Archive for January, 2013

Alsace hardcore

17/01/2013

I haven’t posted about the fact it’s snowing because, it’s Alsace it’s what happens in the winter. P1110883I guess the closest I came was through hinting at it in the post yesterday showing the planters on our balcony with a covering of snow. The first picture shows the courtyard of our flats, notice the covering of snow, it is not melting, it must be cold – probably below zero.

Picture 2 shows the flat across the courtyard from us. You will notice that they have both P1110884windows wide open. On a day when the apple weather app. on my mp3 device, there are other mp3 devices available, shows the temperature as -3 and The Weather Channel app. has the temperature at -1 but feeling like -6 then big style respect to the Alsace hardcore.

Advertisements

Everything’s coming up lovely

16/01/2013

When we left for our Christmas break in the UK, which I wrote about here, we had some bulbs starting to show Birkenhea bloomersin the planters on our balcony, their green shoots poking out of the soil. This made me sad as I was afraid they might not survive the winter.

I’m not a big fan of the winter, more specifically things getting darker through the autumn and then staying dark in the winter. So occasions like Monday when the sun was shinning after 16:00 and it was still light after 17:00 are welcome signs of the improvement coming. Similarly the arrival and flowering of bulbs, when younger indoor ones that had been planted for me and given to me usually by my mother or other relative, whilst of late more that we have planted in the special planters on the balcony. The first photo is of myself in the 80’s trying to be arty and take a photo of myself taking a photo of myself and to my right are the daffodils I had received that year.

P1110881On my return I was pleased to see that the shoots had not died off in the cold weather whilst we were away but they had prospered and grown. The picture here is of them in the sun this morning. I’m so looking forward to them blooming whilst today I just enjoyed cycling in the sunshine on my way home from work, even if it was cold, and seeing the sunshine on the neighbouring buildings out of the window.

François Hollande – Balls of Steel!

12/01/2013

During the primary to be the Parti Socialiste candidate to be French President it became public that Lille Mayor, Martine Aubry, 4b0e71ec32d06e4d0e1c5533601643db4dd2e1d9had a nickname for her opponent, François Hollande, that was “couilles molles” or ‘soft balls’ because of his inability to make a decision.(cf here for example)

Ordering French forces into Mali, at the invitation of the head of the government of the country and working with the United Nations, to stop the advance of the Islamist fighters has shown that not to be the case. The UN had agreed to a force from the African Union to work with the Mali forces to gain back territory from the Islamist invaders but it was said that it would be September before they would be ready to go and the Islamist fighters were gaining ground rapidly. This intervention has allowed the Malian force to stop the advance of the fighters and now, hope fully they can repulse them and restore the control of the government over the whole of the country.(here is the statement of the President of France) Well done M. Hollande

Christmas Part I, or what we did in our holidays

11/01/2013

This week I returned to Strasbourg from three weeks in the UK, seeing family and friends for Christmas and seeing the New Year in. If there was a theme for the period it was that we generally did the undoable.

dante%20gabriel%20rossetti%20lady%20lilith%20core_0The first day was spent looking round Walthamstow and the market, particularly to the good value store, and then on Friday we went to the Tate to see the Pre-Raphaelites exhibition. There were some fabulous paintings, a lot featuring women with long red hair, and I learned a lot about the movement, particularly on the impact they had on art, I hadn’t known before they were influential upon the Impressionists. The rest of the day was spent in London before meeting up with a friend who had recently left Strasbourg for Walthamstow.

searchSaturday saw us leave Walthamstow, via the fantastic and well worth visiting William Morris Gallery for more red-headed women, furniture wall paper etc, and headed to the Barbican for Complicite’s version of Bulgarkov’s Master and Margarita. Despite there having been earlier stage versions of the book it was held to be unstageable. Well it was three hours of fantastic theatre and definitely bought the story to life on the stage in an engaging and interesting way, was well acted and the time flew by.

Then I was with my parents for a week and JTO braved the flooding in the west country to celebrate Christmas with her mother, the first time we have been apart at Christmas for almost two decades! I went to see Reading FC play Swansea which was a dire game but they did what had largely been undoable for them before and avoided losing. After a really good night out in Reading with some friends and JTO going to visit her newly arrived granddaughter it was off to celebrate New Years Eve.

2012 in review

03/01/2013

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 18,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 4 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.


%d bloggers like this: