24 May 2024


The week started with mixed but warm weather and our animator decided to plant flowers in the pots.  

I personally don't like gardening, I only love beautiful gardens when they are done. Therefore I made the photos. Some of the residents really woke up and bloomed happily and stuck their hands up to their arms in the fresh earth. The result was also very nice and later, when we were all sitting around the table with coffee and cookies, they talked about their gardens at home. It was a wonderful afternoon that we spent in the sunshine.

Of course the next day it started to rain again, I had to go out to buy litter for cat Rosie and the cream for my face (what a combination) and also bought some Kiwis and apples. There was not a lot of choice of fruits, the steady rain even in the sunshine countries and the South of France were the culprit ! On top very expensive ! As the rain was very heavy in some areas of Belgium, there were again whole villages under water ! And it rained the whole day !

It didn't stop the next day and it was rather cool, I did my walk but not half an hour the air was to humid, but at least a bit every day ! We gathered in our Restaurant and chatted until the son of our little Italian mamma resident came to visit her and entertained us with stories out of his mother's life, she had raised 5 children and was 3 years old when her father followed the other Italians to Belgium to work in the coal mines. She didn't remember, because slowly her brain lets her down.

The guy was very funny typical Italian and while he talked he mimed his stories. I was used to talking Italians narrating a story, but the others not and were thrilled and laughed their heads off.

On Thursday it still rained and we were almost all there for the animation afternoon.

Each of us got a balloon to blow up for me and some others we made mini balloons and Kim had to blow them up.  Then we made gymnastic with the balloons with hand and feet and the balloons were so slippery that they went in all direction and we had to "run" to pick them up again. At the end we shot with hands and feet and worse then a primary school. Laughing is also a sport !

On Friday morning I woke up because of a terrible noise, I jumped out of my bed and saw a huge crane with a "stalker" standing on the platform and writing something. I thought it would be "fun" if they started repairing the roof now! But a little later that was all I saw through my window.


In the afternoon we played again another game which nobody of the residents knew it was called "toss cans" in English but "Massacre" in French. The title was scary but the game finally fun. 

We had to toss a mountain of I don't know how many red cans, we could do it three times and had to knock them over. Many people didn't have enough strength, I had strength but didn't hit no can because I always threw over the cans ! Afterwards we had our coffee as usual. 

Our Room cleaner Albert participated too, and poor Kim had to pick up all the cans ! Even a little dog was watching !

And another week was over, and no hope for better weather !

more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

23 May 2024


1. What are you currently juggling in your life? 

with my lung disease, for the moment I  am quickly breathless and cannot walk far, I have to sit down and get my breath back. That limits me in many things. I no longer dare to travel like I used to, because I don't want to slow down the group by lagging behind. Since Rick died my COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) has gotten much worse. It causes obstructed airflow from the lungs. I have up and downs and I never know when it comes and how long it lasts.

2. How often do you buy new clothes? What was the last piece of clothing you purchased?
I admit I buy quite often new clothes, but I don't spend a lot of money. My motto is cheap and chic, instead of expensive and chic, that's easy. I don't care about quality, because I don't want that the cloth lasts too long, and ends at the flea market because I am long gone ! What's amazing is that very cheap outfits last longer (some more then 15 years) and I don't give them away, because they are still very in fashion. The last piece of clothing I bought were three elastic trousers, in blue, red and turquoise, bought on Internet, because the rain stops me to go to the biggest market of Brussels.
This market is my personal "boutique" to buy clothing

3. What food festival would you most like to attend? If you need help here are links to some of the bigger and more popular food events around the world-

Ten Food Festivals Worth Traveling To Find

2024 Best Food And Drink Festivals And Events In The US

20 Popular Food Festivals Around The World In 2024 For Your Unconditional Love Of Food

I am really not interested in Food Festivals, I prefer to go in a good restaurant with friends, enjoy a good meal and discussions.


4. May is the 5th month of the year. Tell us something you remember about your 5th grade year. 

I had to check what 5th grade means and found out that in Belgium the kids are then 10/11 years old. At that time I still lived in Bonn (Germany) and only remember a few children who were "weird", one had white hair. Much later I found out that she had been lying under the rubble of her parents' house for 3 days. The others also had terrible experiences. But at that age I wasn't surprised, life was just like that. The war had only been over for 8 years and many things were missing and rebuilding the bombed out cities was the top priority.

Me at 10 or 11

5. What are your favorite five words right now? 

That's difficult I have to translate from French to English and the words are longer. But I say every day "what a shit weather again" in all languages I know ! 

Napoleon's soldiers in the rain

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

At the moment I'm not thinking about anything, the weather has been bad for months, there are a lot of festivals at the moment that I can't go to either because of the rain or because I can't walk much. I don't know if I can travel or where, so I don't think anything and wait and see.
What comforts me is my beautiful room here in the castle, the large park where I can go for a walk whenever I want, and the friendly, warm atmosphere that exists between the residents and the staff.


22 May 2024

20 May 2024


 Pictures from the past .....







We had severe flooding in some parts of Belgium. Even very close to here, fortunately apart from a lot of water on the lawn, we were spared from flooding. The castle is also located on a small hill.

As it was Pentecost a lot of residents had visitors or had been taken out for the afternoon by the families. We remaining, played a game which turned out to be a catastrophe, Kim, our animator, played a song and we had to find out the singer and the title of the song. He had chosen songs which were famous in their generation, with the result that the girls of this time had no time to listen to songs they had to work on a farm and nobody knew the song or singer or sometimes only the song but not the title. 

For me the songs were not modern enough and on top in French, when I started to go out there were other songs and other singers and a lot of English once. The girls didn't find any song or singer, and said, that when they danced they didn't care who was singing, but the two men found two songs ! It didn't matter we had fun listening to all kind of stories from their youth.

Listening to the songs

On Sunday it was rather cool, it didn't rain, but it was cloudy and we couldn't sit outside. Fortunately Kim entertained us this long weekend and he brought his dog Litchi along. It's interesting how dogs can feel the weakest once amongst us ! It was the second time she came and went immediately to a lady who hang in her wheelchair and her husband fed her ! Litchi laid her head on her lap and looked at her and she made a grimace which probably was a smile. Then he went to another one, who sat on a chair but looked lost, indeed she slowly looses her mind, and she greeted her the same way ! Then only she said hello to all the others !


Then she lay happily on the floor and listened what we said. Our game was to find French words, which were not used in Belgium, because we used other words. One word the French took into their dictionary and this was the word Kot. They use it too. In fact the origin is in the Brussels dialect and means a Studio for a student. Kot sounds nicer then studio ! The discussions became very animated because some only used the French words and others the Belgian once, I said I use both, it depends with whom I speak. Then we had our coffee and cookies together. Meanwhile the sun had come out and we tried to go out, but it was too cool for me and some others too, so we returned to our rooms.

Tomorrow is another holiday, we hope for sunshine !