Photo Challenge: Bridge


There are bridges and bridges I suppose. On the same day that the builders had finished building the scaffolding on our building, the neighbour’s feline, Roschti, was the first to try it out looking ahead to see if this new play centre was something interesting.  I was sitting at my desk on the computer and saw him taking the first steps. This was his one and only walk across the bridge, as he had a problem on how to descend.

I went into the garden to see if I could help him. I did help him as he decided he did not want a confrontation with me and leaped onto a pile of tiles from where he was.  This is no problem for a feline and he survived.

Photo Challenge: Bridge

Daily Prompt: Pluck it


I have a mandoline at home. It was a souvenir from my cruise on the Baltic Sea in 1964 from my school when one of the ports we visited was Leningrad as it was then known. Today it has become St. Petersburg again. We were 17 year old school girls and it was our last time spent together. After this journey some of us would all be leaving the school to begin our life in the working world and others would go on to university.

We were on the cruise ship, m.s. Devonia and there were three Russian ladies on board from the Intourist office of Russia to answer any questions we would have about our visit to the USSR as it was then called. They answered our questions and somewhere in the converstions the mention was made that music instruments could be bought, mainly balalaika of course.

Eventually we were let loose, all 40 of us, in Leningrad and we all made a bee-line for the department store, the music department. It was unbelievable that a balalaika cost only 8 rouble, which was next to nothing in those days. The result was that we emptied the store. The Russian ladies serving had never had such a sales day. Of course I joined in, but when I asked there were no more balaikas. they only had a few mandolines, which were a little more expensive, 12 rouble, still next to nothing. I chose my instrument and paid. We left a very astonished groups of salesladies behind us in a department store with no more stringed instruments to sell, the shelves were completely empty.


To prove the indentity of my instrument I just did a closeup of the label inside the body of the mandoline all in cyrillic letters. I can read cyrillic, but my eyes are not as good as they were. One of the words is Russian for “instrument” and another says something like “musical”. The manufactuers of the mandoline have a bird as their symbol. There is also a word meaning “factory” and after it a word which could mean “people”, so “people’s factory”, but in the days of communism everything belonged to the people if they had the money.

We had arranged to meet our teacher at the bus stop in Leningrad at a certain time to return to the ship which was moored in the harbour. Of course, we were all late, and met a very worried teacher with only half of us. Gradually we all arrived, each of us carrying a balalaika or mandoline. We decided it would be better to deposit our instruments in the purser’s office in the ship for safe keeping. Forget it. They must have had at least 100 instruments piled up to the ceiling in the office and could take no more, so mine spent the remainder of the cruise next to my bed, which was in a dormitry.

I still have my balaika to this day, it came from Russia to England and eventually to Switzerland where I now live. Mr. Swiss, being a drummer, knows his way in the music world, and even restrung my mandoline with new strings some years ago. This instrument is now over 50 years old – who knows, perhaps it is valuable. And me – I never learned to play it and I am sure in the fingers of a musician it would be wondrful to hear. I never learned to pluck any instruments, I was a piano player.

Daily Prompt: Pluck it

Good Morning


I thought I would begin the computer day with a cloud, but this is all I could find. It looks like a nice summer day today with normal summer temperatures and nothing heat wave threatening to destroy the good humour. Yesterday I had a late night, at least late for me. I usually hug the bed at 11.30 give or take five minutes. Yesterday I was on the last 5% of my book (Kindle go in percents, not pages) “The Devil’s Work” by Mark Edwards – I mentioned it earlier this week. Now when you have only 5% to go, you finish the book, especially if it is gripping which this one was. You really did not know how it would turn out until the last pages. I survived the ending and disappeared to bed at 11.50, but as I fell asleep immediately, there was no damage done to any humans before writing this blog.

I awoke to the usual sounds of builders greeting each other with their “good mornings” in various german dialects and heard the sound of the grinding machine. Yes we have a new speciality. They are now grinding the cladding to eliminate the seams that are still present between the various blocks. I saw the first grinder yesterday as he mounted the scaffolding with a backpack containing some sort of sucking machine and a grinder in his hand – more later.

However this morning I heard noise from the empty appartment next to ours and took a look. I realised someone was below the appartment in the space in front of one of the hobby rooms. With mobile phone camera posed I decided to get a photo, although all I could see were clouds of white dust.


And then it ascended from the depths. If anyone has ever read the book by H.G.Wells “The Time Machine” they will know what I mean when I was now convinced there were Morlocks amongst the builders. In the future the world had divided itself with the Morlocks, the evil ones that lived below ground and the eloi, the good people living on the surface. This was definitely a morlock, his face covered by a mask and wearing goggles. What was he doing in the depths? I heard scraping noises and a cloud of white mist was ascending.  We are doomed, they are taking over. Luckily he did not see me taking the photo, otherwise I would definitely no longer be here to tell the tale.

On another note, I had an interesting experience in the supermarket last week. I was walking around, searching for tropies to buy and as I turned the corner I head a sound of a crash and running feet. Were we under attack from a rival supermarket?

Spilt Lemons

A complete collections of crates of lemons had toppled from the carrier and the assistants had all rushed to collect them. At that moment I took a photo as I already had my mobile smartphone ready, because it contained my online cloud shopping list. This is a real action photo and I can assure no fake news.

And now I must move one, do not have time for writing blogs in the morning, there are other things to do and I am still sitting in my dressing gown. I never used to bother as my night dress served its purposed quite well as a cover up at the computer, but since there are builders patrolling outside, it is perhaps wiser to cover up my luxury curves, although there  is only one large curve today.

Have fun, see you around, and beware – you never know what might be living in the cellar.