30 Dec 2023


Monday was the first Christmas day, most of the shops were closed except the Christmas market ! I made a lazy day, answered Christmas wishes, I haven't got a single in paper, all per email or Whatsapp. That's very nice, because Christmas cards are expensive, the stamps are expensive and the card takes 3 weeks to arrive, or even longer ! 

In Belgium there is no second Christmas day like in other countries, and in the UK is boxing day. When my English was not so good, I wondered why the British people are boxing on Christmas ? I really couldn't understand until my friend Ann explained me that the word "Box" is a carton which contains gifts and not Boxing shows ! They always teased me with my boxing ! 

We had quite a busy week. Every afternoon there is entertainment for the residents. If I like it then of course I'll go. This time we were supposed to pull a piece of paper out of a bowl and there was a word on it and we were supposed to draw it and the others had to find out what it was. I've never seen so many artists and we really had a lot of fun. I had to draw a box. Sometimes it took some time to find out what the drawing represented.

Here is Amandine who is in charge of the well being of the residents. She is an adorable girl and we get very well together. I also try to help her, it is not an easy job.  

Then the birthdays of the month were celebrated with coffee and cake. A choir had been hired who sang very well French songs, some of which also exist in English. The atmosphere was great, some people were dancing, and one saw a lady in a wheelchair wobbling back and forth, she wanted to dance so much. The man took the wheelchair and swung the lady and the wheelchair round and round, it was supposed to be a "rock and roll". How we laughed! And the lady seemed to have found her youth again.

unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of them.

But that was not all, on Friday we were invited to a Cocktail by the manager, there was champagne, appetizers, chips etc. I was lucky I sat with two women and a man, all of whom were all approaching the 90, but very funny. One told me her whole life that her husband was a drunk and, thank God, died early. She never married again but had a few lovers. You couldn't believe it when you looked at her! Then we all got a beautiful cushion which had a plaid inside. Rosie tried it out immediately when I came back.

Again I forgot to take pictures ! Then we had lunch, fortunately, as some of the residents had some glasses too much and were very funny. Finally I thought these oldies (me included)  have more fun then the youngsters. 

So my week went by very quickly. I feel very well here ! No shopping, no cooking, no cleaning, what a paradise !

The only worry I still have is with my landlord, he wants me to pay damages which I had never done, really ridiculous. He probably thought that old woman will pay. There he is wrong ! He doesn't know anything about it and takes me for a fool. 




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27 Dec 2023


The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul
is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with 61 covered streets and over 4,000 shops on a total area of 30,700 m², attracting between 250,000 and 400,000 visitors daily.





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25 Dec 2023







Saturday I wanted to go out a bit, but the weather was so awful that I thought I will catch a cold/Covid,

 Therefore I sent my Christmas cards not by snail mail but by email. Our mail is so slow that I would have to sent the card at Easter so that it arrives at Christmas. The day went by so quickly and while I watched my film in the evening and fell asleep, it was 8.15 pm. The film was very interesting because I woke up at midnight and saw two fighting hippos ! I went to bed and couldn't sleep ! 

I red the happenings on Facebook and watched little movies with monkeys on my Tablet and then finally I slept. Unfortunately Rosie at 7 am did her morning jogging on me, so I got up gave her something to eat, but she wasn't hungry and returned to bed and it was 9 when the girl brought me breakfast. 

On the Breakfast tray were 4 croissants and a napkin which should say "Merry Christmas" unfortunately the personal in the kitchen didn't know English and gave us a napkin which made me laugh !  

Probably it was made for summer parties !

We had no Christmas weather at all, it rained and it was very windy. I went to the restaurant to see if there was something special, but besides that it was so full and noisy because of the visitors who had come to visit their grandmas and pas, so that I quickly returned into my room and waited for the Christmas meal, which was really delicious.  A shrimp salad as starter, a thick slice of meat in a Porto sauce and as dessert Brownies with a vanilla sauce. Maybe they can't speak English, but they can cook !

Had a few phone calls to do and the afternoon was quickly over. Then my son and family made a video call and since I had discovered that Whatsapp also works on a computer I saw the three very well. We chatted for a while and I told them that I had a nice Christmas. I had bought a bottle of alcohol free "Champagne" which tasted very good.

After having watched an old French movie   "Father Christmas is a rat" I went to bed.  I watch it each Christmas or rather we watched it. It is one of the funniest and very psychological French movie which are usually boring stupid. Except those on TV. And so I spent the second Christmas Eve alone, but I didn't feel alone. A ghost called Rick sat besides me !


22 Dec 2023


On Monday was my personal historical day, I don't know why I was in such a stressed state ! I officially gave back the keys to my apartment.  My asthma was very severe and I didn't feel well at all. Luckily Laura, my friend, took over everything, I was like a ghost. And then after my folding chair collapsed under me and I fell on the kitchen floor, The two men helped me on my feet, very worried, but I had nothing I signed the papers and Laura made sure that I did everything right. Then I went home and collapsed on my sofa.

The next days I slept until 9 am and was still tired and in the evening I was in my bed at at 9 pm. But then I read until midnight ! Besides creating Christmas and reading Blog posts I did nothing. I lived like the sisters of Snow White, who didn't nothing too. It is real nice, the only thing I have to do is to dress myself and feed little Rosie. But I took out my little box with Christmas decorations, just a few. I didn't want to do anything, as I will  be alone, but I think I got orders from another world and Rick told me to do at last a bit. He loved my Christmas decoration, as he grew up in Italy and there were other uses, he never had a Christmas tree, but a handmade crib. The Christmas tree and the uses which come with it, he learned from me and loved it.

The whole week I asked to serve my meals in my room, I didn't want to see anybody, I was feeling rather bad and could hardly walk, because it was hard to breath. After the Holidays they will ask for  my Doctor, because even that I don't have to do anymore .... call for an appointment, this was yesterday and what happened ? Today I was fresh like a rose, I had absolutely nothing, and after lunch I took my  car and went into a store, I wanted to buy some socks and just have a look around. I hope it will last, at least a few days.

Here is my decorated room, Rosie is the supervisor and a picture of my  doll house furniture, which I managed to take along too. Now it's finished with moving !!

The entrance from our castle and the reception was also decorated !

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20 Dec 2023


 1. Did you do more talking or more listening yesterday? Was it by choice or by necessity?

Yesterday ? I had to listen more by necessity, because I had a meeting with my landlord and an expert to give the keys back and the expert looked around to see that I hadn't demolished anything or made a fire in the living room. They were satisfied because I left the apartment exactly how I got it. But when it was over  I talked more by choice !

 2. Are you a tea drinker? Hot, cold, or both? Flavored? What do you like in your tea? Do you make Christmas tea this time of year? What time of day do you like to sip your tea? 
I drink tea only in Egypt which is called Karkade. It is made from Hibiscus leaves, but the Hibiscus looks different then here in Europe. In all North African countries this tea is drunk cold or hot and is very refreshing. Unfortunately I don't have any real hibiscus leaves anymore  and what is sold here as hibiscus tea tastes different.
the leaves

and a glass of tea, hot or cold
Otherwise I am only a tea drinker when I have to

3. What's an activity you won't try, an event you won't attend, or an athletic challenge you won't take part in not even for 'all the tea in China'

No sport, no piano concert except Elton John, and certainly no athletic challenge !

4. What's something most people seem to love but is not 'your cup of tea'? 

Sport, gymnastic, running, etc I am far too lazy for that

5. How does your family celebrate New Year's Eve? 

No idea. Christmas is a family event and for New Year each family member does what he wants ! the youth goes out and the oldies eat and drink.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

The only thought I have is to fall asleep and wake up when Christmas and New Year is over !



 Christmas decoration in Brussels.




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15 Dec 2023


What a week ! I am half dead. I had to do so many things, that I just managed to return home and sit down, otherwise I had to sit on the street. I had to go to my  apartment to leave my keys for the cleaning lady. In the living room my whole belongings were piled up and waited to be taken away 2 days later with an elevator. I didn't regret anything, only that it had been such a beautiful apartment, but I lived the worst time of my live in there. 

Now finally my bags are unpacked and I found a place for everything. The trouble is now that I don't remember where I put the things ! I found the long lost car papers again, amongst books and tons of fashion jewelry which I wanted to give away or sell it but like the clothes I wanted to give to charity are also here. I put them in a corner and after Christmas I will get rid of them. 

On Monday is the big day I give the keys of my apartment back and an official expert will look around to see if I didn't demolish anything. Then I will hopefully be in peace. 

Rosie has a lot of success here ! Yesterday came a girl from the kitchen and brought me a bottle of water, her excuse was, she wanted to see Rosie and showed me photos of her two cats. Fortunately Rosie is getting used to so many people who want to pet her and accepted with grace that the girl petted her head ! I think she likes it to be a star !

This morning I saw men collecting the dead leaves, and there were many ! Probably they couldn't use a machine, because the way is too small. Rosie watched them from her tower, as if they were mice !

We have finished the 3 Christmas trees on each floor one except the 4th floor, where the brain damaged people are. Father Christmas greats you at the entry and at the reception stands the big tree and the red star. I will probably put some little things in my room, as there is enough decoration everywhere

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13 Dec 2023


1. Oxford's Word of the Year for 2023 is 'rizz'. Hmmm...before today had you ever heard the word? Do you know what it means? (Apparently it's short for charisma) Have you ever used the word? If you were in charge of the world, what word would you declare word of the year.

Never heard or used the word rizz ! I only know the Ritz ! Had to google to know what it means and Google meaning said :

"Rizz is a colloquial word, defined as style, charm, or attractiveness; the ability to attract a romantic or sexual partner," according to the Oxford University Press. As for the word's etymology, OUP says it's believed to have been taken from the middle of "charisma," much like "fridge" derives from refrigerator.

If that is the word of the year in Oxford, no wonder that there are still wars and troubles, my word for the year is PEACE. It's at least 70 years that everybody normal claims for peace and you see the result ! Charisma and fridge ? what a combination !

2. What's one word you tend to abbreviate in your writing or speech? (as in rizz for charisma) 


3. Are you a Hallmark movie watcher this time of year? What's your favorite character from a holiday- themed movie, book, or TV special? 

I don't know any Hallmark movie, and as for the moment we are drowning in Christmas songs and movies and decoration, I have rather an overdose !

4. Something you look forward to eating this month? 

Oh no ! I can't hear it anymore ! that's the main question here "what are you eating on Christmas" or, today, or during the week ! I don't care about food. I eat because otherwise I would starve, but it is not my main preoccupation.

5. What's the most stressful part of the holiday season for you?

Stressful is not to know with whom and if I will celebrate Christmas. Without Rick it's  not the same anymore.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Last year Rick passed away and we celebrated Christmas the three of us and I also had decorated our home. But this year my life turned upside down,I suddenly realized that he really would never come back. My health declined,  I had to move into a boarding school for the oldies, the only thought I have is : I wished that I can hand over the apartment to the landlord without problems, and that all these festivities stop ! I want to recover and feel more or less normal again !



Once upon a time .....




Our Christmas decoration



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11 Dec 2023



Linking to AWWW MONDAYS 



Here too the days fly by and another weekend is over. It was such a rainy and ugly cold weather, that I preferred to eat in my room, because in the restaurant it lasts too long, with each time 3 or 4 courses. Nobody can starve here !  

But at 3 pm was as activity "Saturday Chatter afternoon". I was curious what people had to say. Fortunately I was sitting together with nice people who didn't have hearing problems and I didn't have to scream. It was interesting, we talked about where we had lived before and what we had done. We laughed a lot, but then I had enough and said good bye. I stood up made to steps and fell, like that without any reason ! Fortunately I missed the Christmas tree by a few cm. They all thought I would land in a hospital, but no, a man helped me to get on my feet and I felt nothing, apparently my fall was something for the circus, but nothing hurt, nothing was broken, I laughed and told them not to worry, and went into my room I bed that they had something to chat about when I was gone !

On Sunday it was also awful, and with all the flues, Covids and Bronchitis which were so friendly and visited the people I thought it is better to stay home instead of going to the Christmas markets in the villages around I went to the restaurant to join the others. The restaurant was nearly full, but I found a place at a table with two ladies I knew, and a compared to the other men looking like a champion Boxer and macho. It turned out that he was one, so not suitable for me and he became angry because I didn't agree with him and dared to tell him so. The two other ladies smiled with satisfaction ! The meal was real good, macho or not, we had a soup, then a salad with Feta (greek cheese) dices, the main course was steak with mushrooms and then a "mousse au chocolat" and coffee. After that I returned to my room and watched my little crime story. With the food we always get red wine, white wine, or beer with or without alcohol. It's funny how the 3rd youth likes the wine, red or white the importance is several glasses ! Most of them drink their carafe which contains 2 glasses. But some sacrifice themselves and empty the other carafes where something is left.

I had  been in my apartment where everything was piled up in the living room ready to be taken down by an elevator. It was strange to return there, it was not the nicest time of my life I spent there !

and Princess Rosie is happy, eats like a horse, sleeps the whole day and works during the night !