Thursday 31 May 2012


You can see the stairs in the middle of the photo!
This week's prompt is Stairs and I knew the exact photo I wanted: the 100 steps at Mizen Head in the South of Ireland. Alas, a lot of photos were found, but not that one. So, I had to keep on looking and I decided on another set of steps: 162 this time, which can be found at the stairs at Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland.

My father and sister 'flying' up the stairs
Now, I have written about the Giant's Causeway before (during my ABC period), so I am not going to repeat what I said there: I will just give you the chance to read it again by clicking here! When you walk down from the parking lot to the basalt columns, it is a normal roadway. Tarmacced and down hill: easy. However, if you do the walk around bit, you end up at this set of stairs with 162 steps! I counted!! I was gasping for air when I got up on top!!! The view however was fantastic, even on a cloudy day.

This is my 21st entry for Photo Theme for Thursday. Why not join?

Monday 28 May 2012


As you know I am a big fan of the Eurovision Song Contest and have been for years. So, again this year I will bore everyone with this year's winner.

Now, a lot of people have said that the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC for short) has become a contest where only the Eastern countries end up in front. Which is of course nonsense: Norway and Germany have won recently as well. But the fact of the matter is that for some reason the Eastern countries seem to have tapped into the taste of the young people: nice (albeit forgettable) pop/dance songs that stick for an evening and make people vote for them.

On the other hand people are saying that the ESC used to be about the songs and the melodies and now it seems to be all about the gimmicks. Well, I am glad to say that this year it was a return to good songs, good melodies and on occasion great voices! The gimmicks were more or less left at home. More or less, there still were a few! Like the Russian baboushkas: six elderly ladies not blessed with great singing voices, but with a ditty that was hugely popular (it ended second, see top video). Like the Dutch Indian: Joan Franka sang about her first love who she used to play cowboys and indians with and she wore a huge native American headdress (she ended in the lower regions of the semi-finals). The ADD twins from last year were back, but their song wasn't as good as last year's (Jedward from Ireland).

Albania had a woman that had really weird hair and could break crystal with her voice. Great voice, I wasn't sure about the song, but it ended quite high. I loved Engelbert Humperdinck, but he came second to last in the final (25th place). Serbia was my other favourite and they came third I believe. The winner however was a song I didn't really like. But Europe did: they all voted for Loreen from Sweden en masse! So, next year we will be off to Stockholm!

Thursday 24 May 2012


I will be honest here: I didn't quite understand this week's prompt. Because between brackets it said: straight, spiral, indoor, outdoor, fire escape... See my problem?? Anyway, I went with the straight (in my mind anyway) music, not the sound though, just the image.

Two years ago I went to the Military Tattoo in Rotterdam with my father for free and enjoyed an evening of very good music. There were several bands performing there from Suriname, Switzerland, Scotland and the Netherlands itself. One of those bands is a band I have had on the bus several times (which is how I got the tickets): the Royal Military Band Johan Willem Friso. They play everything from civilian and military concerts to tattoos, remembrance services and more.

This is my 20th entry for Photo Theme for Thursday. Why not join?

Saturday 19 May 2012


Wuppie when he was small and cuddly
(he is now big and cuddly)
In January I had taken the monsters on a trip to see the vet. They had to be vaccinated against rabies ànd tested before being allowed into Norway. Since they could only be tested at least four months after the rabies shots, I had to wait until this week for the blood to be drawn. I had written it down and on Wednesday I made the appointment with the vet.

Today I stuck my two lovelies in the pet carrier, balanced it on the back of my bike and cycled off into the sunset to the vet. The vet who had given them the rabies shots in the first place was there and immediately said that she was sorry! Apparently they had tried to phone me on Wednesday to say I needn't come in, since Norway had lifted the bloodtest from their requirements for pets. Unfortunately by the time they had phoned, I had been at work and this morning I had been out in the garden.

Never mind though, since I was there, I could still get Wuppie's ear seen to. As you no doubt remember his ear had a hematoma in it and I was told it was to go away on its own accord, leaving a cauliflower ear. Well, the hematoma is gone, but his ear is now very hard and still quite thick. No blood in it anymore fortunately, but it still isn't good. So, instead of drawing blood from both cats, I took both of them home and several boxes of medication. Something against fleas and ticks, another one against worms and then the three boxes for Wuppie alone!

But the best news is of course: both cats are coming to Norway with me!! Yippie!!

Friday 18 May 2012


The Cliffs of Moher
I treasure my photos. I have albums of my trips abroad alone or with my sister, I have digital albums of my work trips abroad and ever since I had a fight with my computer and lost (note: don't hit a laptop, he doesn't like it much), I have learned the art of back-up. Because in that famous fight I lost several hundred photos I had taken in Ireland, Italy and smaller trips at home.

Today as I was sifting through my photo negatives (I am scanning them all in again), I found a cd-rom. Since I didn't know what was on it, I stuck it in my computer and a couple of seconds later I watched completely dumbfounded at what came up: Ireland photos, London photos and much much more! I haven't got everything back, but my Irish treasure is back!

Thursday 17 May 2012


This week's prompt is Mother, probably due to Mother's Day that was held all over Europe last Sunday (apart from the UK, who celebrate it in June March (thank you little sister) for some reason). As I said before I will not post photos of my family or friends, so a photo of my own mother is out of the question. I did find another one though.

When I was in England in April, we visited Wimpole Hall and this time I went to see the farm instead of the house. And there were mothers and babies everywhere! Calves, lambs, piglets, chicks, you name it: they were there. In this photo there might not have been any babies, but there certainly were angry mothers: hissing at the big bloke who was taking their babies (ie the eggs) away! To no avail though: the eggs were taken, either to be sold or to be hatched elsewhere!

This is my nineteenth entry for Photo Theme for Thursday. Why not join?

Wednesday 16 May 2012


I wonder how busy he/she gets?
I worked last week. And despite the extra unexpected day off, I still worked the rest. Not short days either: I was away for most of the day, would come home, hop into bed, get out again and go to work again. Tiring!

And then there were the Army Days. Three days I was there. The first with high school students, the other two just driving up and down from parking lot to military base. It was busy. There were too many cyclists on the road (it was only a small country lane), there were literally too many bumps in the road (they looooooved speed bumps in that village). Fortunately there were enough buses so people never really had to wait for more than a minute or so. The weather more or less held out as well, which was good.

When my colleague and I drove home on Sunday night we stopped for some dinner along the way. I shouldn't have bothered: it all came out again on the way home. Needless to say Monday was spent recuperating a little. Yesterday was a fairly easy day and today will also be an easy day: I have to work later this afternoon. Since I know where I am going, it shouldn't be too hard.

I don't mind when it's busy, I really don't. It just takes up so much of my free time!

Monday 14 May 2012


I am a little late for this prompt, but I forgot all about it last week and then I was so busy I didn't have the time! Besides that, I had to hunt for a photo!
In the end I settled on the one above. I tried (and failed spectacularly) with the make-up. I still don't really know how and what to use, so I usually go without. If I use any, it will be a little mascara and perhaps some lipstick.
This is my eighteenth entry for Photo Theme for Thursday. Why not join?

Wednesday 9 May 2012

Oh mother!

It's me with the same haircut as my mum
I look like my mother. Several years ago when I had my hair cut short, I told the hairdresser to cut it in a way that would suit me. Which he did. I went home and my mum had to do a double take: she thought she was walking up to the door, when in fact she was standing in the kitchen! Needless to say, the hair was grown long again!
I sound like my mother. Several years ago I listened to my voice on the answering machine and heard my mother. When I am at my parents and I answer the phone (with my own name I hasten to add), I am invariably confused with my mother.

You know when you're young and everything your mother says is true? And then it changes to 'I know better and you know nothing'? And then it changes again, this time to: my mother actually makes sense! Which is the worst, because then you start saying the things your mother always said and you always hated. You know what I mean!

I used to hate it when my mother (and father for that matter) would watch a show on television and suddenly proclaim: 'Oh, how he/she has gotten old!' I do that now!

I used to hate it when my mother (especially her) used to tell me to take my coat off indoors, otherwise it wouldn't be any use anymore outside. I do that now!

Oh mother!!

Tuesday 8 May 2012


Fltr: Noordoostpolder, Netherlands, United States,
Great Britain, Canada, Australia and Poland
As you will probably know the Netherlands was neutral during WWII, but that didn't last long: the Germans invaded anyway and occupied our country within a week in May 1940. It took until May 1945 before we were liberated again. The town my parents live in was liberated by one single Canadian: Leo Major (the rest of his outfit followed soon after). The town I live in did exist, although there were only a few baracks and streets yet. This area was also liberated by the Canadians.

Last Saturday was Liberation Day in the Netherlands. A day to celebrate the freedom we've had for 67 years now. And I spent part of it on the fun fair that was being held in the center of town. Not on my own: with my friend and her two children! We went on several rides and even on the bumper cars, but the biggest favourite with the two children (they are 5 and 7) was the simple children's merry-go-round.
Of course we also had to get some French Fries with mayonaise (that's the way we Dutch eat it!), Sugar Spider and Oliebollen before heading home where I would make pancakes. Sugar and fat! The perfect day!

Monday 7 May 2012


Bekrefter herved å ha mottatt din interessesøknad.
Vi har for tiden ingen ledige jobber å kunne tilby. Men jeg lar din søknad ligge her om det skulle være behov ved en senere anledning.

In other words: they have received my application, but unfortunately they don't have any openings right now. They will however keep my cv on file for the foreseeable future.

Friday 4 May 2012


Debby was at a bit of a loss when I talked about candy floss, kroketten and frikandellen the other day, so I thought a post was due to explain all. And since I have already made a post about the latter two quite some time ago, you can just click here and be transported to the explanation. (This is going to be short post now)

And then the candy floss. You might know the term Cotton Candy, or Barbe à Papa (Daddy's Beard), which is the French name, or Suikerspin (Sugar Spider) which is the Dutch name. And just to show you I really love those, I have added a photo of me eating one in Eurodisney several years ago. Mmm...

Told you it was going to be short!!

Thursday 3 May 2012


It took a while to find a photo I was happy with. I seem to have quite a few photos with tools on them, but most of them only show part of it or are not so easy to spot. And then I found this one.

Now, whenever you are in a strange country, where they speak a different language, it can actually happen that things that are perfectly normal in the host language are really funny in Dutch. Or English. But neither me nor my colleague expected to see this sign in a cooking shop, since pronounced in Dutch it's something incredibly rude. It is however not rude whatsoever, it is a tool that is used in the kitchen and can be used several times I think. Otherwise it was quite expensive and you would be better off using a bit of string!

So, what is it? Literally translated it's a meat cord. Or a tie-rib for meat. If you really want to keep those turkey legs together: use this! Now, if you really do want to know what is so incredibly rude in Dutch: just send me an e-mail, but be prepared for rudeness! And don't you go saying I didn't tell you so!!

This is my seventeenth entry for Photo Theme for Thursday. Why not join?