireless mouse and some other little things.

Nicole was looking for a new wardrobe and I am flirting with a new Television furniture, because I am really fed up with our old thing which is not practical for a new TV as it only has a limited space.
We thought to have a look at Ikea. We walked around found the furniture, but the wardrobe was too large and not so nice, and the TV cabinets were all white or grey. I don't know why but all furniture had the same colors white and black ! I don't like either white nor black I think these are dull colors.
But we had a very good lunch, the food is always very good there and so cheap !

We were quite tired from walking around and thirsty too, and wanted to stop at the Ikea restaurant,  but there were so many kids running around and it was so noisy that we preferred to have our drink somewhere else.

We stopped in a little village on our way back in an ancient Guild house which had been converted into a café. I was really tired when I arrived home ! Ikea is so huge !

And in the evenings we are watching Television together, Arthur on my lap and Rosie just besides, sometimes it's the other way around it depends who arrives first !

more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

6 Mar 2019


Decoration for your garden

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and Image-in-ing

As it is still to early to think about planting flowers and others things in our gardens, we thought we would look for some decoration. Not so for me, because in my garden there are quite a lot of cat sculptures or figurines. But my friend Myriam was looking for something nice for around her swimming pool and also for the front yard.

We saw some really funny things ! A yoga frog, and a huge hyppo both for probably relaxing purposes, because if I looked at the hyppo it made me want to lay besides it. The comic bird made us laugh and the dog which looked deep in the grass for a bone too.

This face is not really made to cheer you up when you look out of your window, it's rather creepy. She didn't like the spitting dwarf or whatever it was (an elf ?) she said it would cause her a nervous breakdown. The snail was too pink and didn't fit.

and this lady was too voluminous to fit around the swimming pool. I laughed my head off when I thought what her guests would think finding this lady doing her gymnastic around the pool.

I had difficulties to understand how one could put skulls in his garden (see picture above) ! A new Goth fashion or what the house owner found in his garden digging for a flower bed ? Maybe the house was built on a graveyard ?  I don't know why but the owl made me think of all the bad things I had done during the week, with its severe look.

After having laughed enough she didn't buy anything and we will look in another shop.

Honestly I prefer my sculptures and cat Arthur too and I would need a lot of help to put them up.

Linking to One Liner Wednesday

5 Mar 2019


The storm "Freya" a gift from the UK, had finally reached my area and the wind was blowing in some regions at 200 km/h. Fortunately the day before it was just windy and rainy and with two friends we were looking for some spring views to cheer us up.

We found it a few km further from Waterloo in a huge Garden Center called the "Groen Decor" (Green deco) because it is in the Flemish part of Brussels' surroundings.

At least it was open on a Sunday and we could walk around and plan what to buy for our gardens later.

It is really very big and you find all flowers or plants to your hearts content !

Of course also decoration. Some of them were really funny. I wouldn't put a hill of skulls in my garden, maybe I would get into troubles with the police who is looking for a mass murderer.

My friend bought the little sheep, an ivy and the two little trees. Nobody wanted the frogh though.

They also have garden furniture and started an Easter display

Animal selling is now not allowed anymore in these big centers, only fishes. Some big kois looked at me.

I liked this huge vase with only a few branches

Beautiful flowers

and an idea how to separate you from your neighbour. The "wall" was made with ivy in a pot and just a few fake flowers.

Believe it or not but these are all fake flowers. If it hadn't been written on a label above, we would never have believed it, they were so well made.

These cactus' name in French is "Mother in Law" cushion .... maybe some of you want to buy it ?

After we had finished, impossible to see all, we returned and on our way back we stopped for a drink in a little village called Dworp

We had our drink in "De Zwaan" (the swan) a very old bistro

The city hall of Dworp is a beautiful old building.

more participants here


3 Mar 2019


Poor kids and poor working people ! While we had nearly spring during the last 2 weeks the weekend and the school holidays are "blessed" with rain and storm this weekend and the following week.

I spent Saturday home where it was warm and cosy and hopped from TV to Computer and the other way around.

The neighbor's cat sat on the garden shed and played stalker, while I was busy with Internet shopping. Unfortunately I had discovered that lots of things are much cheaper and of course I found things I absolutely needed, which were a weather station (ours was broken) indicating inside and outside temperatures, cat food and a scratching post, because when cat's can't go outside they choose chairs and armchairs for their pedicure ! I was very proud because I got everything nearly half price as if I would have bought the things in a shop and I didn't have to go out and get wet.

The day ended with watching Inspector Lewis and I walked again through Oxford as I had done during 4 days 4 years ago ! Only at that time I looked for Inspector Morse ! Of course Rosie watched with me while Arthur prefered Mr. G.

Sunday Nicole and I were fed up to stay home and we met with another friend in a little Restaurant "La Brioche" where they have a Breakfast buffet with a great choice. After breakfast which was almost a lunch, we went to a Garden Center, the only shop open on a Sunday. But it is huge ! We arrived at 2 pm and left at 4 ! There was so much to see ! 

and while outside the wind blew and it was cold and humid we enjoyed flowers and their beautiful colors. Nicole bought the 3 little trees for her terrace and an ivy in a pot. Then she saw this cute little sheep out of stone and bought it too.

In the animal section there was this toy for dogs which she put on her head and of course made us and the people around laugh ! She looked terrific ! Then we had walked and seen enough and were very thirsty.

We stopped in a nice little town and went in a old Café/Pub called "De Zwaan" which means the Swan. We were in the Flemish part of Brussels surroundings.

Of course we all had a beer to quench our thirst. There were not many people yet but when we left the café was full.

We spent a very nice day and I had bought 5 flower pots because the once I had for years were now broken.