Thursday 29 December 2011


Well, hello everyone! Did you miss me? I know, I know, I have been away for over two weeks, but I have a good excuse: it was busy. First it was busy with work and I worked all day every day it seemed. It was quite tiring and I really needed the holiday that was coming up. But when work quietened down, it was home life that was busy. I always make the family newsletter and it's always quite hard to get everybody to send in their stories and things. Which is quite annoying, but in the end I had something that looked quite like a newsletter.

When it finally looked like a newsletter, I had to print it out, staple it together and send it to the family! Which was another day's work and finally on the day before Christmas I was finished with that. Earlier in December there had been plans to celebrate Christmas with some friends of mine, but my head was too full with busyness that I decided to cancel that and just stay home. And apart from the one day where I visited an aunt celebrating her birthday, I did just that: stay at home. Go to bed late, sleep in, eat horrid food (do Smarties count as a food group at all?) and watch television.

For the new year, other things are causing my head to be full of busyness: learning a new language, finding another job, moving to another country, it all needs to be placed somewhere in my head and on occasion I feel it might explode.

Anyway, for now it's quietened down a great deal and if the neighbourhood doesn't go overboard with all the fireworks in the next few days, I shall be fine.

PS: if you were wondering what that photo has to do with this post: absolutely nothing!

Monday 12 December 2011

Head spinning

For some reason my boss or the planner or whoever it is that gives me the work, has decided to give me a lot of work. I was off one day only last week and worked both Saturday and Sunday. Long hours as well. On Saturday I had to go to a Yule Market which is big business in Germany. I was headed to Düsseldorf, which is quite close to the Netherlands. I had to leave from a nearby trainstation at 8am and here's how the conversation went when I arrived there:

Woman 1: Is this the bus to Düsseldorf?
Me: Yes it is.
Woman 1: Is this number 21?
Me: No, it isn't.
Woman 1: But this is the bus to Düsseldorf?
Me: Yes, it is.
Woman 2: Is this the bus to Düsseldorf?
Me, Yes, it is.
Woman 2: Is this number 24?
Me: No, it isn't.
Woman 1: But this is the bus to Düsseldorf?
Me (getting quite exasperated by now): Yes, it is.
Woman 1 and Woman 2 simultaneously: So, is this number 21/24?
Man 1: Is this the bus to Düsseldorf?
Me (grinding my teeth by now): Yes. It. Is.
Man 1: Is this number 21?
Me: NO!
Woman 3: Is this the bus for FNV to Düsseldorf?
Me: Yes, it is! Welcome.
Man 1: But you're going to Düsseldorf?
Me: Yes, with the union.
Man 1: What's that?
Me (being helpful even though I was fully fed up with them): Which company have you booked your trip with?
Women and Man: GEBO.
Me: This is Connexxion Tours. (and I won't write down what I was thinking at that point, but I give you a clue: it had something to do with sods)

Anyway, the trip went off without a hitch. I was early everywhere and the return trip was good as well. On Wednesday I am off to Cologne. Another Yule Market!!

Thursday 8 December 2011

Did I tell you?

I am learning Norwegian and at the moment I have a vocabulary of about 400 words and phrases. I know what a 'bil' is (car), I know how to count to a hundred, although it does take some time to get the Norwegian answer to Norwegian sums and I am about to learn about verbs and their perfect tense and the past tense and the other tense that uses to have. And I can tell you: it's not easy!

So far, the words I have learnt (with a few exceptions) have something to do with either English, German or Dutch and sometimes it's completely alien. And then there are verbs. Those dreaded verbs. And having to learn about those tenses is in some cases the complete opposite to Dutch.

So, today I set myself a task. Every single verb I should know by now I had to write down the present, past and past perfect (is that it?). The first page was more red lines than any other colour, by page two I had figured I was doing it all wrong and went with my gut. By that time the red became less and less.

To prove to you that I have learnt something more than 'God Jul' and takk (which means thanks): here's a little story about me:

Jeg heter Mara et jeg bor i Nederland. Også har jeg bodd i Frankrike, Italia og England. Jeg er førti år. Jeg har to katter som heter Wuppie og Linette.

Easy! Right?

Wednesday 7 December 2011


Just so you know I am not lying dead in a ditch somewhere. But I don't really have much to say right now. It's busy at work, the weather is awful (wind, rain and more wind) and I spend most of my time off learning Norwegian, doing laundry and watching television. I was supposed to go to Brussels this weekend and planning on contacting Gattina to see if we could meet up, but that was changed this morning, so unless Gattina wants to come to Düsseldorf in Germany...

Friday 2 December 2011


Grateful for friends who make me laugh! Even if it makes for wobbly photos!!