Saturday 30 April 2016

Moving day

As I was woken up by the gulls this morning (slightly better than crows), I all of a sudden realised that I hadn't finished packing all the kitchen stuff. The thing is though: I have run out of maps and Christmas wrapping paper! It will get done though. 

I dreamt of the new address this morning as well. A nice mock tudor mews home with lots of small and very strange rooms. Probably as a result of the text message I got in the early hours of the morning where I got the address. Not that I knew of that, but subconsciously and all...

Other than that I feel sad. I felt like tears last night as well. It's hard to leave a home where you were so happy. Anyway, last little leads (literally translated from Dutch, so it won't mean anything to anybody else) and then I am away. On to a new part of my life. 

Friday 29 April 2016

The mess!

Just a few quick photos to show you I have not been idle these past few days...

The little wheelie bin (without wheels actually, they broke off during the last move) holds a lot of blankets.

Some work yet to be done, especially the green crate.

Who needs boxes when you can use binbags?

It's a bit of a job to get to the window in my bedroom!

Thursday 28 April 2016

The list

I made a list on Tuesday night. A list of all the jobs I had/have to do before moving day on Saturday. But even if the list is long and I do occasionally cross things off, it seems as if I am adding more than I cross off. This morning however, a colleague came over to help me and managed to do all those niggly little things that just take time, like taking screws out and getting stuff out of the basement.

In the mean time the boxes are everywhere! And I mean everywhere!! Driving me nuts, but also giving me satisfaction. The colleague who came to help has now gone to get some low crates I can use for food and probably crockery. Which would be good, since I don't think I have enough boxes, what with having bought a few things since the big Move three and a half years ago. 

Wednesday 27 April 2016

Congratulations King Willem Alexander!

But of course, much more importantly: CONGRATULATIONS MISS OSWIN! 

Since I will be quite busy over the next few days, we won't be able to celebrate it in a big way, but I promise that we will as soon as we get our own place. 

In honour of the King though: the little hat I was due to wear today, but now am not since I am afraid it might get ruined.

Tuesday 26 April 2016


When I first got my job as a busdriver in Norway, I needed to find a place to live. But how to find a place all the way from the Netherlands? Now I had some very resourceful colleagues who came up with a great idea: buy a parking ticket to a covered car park and put all my stuff there. Sofa, fridge, tv, the lot. I could live there until I found a better place. 

Fortunately I had a soon to be colleague who found an apartment for me and I was spared having to camp out in a parking garage. 

Yesterday I found myself in a similar predicament: where was I going to live from May 1st onwards? One lovely commenter said that perhaps I would need to move into a bus. Well, stranger things have happened, but again, I was in luck.

This time I thought of it myself, since I know a handful of people now. I knew a colleague had bought a house a year ago and was at some point going to rent out the ground floor. Hoping he hadn't done that yet, I contacted him and well... I won't be homeless. 

It will only be temporary though. I won't be able to bring all my stuff most likely (I haven't seen the place yet) and it is in town, which is not good for either me or Miss Oswin. Basically because we both prefer the countryside!

So, the plan now? I move to that apartment and then when I have a spare minute I will take myself off to one of those places that will offer loans to first time buyers without money. And no, I am not talking about money sharks. Some Norwegian communities want more people to come and live there and are offering financial help to people in buying a home. The community I live in now doesn't do that, but there is at least one close by that does. 

The plan after having hopefully secured a loan is to find a place to live. Not too small, not too big, just right for me and Miss Oswin. Like the house in the photo. That would fit us perfectly!!!

Monday 25 April 2016

The water saga, final chapter

Remember the water saga? The long running saga that seemed to be without end? Well, as of May 1st, there will be an end to that saga and I will have proper drinking water. Yahoo, I hear you yell from across the pond. 

Let me just recap in short: last year March they did a test on the water and found it to be polluted. I got a phone call from the owner saying I shouldn't drink the water without boiling it first and that they would have it fixed within three weeks. In April last year I asked them when the water would be fixed. The plumbers... During the summer I asked when the water would be fixed. The plumbers... In November I asked when the water would be fixed. The plumbers... When I then said I thought I paid too much rent, they said I could move out. But, a day later she arrived, apologized and phoned the plumber. The day after that she phoned me and said it would get fixed after Christmas. 

January came: nothing. February: nothing. March: nothing. I was getting fed up and (finally) got in touch with a lawyer to see what my options were. I had to have things in writing first, so I wrote them an email: when was the water going to be fixed. The plumbers... But a few days later she emailed me saying that the plumbers had finally done part of their job. Still no date though. I felt however that I was due some compensation for being without drinking water so long and wrote them an email claiming part of my rent back (with the help of the lawyer). 

That was yesterday. This morning I got her answer: be out before May 1st (and before you say anything: she can do that)! 

So, I will have proper drinking water. Now it is just a case of finding out where, since I have to pack up and move and find a new place in the space of four/five days. But I will have clean drinking water! Yahoo!!!!

Sunday 24 April 2016

Photo on Sunday 2016-15

No more car loan! Good feeling...

Tuesday 19 April 2016


I work for a company that owns a lot of buses, it being a bus company and all. However, sometimes those buses need shifting. And when they are no longer 'drivable', yet need to be taken away, the heavies come in!

Last week several buses on our lot were to be taken to a scrap yard, because they were too old to be used in day to day service or had been too damaged due to a crash. And as I headed home one day I saw a bus flying. Yes, it was in mid-air! Very disconcerting. But after its flight, it was landed safely on the back of a deep-loader to be taken away.  

Sunday 17 April 2016

Photo on Sunday 2016-14

A few days ago the Pole came over to look at my bedroom window. With a crowbar and some force he managed to get the window sort of in its place and closed. Yesterday he was back. This time with a large ladder. And now? The window is fixed again. I can open and close normally again. Result!

Thursday 14 April 2016


Did I ever happen to mention that I live in a small red wooden cottage in the Norwegian countryside? Well, just in case I didn't: I live in a small red wooden cottage in the Norwegian countryside. And I love it here. Great view, nice and quiet, nature and did I mention quiet already? 

The house is an old house and things go wrong with it. The water has been an issue for over a year now (working very hard to get it sorted, one way or another), but other things go wrong as well. Like the leakage a few weeks ago. Came from the ceiling. They had a Pole come and sort it out in no time. Roof tiles missing? The Pole or somebody else will come and fix it. Again in no time. Today I had to report another problem.

Now, I love sleeping with an open window. And when there is no (northern) wind, I can do so. The window is old and has seen a fair few winters I imagine. So, opening and closing can be quite difficult at times. What with the wood expanding and shrinking due to the temperatures outside. This morning however...

I couldn't close it at all and when I looked a bit closer, I found out that the glass pane was slowly falling out. All that banging and such had not done the window much good. Ah well, the Pole will come and sort it out hopefully. 

Now, people keep telling me I should move. Get another place somewhere, like an apartment. And I honestly have been thinking about it. And I have even been looking. Sort of. But there are a few criteria I want: quiet, not in town, affordable, not an apartment. But I think that in the end, the real truth of the matter is, that I love it here. Just love it. That is why I have only been looking half-heartedly. 

Wednesday 13 April 2016

Not Camilla's cat

Well, the update on Camilla's cat? It's not. It didn't come over 20 kilometers and it isn't even lost. It actually lives in this area, has a family and gets fed and watered. It goes home every day. 

They might want to look at that matted fur though, because it will really start to hurt at some point!

Tuesday 12 April 2016

Going walkies

Chewy art
During the weekend the weather was supposed to be very nice. And I had told myself I was going to walk up the big mountain we have in Haugesund. Until I realised I am totally unfit and not up to doing such a big walk. So, I decided to walk around the lake. But I didn't really want to get in my car and drive there.

In the end, on Sunday night, I walked to the nearby nature area and spent about two hours walking around, taking photos, losing my lens-cap (it was in the only pocket I hadn't checked), seeing deer in the distance and getting quite tired. 

Several deer in the distance. I did spook them in the end and they took off
When I got back I realised it had been a good thing I hadn't gone up that mountain. Nor around that lake. I was pooped! Albeit a happy pooped... 

Monday 11 April 2016

Miss Oswin enjoys the sun


Oh, these past few days have been perfect! I have been allowed to go out nearly every day and have been enjoying it every single second. 

There is so much to smell and hear and see. And walking in dry grass certainly is a lot better than walking on that awful cold white stuff we had in the winter! Mara says it is still very cold, but I don't care: I have a good coat!

On Caturday I was also allowed out and I loved it. Even when Mara came out with that clickety clackety flashy thing. I just showed her some great enjoyment moves!

Rolling around in the sun and making sure my back was well scratched! I hope it will be summer soon, so I can catch some mice!

Sunday 10 April 2016

Photo on Sunday 2016-13

Back in the Netherlands everything was already blooming and on its way to being summer. Over here? Not so much. As proven by this photo of my apple tree taken yesterday!

Friday 8 April 2016


I was late for work this afternoon. I hadn't planned to be late. In fact, I had plenty of time to get to work. But, I had to visit the doctor first, because my finger was bleeding and bleeding and bleeding and it didn't show any signs of stopping. 

I had put a massive plaster on the wound and then taped all around it, but after only a short while, the blood started coming through anyway. So, I decided to call work and tell them I wouldn't make it. I got dressed with great difficulty and then wrapped a towel around my finger/hand and drove to the doctor's. 

He cut my band-aid off, cleaned the wound, told me it looked good and put another plaster on. I was good to go! I got two more plasters just in case and I went to work. 

So, now you are wondering how I did hurt my finger? Well... ehm... my finger got in the way when I was shaving in the shower. Right through the nail it went and into the flesh underneath. I will be giving people the finger for a few weeks yet!

Tuesday 5 April 2016

Camilla's cat

Remember the cat? The cat that would come running when I opened the door? The one that harassed Miss Oswin? 

I sent a message to the local animal welfare and they got back to me about a week and a half after I had sent it. Because I was going on holiday, I gave them permission to come into my garden and look for the cat and probably catch it. They did come in, but never saw the cat. Well, apart from its tail that is. 

I got a message back from them, that if I saw it, could I catch it and then contact them again. I saw it on Friday afternoon, but that was before I had read that message and didn't see it at any point during the rest of the weekend. 

This morning I got yet another message. They had found the owner and now they needed the cat. Which I hadn't seen since last Friday! So, now I will keep a lookout for the cat. Who has come a long way, around 20 kilometers (14 miles), to get lost around here. 

Here puss puss puss...

Monday 4 April 2016


Well, that was it. Nearly two weeks off and this morning my alarm went off at 5.15am because I had to work. I could have done with an hour more, because even if I did go to bed early last night, the first two hours were spent tossing and turning quite a bit. Ah well, I will get back into the swing of things in no time I guess. 

Miss Oswin was happy to see me again as well I think. On Friday night she spent several hours either on my lap or on the other couch. She spends the night with me as well, but since my bedroom door is still closed at night, it's a bit annoying when she hasn't gone to the toilet before bedtime. 

Of course I spent a fair bit of time on my computer this weekend. Photos and other information needed to be sorted out. Turns out, I don't have a nice and simple photo thingy on my current computer and I had to use my old laptop to get all the photos cut to size! I am getting it sorted now, because it was quite annoying. 

Now, the cow photo in this post is not a recent photo (I was going to write cow, but that sounded very silly), but one taken last year on one of the few really nice days. Hopefully there will be really nice days this year. Preferably soon!

Sunday 3 April 2016

Photo on Sunday 2016-12

I didn't take many photos during my short holiday in the Netherlands, but on my way back home, I took several from the train and from the plane. The first one shows an area that is quite 'new', meaning it wasn't made until the fifties (before there was water) and is now a nature reserve.

And the second photo shows the place I used to live from the sky. Well, the town anyway, also in 'new' country only getting made in the forties.

Saturday 2 April 2016


Another great grandfather. And yes, he has a wooden leg
As you may have read, Brom and I spent a week in the Netherlands. We visited my parents and I spent most of the first few days lying on the couch nursing my head. In between feeling a bit sorry for myself, I got out the photo albums (again) and went through them (again), but this time I asked my mother for help. And lo and behold, several great aunts and uncles and great-grandparents made their way into my vision. Especially the great grandparents were good news. Unfortunately my mother only had her paternal grandparents and the day before I left, my mum and I made our way to her eldest sister who had photos of the maternal side. Plus stories and even a letter. 

Now, that is what I did mainly: research in my past and I loved it. The thing I didn't love was how warm my parents' house was. Since I live in a completely different type of house without central heating, having to deal with central heating all of a sudden was weird. I am usually somebody who complains of the cold, but this time I moaned about the heat. Normally I wear one or two shirts and nearly always a nice thick cardigan. I had to leave the cardigan and quite a bit of time was spent in a t-shirt only. 

My aunt, aged 3
Another thing I did quite miss was the quiet. Don't get me wrong, my parents live in a nice and quiet neighbourhood, but I could hear the road, and people and late at night the train. The worst was the crows though. I always sleep in the attic and the crows were making their nest not far from the window. You could hear them scrabble on the roof and of course that eternal and infernal crowing. 

Despite the not so nice things, I did enjoy myself. But I am glad to be home again.