Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

Renovation 24.05 (4)

Living in Switzerland, I am spoilt with beautiful views of mountains, sunsets and sunrises, and eventually you no longer appreciate them as much as you should. I should be ashamed I suppose. I live near a river and swans and ducks are a daily event. We also have a few hundred cows in the village, so now my camera and I are searching for something new.

I was not really happy about having the building where I live undergoing a new makeover with an army of builders and scaffolding. However, every cloud has its silver lining and I now have the satisfaction of taking photos of events I never knew really existed. Imagine seeing sparks flying outside your front window and being able to get close enough to take live photos. Although I would mention the builder in this photo said I should stand a little further away, otherwise the sparks might hit my camera lens. Was he laughing or was he serious. I do not know, but I do know that as soon as the workers see me with the camera they laugh and say hello and even give me a pose for the action camera. Satisfaction is everywhere, you just have to discover it.

Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

Daily Prompt: It’s tea time

Tea

A collection of dried leaves soaked in hot water, perhaps in a paper bag, or just pure where you would need a sieve to remove the tea leaves from the hot water. What is so spectacular about tea? You are afterwards left with brown water which stains everything. your cups acquire a brown surface, the spoons are stained brown, I dare not think what the internal digestive organs resemble. The kitchen sink has a brown layer, everything is brown.

I cannot do this again. My tea experiences are exhausted. My file of photos has been continuously shown until all there is left is just a remainder at the bottom of the cup and even that no longer looks so fresh. I have told you about my morning breakfast tea, my Lady Grey Tea in the afternoon and evening. My experience with the Lapsong Souchong has also be explained: the bacon flavoured tea leaves smoked somewhere in the depths of China.

What more is there to say. My mum grew up with tea in England, my dad joined her addiction, Aunt Annie drank 15 cups a day. I did not even like tea and avoided it in favour of coffee. I was the only one of the few in the family with blue eyes, I am still convinced today it is because I never drank tea for many years. Everyone else had brown eyes.

I have written two blogs about tea, and now my computer keyboard has brown stains and no longer works so smoothly since the keys are blocked with tea leaves. I was actually thinking about a reblog of what I wrote a couple of years ago to save time and energy, but if tea occurs again as a subject it will mean yet another reblog, and I have already reblogged my tea blogs twice.

Now there are only the dregs left in the cup and they have gone cold.

Daily Prompt: It’s tea time

Good Morning

Water drops

So it rained through part of the night. We even had claps of thunder yesterday evening. I heard a loud noise some time early in the morning as if somewhere something heavy had been dropped, or was my cat Tabby having a happy hour in the appartment. I did not really care, because the main thing was that I heard it all. I heard the noises of the night. I could near water running in the bathroom when I washed my hands. This morning I heard our buiders greeting each other when they arrived for work and when I eventually arose there were already sounds of work being done outside with various machines. I do not complain about these things any more, they are part of the background music to life. On Sunday and Monday my hearing disappeared due to my ear canals being blocked with enough wax to construct a candle. Yesterday the doc, may she live forever, removed the objects in my ear and lo and  behold, my hearing returned. I was one of the lucky ones, because normally I can hear with no problem.

Mr. Swiss is now operating the vacuum cleaner, sounds of life. OK, let’s not overdo it, but I am still celebrating my return to the world of sound.

And now to celebrate my return to a normal day in the life of the Family Angloswiss. I have nothing to interrupt my daily routine so it will be an excursion to the supermarket with Mr. Swiss as usual. There was a small problem yesterday when he was adding to our online cloud shopping list on the mobile phone and managed to delete the list. Luckily I still had the list on my mobile phone, so I had to reconnect him to the cloud. After a few tries, I remembered how to do it and now we are both on the same wave length again.

It was time for a new book and  I decided to take the plunge with the first volume of “Game of Thrones”, the title being “A Song of Ice and Fire” by George R.R. Martin. I know that the TV series is breaking all records as the most successful fantasy epic, but I do not like sitting in front of the TV, binging through one film after the other. I like to take a stroll through the books. I was really unsure of this project, as the book has over 800 pages according to Amazon. However, Amazon allowed me to read the first pages free on their Internet site. There were so many characters and I had to be careful not to lose the thread. I also have my complete reading experience in the Goodreads site and saw a few remarks from those that have read this book. Most said that the beginning can get confusing with so many characters, but once you get into the book it all falls in line and it is really a great read. OK, uploading it on my Kindle (the machine that does not smell like a book, or feel like a book) was no problem, costing only 2-3 € which was really minimal. Had I decided to order a kilo of expensive real book with the heavy covers and pages, I would probably have a sprained wrist eventually by holding it. I am now getting into the book, having read 10%, and it is really well written.

Mr. Swiss told me some local news this morning. Any tennis followers may know the one time German star, Boris Becker. He is now too old to play, but trains Novak Djokovic who is not doing so well at the moment. Boris Becker is also not doing so well having Forty million Swiss francs debt. However, Boris has a damaged ankle joint which had to be operated and he has now been operated in our local clinic in Solothurn where they apparently have one of the best surgeons for the job.  My two sons were also born in this clinic and I have also had a couple of ops there. I had to pay for my treatment, although I was covered  by my insurance which I have to pay regularly. I was wondering how  Boris is managing to settle the bill for his treatment with so many debts. I suppose there is one law for the rich and another for the poor. Of course the whole thing was kept secret about this special patient, until he was realeased.

Enjoy the day everyone, be careful when cleaning your ears with cotton wool buds. Due to the rain, my garden is bursting with energy and here are my buddleia mixed with my tansy flowers.  I can almost hear them growing, although no quite, but with my new improved hearing it can only get better.

Buddleia and Tansy25.07 (1)

Fun Photo Challenge: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant

Fire in the old town of Solothurn

This was a live photo by me. I was on my way home from a dentist visit and found the main street was blocked off. An attic was on fire in one of our old buildings in the main street and I was there with my camera to take photos. The date on the photo is 2011, so it was 6 years ago.

Feldbrunnen to Langendorf 09.11 (2)

We drive past our local fire station when we visit the supermarket, and if you are lucky one of the engines will be parked outside the station. There are fulltime firemen in the big towns in Switzerland, but otherwise it is mainly volunteers that do the work.

Firefighter Exercise Feldbrunnen-Riedholz

In my younger and more active days I belonged to the village first aid group and once a year we would do an exercise with the village firemen. We then got a closer look at the fire trucks.

Feldbrunnen village 10 (2)

And as an extra, this old fire hydrant stands at the edge of a field in our village. I don’t know whether it is still working, but who knows.

Fun Photo Challenge: Fire Trucks, Fire Houses, Fire Hydrant

Daily Prompt: Let’s do it again

Road to Langendorf 24.07 (3)

We approached the supermarket and there was something comletely different outside. Thre was a little hut with fireworks and swiss flags. Everything was decorated Swiss style. There were even plastic holders with candles with a Swiss Cross. Of course it will soon be 1st August, the Swiss equivalent to 4th July and 14th June, the Swiss National Day.

There are only a few days to go and our cat will hide all night beneath the bed from the bangs and light effects of celerating Switzerland. The hills (mountains) will be alive with the crackle of bonfires. If you happen to take a flight on 1st August and pass over Switzerland, do not worry. We are not under attack, and defending ourselves with explosions. Most mountains have their own little fire to show that we are celebrating. No-one really knows why it happens on 1st August.

Many years ago Switzerland was a collection of little villages in between the mountains, because it was the best place to build, everything else was on a slope and you at least found some flat places where you could complete your chalets without falling down the slopes. The mountains were left to the cows, they could climb better and found more grass at the top.

The villages grew and people wanted to see what it was like on the other side of the mountains. One evening three guys from different villages met in the valley called Swiss, and lit a fire because there was still some wood laying round from building wooden chalets. The crossbows were put on one side, as the men were hungry and no-one really felt like playing the national game of shooting an apple off each other’s head.

Each guy had a Swiss sausage with him. They found some sticks of wood, and so the sausages were pierced and roasted over the fire. Yes our swiss ancestors were genial. Suddenly there was an explosion and a crate if beer appeared. The three guys all spoke with a different accent as they were from different villages, but decided it was time to get together and speak the same language, something like Swiss German. They decided it had been “hell” living their lonely lives in the mountains. There was no “vet” to tend to the cows and the third guy said “ja” and so the country of Helvetia was formed.

When they got home their wives were annoyed at the noise they were making, yodelling and waking the villagers, but when they heard that they were now all living in Helvetia it got very complicated. Hedda found it a stupid name for a country, Vreni was not even sure how to pronounce it and Heidi said they should go and count the cows which would be more sensible that inventing countries. The cows had all scattered over the meadows, frightened of the explosion made by the appearance of the crate of beer from nowhere. It was then Fritzli came home from the village school and said someone had stolen a crate of beer from the local tavern and that it was a real Swizzle, “Er?” said Hedda and Vreni and Heidi both pulled on their platted hair and asked where the crate of beer landed. Fritz said it sounded very much like in Switzerland and so the name was born.

Helvetia still exists but only on the postage stamps and money to keep it all nice and neutral. In the meanwhile Tabby my cat stays under the bed all night whilst the Swiss celebrate by roasting sausages over the fire and empty crates of beer accompanied by the sound of exploding fireworks. Or perhaps it happened differently. No-one really remembers as it all happened more than 500 years ago, it is just tradition.

Daily Prompt: Let’s do it again