They also come is various colours, shapes and sizes, but they all climb.
They also come is various colours, shapes and sizes, but they all climb.
The bin next to the ice cream was probably for what was left over, if it was too much to eat.
The left overs after building the scaffolding
Two coffees served with a glass of water
And last but not least, Nera, my cat who left us for the eternal corn chambers for her 10th life a few years ago. She was our chief cat, not fat, just very fluffy. We still have her litter sister Tabby. although we are not sure how many fathers were involved.
This is all I have left from my yarning days which is not very much I must admit. I wrote once before, just a couple of weeks ago, about my knitting and crochering days which are also now long gone. My first grandchild will be arriving in September, but her grandmother Angloswiss will not be raiding the yarn shops for baby wool to knit. Today it is not so necessary, you can buy such wonderful baby stretch onesies in pretty colours with attached feet, so what in the point in knitting little bootees for the baby’s little feet, in a few weeks the feet will no longer be little and stretch is perfect.
However, not wanting to disappoint, I took a quick trip to the cellar where I keep things “that might come in useful”. I got that one from mum. I think her complete household was full of things that should come in useful. Nothing was thrown away, you never know. Every little glass bottle that once contained tablets was kept on one side. They never really came in useful, but who was I to destroy my mum’s visions. Yes she was the original re-cycler, but then it did not have a name.
And now to my bits and pieces that I found in this tin. It seemed to be full of empty cotton reels and spare elastic. I even found a cotton reel with a full supply of thread on it, waiting for the next button to be sewn on. If you are looking for buttons, they are in a different tin. I have many, in all shapes and sizes and colours as well as hooks and eyes. They might come in handy one day. In the days of office work, Mr. Swiss would wear uniform on days when visitors were in the office: generally a shirt and tie and all the trimmings. It was the done thing at the time. Since he has joined the happy hunting grounds of the retired, his collection of Dior, Boss and Armani ties are now left in his wardrobe, hanging on the rack on the door. I cannot remember when he last wore a tie. The modern trend for special occasions has the description “Dress: casual” so the tie curse has now been eliminated.
But back to the buttons. At his time of wearing shirts, the buttons would usually leave the shirt after only wearing it a couple times. They were sewn on by machine, and just a simple pull on a thread would totally separate the button from the shirt. If you were lucky you found the missing button, otherwise it was always useful to have a few spare buttons. I was not very good at sewing on buttons, but Mr. Swiss quickly realised it was a an advantage to learn how to do it as he did not have to wait until I did it. As the shirt problem no longer exists, a supply of extra buttons is also no longer necessary and so the tins of yard/thread and buttons now lead a solitary life in the cellar. I only found them today for the photo above.
Of course there are women (even men it seems) that still like to knit a pullover or sew their own clothes. I used to belong to this tribe, but now prefer a computer and buy what I need in a store. One of my rebellious acts against becoming a golden oldie.
Despite the cold temperatures, we still have sun and the lilac tree opposite my garden is flowering at last. After early warm spring weather that caused the trees to flower we had a very cold patch. The farmers are not so happy and many of the trees had frost problems, especially the cherry trees. There are cherry trees dotted around Switzerland and they are a source of income for many farmers. Now the cherry tress blossomed, the cold weather arrived, the beginning fruits perished in the cold and there willl be a very reduced harvest, if at all. There are also many crops that went kaput due to the cold weather.
In the meanwhile life goes on. Our scaffolding workers arrived yesterday in the morning. We noticed that Saturday morning was part of their working week. However, yesterday the stayed and worked through the day until 7.00 p.m.: a normal working day but even a bit more.
We relised they had a deadline to fulfil. Monday is 1st May, and workers do not work on that day in Switzerland. The shops are only open in the morning, and building sites are closed. This meant the troop of scaffolding construction workers had to finish the job on Saturday and they did. It did not bother us so much. Of course there was noise, but not so much, just the clanking of metal pieces. They had their deadline to maintain. Next week the plasterers will be arriving and they have to be able to reach all parts of the building.
It is actually fascinating how the scaffolding is planned into every detail. Stairs and platforms are placed in strategic positions. Every piece of metal fits, it is a sort of giant lego construction. Mr. Swiss told me in the olden days the scaffolding was made of wood. Today it is all aluminium and on the high end buildings steel. However, they were friendly workers, always ready with a greeting in the morning and a smile now and again, especially when they saw me with the camera.
Our view from the kitchen window is now metal scaffolding and ladders. Our West side in summer is usually exposed to the full sun, and from midday you have to cover the patio with the sun blind as it is too hot to handle. We noticed that due to the scaffolding in front of the windows, we are no longer subjected to the full strength of the sun during the day, for which we are glad.
On Tuesday all the blinds will be removed to enable to plasterers to do their job. When the work is finished we will have new blinds for all the windows. In the meanwhile we had to rethink our living space, as we are not curtain people: just in the bedrooms. The kitchen is not practical for curtains due to the cooking residue. The interior decorating guy, that we use for such work, paid us a visit with a few suggestions. We decided on the stripes with all the attachments for the complete appartment. We can pull them to the side if we do not need them, which is very handy in the kitchen. The fitted them up last week and only needed a few hours.
Here you can still see the horizontal parts of the metal blinds in the background, but they will be removed. We have got special stripes for the bedroom which prevents too much light entering the room. I am quite pleased with this system. They are good quality and work well. Even our cat is enjoying the effect on his chair.
At least we now have a few peaceful days to relax until it all begins again. I was planning on a walk yesterday, but preferred to relax at home. Today they will let me out for an hour this afternoon. I must go places and see things before the new week begins.
Enjoy your Sundays wherever you are.
Someone called Lewis found them growing in a mountaineous area facing north in the States. What could be better for Switzerland. They like a dryish, sandy, stony earth, although in my garden they are not so dry at the moment due to the continuous rain we have had for the past week. However the sun was shining today, so it can only get better. I love these little flowers and they make a great show. You just have to be called Lewis.
I am living in a gray world, surrounded by gray – textures and shades of gray: not quite 50 but if this continues, we will reach the 50 shades eventually. Even the white nylon sheet suspended over our entrance is now gray. The workmen hung it up today, probably to catch any dust or dirt that might fall from the building, the sun arrived and reflected the complete gray background onto the material and so we are grey in gray. Even the pants I am wearing at the moment are dark gray and the t-shirt light gray. But today we had a blue sky.
I am not really the perfume type, but if it has a name then why not. I found my perfumes at the duty free when I would travel to London to visit my dad. They had small bottles of various sorts (flacon?) in a box. I still have remainders in my bathroom cabinet, for the simple idea that I never bother with it. As we have had these theme before I will try not to repeat myself and now tell you about the times when I was a kid and mum liked to visit the family grave in Stratford in East London. Today Stratford is no longer the Stratford I knew. It was discovered for the London Olympic Games in 2012 and a lot was destroyed to make room for various stadiums for the sports.
So mum and I were on our way by bus to the Woodgrange Cemetery, which has now been partially converted into a moslem cemetery. Do not ask, things change throughout the years. As we approached the area we would cross a river, probably the River Lea. We passed over a bridge and then it hit us, the strong smell of perfume, the bus smelt like a lavender market. On the river bank, Yardleys had their factory. Yardleys were the biggest perfume suppliers in England. Their products were sold everywhere: they were cheap and popular amongst the Brits. These were the days before everyone had a bottle of Chanel No. 5 in their bathroom cupboard, and our family definitely did not invest large sums of money in perfume. It was more for decoration than anything else.
When we reached Stratford we would change busses for the graveyard where most of our family members were buried. Family members that I never met in life and had only heard of from mum. My maternal grandmother was the last to be buried in the grave when I was a kid, and I never knew her. She passed on when I was 4 months old. Some years later my maternal granfather was the last to be buried in this cemetery, the grave was then full, its limit of 6 people/bodies had been reached. I visited the cemetery on a visit to my father in London with my friend some years ago and we discovered that half of the cemetery had disappeared and had appartment blocks built on it. There have been rumours of hauntings in various appartments, but probably more due to highly strung imaginations of the people living there. Our family grave was now non existant. I knew roughly where the family grave was, but even in my days of monthly visits to the cemetery with mum, it was over populated and you had to climb over other graves to get to the one you wanted to reach.
I am drifting from the theme. The Yardleys perfume factory is also no longer there. It had to make room for the Olympic Games, and having a background smell of “Ashes of Roses” or however the perfume was named, was not the ideal scent for the background of a race or pole vault.
The remains of Woodgrange Cemetery
I discovered this morning that there is such a thing called “dandelion days” held in honour of this garden intruder. A fellow blogger mentioned it and so I decided to examine this strange idea a little closer. Of course they have their charm, the happy yellow flowers are one of the first to appear in the garden, almost everywhere, which is the first problem. They are everywhere, I even found two flower heads in my wonderful green lawn and if you find one, the others will not be far behind. This was the reason I removed the two flowers. Outside my garden there is a natural meadow where all wild flowers can grow as much as they want to. It is only removed at the end of the seeding season, to ensure it will grow again next year.
In the meanwhile the dandelions produce their many flowers which eventually become fluffy balls containing the seeds which are spread by the wind to other places to grow, ensuring that they will be back next year, perhaps even for a second show this year, they are everywhere. I remember the childhood days when we would pick this fluffly seed containers and empty them by blowing the feathered seeds into the wind, helping to propagate and spread the dandelion. Today I am not longer a child, and a dedicated enemy of the dreaded dandelion. Not only do they grow, but they produced roots resembling what a baby triffid would probably develop. The roots go deep and I need some sort of garden tool to dig them out to ensure that they will not return next year. I love flowers, but dandelions are too much of a good thing.
On a walk in the field next to my garden I discovered this new growth of dandelions, promising all the negative delights of a new dandelion plantation next to my garden. It is already showing a couple of stalks depleted of its seed heads (which have probably found a new future home near my garden) and is bearing the shape of things to come with new flower stalks. No, it is not one of those romantic dandelion flower pictures, but a mass of buds and leaves, probably growing its carrot like roots in the underground, a danger to all normal plant life as far as I am concerned. All I can say is feel free to celebrate your dandelion days, take your photos and afterwards, if your strength allows it, dig them up and throw them on the compost heap. My words to the international dandelion days, they do not need days, they need obituaries as far as I am concerned.
In the meanwhile the scaffolding construction work in our part of the world seemed to be approaching its end yesterday. All the various steel bits and pieces in our garden were cleared away and our building now resembles the Centre Pompidiou in Paris. That is a an art gallery constructed in the fashion of a building site, but more with architectural design and judged as a work of art. We are on the bottom on the right in the following photo.
I am not quite sure if this can be recommended as a work of art, but this seems to be the entrance to the stairs on this construction. It has been enclosed with Paul Klee-like colourful designs, which I am sure is eligible for a prize in art design.
I actually thought the scaffolding constructors will now be leaving to make way for the next troup, which will be the plasterers, but they have returned again today. They probably want to say goodbye to their creation and have a few bits and pieces to finish. The first week of work was done by a couple of guys from Germany who seemed to be the experts.
This week a new troop arrived, speaking a language I did not at first recognise. However, when they were constructing our personal entrance to the stairs on the East side, which we are forbidden to use, I asked them if they could put my garden hose in a place where we could use it. The guy answered “je ne comprends pas” and so I realised they were all french speaking, although I did not actually recognised the language as French at first. After further conversation, me using my broken french, it seems they are all from Morocco and it must have been some sort of french patois they speak between themselves, although it seems they would be more comfortable with spanish. I then realised that this was not just a building site, but an internatonal building site.
And now to a normal Saturday with no unnecesary exitements, I hope. Mr. Swiss said this morning everything was covered in mist outside, probably due to the rain we have been having in the last few days. I have no big plans for today, but might take a walk somewhere.
See you around later, have a nice week-end.
We have a violin builder in our town of Solothurn. His window is full of violins in all sizes, but the photos show more my reflection than the actual violin. One of these days I will walk into the shop and ask if I can take a few photos. Anyhow over the entrance to the shop he proudly displays his trade mark of the end piece of a violin.
Due to the renovation work being done on the facade of our building where we live, we now have our own, almost, private staircase. It was fitted up today, but when it was finished it had a metal door and with a lock. No-one is allowed in except for the builders. The staircase continues to the roof of our building.
We have had cold unfriendly rainy weather over the last week, and in the heights of the Jura it snowed. We were on the way to the supermarket this morning and I only had my mobile telephone camera with me, but risked a couple of shots from the car of the snow capped mountains.
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