Tag Archives: parking herel

Wednesday 2nd March 2022 – IN WHAT MUST SURELY …

repairing bicycle shelter place d'armes Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022… be a new world record even for these days, the new bike shed didn’t last very long.

Not even 15 hours, because when I came home from the doctor’s this morning, the guy who was there yesterday installing it had returned and was now busy dismantling … “disPERSONing” – ed … it again.

Whatever he had done yesterday was clearly not good enough.

It’s not as if building a bike shed is rocket science so there’s no reason why he would need to take it apart again. But all that I can say is that I’m glad that I didn’t take my bike out of the back of Caliburn last night and park it in there.

There has been other news too today, and this news is equally depressing. At 12:00 midday all over France they tested the nuclear alert sirens, not that there’s anywhere these days to hide if there’s a nuclear attack.

We are living in interesting times.

fete foraine place herel Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022So while you admire some photos of the fête foraine, the funfair, let me tell you about where I went during the night.

I was out on the Wirral peninsula last night. I’d been there before and I’d seen all of these kids coming out of school. There was a bus stop by three different schools, judging by the uniforms. I’d seen some kinds in another street, a residential suburban street and I wondered where on earth it might have been. I was looking for the house of a girl I know and her brother. I was wandering around and I only had the street name but I didn’t have the number or the ‘phone number and I didn’t even know exactly where it was so I had to find it on the map on my phone or something. I was walking around and suddenly came across a place in a street that went from north-east to south-west where I might have seen these children congregating but on a closer look it wasn’t actually the same place but pretty similar. Then I bumped into a little boy and a little girl. They were extremely talkative. They asked me what I was doing so I said that I was looking for this street that might have been called Allison Avenue, something like that, She said “oh, that lot of streets” as if she knew where it was. She said “why don’t you go to the end of the street here and look left? You can see all the way down the road to Liverpool from here”. I thought “maybe if I had time, I might but I don’t know where I have to go yet”. I started to quiz this girl but just then 2 other people came past and started to ask her something and she was talking to them. I was holding this girl’s arm by this time and I started to stroke it basically to keep her attention focused on me while she was talking to these 2 people.

fete foraine place herel Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022And later I was at a football match last night, watching a game sitting in the stand quite quietly. The ground was pretty full and these 2 boys were sitting next to me and started to crowd over onto my seat. They asked me if I was enjoying the game etc. The one in the middle asked “who was the hardest? me or his friend?”. I eplied that I don’t know his friend so I can’t really say. Then a fight erupted between the three of us and it was all extremely depressing kind of thing.

And then I was in my Opel Senator last night, using it as a taxi. I was parked up somewhere in Brussels and some guy who had at one time been a regular passenger in my taxi turned up. He said “we want to borrow your taxi for a moment to have” and about 10 of his friends stormed into it. They wouldn’t leave when I told them to so I went to ‘phone the police but my ‘phone kept on playing up – I couldn’t remember the password or the password was wrong or the ‘phone screen wasn’t working, all kinds of things like this. No matter what I tried I couldn’t make these people leave my car.

fete foraine place herel Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022Finally, I’d been out with some of my family again. I’d been out on a motorbike but I had my beige Cortina YLO with me. I was in an awful hurry to leave but they were loitering around. I was sitting there drumming my fingers on the table but my motorbike by now I’d actually coupled it up to the Cortina with a A-frame and so I set off on the motorbike pulling the car from Shavington. When I looked behind, the family was following me so I went quite quickly through the S-bends in Gresty, putting the motorbike well down to go round these bends towing the Cortina. I could hear tham say that I must be crazy or something. I arrived in Crewe and ended up in a subway somewhere. I had to cycle (because it was now a bike, that of Marianne’s that I was on) up the hill to the street-level but the gearing was all wrong on this bike. I couldn’t make it up the slope. No matter how fast I pedalled, it wasn’t advancing any. I had to roll back to the bottom of the slope on this bike pulling this car and then play with the gear arrangements on this bike in order to find the correct gear that would see me, the bike and the car back up the hill again and onto the street level so that we could continue.

But as you can see, it wasn’t a very pleasant night last night and in some respects I was glad when I awoke. That was actually quite early and I was out of bed as soon as the alarm went off at 07:30.

After the medication I went off to have a shower and a good clean-up ready to go to the doctor’s.

loading joly france ferry terminal port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022When I reached the corner of the Boulevard des 2E et 202E de Ligne and the Boulevard Vaufleury, I stopped to check the NIKON 1 J5.

Over at the ferry terminal was one of the Joly France boats, the older one of the two. And they were loading her up with stuff, judging my the crane with its hook dangling down into the forward hold of the boat.

It’s not exactly the best day of the year for a run out to the Ile de Chausey. It’s quite cool and windy and I’m well-wrapped up for a change.

lysandre les bouchots de chausey la grande ancre fish processing plant port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022While I was there at the viewpoint I noticed that there was plenty of activity going on down at the fish processing plant.

No prizes for spotting La Grande Ancre. Her silhouette is quite unique and you’ll be able to spot her anywhere.

Whoever is behind her I don’t know, but in front of her is Les Bouchots de Chausey unloading its catch onto the tractor and trailer that takes it away.

And just puling away from the quayside is Lysandre, the St Malo-registered shell-fishing boat that comes into port here every now and again.

marite thora belle france joly france port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022There’s quite a lot of activity going on at the quayside in the inner harbour too.

Marité is there of course, but in front of her is Thora, one of the little Jersey freighters that run a regular service over here. Before she came to Jersey, she was a car ferry out in the Shetland Islands.

The other Joly France boat is down there in the foreground, tied up to Belle France. And if I’m not mistaken, Chausiaise is moored up on the other side of her. They can’t have much on today.

At the doctors he gave me my prescription for the Aranesp that pumps me up ready for when I go to Leuven, and also a prescription for an X-Ray on my knee. I’m not sure if I mentioned that the physiotherapist is of the opinion that there has been no improvement to my knee despite 6 months of effort.

“That’s not normal” she had told me, and that’s no surprise because neither am I.

Ther does however seem to have been some kind of communication between him and the hospital, because he also mentioned that counselling is a good idea for me. So God help the person who draws the short straw and has to probe the depths of my subconscious mind.

He has however given me some tablets to take before I go to bed. I’ll try them to see how they go but if it interrupts my nocturnal rambles I shall stop. Quite frankly, what goes on with me during the night is about the only excitement that I have these days.

Plenty of excitement at the chemists though when I took the prescription there. Some French woman was complaining about this that wasn’t right in France and that wasn’t right in France, so I asked her if she would like to swap her French nationality for my British nationality.

Some people don’t realise how lucky they are.

tiberiade port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022On the way back up the hill I noticed to my surprise that Tiberiade was not out of the chantier naval.

It doesn’t look though as if she’s had a complete repaint. There are still plenty of patches of wear on her hull. She doesn’t have her nets on board though either, so she’s not completely ready to go back out to sea.

As for me, I was more than completely ready for my morning coffee and slice of coffee cake. I’d made it all the way up the hill without stopping for breath and I was pretty exhausted. None of these health issues are doing me any good, but you knew that anyway.

repairing bicycle shelter place d'armes Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022Goinf past the bike shed I noticed that the guy had gone and taken all of the innards with him.

All I can say is that that didn’t last very long, did it?

Back here I had a coffee and my cake and then attacked the dictaphone notes. As I said earlier, it wasn’t a very happy night by all accounts

After lunch, I was back out again. This time to the physiotherapist. She’s back from her holiday and it’s her birthday today too.

peche a pied port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022Once more, I stopped at the viewpoint at the corner of the Boulevard des 2E et 202E de Ligne and the Boulevard Vaufleury to check the camera again.

Right out at the entrance to the harbour there were some people out there wandering around as if they were engaged in the peche à pied.

And as I have said before … “and on many occasions too” – ed … with all of the stuff that is probably dropped and churned up by the boats that come in and out of the harbour, that’s the last place that I would look for shellfish.

By the time that I arrived at the physiotherapist’s, I was melting. It had warmed up dramatically and I was in my winter coat. But anyway she used a machine to massage my knee and then to finish off she had me doing a few exercises.

vegan cheese vegan dessert lidl Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022After I left the physio I went round to LIDL to pick up a few bits and pieces. With going to Leuven next week I’m not shopping on Saturday.

And here’s an astonishing thing that I haven’t noticed before. Vegan cheese slices – and “English” (presumably Red Leicester) too.

Of course I’ve no idea what they might be like but the vegan deserts aren’t as good as they might be so I’m not too optimistic. However, if no-one buys the stuff they won’t stock any more vegan food so they need some kind of encouragement.

If it melts, it might be good for cheese on toast and there’s only one way to find that out, isn’t there?

new building rue victor hugo rue st paul Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022On the way back I had a look again at the new building that was going on at the corner of the Rue Victor Hugo and the Rue St Paul.

They don’t seem to have made a great deal of progress since we saw them last, but the road must be closed for some good purpose that isn’t easily apparent.

At the bottom of the hill is the funfair – the fête foraine – so I went for a wander around there for 10 minutes. It’s not as good as it might be when it’s all lit up but I’m already on 105% of my daily activity and I’m not going out again in the dark.

people on beach rue du nord Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo March 2022Back here at the building I can’t go inside until I’ve seen what’s happening down on the beach.

By the time that I came back I was rather later than usual but there was still some beach to be on and there were a few people down there actually on it. They were probably enjoying the warm weather.

Back in here I had a coffee and then I had some work to do. We’re doing a series of programmes on the Ukraine and I spent an hour or so tracking down some Ukrainian rock groups. One of them burst into the limelight thanks to an appearance that they made at a concert in Lviv and I actually managed to track down the concert too

Now I shall have to brush up my Russian because this concert was in pre-independence days and it’s 30 years since my last trip to Eastern Europe.

Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that years ago I used to work for a coach company that won a contract to take tourists behind the Iron Curtain. As I fancied the job as driver, I found a local woman who spoke Russian and she taught me the basics, most of which I have forgotten.

While I was at it I also came across a friend of a friend of a friend who has a daughter in the Ukraine and I’ve been trying to set up an interview for the radio. But that’s not easy, as you can imagine.

Another thing that I did was to bash out a few more photos from my trip to the High Arctic in 2019. Where has this energy come from?

Tea tonight was a potato and mushroom curry, and then I came back in here to write up my notes – and to make a long ‘phone call to Florida. My network of contacts stretches throughout the world and it’s just as well, with all of this going on.

Tuesday 25th February 2020 – THE WIND OUTSIDE …

… tonight is probably one of the most wicked that I have ever experienced in all the time that I’ve been here.

funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallYou might be wondering how come it is that the fete foraine – the funfair – is still managing to operate in this kind of weather.

In fact, firstly only part of it is. Several of the rides have closed down, presumably due to the high winds. But then again, the Parking Hérel, where the funfair is situated, is pretty well sheltered.

Where I’m situated is on a headland right on the English CHannel with nothing between me and North America and I’m certainly taking the brunt of it. There’s another headland to the south of the Parking Hérel and there’s a high cliff right behind it.

But returning to our story, a rather strange thing happened to me during the night. I had the same dream no fewer than four times, one after the other. I couldn’t believe it when I listened to the dictaphone.

We were at school. I was with a friend of mine and we were taking photos of all of the school children. They were all sitting at the big long tables eating their meals. At the end of the session we went over to the headmistress and asked “what about our meal?” She asked “haven’t you had yours?” “No, we’ve been busy taking the photographs”. It developed into a long, lengthy discussion about how we should have had a meal which of course we knew. She couldn’t understand anything because of this issue about the photos. She knew that we’d applied for the contract and that we should have had the contract as our quote was the best, all this kind of thing and we were entitled to a meal. She went on and on for a while. In the end she went off and my friend went off. She came back with a pile of paperwork and asked “who’s filled in these forms?” They were forms to show the directors and officers of the company. I could remember filling one in when i was appointed but my name wasn’t there. It was still directors of the company from school years ago who were still there. She said “I remember (… someone else from the past …) filling in this form only yesterday about taking kids for a walk. It’s clearly something that wasn’t right and it had to be put right so that the situation could be regularised. When my friend came back in I asked him what he would be doing on Wednesday night. He came out with some kind of comment about getting ready for school on Thursday. I told him that we had a pile of paperwork to fill in. I started to explain to him about the paperwork
I had this dream four times this evening as I mentioned earlier. But in the third one the headmistress was going on about cupboards in front of the radiators which were small with close-fronted cupboards and doors. She was saying that in the old days they were porous so that the heat could pass through and warm the room more but the ones they have now are solid and so the heat doesn’t pass at all.

So explain that if you can!

After breakfast I set about cutting up a pile of digital sound files into the component tracks. And once more I had the misfortune to find a pile that were out of order and it took a considerable amount of time to unravel them.

What with having something of a late start this morning, it was about 11:00 by the time I finished my morning tasks.

chantier navale port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallThat was the cue for me to go for my bread before I actually settled down to do some work.

For a change I had no intention of going out to see the parade this afternoon so I went for a long morning walk all around the headland, which would give me an opportunity for a close-up view of the chantier navale to see what was going on.

And we seem to have acquired another new resident. We now have three fishing boats in there receiving attention

large floating pontoon installing new pontoons port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallThe tide wasn’t quite in so the harbour gates were closed and I could pass over the path on the top to the other side of the harbour.

The big pontoon with the cranes was hard at work again over by the rue du Port. They are cracking on with the installation of the new pontoons for the landing stages and they might well be finished sometime soon.

But I was more interested in that very large grey post that now seems to have appeared over there behind the floating pontoon. That’s something else that I shall have to check.

floating scaffolding port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallBut there was one thing yesterday that I mentioned and that I said that I would check up on today.

That was the crane and the mysterious scaffolding construction that it seemed to be erecting. So down at the quayside today I had a look to see what was going on, and there is the scaffolding bolted to some poles that are screwed firmly to the quayside and clamped down.

So it looks as if there’s some kind of serious and semi-permanent arrangement of things happening here right now.

Having picked up my dejeunette at La Mie Caline I headed back home. The crowds were already starting to assemble and I didn’t really want to be caught up in it.

Instead, in the run-up to lunchtime I began the notes for the next radio project.

After my butties I spent an hour or so in the kitchen. The orange and ginger syrup is running out and having bought a pile of lemons yesterday, I decided to make a lemon and ginger syrup.

First step was to slice up the rest of my ginger root (I must buy some more) into tiny pieces and put them in a little water in a saucepan, bring it to the boil and let it simmer.

Meanwhile, peel the lemons and remove as much pith as possible, put them in the whizzer and give them a whizz around to extract as much juice as possible. That was strained off, poured into a bottle that I had sterilised and put in the fridge.

The rest of the lemons went into the whizzer again and properly broken down, and then added to the water and the ginger and left to simmer.

In the meantime I cracked on for a while with the notes for the radio project and then went out for my usual walk.

If you are wondering why there are no photos of the afternoon walk, it’s because the heavens had by now opened and we were having rain like I haven’t seen for a long time. I did have my camera with me but it was tucked up inside my wet weather gear and I had no intention of taking it out.

However, I did find a dry bit of my walk, one of the places where I usually go for a run, and so I took the opportunity to clock up another couple of minutes.

Back in the apartment I took the ginger and lemon off the heat and added a couple of tablespoons of honey to sweeten it. And then the whole lot went into the whizzer for a really good whizz around until it became a syrupy mass.

Final step was to take out the bottle of lemon juice that I had earlier put in the fridge, add the syrup to it and give it a really good shake up so that it was all mixed well in. And that will be the drink for the next week or so, diluted with my filtered water.

However, I am tempted to see what it might be like with some sparkling water.

Having finished writing the notes, I turned my attention to tea. Stuffed pepper with rice and veg, followed by rice pudding.

And I bet that you are all wondering how I make my stuffing too.

So, a handful of either bulghour or quinoa – whichever is first to hand – goes into a saucepan with a very small amount of water and some spicy chili power. It’s brought to the boil and left to simmer.

In the meantime, I chop up some onion, garlic, mushrooms, olives and anything else that looks as if it might be suitable and chuck it all into a bowl. And then I add a fistful of salted peanuts.

By now, the quinoa or bulghour should be ready (it doesn’t need to be competely cooked) and you add that to your mix with herbs and black pepper.

Finally, add some tomato sauce (I have some nice arrabiata sauce that they had in Noz and I bought a few jars) and olive oil and mix it all up together.

Cut round the stalk of your pepper and pull out the core, the seeds and the pith. Then stuff it with your stuffing and pack it well in with a fork.

Finally, 6.5 minutes on medium-high wattage in the microwave (in a microwave-proof bowl of course), followed by whatever time it needs on full power to finish cooking until the pepper itself is nice and soft. And there’s your stuffed pepper.

funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallOutside, I was absolutely whacked by this thoroughly wicked wind that seems to have sprung up out of nowhere.

My original pla was to go around the walls for a second time today rather than around the headland which would be … errr … somewhat exposed. But it didn’t quite work out like that.

The wind was so violent that it was impossible to walk at all in the rue du Nord and that’s the way that I go when I’m off on my travels out around the walls.

funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallInstead, what I did was to go for a walk through the narrow streets of the old medieval town where there was at least some kind of shelter.

One of the streets was actually quite well-sheltered from the wind and as there was no-one about I broke into a run.

It wasn’t as long as I would have liked but it wasn’t the kind of weather to be out there discussing things like that. It was one of those occasions where I was obliged to go with what I had and make the best of it.

burger van place cambernon granville manche normandy france eric hallThe route that I took brought me back into the Place Cambernon and there, a little surprise was awaiting me.

Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that on Thursday evenings we have a pizza van parked up in the square. But tonight we seem to have acquired a burger van.

Whether it’s going to be a permanent arrangement every Tuesday or whether it’s just a temporary arrangement for the period of Carnaval remains to be seen. But whatever it is or will be, it’s nice to see some life coming back into the medieval town.

funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallBy the time I made it to th city gates there was still 6% of my daily target to have a go at so I went for another little extension to my walk.

From the top of the walls there was a good view down into the funfair so I experimented with different speeds, exposures and ISO settings to see what I could produce.

And then I came back to write up my notes.

Now it’s bed time, later than I was hoping, but still …

The wind is sill howling away outside but in a minute I’ll be tucked up under the covers. I wonder where I’ll be going tonight. And how many times I’ll be going there.

Thursday 20th February 2020 – NOW HERE’S A THING!

When the first alarm went off this morning at 06:00 I was actually sitting at my computer working.

And yes! I had been to bed – not a case of staying up all night, as has happened on several occasions, eben though it was something of a rather late – in fact very late night (a huge pile of my favourite tracks came onto my playlist while I was thinking of going to bed so I stayed up and listened to them).

It all happened this morning quite by accident too. I awoke at about 05:20 to find myself dictating into the dictaphone that wasn’t switched on. The reason – a flat battery.

None around by the bed (I forgot to look in the camera bag) so I had to leave the bed to find one. In the radio bag there was only one so I had to search the apartment to find some more.

By the time that I found them, I was wide awake so there wasn’t much point in going to bed. I may as well start work. And I wish I knew where that battery disappeared to. It was one of my new ones too.

So I had my medication and was checking the dictaphone when the alarms went off.

I was back in Hankelow Hall again There was a huge crowd of us having a party or something and Clare Channing was there and I can’t remember who else and her husband. They had the electric on for some reason or other and were having a party. I was upstairs trying to do something and had to go to the bathroom so I went in and it was overwhelmed with cobwebs and things but there were still things hanging everywhere and so on. But there was toilet paper which was great. I switched on the light but the light wouldn’t work. I tried putting the bulb in various positions to see if that was something wrong but no. But I thought it was still light so I could go anyway. But I was called down at that point. A lot of people had gone and there were just a few around. Someone brought a big plate of sandwiches and gestured towards them “there’s some here that you can eat”, some kind of paste or something on really dark brown bread like German. I said I hope that I’m going to get more than this for my tea because there was really only two triangles and I can eat a lot more than that when I’m going. But no this seemed to be my entire teatime and I felt a sense of dismay at that.
I was In Hankelow Hall last night and there was a lot of us there doing something downstairs. I went upstairs to use the bathroom and it was all covered in dust and there were decorations everywhere all over the wall and everything, cobwebs, but I went in al the same. I found some toilet paper which was just as well but I couldn’t get the light switch to work which was odd. It wouldn’t come on. I messed around with the cable for a bit trying to get that into a better position but that didn’t work either. I realised that I was going to be more embarrassed by getting further, deeper into this than I intended to. And someone shouted out, it was a cry of “Maths” so I had to go downstairs and eat my maths. We were in a building like St Joseph’s so I went downstairs and changed my money and got some maths, changed some more money and got some motorbike company and had my evening meal. Although I was sitting at a table with a few people I had my thoughts practically about me and I stayed like that until the alarm went off at 07:15 when I was the first out of the door and got a boat ready to sail off to see the animals to see how they had survived the winter.
I’m not sure if the second part of the above is the same as the first part and dictated a second time in a different fashion, or whether it really is a different voyage that, by simple coincidence, is related to the first one.
A little later I was doing something but I can’t remember quite what that involved a couple of old cars and I had to swap these old cars around. I ended up in a black Citroen traction avant. I had to drive it up the road and down a slip road onto the motorway and off again somewhere. I got up to the set of traffic lights where you turn left for the motorway and turned onto the sliproad. Round about there, there was a boy and a girl weaving about in the road on pushbikes talking to each other and I clipped the heel of the boy on the bike. Of course that was all I needed! he insisted on filling in an accident form, all this kind of thing. Of course this traction hadn’t moved for years and there was no paperwork with it. he was quite insistent about this so I had a root around in the vehicle, found some kind of paper about something and he seemed to be quite satisfied with this, saying that the controle technique was OK and so on. In the meantime I was talking to this girl about the car. She said “if this was 30 years older it would be a real veteran”. I said “I know. It came out of a barn down on the French border somewhere (… I was in Belgium …) and we were having a friendly chat about this car and he was getting a bit up in the air about all kinds of things which he was right to do but anyway …

After breakfast I sat down and split up a few digital music files into their component tracks. And while it might have been more straightforward that on previous occasions, it was not without its complications.

One of the albums ended up with 19 minutes of extra music and of those, I only recognised one. I ad to search all the way through a pile of catalogues until I could find which version of the album it was and, more importantly, the timings because not every catalogue entry has the timings.

And then I had to listen to samples of the extended tracks to make sure that it really was what I was expecting to hear and that it was all in the correct order – because I’ve been caught out with out-of-order recordings before, as regular readers of this rubbish will recall.

“But why are the recordings out of order?” I hear you ask

The answer is that with studio master tapes, they are recorded, quite simply, in the order that they are recorded. However, unless it’s a concept album or something where the running order is crucial, the producer will then try to sort out the tracks so that there’s as near as possible an equal length of recording on each side of an LP or a cassette. And quite often, that’s nothing like the order in which they were recorded on the studio master tapes.

stage me vie dans la manche place general de gaulle granville manche normandy france eric hallThat was the cue for me to head into town and LIDL so I had a quick shower and put the washing machine on the go before leaving the apartment.

There was nothing whatever of any relevance on the way down into town so I didn’t loiter around. But my route took me onto the Place General de Gaulle where they have assembled the stage, to see what else was happening.

And there was certainly plenty of excitement there this morning.

ma vie dans le manche place general de gaulle granville manche normandy france eric hallThere was a bunch of guys manhandling a trailer around on the square, so thinking that they might be trying to steal it, I went to see if they needed a hand.

Actually there were delivering it, not taking it away. And I’ve no idea what it might be except that it makes reference to ma vie dans la Manche – “my life in the Manche” (the département here).

And so my thought is that it might well be some kind of sales pitch, tourism or advertisement thing ready to try to seduce the crowds at Carnaval.

chapiteau marquee parking cours jonville granville manche normandy france eric hallInstead of going up the rue Couraye I went along the Cours Jonville to see how they were getting on with the chapiteaux, the marquees that we saw yesterday.

And by the looks of things they might well be almost finished over there now. And that’s a really impressive task that they’ve undertaken to do it so quickly.

Mind you, they’ve r^probably had plenty of practice doing it. I imagine that the marquees are hired in and that the fitters and installers come from the hirers and do this every week.

stage cours jonville granville manche normandy france eric hallBut this is a new thing and I’d forgotten all about this, even though I stood on it last year to have a good view.

There’s a Princess of Carnaval and on Sunday she’ll be standing on this stage to address her loyal supporters.

And I’m amazed at just how quickly they’ve set up this stage too. There wasn’t even a hint of this here yesterday lunchtime when I came for my bread so it looks as if they must have dashed through the installation yesterday afternoon.

funfair fete foraine place pierre semard gare de granville manche normandy france eric hallUp past the cinema and onto the rue Couraye that way up towards LIDL.

At the roundabout at the Place Pierre Semard by the railway station, I came to another halt. On Monday as I came by there were just a couple of lorries here but today the fête foraine, the funfair is practically all installed ready for the opening on Friday evening.

These people don’t ‘arf crack on with this kind of work when they have a timetable to which they have to adhere

renovating old car spares shop avenue du marechal leclerc granville manche normandy france eric hallWhen I first moved here there was a car spares shop and rally centre in the avenue du Marechal Leclerc but it closed down not long after I arrived.

A few months ago the windows were pained over on the inside as if something was going on there but there were o visible signs of anything at all. Today though, they’ve ripped out the shop window.

And so with this work going on, it looks as if there’s going to be a new occupier in there. I wonder who it might be and, more importantly, what they might be selling.

gluten free products lidl avenue aristide briand granville manche normandy france eric hallRegular readers of this rubbish will recall that over the last few weeks we’ve been examining LIDL here for vegan and vegetarian products on sale as their range slowly expands.

What we’re featuring today is another discovery that has taken me by surprise, namely a range of gluten-free products. This is a major Leap into the Unknown by a shop like LIDL but it’s a sign of the times, I suppose.

But it’s not all good news though. It’s a good job that I bought those vegan burgers when I did because there are none in the freezer today. Whether it’s a temporary rupture of stock or something more permanent remains to be seen.

And LIDL felt the benefit of my largesse rather more than usual today. They were selling bathroom stuff in there and one of the things that they had was a magnifying tabletop mirror, something that I don’t have and which I can certainly put to good use.

building work impasse de la corderie granville manche normandy france eric hallbeing rather later than usual today I didn’t loiter around too much but headed for home.

And regular readers of this rubbish will recall a while ago that we saw them erecting a crane outside a house in the Impasse de la Corderie, but not a great deal happened subsequently. Today though, there’s some shuttering gone in and a pile of breeze blocks have been delivered.

Clearly things are going to start happening there sometime soon. I wonder what that will be.

fairground kiddies corner fete foraine parking rue saint sauveur granville manche normandy france eric hallOver the last few days we’ve seen them erecting the fairground attractions on the Parking Hérel.

That’s all the heavy stuff going in there but there’s a smaller car park next to it in the rue Saint-Sauveur and they are setting up a few attractions there today.

So that looks as if it’s going to be Kiddies’ Corner for all of the tiny tots to have their round of fun. As you can see, in one fashion or another the Carnaval and the fête foraine are taking over the town.

compactor parking rue du port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallAt la Mie Caline I picked up my bread and headed back up the hill towards home.

And my progress was erected in dramatic fashion by the sight down on the parking area that they’ve been renovating where they ripped out the old railway lines.

We have a compactor down there now flattening down the surface. So I imagine that they are going to be putting the top layer on there any day now.

That’s going to be exciting to see what they are doing – I hope.

Back here at the apartment I reflected on the fact that I hadn’t made any observation whatever about the climbs up the hills today. That alone tells me tjat I must be feeling somewhat better than of late.

And so I made a coffee and returned to the digital sound files.

As well as the ones that I’d previously downloaded, I actually managed to track down a couple more and they were summarily dealt with too.

The next task was to make myself a decent badge with my name on it for the weekend. We have badges for the radio but with our given names scrawled on the back in felt-tipped marker pen. I wanted something much more official so I scanned my badge, inserted text with my name in bold font, and then printed out two copies on stiff paper and glued them back-to-back

And it’s moments like this that I wished that I had my laminator here.

This was another job that took an hour to do. 5 minutes to scan the badge, 5 minutes to insert the ext and 5 minutes to print it out and stick it together, and blasted 45 perishing minutes to find that flaming thing that I sodding well had in dratted hands 10 damned minutes earlier.

By now it was lunchtime so I made my butties.

nw-700 neweer microphone holder place d'armes granville manche normandy france eric hallThis afternoon I had plenty to do.

Not the least of which was to contact the company who made the desktop mike stand that I ordered and which came the other day. The mike mounting is about 2.5cms and yet the diameter of the microphone is actually 4.5cms.

It looks as if the wrong mounting bracket was put in the box so I had to photograph the set-up to send off to the suppliers.

Of course I don’t have my coloured ruler – that’s in the pocket of my jacket that’s hanging up in a hotel bedroom in Calgary – so I had to invent one.

Coloured rulers – where each inch or centimetre is coloured differently are really useful because when you are photographing objects like this you can lay the ruler alongside it then take your photo, and the presence of the coloured ruler in the shot shows at a glance the effective size of the object.

Tidying up was next. I’ve found that the plastic containers in which I’ve been buying my carrots fit nicely in the small drawer of my desk – suspended from the top of the sides leaving a space underneath.

And so I tidied the drawer out and found a few things about which I had completely forgotten

Final task for today was to start the photos from the summer. All of June is now finished and I’ve now started on July.

But so much for my shipboard idea about placeholders. By the time that I’d reached just number 7 I’d already overtaken the placeholder numbers.

And the fault in the images on the portable computers doesn’t seem to be the photos but the screens, as I suspected. On this screen, which is quite expensive and good quality, as well as being more modern technology, they look so much better.

A couple of interruptions though. The afternoon walk was one of them but I didn’t go far as we were having a torrential downpour and hurricane-force winds. I did about half a lap in an ad-hoc direction that kept me out of the wind, and then came back.

The second interruption was … errr … a little relax. And no susprise given my night. The only surprise was that it was only for about 10 minutes and wasn’t all that deep.

Tea was all of the leftovers with spicy tomato sauce and pasta with vegetables, followed by apple pie and raspberry sorbet with chocolate sauce and it was magnificent.

And then the evening walk. The weather had subsided but it was still quite damp outside.

Nevertheless that didn’t stop me going for my evening runs. And for two days on the run … “groan!!” – ed … I ran on for a good few metres on my first run and on my second run ended up halfway up the ramp instead of flaking out at the foot.

Yes, I’m definitely feeling better.

And for two days on the run, Minette was there on her windowsill waiting for her stroke. It’s very relaxing, stroking a cat. Good for easing the stress.

new pizza van place cambernon granville manche normandy france eric hallThe pizza van was there again, parked bang outside Le Contremarche, the new posh restaurant in the Place Cambernon.

Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that I pointed out the other week that she had a new van. And now it seems to have been painted. Business must be good.

So now I’m home, finished my notes and ready for bed. And with new batteries in the dictaphone I’m hoping for a decent night’s sleep.

Whether or not I have one is another matter.

And no water craft today either. What is happening to me?

Tuesday 18th February 2020 – I CAN NOW ADD …

trawlers port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hall… to my list of accomplishments that of “tying up a trawler”.

I arrived at the harbour at exactly the moment that the harbour gates opened, and I actually do mean that because I was walking across the path on top when they started to close and I had to scramble underneath the barrier.

There must have been eight or nine fishing boats of various sizes sitting in the queue outside the gates waiting for the off.

trawlers port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallAnyway, as soon as the gates opened, they shot in like greyhounds out of a trap and headed for their berths.

One of the later arrivals pulled up right by me as I was walking down the quayside. The skipper shouted “tie us up, will you?” and hurled me a rope. I missed the first time but the second time I caught it and looped it over a bollard and wound it round.

he seemed quite satisfied that I’d done it correctly so I cleared off. I had no idea that passers-by – civilians like me – were expected to know how to do things like this and be roped (if you’ll excuse the pun) into participating in the antics of the fishing fleet.

You learn something new every day.

Nothing new though in this morning’s antics. I missed the alarms again and it was about 06:45 when I finally arose.

But I’d been awake a couple of times during the night and on both occasions found myself dictating the account of a nocturnal voyage … into my hand. Dictaphone still on the chest of drawers.

It’s enough to make me wonder how many times I’ve done that in the past and what I might have missed.

After the medication I had a look at the dictaphone and … GULP there’s enough on here to keep me busy for a week or so, enver mind half an hour.

There was a group of kids, 7 or 8 or 9 and it was some kind of adventure quest. They had to travel to France for some reason or other, all dressed up, even two of them dressed as a pantomime horse with a girl dressed as a princess sitting on top, all dashing off down to Dover docks. I was one of the monitors – I had to follow them around and make sure that they weren’t getting up to any good. They had challenges that they had to meet on the way, like one where it was the task of this pantomime horse to actually involve itself in the encounter, this kind of thing. I pile of them made it down to Dover so I said “what happens now? Do you have to get your tickets?”. One said “ohh no. They said we could get our tickets at the other side” which sounded strange to me but they all seemed to agree that that was what was supposed to be happening. They were all jostling around for a place to sit. One of the girls was Helena who was probably a little older, 10 or 11 I dunno so i got talking to her. “What have you been doing?” “Well apart from having to drive my car to the Isle of Man, not a great deal” so I asked her to tell me about her kind of adventure in this particular thing but she didn’t have the chance to before I awoke
And I’ve done it again, haven’t I? Dictating a dream in my sleep without the Dictaphone. Strange. I was up on the Elm Drive estate in what should have been a council house but it was a big private house of mine. I was doing it up but I’d been taken ill as you know and couldn’t work so the work had really slowed down on this place. But Castor and Pollux were there and Jerry Kobalenko (welcome into my nocturnal rambles, Jerry) too. We were preparing for an expedition and it had started and we had lost a lot of equipment and I’d fallen through the ice. We’d had to arrange this kind of thing and ended up with no clothes so we were back at my house again drying off. I started to lend Jerry some clothes and stuff like that and get myself organised. Jerry borrowed my car which was a Mark IV Cortina RHD but with the gear lever on the right up against the door. He went off and did something and then I came back and took the car for a drive. Went down West Avenue and Richard Moon Street and out to Nantwich. Round Nantwich and back again all the way up Middlewich Road. I can’t remember where I ended up then, some town or other and had to do a U-turn. I pulled out of a side road and nearly knocked a lorry off over into the centre of the road. There was a huge power station where I did my U-turn and came back. Castor and Pollux were talking to me. They asked me what I intended to do about the house. I said that I was going to finish it off and live here. They were surprised and asked if I ought to be taking more care of my health. I gave them the usual story about wanting to enjoy what life I had left rather than being afraid and not doing anything. They were a bit surprised by this but I told them that was how it was. They asked what I was going to do for money. I wasn’t going to say anything but yes I’m OK for money, plenty of it. I said “you don’t need a job”. Castor said to Pollux “but everyone needs a job, you know” and Pollux was still wondering how you manage to live, all this kind of thing. I was trying my best to explain to her. I’d forgotten that bit about taxis when I was out in the car. I wasn’t supposed to be taxiing and I had to stop thinking about being a taxi driver. So this discussion went on and then was when I awoke to find myself dictating this dream out loud into my hand not the dictaphone so I’ve no idea what has happened there – and how many other times I might have dictated into my hand during my sleep and never been aware of it.
Interestingly, it proves the point that dreams are connected with memories and not out-of-body experiences – at least this one was. The area of West Street around West Avenue, Richard Moon Street and Middlewich Road has undergone all kinds of changes since the demolition of the railway works after I left the town. But not one of these changes appeared in my voyage around that area.
Somewhat later I was doing exactly the same thing again – dictating my dream into my hand while asleep. It was a cowboy situation – the James Brothers. One of them was an outlaw, fed up of them being on the run and wanted to go straight. He was talking to me about it. I went outside and there was the other brother trying to break in a horse. That was when I awoke to find myself dictating my dream in my sleep again
Later on I was with Nerina and we’d been working on a taxi. We’d had to have some letraset done to make some stickers and Karen Brierley had done it. The job was absolutely perfect and I wouldn’t have had the patience to do this, as I told her, but this was really good. In fact we’d been talking about business cards prior to this. Someone had taken us to a place and the guy had opened up a set of drawers that he rented out, right by the doorway. “You’ll know what’s in here” he said and opened the top drawer but there was nothing in it. he opened the next one and it was full of business cards and that’s how we got talking about stickers. We much preferred stickers for the taxis because you could stick them everywhere. Anyway then people then were going on about this taxi, painted white and letraset it but it was really late. My family were all up and Nerina was really tired, and I needed her to do some more work. In the end I smiled and said “yes, go on Nerina, go to bed”. I said to my mother that I won’t be up very long either. Even though they were planning to be up all night I’d go to bed and do this first thing in the morning. She went off to bed and I went out to work on this car. But I came back because I was in a suit. I took off the jacket and shirt and went to get an old tee-shirt. And as for jeans I’d but on a pair of overalls to protect the trousers.

As you can imagine, it took me much more than half an hour to type out all of that. I had a break for breakfast at some point and then came back to carry on and it was right into mid-morning by the time that I’d finished all of that.

That meant that finally I could start on the notes for the radio project on which I’m working, but I wasn’t at it for long because I needed to go for my bread.

mobile crane port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallFirst task was to leave the house of course. And it was a bright sunny day so i’d planned a nice long walk.

Not that i would get very far though before I had to stop. regular readers of this rubbish will recall that I’m quite interested in the plant life around here – this kind of plant of course, not the other kind. So when I saw this mobile crane pull up on the other side of the harbour I stopped to photograph it.

No idea what it might be doing there. There’s already enough plant and machinery over there as it is.

trawlers port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallAs I walked down the boulevard des Terreneuviers I noticed that the fishing boats were now jostling for position at the entrance to the inner harbour even though the “traffic light” was showing red.

That could only mean one thing – that the harbour gates were closed but would be opening very shortly. I had a brief look at the chantier navale but there was nothing there any different from the last time I looked.

And so I pushed on rather rapidly, not even stopping to take a photo of the shellfish that they were hauling up from a boat at the fish-processing plant.

fishing tackle trawlers port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallJust as I set foot on the footpath across the top of the gates the siren sounded. I moved rapidly but the barrier came down and the gates started to open before I could cross over.

Luckily I was on the far gate so I didn’t have to jump for it, but I still had to scramble under the barrier at the far side. But I’m glad I did because it gave me an opportunity to inspect the fishing tackle on one of the fishing boats.

So now I know where everything goes and what it’s for. I’ll have to get myself out there on a fishing boat one of these days and have a first-hand look at it.

trawlers port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallSo as all of the fishing boats cleared off into the harbour, I cleared off after them. And that was when I had my encounter with the other fishing boat that I had to tie up.

The guys were there with the pontoon and the large mobile crane. Having been rebuffed the other day I decided not to waste my time asking them anything but to wait and use my own eyes to see what was going on.

And I wasn’t to be disappointed at all, as you will see in due course.

food stall carnaval place godal granville manche normandy france eric hallAnother one of the things that I’m doing right now is to go round by where the fête foraine – the funfair – will be for the carnival and see how they are getting on with arranging everything.

In the Place Godal, where some of the caravans of the entertainers are parked, there was this popcorn, toffee apple and ice cream stall.

Not that i reckon that it’s supposed to be set up there (although it wouldn’t come as any surprise) but my thinking was that they are waiting for the funfair to erect itself and then these stalls will fit in around the amusements.

carnaval funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallSo down to the Parking Hérel to see how they were doing.

And the big machinery is going up together quite nicely – and quickly. In fact the apparatus on the left was actually working, swinging back and forth. It made me wonder whether the inspectors were actually there today checking it over.

These machines are impressive but they are quite dangerous and can’t ply for hire until they have been inspected and have a permit to operate.

palais du rire funfair fete foraine parking herel carnaval granville manche normandy france eric hallThe Palais de Rire – the Palace of Laughter – looks impressive and they must have worked impressively to have it done this quickly. They had barely started on it yesterday.

But I learnt something today too, and I’m always in the market for learning new things.

There was a lorry there that was towing a couple of trailers – the typical “showman’s goods” lorry. So I asked someone with it what licence yuo needed to drive with more than one trailer.

The answer was (the Fench equivalent of) “a HGV Class one licence – nothing else”. In other words, any ordinary Heavy Artic licence. And I have one of those, don’t I?

But don’t worry. My days of driving all this heavy stuff are over.

entertainment stage place general de gaulle granville manche normandy france eric hallFrom there I walked into town and La Mie Caline to pick up my dejeunette

And here across the road is something that wasn’t here this time yesterday. Clutching my bread quite tightly, I went for a closer look.

They are pushing along quite rapidly with the features for Carnaval as we can see. This is the stage from which they will make all of the announcements I reckon and where there might be some kind of entertainment during the evening – I dunno.

erecting marquee chapiteau parking cours jonville granville manche normandy france eric hallYesterday I’d been past the car park in the Cours Jonville and seen them laying out the edges of the chapiteau – the big marquee where the Friday night Ball will take place.

And so I went that way today to see how they were getting on with it. And “getting on with it” they certainly are. It’s quite impressive the speed with which they are putting up these things and the marquee is certainly one of the more exciting things

So Friday night we’re going to ba having a Ball. Well, they are. I shall be tucked up in my warm little bed ready for the onslaught the following day.

cranes slinging into place pontoon support rue du port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallThe roadworks in the place des Corsaires have gone now and the street is open. Me though, I pushed on up the rue des Juifs until I was interrupted.

Excuse the dreadful shot but the sun was right in my eyes and in the camera lens. But here’s our mobile crane, now on this side of the harbour in the rue du Port and the big pontoon has sailed over here too.

And between the pair of them they are manoeuvring one of the pontoon supports into place ready for fixing against the harbour wall. I was lucky to catch this photo today.

Back here I had a late lunch and then set about my afternoon project.

home made apple pear coconut puree orange ginger syrup apple pear cinnamon cocnut cordial place d'armes granville manche normandy france eric hallPeel some ginger, dice it into some very tiny squares and then put it in a small amount of water to boil, then leave to simmer.

Meanwhile, peel four good juicy oranges and put them in the whizzer. Whizz them round and then filter out the orange juice which goes in the fridge in a bottle.

The left-over pulp goes into the pan with the ginger and it’s all left to simmer.

While that’s doing, put about 5mm of water in the bottom of your nice new big saucepan and add plenty of lemon juice to it.

hen peel, core and dice seven apples and three pears. When they are finely cut, add them to the water and lemon juice as you go along, swirling them around so that there’s some lemony liquid covering all of them to stop them browning.

Then add desiccated coconut and some cinnamon to the apples and pears, take off the orange and ginger and put the apples and pears etc onto the heat and bring to the boil and leave to simmer.

With the orange pulp and ginger add a couple of dessert spoons of honey and stir well in. Then add to the whizzer and give it a really good whizzing around to liquidise almost everything. Then when it’s cooled down, add to the orange juice and give it all a really good shake.

There’s a nice orange and ginger syrup to add to filtered water.

floating pontoon across rue du port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallThat was the cue to go for my afternoon walk.

There were crowds of people out there today because it was so nice, and I’m glad that I went out when I did because I saw a most unexpected sight. Regular readers of this rubbish will recall seeing the new pontoons stacked up on the quayside the other day, but here’s one in the water heading across to the cranes that we saw earlier.

But how are them moving? They aren’t rowing them so maybe there’s an outboard motor somewhere, I suppose.

rainbow granville manche normandy france eric hallThere had been a heavy rainstorm briefly a short while earlier but it had passed and was gone.

Not too far though because we had this gorgeous rainbow. We’ve certainly seen some impressive rainbows since we’ve been living here but this one is one of the best.

Back here I checked to see that the apples were done, and then strained off the liquid. That’s in a bottle ready to be diluted in early course.

As for the solids, they went into the whizzer and turned into purée for me to bottle. That’ll keep me going for a week or so.

Now I could finish off writing the texts and dictate them, just interrupted by a little 10-minute crash out. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough time to finish editing them before it was tea-time which was a shame.

For tea I had a stuffed pepper with rice followed by apple turnover and Alpro soya almond with chocolate sauce. And I’ll tell you something for nothing, and that is that now that i’m much better-organised my diet is improving 100%

Cutting out these shop-bought sugary drinks and their plastic bottles was really a good New Year resolution.

For my walk I managed my two runs and then headed back here to write up my notes.

And now bed-time. After my marathon adventures during the night last night I’m ready for a good sleep. I just hope that I remember to use the dictaphone if i want to dictate any notes.

Monday 17th February 2020 – REGULAR READERS …

… of this rubbish will recall that last week at our weekly meeting I was about half an inch from … errr … expressing my displeasure at the antics of a certain member of our team.

It seems that i was not alone because every one of us today received an e-mail from a member of our team announcing that he was standing down, and explaining in great detail exactly why. And these reasons correspond pretty much with my own ideas.

There is another reason, as I became aware on Saturday when I went for this press thingy with the chars for Carnaval, but that wasn’t mentioned at all which is hardly a surprise. But it’s what I expect is the real reason.

As for me, I missed the third alarm yet again, but not by all that much. 10 minutes or so, I reckon.

After the meds I came back to check on the dictaphone. And phew!

For some unknown reason I was in Burnley last night and I was taking an exam. It was about decimalisation and I had to write about decimalisation in this exam. I wanted to have ot done quickly so I could go. And I did it quickly. But just before I went to hand in my paper I suddenly remembered something that I had missed off so I had to add an extra paragraph onto my paper and add an extra conclusion. And then as I had done that which I had to write, I remembered something else about how easier it would be to calculate so I had to write another paragraph about that as well and another conclusion. But each time all the papers were getting muddled up and I couldn’t find half the papers. And then I couldn’t find more papers. There was this little girl trying to help me find the papers. In the end we were just disturbing everything but a little boy said “this paper is over here” so I went into one pile of papers and got one of the papers out. This was all getting into one confusing mess and just as usual, I was spending more time looking for the papers than I was writing anything down. My idea of getting away early had gone right out of the window by now.
Later on during the night I was at IKEA with Ingrid and a baby believe it or not. We started to wander around the introductory bit of the shop where everything is displayed but we somehow became separated. I went back to look for her but found the bargains corner so got waylaid in there looking through all the bargains. By the time I’d made it back into the display area Ingrid had gone and I couldn’t see her anywhere. I had a pretty good look for her and caught her in the distance waiting by a meeting point so I got my phone to ring her, gave her a couple of bleeps, she turned round and waved so I hung up and walked over to her. Then another family group, I was talking over the internet in a chat room and mentioned my daughter in this chat room twice so I was kicked out with a warning message about “talking about my daughter” on there.

After breakfast I came back in here and cut up a few digital music files into their component tracks and seeing as I picked three easy ones, it didn’t take that long to do

A shower next, (and I’ve put back about 400 grammes of that 600 that I lost) and then I headed off into town.

bad parking cours jonville granville manche normandy france eric hallFirst port of call was the Post Office to post the letter that I had written the other day.

But start as we mean to go on, hey? Back on this bad parking lark again. But then, why just take up one parking space when with a little less effort you can take up three as well as block off a pedestrian crossing?

Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that this is the kind of thing that really gets my goat and it’s just becoming worse and worse.

erecting carnival marquee cours jonville granville manche normandy france eric hallBut for the next few weeks parking here in the centre of town will be more and more restricted.

Over the next couple of days I’ll be wandering around checking up on the erection of the Carnaval attractions, seeing how quickly they can get them up. And here on the car park at the Cours Jonville, they have ejected all of the cars and are sticking this marquee up for the Friday night dance.

That’s when it al kicks off, Friday night, but my work doesn’t start until Saturday.

boutique ludique cafe boulevard d'Hauteserve granville manche normandy france eric hallWith having come this way to check up on things, I carried on up the boulevard d’Hauteserve, a street that I don’t usually use.

And i’m glad that I came this way because here’s something that I haven’t noticed before. It’s a “Boutique Ludique” – a games shop café. And that could be extremely interesting.

Next time that I have half an hour or so to spare – whenever that may be – I’ll have to come here to make further enquiries.

And if it livs up to its title, I’ll bring my microphone and Zoom H1 because there must be some kind of story in this.

painting street furniture st nicolas granville manche normandy france eric hallThe walk all the way up to the Centre Agora was pretty uneventful with nothing much happening – except that I seemed to be a little more like my former self going up the hill. Not quite at the “on my way to invade Poland” yet, but getting there.

In the Square St Nicolas or whatever they call it, the street furniture guys were there. We saw them a few days ago in the Cours Jonville but we couldn’t see what they were doing. But here it was pretty evident.

Our meeting was somewhat subdued with the news that we had received, and when we were asked for our observations I wasted no time in putting forward the things that have been bugging me in this affair and telling them the things that I’ve been telling you lot over the last few weeks.

Whether anything comes of it or not, I really do not know. But I have heard that there has been a “follow-up” to all of this, so I’m awaiting developments with bated breath.

After the meeting we went down to the basement and did a stock-check. There is some kind of talk about some kind of offer of some kind of permanent place to use as a studio and store.

What, when, how or where – or even “if” – is very much an unknown factor but we need to know what we have. And it seems that somehow we are a microphone cable short.

No idea how, and I know that I don’t have it. But then things like this are always disappearing so it’s no surprise.

After the meeting I went off to LIDL to do a little more shopping.

soya desserts lidl granville manche normandy france eric hallAnd although I spent a little more than usual, on some cable ties and Brazil nuts, I didn’t buy any of this here but six months or so ago I might well have.

Last time I was here I pointed out the new vegetarian and vegan products that are appearing in LIDL, and this is the latest that I have found.

I would have died for this stuff back then but having given up hope of finding it, I’ve gone down a different road and buy the big tubs of Alpro stuff for dessert and make my own apple purée.

And that reminds me – I need to make some more purée tomorrow. So I bought a big bag of apples.

erecting funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallYesterday I mentioned about going round to see how they are getting on erecting the amusements for the fete foraine on the parking Hérel.

Earlier today, we saw the marquee at the Cours Jonville and I expected them thus to be well on their way here too. And I was right because they really are bashing it out.

No time to lose, I suppose. They can’t afford to be hanging about seeing as how they move from place to place quite rapidly wherever there’s a fairground to be installed.

erecting funfair fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallThere are all kinds of amusements here – fun for all the family I reckon – but I don’t really know what’s in these lorries.

Time will tell of course so I’ll have a wander by tomorrow when I come down for my dejeunette and see what they are up to then.

But talking of my dejeunette I carried on with my walk into town and La Mie Caline. I don’t need to ask for my bread now – they just see me coming and slip a dejeunette into a bag all ready for me.

Service with a smile, that. You don’t get that in Belgium.

road closed place des corsaires granville manche normandy france eric hallOn the way back home there wal a little more excitement.

The road that goes through what used to be the Place des Corsaires seems to be closed and they are digging up the street. I wonder why – and there was no-one around to ask.

Back here it was already after my usual lunchtime so I quickly made my butty and had some fruit – the new apples, not the old ones. They are destined for the purée tomorrow.

And I’ll try out my new saucepan too.

This afternoon I attacked the radio project 26. “Where”s 25?” I hear you ask.

The fact is that 24 has now become 25 because 24 is the last Friday of a month (Bane of Britain forgot that there are only 30 days in April) so that will have to be a Live Concert, if I have one by then.

If not, I’m sure that I’ll find something.

By the time that I knocked off I’d chosen the 10 main tracks, combined them in pairs, worked out a speech for my guest and added in my standard into to Pair A.

Tomorrow I’ll do the text and see where we go from there.

Tea was falafel and steamed vegetables in vegan cheese sauce – not the pie because I wanted to use up the falafel that has been hanging around for a while.

Pie is tomorrow and stuffed pepper is on Wednesday by the way.

Pudding was half of the apple turnover with that Alpro almond dessert stuff and chocolate sauce, and that was delicious.

The beautiful weather that we had this morning has given way to a rainstorm this evening. I didn’t have my afternoon walk because I was already at 106% but I wanted to get in my runs.

So sopping wet and miserable, I completed them both, although the first was on my reserve track as my main one was flooded out again. In fact I did quite well on my first one, running on for about 20 metres which, the way things are with me, was quite good.

bad parking place d'armes granville manche normandy france eric hallOn the way back, we had more excitement and so we’ll go out where we came in.

Bad parking again, folks. Someone else who decides that it will be fun to park in the fire lane at te back of our building despite the yellow hatching. never mind that we’ll all be burnt to a cinder because he is far too idle to walk an extra 20 metres from the main car park.

So now my notes are written and i’m off to bed. Not as early as I wanted but still I should have about 6 hours sleep I reckon.

makes me wonder where I’ll be going tonight. And, more importantly, who is coming with me.

Sunday 16th February 2020 – DESPITE IT BEING A …

lentil tofu pie apple turnover apple pie granville manche normandy france eric hall… day of rest today, I have been a very busy boy.

And here is the evidence. Frm left to right we have a lentil-and-tofu pie, an apple pie and, to use up the rest of the pastry and apple, an apple turnover.

The other day I mentioned that there were only a couple of slices of pie left in the fridge. Well, there was some tofu that needed using up and I bought a couple of pastry rolls yesterday.

Lentils are never in short supply here and so there we were.

A couple of hundred grammes of lentils went into the slow cooker with some parsley, sage and rosemary, and then some water. And they were left to boil up.

Once they had boiled, I drained them off, rinsed them and put them back in clean water with some tofu, more herbs as above and a couple of stock cubes. And left them for a couple of hours.

And talking of a couple of hours, it was more than a couple of hours of sleep that I had last night. In bed at a relatively realistic time, I slept right through until about 07:50.

But there was no chance of my leaving the bed at that time of the morning. The howling gale and rainstorm that I could clearly hear going on outside made me crawl back down under the bedclothes. 10.30 is a much more reasonable time to arise on a Sunday.

After the medication I attacked the dictaphone. Apparently I was at a rock concert last night in Nantwich and there was a group playing and I was watching the group. I was with someone but I can’t remember who now and a woman came over. I knew this woman but I can’t remember who she was. She was big and tall and in a wide-brimmed black hat with a small crown, black cloak type of overcoat. She looked like a Bishop. She shouted at me but I didn’t recognise her at first but then I did and got talking with her. I noticed that one of the musicians was someone who had been a chauffeur with me, and he was with a saxophone. I thought “ohh, how strange”. We had a talk and a joke about cars, that kind of thing. I was meeting someone else but it was quite early so I went back to my apartment and got a burger and started to fry it. But being hit overwhelmingly by an overwhelming way of sleep I went to get into bed. I took off all of my clothes to get into bed and just then the doorbell rang. I staggered out of bed past a half-cooked meal, half asleep and asked who it was. “Oh, it’s Mikhael” the bass guitarist from the Hillbilly group. That was the guy I was waiting for. So I thought “‘I’d better let him get in and get dressed, stop eating and trying to cook this food, all of that kind of thing”.
After that I was in a museum somewhere and there was a discussion about a play taking place where two actors were throwing balls at each other – Roman actors. They were on version 2 of a CD or DVD and I had to check first of all to check that I had DVD version 2, which I had. So we checked and it was the Romans in bed that were throwing, these two guys were throwing these hard balls at each other until one was hit on the head and killed. We were discussing why the other guy hadn’t killed the first one and we thought “maybe he had been lying on his arm so long so his arm was weak and so he had to use his bad arm. This led to a discussion about military tactics at Flodden -Culloden rather where British soldiers were instructed to attack the man on their right whenever he raised his claymore to attack the British soldier standing on his right and never mind about the guy in front of you because your mate on the left would be taking care of him. Whenever they raised their right arm, their soft under-belly was exposed and that was where you would bayonet them. That went back to the crusaders and armour, how you would kill a knight is underneath the right armpit. Someone said “should we all go and get a glass of water out of the tap and resume this discussion somewhere more comfortable rather than around a few library desks.
A little bit earlier I was having to do something that was extremely urgent and I’d got off the Metro and there on the Metro was someone, the guy who played someone in Hawaii 50 and I can’t remember his name – a very famous actor. I quickly got back onto the Metro to get off a bit further down and was hoping that there was no-one at the station waiting for me. It was a long and convoluted route to get to where the safety deposit box was because obviously the previous Metro Station would have been better for that. I had to come off and walk across a crowded street which took ages and walking up this hill in the countryside. As I was doing it, some woman’s dog came along and started growling at me so I kicked it away. She complained. The dog came back and bit me so I gave it a really good heavy kick and she complained about that. I said “you should have your dog on a lead”. She said that lLeads are compulsory here which I thought strange. I had to walk up this hill and I reckon that it was a climb of about 500 feet and it was hot, in the summer and we were quickly out of the urban area into the rural area. I was feeling really uncomfortable at this walk and this climb. I have this the wrong way round haven’t I? It was first the man then the story about being on the tram and the dog biting me then finally the third part.
Later still I was on the The Good Ship Ve … errr … Ocean Endeavour again with a group of people, a family with very young kids and we were doing the usual family type of thing that you do with young kids, playing games and things. And then I went for a walk. We’d only been on this ship half a day or so but I’d been on it before so I knew my way round so I was wandering around quite happily. I walked past all these people on the deck sitting there in the lounge. I walked out and upstairs, outside and round and ended up being on the top of a double decker bus, an old green Crosville one. I worked out that on the top deck there was only room for about 20 people that you would expect on a double-decker bus or maybe more I dunno. Anyway I walked back down and these people were looking at le with amazement thinking “where’s he been?”. A stewardess called Kerry who I knew so I said to her, calling her by her first name and they all thought “wow he’s learning quick about the ship” and then we approached Crewe Bus Station which was a dock and I said to her “gosh, he’s coming in quick! Is he on a mileage bonus or something?” “Ohh God yes he is!” and he hit the quayside, bounced up on top of the quay. I said “that’s our holiday finished, isn’t it now?” But he kept the power on and the sip sailed round in like a U-turn, back to the edge of the quayside and dropped over and into the water again. I thought “God, I’d never ever thought of doing that” but there we were, back in the water again.

By the time that I’d finished typing that lot out I’d had breakfast, had a quick bit of butty and it wasn’t all that far off teatime. After all, it’s Sunday and I was in no hurry.

lighthouse coastguard station meteorological station pointe du roc granville manche normandy france eric hall
One thing though – because of the weather I hadn’t set one single foot outside the apartment but round about 16:00 the rain briefly stopped.

Seizing the chance I grabbed my coat and went outside for a walk. The weather was still grey and totally miserable as you can tell from this photo of the lighthouse and the coastguard station at the Pointe du Roc.

But the most important thing was that the wind had dropped considerably and that was good news. it had really been wicked.

waves storm port de granville harbour baie de mont st michel st pair sur mer manche normandy france eric hallAnd while the wind might have dropped there was still plenty of power in the sea.

That’s quite evident in this photo. The tide is well out right now and yet there’s enough force in the waves to bring them right up to the sea wall with something of a splash.

If it keeps it up, it’s going to be really impressive out there this evening at high tide I reckon. Not that I’ll be there to see it though.

eroding cliffs concrete supports pointe du roc granville manche normandy france eric hallHeading into town for a long walk by the very old road – or path more like – here’s something that I don’t remember encountering before.

It was the fencing and the “keep out” notices that drew my attention to it so I went to look. It seems that the cliffs are eroding just here and undermining part of the wartime German concrete.

There’s tons of that around here in the Atlantic Wall and we have seen plenty of it in the past, but this looks like one piece that we won’t be seeing for much longer.

spring exit pointe du roc granville manche normandy france eric hallBut while I was there my attention was further caught, this time by the sound of running water.

There are a couple of springs up on the top and these days they disappear into some kind of guttering system. I’ve never worked out where they go to from there but now I think that I know.

This culvert here that discharges into the sea looks very much like the outlet for all of this.

caravans fete foraine port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallWith the tide being quite far out right now the gates to the harbour were closed so I could walk over the pathway at the top to the other side of the harbour.

Yesterday I mentioned the fete foraine here in Granville. The machinery and amusements are to arrive today and start to set up tomorrow. It looks now as if most of them have turned up already.

Here they are anyway, parked up at the car park at the end of the quayside near to the ferry terminal and here they’ll stay fr a couple of weeks.

tractor trailer stone rubble port de granville harbour manche normandy france eric hallRegular readers of this rubbish will recall that we’ve been following the fortunes of the two concrete breakers, the digger and the two tractors and trailers that are removing rocks from the ferry terminal.

The havy stuff parks over by the fish processing plant but here on the quayside are the tractors and trailers and all of the stuff that they have brought with them.

And this can only mean that we won’t be expecting a gravel boat for a while because all of this is parked where the gravel would be dumped for loading.

caravans lorry fete foraine granville manche normandy france eric hallLast night we saw the arrival of the first lot of caravans for the fete foraine and they were parking up at the Place Godal.

Today there are a lot more of them as well as a couple of lorries that might well be something to do with the fairground attractions.

and just in case you hadn’t already noticed, it was now back to raining again. But the wind was still keeping down so I pressed on with my walk. After all, I can’t get much wetter than I am.

fete foraine parking herel granville manche normandy france eric hallMy little voyage took me along the sea front and down to the Parking Hérel.

Starting tomorrow this will be where the fete foraine will be erected. And it’s a complete work of art the things that they do to get it going.

Tomorrow I’ll be coming back from my radio meeting this way and I’ll be able to see how they are doing. And hopefully take a few photos of the erections that they put up. And it doesn’t take them long to do it.

old normandy house rue commandant yvon granville manche normandy france eric hallFor a variety of reasons there aren’t too many old houses of the traditional Normandy-Style here in Granville.

And this is one that I haven’t seen before, in a little alleyway off the rue Commandant Yvon. A real Normandy wooden-framed house. And not falling down either like the one in the rue Ernest LeFranc.

By now I was ready to return home but still wishing to push up the percentages on the fitbit I continued around the town for a while getting wetter and wetter and eventually made it back home for coffee and cake.

For tea I made myself the usual pizza, forgetting the sliced garlic, and then made my pies.

Before I’d gone out I’d checked the slow cooker. The mix was too liquidy so a couple of spoonfuls of oats had taken care of that and it was lookign quite good.

So pastry in the pie dish, add in the filling, moisten the edge of the pastry, put a top on, press down the top with a fork so that it seals, trim off the excess pastry, paint with soya milk and prick with a fork.

Roll out all of the excess pastry so that it’s flat again, cut out a circle to put in a pie dish, slice a few cooking apples very thinly and pack the pie dish with them, some lemon juice and brown sugar and forget the cinnamon and nutmeg but remember the desiccated coconut.

Roll out the remaining pastry, cut out enough for a lid, repeat the process as for the previous pie except to sprinkle on the top some brown sugar.

With the pastry that you’ve trimmed off, roll it out again and keep on trimming and adding back as you roll it to keep it square, fill it with the leftover apple brown sugar and coconut, fold it over and then bung the lot in the oven to cook while I’m eating my pizza.

And while I was eating my pizza I was wondering why I hadn’t fried any onions and garlic for the pie mix.

The pies weren’t ready so for pudding I had a banana with some of the Alpro almond-flavoured dessert stuff that I’d bought for the apple pie.

No-one about at all on my evening walk so I had a good couple of runs. My usual track on the north side of the walls was waterlogged so I improvised. And I even did a third run – or, rather, half a run – later on because having seen that I was now on 93% of my daily target, I extended my walk.

Now my notes are finished, my day of rest is over and it’s back to work tomorrow. A good night’s sleep is required and then i’ll be fighting fit for tomorrow.

I don’t think.

Sunday 24th February 2019 – HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!!!!

I’m officially (I think) an old-age pensioner, having reached the ripe (and getting riper as I get older) old age of 65.

And you can tell, too. This morning I switched on the hi-fi and then waited for ten minutes wondering why the computer hadn’t switched on.

Last night wasn’t all that late, but I was expecting something better than being awake at 05:30. I heard the water switch off at 06:25 but then I must have gone back to sleep somehow because it was 08:30 when I awoke a second time, and 09:00 when I crawled out of bed.

Piles of goodwill messages already, which is always very nice. I’ll have to reply to them at some time. But now I’m going to have breakfast. To dive into a big bowl of porridge, and maybe some grapefruit juice as well.

Back here, total chaos yet again as that evil dictator in nominal charge of this mad, insane flight over the cliff into disaster goes off on another pointless walkabout with no purpose other than to prolong the delay in suffering another humiliation.

We’re experiencing a coup d’état from the top, just word-for-word and action-for-action as Jacques Benoit-Mechin predicted in De La Defaite Au Desastre.

Rosemary rang me for a chat too but I couldn’t stay talking for long. My throat gave out after a while and I had to hang up. I need to look aout after myself.

seagulls underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy franceInstead, I went for a walk in the glorious sunny weather.

Around the headland amongst the crowds and then down the steps to the harbour.

I had a walk underneath the fish-processing plant to see what I could see, which included a horde of gulls picking over the broken shells that had cascaded down through the floor into the mud.

fete forain parking herel granville manche normandy franceOver the gates to the other side of the harbour and out to the other side of the town.

On the Parking Hérel the lorries were arriving; bringing the fairground in. Carnaval starts tomorrow so they’ll be setting up tonight ready for things to get swinging underway.

Back into town, I went for a sorbet – the first of the year. And I sat in the sun on the square to eat it too. It really was a beautiful day today and I was enjoying every minute of it.

place des corsaires granville manche normandy franceThe way back home was via a diversion in a street that I had never visited before.

I’d seen some construction work going on at the Place des Corsaires and I had wondered what it was. They are in fact demolishing – or half-demolishing – a house and building it up with breeze blocks like they are doing with that house on the rue du Nord that we visit from time to time.

Back here, I opened my birthday presents. Jenny sent me some chocolates and Alison a money belt and a useful tool for eating out. I have some lovely friends.

Tea was a vegan pizza – not as nice as usual because there wasn’t much to go on it. And then a lovely walk around the walls in the dark and the solitude.

I’ll go to bed now. Not too early but not too late. No alarm tomorrow either. I’m going to take it easy which I try to get back my strength.

crowds sunshine pointe du roc granville manche normandy france
crowds sunshine pointe du roc granville manche normandy france

chantier navale port de granville harbour manche normandy france
chantier navale port de granville harbour manche normandy france

sanding down respraying armor port de granville harbour manche normandy france
sanding down respraying armor port de granville harbour manche normandy france

lobster pots port de granville harbour manche normandy france
lobster pots port de granville harbour manche normandy france
“How do you train a lobster to go on one of these?”

underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france
underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france

underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france
underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france

underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france
underneath the fish processing plant port de granville harbour manche normandy france

rue etoupefour granville manche normandy france
rue etoupefour granville manche normandy france

rue etoupefour granville manche normandy france
rue etoupefour granville manche normandy france