20 Mar 2020


This week was very strange. It was the first week we were totally confined in our homes. It is a real strange feeling when you drive through Brussels or Waterloo or other towns they alll are empty no traffic jams, nothing.

I had done all my shopping when the rush had not yet started so I didn't have to go out. But the idea to be locked in against my will didn't please me at all and my scrabble girls all agreed confined or not we stay confined together and scrabble. At least that seemed a normal afternoon to us. Anyway the weather was bad so we had a nice afternoon.

The ghost town

Next day again empty streets, lots of people working from home. No kids on the street they had to stay inside ! Poor parents ! I did my blogging work and in the afternoon it was a real funeral weather grey, humid and a lot of rain. Not good for our already damaged mood !

We met at Myriam's  and exchanged the last Corona news. Myriam and Nicole had still their grand children stuck in Morocco and in the Philippines. And we are not allowed to travel either ! A friend has her 88 year old mother alone in France and wanted to visit her, but she couldn't. Had to postpone her visit after April 3. I don't know who has fixed the date of the end of the virus crisis on the 3rd. Must be a clairvoyant, or somebody has it planned (??)

At least the following day the weather was wonderful, the sun shining, warm, a real nice weather to go out for a walk. But ... you are allowed to walk in couples, what the third person has to do is not precised. Could be the grandparents or simply two toddlers, do they have to walk alone behind. And always at 1.50 m distance ! Have to take a meter along !

We didn't care we sat on Nicole's terrace in the sunshine and Isis was happy to have company and be combed. First we had thought to do a little walk, but we all didn't feel like walking in the park and been checked and asked what we are doing there !

Mr. G. went early shopping, now for retired people they open Supermarkets from 8 - 9 am (when I am still sleeping) and only 4 persons were allowed to go inside. He bought his stuff and my apples and returned quickly home. At other supermarkets people were already lined up and waited to be let in. New rules 1 client per 10 square meters and half an hour shopping. In order to avoid hoarding food and empty the shelves, there are security guards now to check the caddies.

As usually after painting class we are going together into a restaurant, I invited my 2 friends (the third couldn't come) in the restaurant "Gattina" where I served a "Quiche Lorraine" and a mousse au chocolat. Mr. G. had nice company, 2 ladies who listened to his stories, while the third one closed her ears after 50 years of marriage you knew them all  by heart. 

When we had finished, we watched a movie I had recorded "Vera" during which Nicole fell asleep and Myriam too. Unfortunately when my camera was ready to take a picture they opened their eyes. We chatted a bit and then they returned home. And we had survived the first week.

At 8 pm we should all go outside and applaud the nurses and doctors, but in my street there was nobody. Not even a cat.

Our house sale is stopped, nobody allowed to visit and all workmen don't work (sounds good) My cleaning lady is not allowed to come, the hairdresser is allowed to take one client per hour ! They are not happy. Deliveries are put in front of your door, and you don't have to sign the reception. The virus could jump on the tablet.

We all feel not real. We have never lived such a situation to be confined and not allowed to go outside except for food shopping. Even the dentist doesn't work !

And even after a week people are still hoarding !

more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

19 Mar 2020


The prompt of this week's One liner Wednesday is :

What small things in your life do you now have time to make great?

I don't know small things in my life and what is a small thing ? A plant which becomes suddenly a tree ? Really I have no idea what I should make great now.

Of course as I am retired, I have more time to do my hobbies, which means that I can take pictures and change them but if that means that they are great afterwards, I have my doubts, that's the same with my second hobby painting. I paint mostly acrylic, but I doubt that once I will become a great painter.

All this doesn't bother me I am quite happy with my life, I have no serious health problems, but I have problems with the new Government instructions for the Belgian population to fight against the Coronavirus.

We are confined at home, that means we are not allowed to go out, except for shopping (half an hour) I don't know who will control that. All shops or shopping centers are closed except those who sell food. Pharmacies remain open too. I have the feeling to live in another world. The cashier girl is dressed like a nurse with rubber gloves and mask. Only 1 person per 10 square meters are allowed to be in the shop. There are security guards everywhere. All surgeries are cancelled unless your life is in danger. All hospital beds are for Coronavirus patients. If you don't have a very serious problem at your teeth, don't try to go to a dentist they are closed. Hairdressers are allowed to take one client !

You are allowed to walk outside and take some fresh air, but only alone or two people together with the legal distance of 1.50 m. I don't know where we have to put the old grandma or grandpa or the child if you are a couple. Maybe they have to walk alone at distance and who pushes the wheelchair ? Police is controlling if there are not 5 people sitting on one bench. You risk a fine of 300 to 8000 Euros.

My head is exploding from all these interdictions.

Finally you don't know anymore what is allowed and what is not allowed. As restaurants and cafes are also closed, you have to cook yourself because no the take away  anymore of Hamburgers and Pizzas that is now is closed too. Too dangerous for the personal. Some restaurants not to loose too much money sell their plates as take aways.

Theoretically I am not allowed to visit a friend and if she needs something I have to ring the doorbell and put the things in front of her door and run away ! At the same time you are allowed to invite one person but keep a distance of 1.50 m !

OK I would accept all that if ALL countries would do the same ! But not at all, the UK which is 300 km far from Brussels; separated by the sea, nothing is closed and people live as if there was no Corona Virus and if it could swim over to Belgium ? In the Netherlands our neighbor with a distance of 200 km only the restaurants and bars and pubs are closed but the coffee shops where you can smoke your canabis remains open. Maybe it is a medication for the Virus

And this mess  will last until the 3 or 5th of April, they gave two dates, where apparently we are supposed to be in no danger anymore.

Now I am really curious who will win the challenge, the countries which did nothing or only a little against this virus or the once who locked us up and kept us in prison.

BTW we are not allowed to travel either !!

Hey girls ! Keep a distance of 1.50 m

Linking to Linda G.Hills One Liner Wednesday - Challenge

18 Mar 2020



queuing up in the whole world ....

only for that ! More precious then gold bars !

more participants here,
and Image-in-ing

17 Mar 2020


For the 50th anniversary of Belgium the King Leopold II had built the Cinquantenaire in honor of 50 years of Belgium.

It is a quite impressive monument and when I saw the Berlin Gate which is so famous I was disappointed because it seemed so small to me compared to this one ! Maybe I shouldn't say that, but for me it is the truth. I think the Berlin Gate is so famous because of its history.

On the left and right side of the gate are buildings converted to museums.

View on the park and a boulevard which leads to Tervueren

You can read more about it here in my COUNTRY CITIES BLOG

more participants here

16 Mar 2020


Little figurines



Because of this beautiful little ball, which looks like a modern painting, the whole country is in a kind of prison.  As all activities, cinema, theatre, expositions etc are closed, the only amusement or distractions are the food stores which remain open.

Ever since I have seen the battle to catch toilet paper on TV I didn't do any shopping and preferred to stay home. But in the afternoon I had enough of computer work and TV and called Nicole. She was bored to death too and called Myriam and at the end we all met at Nicole's just for a chat and everything what we had heard. Poor Nicole was worried about her grand daughter, stuck on an island in the Philippines from where she tried to get to Manila to wait for a plane for Brussels.  Apparently she has to wait for 3 days in Manila. Myriam too has troubles with her son who is stuck in Marrakech and has to wait a week until he can get a plane back to Brussels. I am more lucky my son sits in Amsterdam in his house and works from home.

Poor Mr. G's weekly Whist games are cancelled too as the building which also contains the Tennis Club is closed. So he plays Whist with his computer and watches TV and is bored. The worst is that our cat Arthur who entertained us always is gone forever a week ago and the house seems so empty without him. We miss him so much.

Our son had the intention to come next weekend but told me he won't come, now I don't know if he is scared to bring us the Virus or if he is scared to catch the Virus here. In any case there is nothing to do, we have to go through this.

On Sunday it was the same scenario, for once since a very long time I stayed in bed until 11 ! When I had seen the dark grey sky outside, I fetched a cup of coffee, returned to bed and read Facebook stories about ..... Corona Virus. There were so many jokes about it, which made me laugh.

In the afternoon we three girls met again this time at Myriam's. I left Mr. G. with his American bloody Expert or Chicago Police at home and picked up Nicole, who had terrible back ache due to the humid weather. As we three absolutely need to discuss we thought we will get together every day until this quarantine is over. For the moment they talk about April 3rd !!  Despite the two days of discussion of all kind of things and how this virus has arrived in China and spread out in the whole world, we couldn't find an answer to the question "Why do people fight for toilet paper" ?? and not only in Belgium but in the whole world ???

So far we have 886 infected people in Belgium and 4 death 90,86,80 and 73 years old. Third age teenager I would say.

This was the first Corona Virus weekend.