I think I’m finally allowed to reveal that my best friend has just given birth to wonderfully healthy, adorable, scrumptious little twins.
A boy and a girl.
Hurrah to these delightful, beautiful little babies and a massive well done and huge congratulations to my gorgeous friend and her husband who created two such perfect, miniature, 6lb human beings. Continue reading “Welcome to parenthood…that’s the last hot meal you’ll be eating for a very long time!”
Whilst I always attempt to be interesting, topical, thought-provoking or just write a witty little piece on something that has happened to me, I appreciate that not all of my blog posts will hit the mark with everyone.
Occasionally I write a piece that I am genuinely proud of and on those rare occurrences I will allow myself to think for just a short time that maybe, just maybe it will come to something but alas, sandwiched there on social media newsfeeds between a picture of a slightly amusing shaped potato that someone found lurking at the bottom of their salad drawer and yet another video of a cat doing an acrobatic display after a cucumber creeps into its peripheral vision, it’s so easy to scroll past.
One second and it’s gone, never to be seen again amongst the army of other posts and shares clamouring for attention like the ever open mouth of a persistently hungry baby bird and once again my efforts will slide into total obscurity. Continue reading “Trying to be heard above the eternal din.”
As you probably already know, I didn’t watch the Royal Wedding last weekend but after so many people mentioned it, I really couldn’t help but perform a Google search for Bishop/Reverend Michael Curry’s sermon to see what all the fuss was about. It’s a pleasure and also a very rare experience for me to be able to write about something that was witnessed by an estimated 1.9 billion people, as you know my witterings are normally confined to things that have happened in my own very sheltered life, so I’m confident that this week, a very large percentage of you will know exactly what I am talking about.
Yes, THAT sermon!
I call it the post-holiday fug!
Many people probably assume, on account that they believe me to be a staunch royalist, that I will absolutely be watching the Royal Wedding.
Well, I won’t be.
It is true, I am a loyal supporter of our sovereign but since there has only been one reigning monarch during my lifetime then I am not sure if that makes me a ‘royalist’ or just a huge fan of HRH Queen Elizabeth II. After she is gone, I’m not entirely sure how I will feel about the rest of the Royal family.
So am I royalist, a loyalist, a monarchist?
I have full admiration and respect for our Queen. I believe she is an incredibly hard working lady. Not in the sense of manual labour, naturally, but she has certainly served her country impeccably and continues to do so some thirty years after most normal British citizens would expect to be retired and to be taking their well-deserved rest.
She is a remarkable lady indeed.
It was a complete and utter surprise on account that
a) he has already purchased me a beautiful vintage emerald and diamond ring and
b) I had never even heard of this relatively exclusive, handmade, celebrity trending ‘must have’ perfume.
Is it remotely possible that my husband is more ‘on point’ than me?
The use of a highly irritating term that has been seriously over-used to the point of it no longer being ‘on-point’ is an obvious irony that I hope you will fully understand.
It turns out that this fragrance is only available from some of the most prestigious of outlets; Harrods, Liberty and Selfridges to name but a few and I was suitably impressed that he had not only ‘considered’ it as a gift but had even gotten to the stages of registering an account with Liberty of London, and actually adding it to his shopping basket before his hesitation and natural reservations about purchasing it set in.
As it was he didn’t buy it and in reality was never going to because he already knows full well that buying me a gift that I have not previously mentioned or specifically chosen for myself, or have never even heard of is likely to be met with the ‘WTF’ or ‘This does not compute’ face:
So, I recently made my husband a Marmite sandwich as a quick and easy, savoury midday snack as the fridge was decidedly barren of any meat or cheese products, or really anything for that matter. Yes, a shopping trip was long overdue but in my defence, we had been away all of that week and the weekend and I was unsure as to whether we would also be away for the whole of the following week too.
Obviously, a Marmite sandwich must be served on soft white sliced bread, buttered right to the edges and then a generous spread of Marmite to be enjoyed at it’s absolute best. Thankfully, we at least had fresh bread and butter and there is always a pot of opened Marmite in the cupboard.
As it turns out, at the age of 49, it was the first ever Marmite sandwich that my husband had knowingly experienced (he’s previously only ever partaken of Marmite ‘on toast’ before) and he enjoyed it very much indeed.
Being the total domestic Goddess that I am, I told him, “You wait until summer is here then and I make you a Marmite and cucumber sandwich, that is gonna blow your mind baby!”
I know, I’m such a little tease. Continue reading “A post entirely dedicated to the ‘humble’ Marmite sandwich…… well almost entirely!”
Do you remember that advert; If Carlsberg made hotels they would probably be the best hotels in the world?
Well after our abysmal travel disappointments of earlier last week, I told you that we still had our anniversary celebrations to look forward to.
I can now happily inform you that last weekend, we spent a wonderful weekend away and for perhaps the first time ever, I have ZERO complaints!
That is correct; None, Nada, Nicht, Rien, Zilch.
Well, apart from the several huge mosquito bites that I picked up but that is not really avoidable unless you go out wearing a full head to toe mosquito net, like the one below and I rather feel that it would have spoilt the overall glamorous look that I was going for. Continue reading “If Carlsberg made hotels…….”
I’m currently confined to another Ibis hotel whilst writing this blog, well the same one we frequent in Ales actually, and yes, 18 months on the chip/chewing gum/slug thing that I have previously mentioned being stuck on the ceiling at stairwell 4 is absolutely still there!
Still clinging on.
In fact, we also stayed here last week and on that occasion, we were put into a room on floor two which, as it turns out, is the only floor that we have not previously stayed in and also the only floor out of the five available that has been recently refurbished. When I say ‘recently refurbished’, I mean that it has been completed in the last two/three years, though it is quite bizarre that the refurbishment is limited to just small parts of the hotel, mainly the reception area and restaurant and floor two. Why not start at floor one? I will freely admit that this perplexing approach to refurbishment aggravates my OCD tendencies a little. Also, much of the refurbishment is still very dated. Perhaps they get the hand me down interiors from other Accor hotels that are upgrading. Maybe the Mercure pass their ten-year-old interiors onto Ibis, and Ibis pass their twenty-year-old interiors onto Ibis Budget and so on. Continue reading “A decidedly disappointing and distinctly dreadful dinner!”
Until about five minutes before I started writing this, I literally had no idea on what subject I was going to focus on for this week’s blog, but then I saw a post from one of my friends on Facebook (naturally!) about a possible impending solar flare within the next few days and it reminded me of a story that my husband was recently relating to me.
As you would expect, I was only partially listening to him on account that the introduction to the said story contained the words ‘catastrophic’, ‘youtube video’ and ‘….was really interesting’.
These are normally the keywords that trigger me to mentally switch off or zone out but to ensure that I randomly utter the odd “Oh?” and “Hmmm. Interesting!” at various intervals during the next few minutes or until I hear him stop talking. Hee Hee Hee…clever me! Continue reading “Victims of our own success”
When I first met my husband he described me as a ‘one-woman war machine’ on account of the fact that I was feisty and I pretty much got things done if I decided that I wanted to and if I didn’t want to do something then it was nigh on impossible to make me budge. I would not suffer fools, I would rarely take ‘No’ for an answer and I was a proper Little Miss Bossy Boots.
Without wishing to be too depressing this week I have, understandably, recently been reflecting on the death of my father and not just that of my own father but also several other current situations that are affecting those close to me as cherished loved ones of friends take a turn for the worst.
Euthanasia is the practice of intentionally ending a life to relieve pain and suffering. There are different euthanasia laws in each country.
The term Euthanasia is derived from the Greek word euthanatos which essentially translates as easy death.
Assisted suicide and Euthanasia are currently prohibited in the UK by section 2(1) of the Suicide Act 1961. Continue reading “This one-woman-war-machine wills a revolution to break the chains on Euthanasia in the UK”
I awoke on Wednesday this week to discover that one of my idols was no longer with us. No, not Ken Dodd… I’m talking about Stephen Hawking.
Just as the world starts to go completely mad and a number of episodes of Black Mirror actually start coming true*, one of the last bastions of hope, logic, rationality and reasoning has departed this mortal coil but not before he left his undeniable mark on humanity and certainly not least before his sheer willpower to live saw him defy medical odds for over five decades. Having been diagnosed with motor neurone disease at the age of 21 and given a rather grim life expectancy of just two years, he amazingly and against all the odds battled to live to the age of 76.
The entire world of journalism has been paying tribute to this brilliant man this week, so I’m not going to rehash yet another summarised biography of his life, his trials and tribulations, for we are all more than aware of who he is, what he achieved and what he represented but I just wanted to share my huge respect for him. Continue reading “What happens when all of our heroes have finally gone and left us?”
Yes, admittedly once again I am very late to the party!
I have only just discovered the brilliant ‘Black Mirror’ another much-lauded television series which first aired on Channel 4 for two seasons between 2011 and 2014 which was then subsequently purchased by Netflix who added the existing Seasons 1 and 2 to their catalogue and consequently commissioned 12 more episodes with a much bigger budget, that formed Seasons 3 and 4 and which aired on Netflix in 2016 and 2017.
It is owing to Netflix that I am now devouring my first few episodes.
I know it must seem like I have a full-time relationship with Netflix.
I suppose you could be forgiven for thinking that I am a lazy cow, who sits on my arse binge-watching season after season of fictional entertainment and in some respects this is true but I like to call it ‘research’ you know, for my ‘work’.
That unpaid job that I do, writing this blog. Continue reading “‘Black Mirror’ a modern day take on the ‘Twilight Zone’ and ‘Tales of the Unexpected’ and an all too frequently disturbing insight into a potentially bleak future of our very own making.”
Many of you in the UK braced yourselves for snowfall this week, some of you experienced just a light dusting reminiscent of icing sugar on the top of a mouthwatering Victoria sponge cake and some of you received six to eight inches of deep, satisfying snow carpeting your immediate surroundings, causing temporary hysteria and hampering daily activities.
Some of you may have been aware that a large amount of France was blanketed in a jolly good dose of snow a couple of weeks back, so welcome to the club, glad you could finally join us!
Any of you that have recently experienced snowfall, will fully understand that my comment in my recent blog about the huge advancements we have made in technology and space exploration is all well and good but we still have made no advancements whatsoever in coping with the problems we face each year, when just a few centimeters of snow grace our homelands.
In many European countries, we are still absolutely crap at dealing with it despite that several other countries experience snow for a considerable amount of the year and cope perfectly well on a daily basis. Continue reading “SNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW!”
Dear Chaps, Chapesses,
Sorry, but there is no blog again this week (for the second week running) on account of my spending an inordinate amount of time in the car, trawling around various parts of France this week and sleeping at three different Ibis hotels in just three nights with check-ins averaging 7 pm and check-outs at 8 am.
The map below only indicates the estimated time it would take to travel the total distance we covered this week and obviously does NOT include any additional time spent stuck in various traffic jams around Lyon due to demonstrating farmers or time sucked up by that eternally contrary bitch, Paris or waiting for my husband to quickly ‘pop’ into a customer for ten minutes which actually turned out to be five+ hours.
Continue reading “It’s not that I’m lazy, I’m just really, really good at doing nothing.”
This week I received notification that I was having difficulty logging in to Facebook.
Nope. Not me.
Immediately you suspect that someone is trying to hack your account but before doing anything rash it is always advisable to give the email a good glance over to make sure that it, in itself, looks to be genuine, like some of the fake emails that purport to be from Paypal advising you of your recent costly purchase, quite frighteningly these can look pretty genuine, unlike in stark contrast the scam attempts from people purporting to be the National Bank of Uganda informing you of your $1,000,000,000,000,000 inheritance and to urgently send instructions of a clearing account.
The Facebook email looked genuine enough but then I noticed the address at the bottom of the email:
1 Hacker Way
My instant reaction was to assume that this too was perhaps a fake email but following a very quick Google search of Facebook HQ it turns out that this genuinely is Facebook’s address.
This last week I have been on practically every transport known to man well, apart from a bike, a tram, a boat, a donkey …..ok so not EVERY form of transport but quite an adequate array.
My six-day visit to Hampshire and London ended up involving at least 28 hours of public transport and waiting around at airports which was quite considerable when you consider that I have only travelled from France to England and back again.
So, having spent entire days (or at least eleven hours punctuated with lots of waiting and hanging around) making journeys, travelling from home to the UK and then back again not to mention the journeys in between, I found myself remarking to my husband, “That’s another day of our lives gone that we won’t be getting back” after which it unexpectedly struck me, the very real and meaningful starkness of this comment, not merely a throwaway quip to be spoken when something was boring, arduous or a perceived waste of time but genuinely and literally one day less of our lives.
Don’t get me wrong, it was undeniably lovely to catch up with family and friends and the endless hours spent on almost every conceivable method of transport was unquestionably worthwhile but the abrupt realisation of being a day or a week lighter of my life quota was a very sobering thought.
We have all used the expression “That’s X hours of my life I won’t be getting back” when having been sat in a long, boring and seemingly rather futile meeting, having watched a film that turned out to be utter shite or when facing a delay where there is little else to do but sit and wait but very rarely does the genuine significance of the expression itself ever truly penetrate the cerebral cortex.
How much time do I, or any of us actually have left? Continue reading “Sometimes a window is all you need to give you a new perspective on life”
With onward travel to the UK on Thursday and no idea, as yet, if we will be returning home in between, we have packed for the next few days away and also our tiny little hand luggage cases for taking to the UK.
Not to mention, my husband’s kilt attire in a suit bag, yet to be decided as to whether he will wear it for travelling in, on our Burns night flight, or wear EVERYTHING else he needs to take and cram his kilt and accessories into his hand luggage bag.
I did my best when packing yesterday, to remember everything I would need but I find it difficult to pack for several stages of travel so I would be very surprised if I hadn’t almost certainly forgotten a few things.
I checked once, twice and thrice that we had the most important things, passports, boarding passes, travel tickets, car hire essentials, purse/wallet. Everything else, I guess we can muddle through without.
We got up very early on Monday, well very early for me since anything pre 9 am is to be considered an early morning as far as I am concerned. With a strict departure time of 8.30am set, a 7 am rise was necessary. An ungodly hour if I may say so, how I used to be at work for 6 am when it was called for, beats me, that is practically the middle of the night. Continue reading “Such are the amazing advancements of technology, that I shall be away travelling and enjoying myself when this is published and so you’ll have to put up with only half a weeks news, which in my world can mean very little indeed.”
How is it possible that the weeks can stealth by at such a pace but the month seems to never end?
What is this lunacy? Is there a problem with the space-time continuum?
I hope not, that could cause severe disruption to our upcoming flights!
I’m already a little apprehensive about them on account that they were only €4,99.
- Do they still bother doing the FULL safety checks for that price?
- Are we likely to see an ‘L’ Plate flapping around on the nose of the plane?
- Do they even bother landing or are you just expected to jump out near the airport as they throw your luggage after you?
I once didn’t drink alcohol for about fifteen years straight!
Admittedly I was a kid but that is entirely beside the point.
I don’t know about you, but I’m always really glad to get through the first couple of weeks of January.
January seems like such a long depressing month. In reality, it’s no longer than six other months of the year but for reasons unknown to me, it always feels so endless.
As for doing it ‘dry’, good grief can you imagine anything more depressing than electing to go through the entire month without a single glass of fizz?
No thank you!
My version of ‘Dry January’ would have to be drinking solely Brut Champagne.
There were quite a lot of ‘Dry January’ Memes but these two were my favourites.
For instance, I don’t feel the need to tell everyone that I will be doing fat-arse, lazy January by taking an entire month off from doing any exercise, I just get on with it or not as the case may be. Actually, as a blogger that is probably untrue as I do kind of end up telling everyone about everything. Continue reading “Were YOU ready for a month of sobriety after the excesses of Christmas and New Year? Tssssk.”
It’s so hard and slightly sad to believe after all that effort, planning and considerable expense that Christmas was less than two weeks ago and already it is a dim and distant memory. I vow to have a very different kind of Christmas next year if only so it is not immediately lost to the archives of yet another unremarkable and unmemorable Christmas at home.
Anyway, enough about Christmas, it feels rather unfashionable to still be talking about it, soooooo last year dahhhhling!
On to our New year visit to Bordeaux……
Having planned a New Year trip to what I thought was an exciting metropolis of culture and arts, I was quite surprised that there wasn’t more going on, no huge firework displays over the Garonne river to “ooh” and “ahhh” at culminating in a frenzy at the boom of midnight, no organised outdoor festivities in the city centre. Continue reading “We welcomed in 2018. Not quite with a huge bang, just a light Prossecco fizzle and the gift of a giant leg of wild boar!”