Tag Archives: forgot breakfast

Tuesday 16th August 2022 – SUMMER IS BACK!

After the couple of days that we had of grey overcast weather conditions, Summer came back with a bang today.

Not quite the record-breaking temperatures that we had, but blue skies all the same.

dry footpath pointe du roc Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022And while we’re on the subject of the hot weather … “well, one of us is” – ed … I thought that you might like to see how things are doing around here.

This is the footpath on top of the cliffs at the back of the Sports Ground. It’s the route that I take down to the end of the headland and you can see how it is (or isn’t) holding up.

The path itself is a layer about an inch thick of dust. On the edges of the path the grass has dried out completely and has died off in places. The rest of it, what’s left, is a burnt shrivelled mass and it’ll take a while to regenerate.

Those little showers of rain that we have had just recently haven’t done anything towards improving the situation.

What else took a while to regenerate this morning was me, unfortunately.

It wasn’t until 09:00 that the alarm went off for me to awaken but there was a good reason for that. Late last night a Paul Temple adventure came up on the old-time radio feed just as I was thinking of going to bed. A programme that is timed at 3:25:00

These old radio programmes are really excellent and so I was planning on listening for an hour or so before going to bed. But instead I ended up listening to the whole programme and it was long after 01:00 when I fell into the stinking pit.

Not that I’m bothered about that because life is for enjoying too as well as working and let’s face it – I’m not getting much pleasure in anything else right now

So after I’d finally staggered into the kitchen for my medication I came back in here to find out where I’d been during the night.

And it’s no surprise that I wasn’t feeling like much today when you look at where I went during the night. Having stayed awake until all hours listening to a Paul Temple episode, when I was asleep I had a Paul Temple episode going on in my head. It went on for hours and hours and hours. It involved some saucepans and saucepan lids but everything was just so confusing that I can’t remember any of it. It rambled on and on and on about these guys who I think might have been sportsmen on small boats or something. That’s all that I can really say about this that went on for hours.

And then we were still in Istanbul (had we been there before? I dunno). We’d been talking to some people about meeting up with someone and performing an interview. They to whom we were talking was a taxi driver had something to do and he produced a girl. She exited his cab and walked away. The person with me said that that would have been a good interview. He explained that she was rather too far in in this organisation and would likely cause a lot of problems. She spent most of her time being institutionalised and the rest of the time going round with this gang. So we agreed and he said that he’d see who else he could find for us. He drove away. The person with me said “God, I have to go” and dashed through the door in this stone terraced house and disappeared. I went through this door. There was a set of really steep steps that went down to the river. I went down there as best as I could. I had no idea where he went. There were 2 or 3 cafés at the bottom. He didn’t appear to be in either so I wondered whether he’d gone to the toilet so I’d wait around. There was a girl painter there with a boy whom she was painting. He was carrying this brown and black cat. She was drawing the cat so I went over to talk to her and to stroke the cat. It wasn’t all that friendly but it didn’t fight or anything. We chatted about the cat for quite some time.

Later on we were on a train heading north towards Doncaster somewhere like that. We were on board and it was an express. There were a few seats taken, not all that many. We walked along the train trying to find our places to sit. I can’t remember any more than that

At some point or other a girl with me announced that she was pregnant but it was sort-of announced by accident. It wasn’t a planned announcement, it came out in the conversation. I asked her what she was going to do but she didn’t give a reply so we went back home and went in. The house was totally filthy and really awful. Everyone was just sitting around in a complete state of untidiness. Someone said “you’ll never guess what the baby (for there was another baby in there) had been playing with. He went on to say that it was a half-dead mouse. “I just threw it i ntothe middle of the room” he said which made everyone shudder. I had to start to look for this thing. I thought that if any girlfriend of mine was going to be pregnant this place is going to have to be cleaned up because she shouldn’t bring up a child in this no matter how someone else was bringing up another one. It clearly wasn’t any good at all and we needed to do something about it.

And finally I was walking along the shore on the edge of a beach. There was some people and a dog down there playing about in somewhere where there had been a great big fire. I could hear them discussing it. They seemed to think that it was some form of spontaneous combustion of whatever was underneath the sand. They were busy digging away at it and walking in for a closer look. I carried on walking past and ended up in the mountains in the snow looking at the maps about the ski resort and the various tracks to descend into the valley again. I was looking for either a blue or a red run. Eventually I found what I thought might be a good place to go down but there was a lot of fog around. It came swirling around cutting off the view of the valley and then the view of the sign with the routes on it. I thought to myself that this is going to be extremely difficult for me to go

That skiing excursion actually reminded me of a skiing adventure in which I took part in Cervinia in Italy in the days of my youth. I was with my Italo-Russian friend and we were up in the mountains of Italy near the Matterhorn. We were with a few other people but we were actually in front and when we returned to the village we found that we were on our own.

There had been hanging clouds in the mountains and they had missed the left-turning in the mist and carried straight on downhill into a different valley and ended up in Switzerland. In the days of border controls with no passports or anything, and the 38-mile taxi ride to return to the hotel was the least of their problems.

But something else that was interesting was the dream about the untidy house. We all know only too much about that these days and so for the rest of the day (because there wasn’t much of the rest of it after typing out all of that) I’ve been tidying up in here.

A huge pile of rubbish, papers and the like, bit the dust today. It’s all in the bin and a lot more would have followed it except that each time that I went out I bumped into a neighbour and we had a lengthy chat. Not that I’m one for chatting to the neighbours but I do have to try to be sociable occasionally.

And I now know why the barrier to the car park isn’t working. I wondered where the car of one of my neighbours had gone

As well as taking out the papers I’ve actually put some stuff away too, I have cunning plans for more stuff and later on tonight I’m going to go outside with my old non-working printer and … errr … forget where I left it. This is going to be quite a long job.

In fact I was so carried away that I forgot to go for breakfast. That’s not like me, is it? Although I am eating less these days than I have done in the past.

people on beach rue du nord Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022It was a surprise that I actually managed to make it out for my afternoon walk.

As usual I went across to the wall at the end of the car park to see what was happening down on the beach. With the weather being a lot warmer and sunnier than it has been this last couple of days I was expecting to see the crowds.

And as usual, I’m not disappointed. This was just a few of them, with many people having taken to the water to cool off. There were crowds of people elsewhere disporting themselves on beach towels catching the sun all the way down the coast.

yachts baie de Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022While I was at it, I had a look out to sea to see what was happening there.

When I’d been walking down to the end of the car park I’d seen something white out at sea. It’s actually a yacht with a white sail with green stripe that’s cavorting around out there and it has a friend way over there towards the northern Normandy shore.

Over to the right of the yacht in the foreground is a marker buoy, presumably indicating another lobster pot, and then we have one of the many bouchot farms of the area in the background with its stakes rearing up like a medieval cheval de frise

st helier jersey Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022As you can tell from the previous photo, the view was so much better today with the air being much cleaner.

That meant that I had high hopes for a photo of Jersey and St Helier so I went and found a piece of high ground where there might be a really good view.

And once again I wasn’t disappointed. It’s not the clearest view that we have had of St Helier but it’s still pretty good all the same.

One of these days I’ll really have to get myself out there somehow so that I can identify all of the buildings that I can see from here. The way that things are right now, I’ll have to hitch a ride on a freighter.

kayak cabin cruiser baie de Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022Or else flag down a friendly cabin cruiser.

As I walked through the sandy wastes towards the end of the headland I noticed this cabin cruiser pull up. At first I thought that it might be a group of fishermen but as I watched they lowered something down at the stern.

A couple of minutes later someone climbed in and kayaked away. And it’s a good job that it’s summer because you don’t need to keep warm. After all, we all know that you can’t have your kayak and heat it.

And on that not, I wandered off further down the path.

cabanon vauban people on bench pointe du roc Granville Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022The car park was crowded again with cars so I was expecting to see a lot of people here too.

Plenty of folk down on the lower path and there was a couple of people sitting on the bench by the cabanon vauban.

Not that they had very much to see because there were no boats out there this afternoon and no-one fishing on the rocks.

However, the buoy that we saw yesterday marking what I assume to be a lobster pot was still there so they can keep their eye on that.

ch638749 pescadore ch918297 trafalgar ch764626 chant des sirenes ch449345 peccavi ch 730708 la soupape I ch898472 cap lihou chantier naval port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022So I wandered off down the path on the other side of the headland to see what’s happening in the port.

And there are yet more changes in the chantier naval as another trawler has come in to join the fray today. The black and blue trawler in the middle of all of that is Pescadore.

She always confuses me because when I first came here she was actually blue and white but had a repaint a while back.

Meanwhile over at the ferry terminal out of shot is Chausiaise, the little freighter. She’s not going anywhere at the moment.

marie fernand port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022While I was here I went to check to see if anyone was playing “Musical Ships” at the Fish Processing Plant this afternoon but I was side-tracked.

Over there in the inner harbour is a yacht. At first I thought that it might be Charles Marie because it seems to be the same style, but the colours are different. This one here is dark brown rather than dark blue.

So I shall have to go for a closer look to see if I can pick up a name.

But there’s another lorry in the port this afternoon, presumably dropping off some more freight for the Channel Islands. Things are certainly hotting up here as far as freight goes. We’re starting to be over-run and that’s good news.

victor hugo port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022Heading off towards the inner harbour (forgetting all about the Fish Processing Plant) I noticed that Victor Hugo is back in port.

The last that I heard of her she was running a shuttle around the outlying islands of the Channel Islands but now she’s back in the inner harbour and moored up at the quayside. It looks as if her mad dashes out and about over the last couple of days have come to a halt.

However I hope that it’s only a temporary pause. I mentioned earlier that I want to get out to the Channel Islands at some point in the near future and I had some high hopes that the ferry might become a regular thing. It’s no part of my plan for her to be laid up for long.

marie fernand port de Granville harbour Manche Normandy France Eric Hall photo August 2022So back at the inner harbour and the yacht that’s in here.

It was not easy to read her name but a check of the fleet radar later revealed that she’s called Marie Fernand. She was built in 1894 as one of the harbour pilots for Le Havre and the northern Frenc coast, duties that she carried out until motorisation of the pilot service after World War I.

She was sold to someone in the UK in 1922 and for a long time disappeared from view.

Someone told me a delightful anecdote about her though. They planned to build a reconstruction of her in time for her centenary so they cast around for the plans. However someone had the rather brilliant idea “why don’t we just copy the original?”.

That was the first that the organisers knew that she still existed so they convinced the British owners to sell her back to the port and since then she’s been restored and was present at her own centenary.

There’s the Festival of Working Sailboats taking place soon so I imagine that she’s come here to be part of it.

Back here I had my iced coconut drink and did a little more tidying up. It’s going to take me an age to do what I want to do.

Tea was the second half of that rather wicked curry. and it was wicked as well. I’ll have to put the toilet paper in the fridge later.

But I didn’t go out to put the printer out. Even as I write we’re having a thunderstorm and a rainstorm. The printer doesn’t really work but I want to give someone a sporting chance and soaking it in water won’t help.

No radio tonight – I’m listening to music so I doubt if I’ll have a late night. I must remember to reset the alarm and then tomorrow carry on with my cleaning plan, otherwise known as “throwing out surplus items”.

A good night’s sleep would be nice too. We can live in hope.

Monday 27th August 2018 – THE GOOD NEWS …

… is that the blood count has gone up yet again.

The bad news is that it hasn’t gone up enough and the people in the hospital don’t want me to travel.

Despite the racket in the reception last night, I did manage to go off to sleep quite easily in the end and I was flat out until all of … errr … 04:38.

But even so, I was back asleep until the alarms went off at 06:20.

I had my medication and then a shower and a good clean up. But I was so bust sorting myself out that I forgot to have a coffee. And with no water or anything to drink, I had a thirst that you could photograph.

But I was out early and down to the station where, when I was buying my ticket, I heard them announce a train to Leuven. So I RAN – yes, RAN, dear reader (and you’ve no idea how pleased that made me) for the train and leapt aboard.

And it was then that I realised that I had forgotten to buy any breakfast either.

But there’s a supermarket at the back of the station at Leuven so I picked up some bread rolls and at them as I marched across the city.

I was early for my appointment so I settled down in a comfortable seat, and bang on time, the nurse came to see me and I was all plugged in and hooked up.

When the doctor came to see me, he told me that my blood count had only gone up to 9.3. Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that this time last year it was at 13.0 and they were happy to let me go a-wandering off.

Not this time, though.

They want me back in 3 weeks time, so I spent the afternoon in between sleeping having a discussion with Rachel about a cunning plan.

Kaatje came to see me too. I’d had two more bills from the hospital so I handed them to her to pass on to my health insurance people.

resurfacing kapucijnenvoer sint rafael belgiqueWhen they threw me out, I wandered back downtown.

My route took me down to the Kapicijnenvoer for a change, and outside the Sint rafael Ziekenhuis I noticed that they had dug up the street completely.

It’s quite an impressive piece of work that they are doing.

In the town centre I stopped at a couple of places- the Carrefour, the Loving Hut and the Kruidvat for some supplies, and then I caught the train back to Brussels and my hotel.

Later on, I went out again. Alison had discovered a vegan and gluten-free restaurant called Moon at the back of the cathedral so we met there. It’s a simple buffet where you pay for the food by weight.

Delicious it was too and this will go onto our list of places to revisit, although it’s a bit amateurish in the way that it’s run. The rice ran out and “there’s no more now until tomorrow” – that kind of thing.

carrefour de l'europe gare centrale bruxelles belgiqueWe went down to the Gare Centrale for a coffee and a good chat afterwards.

Later, we went outside and I put Alison onto her bus home. Once she’s ridden off into the sunset I had a bit of a loiter around outside.

With all of the photos that I’ve taken of Brussels over the years, I’ve never taken one of the Central Station. It’s not very impressive in the daytime, but at night it’s something else.

carrefour de l'europe gare centrale hotel hilton bruxelles belgiqueThe exterior of the station at the Carrefour de l’Europe never used to be very impressive.

When I lived here it was just one main street with traffic just about everywhere, but not the traffic has been blocked off and it has been turned into a pedestrian zone.

The addition of a few pillars and arches, and a few cleverly-positioned streetlights make the place look really good.

statue jacques brel place de la vieille halle au bles bruxelles belgiqueFrom there I went for a little wander around in the dark, boldly going where I haven’t gone for quite some considerable time.

My perambulation took me past the Place de la Vieille Halle au Blés where the statue of the famous Belgian singer/songwriter Jacques Brel stands sentinel.

He’s come out quite nicely in the subdued street lighting.

Now back at my hotel, and 205% of my day’s activity – 16.2kms – I’ve walked today. And it feels like it too.

I’ve made my butties for my journey tomorrow and now I’m off to bed. I have an early start in the morning.

05:20 to be precise.

carrefour de l'europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique
carrefour de l’europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique

carrefour de l'europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique
carrefour de l’europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique

carrefour de l'europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique
carrefour de l’europe gare centrale bruxelles belgique

grande place hotel de ville rue de l'etuve bruxelles belgique
grande place hotel de ville rue de l’etuve bruxelles belgique

Monday 30th January 2017 – WHAT A WONDERFUL …

… meal that was.

Pizza with fresh vegetables with garlic bread, followed by pineapple rings with lemon sorbet. There’s no doubt that having defrosted the freezer cabinets in the fridges here the other week has certainly expanded my culinary whatsits, and I can’t wait to have a decent little kitchen with small freezer. I shall be well away, that’s for sure.

Last night I forgot to watch a film, so I dozed on and off for hours before dropping asleep. And I was disturbed during the night by a noise that awoke me at some point, although I did manage to go back to sleep until the alarm went off.

But never mind that for a moment, I was away with the fairies during the night. I was having some kind of issues about plants and I’d had to pick up some packs of compost – three sacks I wanted. I couldn’t find any to buy so I had to order it for delivery. The girl at reception wrote down the phone number for me on her note pad so that I could phone it and order what I needed. Outside, I was discussing push-bikes with someone and we made the point that up until about 10 years ago, the average age of pushbikes on the street was probably about 30 years old, but recently of course, buying new bikes seems to be the thing, and this would have brought the average age of bikes down to a much-more reasonable figure.
Meanwhile, my sacks of compost hadn’t come and I needed to remind the company. I was driving past the offices of this place and could have called in to pick them up but I was driving a school bus with kids and it wasn’t quite the right thing to do. I couldn’t find the secretary who had given me the phone number, and I couldn’t see it on her notepad so I wondered what she had done with it. This was getting confusing.
A little later, I’d gone for a manicure of my finger and toe nails. Who should be doing the manicure but “The One That Got Away”. As an aside, I have to say that just recently in real life I’ve been taking better care of my finger and toe-nails and this came through in the dream. Although they were cut very short and irregular, it was clear that I’d been taking care of them, and she was impressed. She said that she liked a man who took good care of himself. Then I made a comment about how warm it was in there, to which she replied that warmth always made her more amorous, and she gave me a big smile.

It would be at that moment that the alarm went off – had I known that I was ensconced in a tiny studio on the verge of a close encounter with her, I would have had a lie-in.

They had forgotten us yet again at breakfast and it was a struggle to find stuff to eat. And drink too because the juice supply was exhausted. When this afternoon I saw the guy who does the stocks, I had a good moan at him about that.

And then we had the hospital.

Walking that distance to the hospital hardly affected me at all – I was feeling quite cheerful on my way up there despite the light drizzle. And then we had the good news. Blood count stable at 11.8 and protein loss at 1.97 – still far too high but stable.

They offered me a six-week absence before the next visit, but I insisted on four weeks. That takes me up nicely to the end of my rental period here and if it’s still stable then, I can negotiate a six-week absence and disappear off to wherever it is that I’m going.

This afternoon was quite relaxing. I didn’t do too much. And now it’s bed-time yet again. A quiet day is called for tomorrow and then I’ll have to start to make plans.

Sunday 22nd January 2017 – WHAT A SURPRISE!

Indeed! And I’d only nipped out for half an hour too!

Last night was another awful night and once more I’m not sure why. I should have fallen asleep like a baby but it wasn’t at all like that. I kept on falling asleep and waking up right the way through.

However I had managed to go off on my travels too. I had to go for a drink with someone and I’d made an appointment to meet him in a bar. But I couldn’t really remember what he looked like. And then I remembered that I had an appointment with someone else – at the same bar half an hour earlier. And the person I was seeing first was waiting outside so he went in to buy me half a pint of beer and as I walked in I saw someone who resembled the person I was to meet second, but I wasn’t sure. But anyway I smiled at him and said hello, then went to look for the person I was to meet first. But before I could meet up with him I met a third person, a young girl whom I had been hoping to see for a while. She was there too, and we started to chat. And not only that, there was this tiny girl with black curly hair who was extremely attractive and I wouldn’t have minded meeting her on another occasion. But eventually I could disentangle myself from all of these other engagements and go to meet the guy – it was indeed him and he had saved a space for me on a seat, but sitting on it was the girl with black curly hair. He asked if I didn’t mind and so I replied that it didn’t bother me. If she didn’t budge up, she could sit on my knee.

It seems that they had forgotten us for breakfast. Stale bread from yesterday, no orange juice – it was that that greeted me this morning and that dismayed me. But I suppose that it happens. Back down here I had a shower and a shave and a change of clothes, and then attacked yesterday’s blog. You may remember that I crashed out yesterday as soon as I returned home, before I have even had time to start it. 2362 words later (I had had a busy day, remember!) it was finished, and it was lunchtime too.

I’d had a good chat on the internet with “The One That Got Away” – that was pleasant too.

And then I went out for half an hour. There’s a guy who used to live here and he’s asked me about doing a furniture job with Caliburn, and should we go for a coffee?

Sounded like a good plan for me, and so we did. That was at 14:00 and I finally made it back at about 20:30. We’d had a few coffees and so on, a really good chat, and then it turned out that he was a big fan of Indian food and knew where there was a good Indian restaurant.

Of course, I’m always game for an Indian and finding anywhere half-decent in mainland Europe is extremely difficult. Consequently, off we went and there we were. And I’ve tasted much worse Indian meals than this.

That’s why I’ve only just returned, from my half-hour coffee break.

As you know, I’m not very sociable, so going out like this is a strange thing. but anyway, there I was, and here I am now, back home

I’ve had an excellent, busy weekend and quite right too. High time I did things like this and after all, everyone is always telling me that I ought to get out more often.

Monday 26th September 2011 – I REMEMBER YESTERDAY …

… saying that I didn’t want to come home.

And had I known what the flight was going to be like, I wouldn’t have done.

I’m not the best air traveller in the world, but I’m much better than some of the people on board who spent almost the entire flight screaming as we were tossed from one patch of turbulence to another all the way across the Atlantic.

The worst part about the flight though was that I didn’t receive my vegan breakfast – and how upset was I about that? That was a huge disappointment, although no complaints about the chick pea curry the night before.

Passing through the Immigration was fairly painless for a change. But the armed soldiers patrolling the airport wasn’t very pleasant to see. We all know about soldiers and their accurate rate of fire. A suicide-bomber pops up his head and 50 civilians are killed in a spray of inaccurate machine-gunning.

And it seems that they can’t spell “AREA” either. We all have to go to the “Baggage AERA” for our luggage.

The airport might have been fairly painless but the journey through Paris to the Gare de Lyon wasn’t. I’m really going to have to find an alternative to this route. Dragging my huge suitcase through the crowds and through the metro and the RER is no pleasure, believe me.

Nothing exciting happened on the train back – which makes quite a change after last year’s adventures and Terry met me at the railway station at Riom.

I fuelled up Terry’s car and then he took me back to his place, where Liz very kindly offered me a bed for the night, for which I was extremely grateful.