Good Morning

I eventually prepared breakfast and set up the computer, but not without an early morning stress. Today is one of those days where I should have octopus arms to cope, but I did it. The first chore was to strip my bed as today is fresh linen day. Then I arrived in the kitchen knowing that I should actually bake the day’s bread. No problem, I made the dough and put it to rise in 10 minutes – practice makes perfect. And then photos, I had nothing knew so explored the garden for a few insects – they were resting after their nocturnal activities. Although everything is damp from the constant rain we have had, not even that drew out the slugs and snails.All I have to show is my breakfast table.

I invested in a new plant on my last visit to the store. I just love kalanchoe. They are so simple to care for: hardly need any water and flower constantly for a while. Afterwards they grow further and are almost indestructible. They are also quite reasonable in price. It is now sitting on my breakfast table.

I also have this sedum outside on the porch sitting in a vase filled with water. This was an accident. I was cutting down my tansy as they had grown qujite tall and was surrounding my sedum which was now thinking about flowering, so it was the tansy or the sedum. Unfortunately in my busy actions I mistankenly cut this sedum. I immediately placed it in a vase of water: another plant that likes to make new roots so nothing is lost.

I have quite a busy day today. After making the beds anew I will bake my bread in between and have a spaghetti dinner to cook. The afternoon is looking better after my midday sleep. I was not sure if I would have the time to make a morning greeting, but I have managed that as well. I only wish the weather would brighten up a little. And now I must really move on to continue with the daily tasks. Have a good one everyone and do not stress too much (like me).

I nearly forgot my little bird. He arrived on the porch yesterday afternoon and began to forage around as if searching for food.

The interesting part was how he kept putting his head beneath the garden cupboard door – probably hoping to discover something. Unfortunately I have no bird seed. Our shops sell none during the summer months as they find the birds have enough to eat outside. This little bird decided to persevere. I think it is the first bird I have seen so close since a few months.

Good Morning

Although it is a cloudy grey morning after a night of rain, I managed something a little brighter for a good morning photo, a view of my front garden where the buddleia are now flowering. They bring a little colour into the day.

Yesterday I really had to get into town – Mr. Swiss weekly supply of cigarettes and a few items in the store otherwise were necessary. Rain or no rain I saddled my scooter and was off. On the way I felt a few spots of rain, but they remained as isolated spots and I stayed dry.

Some of the decorations for our national day of 1st August were still hanging. This is the building with the local headquarters of our army so they had to be patriotic. We have the Swiss flag on the left and the flag of our Kanton of Solothurn on the right. I remember when Mr. Swiss had to report to this building, many years ago. He was exempt from the annual three weeks of national service due to health reasons, so had to pay his military tax once a year and appear in person with the cash, and that was an expensive tax invoice.. This has now been changed, and like all normal tax procedures, you can now do it online with your other invoices, although as a golden oldie he no longer has to pay any military tax.

As I wheeled into town on my scooter I passed our first world war memorial on the back road. I always found this a strange statue with a naked soldier (except for the helmet) carrying a sword in an appropriate place. At least they plant some flowers during the Summer to brighten it up. This is the only reminder that there was a war. They did not seem to bother with the second world war. We were neutral in both wars, but I know my father-in-law had to do his duty guarding the borders of the country with his regiment.

Moving on in town I notice that our roadside cafés were quite populated and even the streets had more people. Covid is still with us, but rules and regulations have been a little relaxed. Serving personnel must still wear their masks, but the general population can please themselves. We still must be masked in enclosed spaces such as the stores. For a while our infections were diminishing but now we have a jump in statistics probably due to the new variant of the virus and also people who think it is a fuss about nothing and refuse to be vaccinated. The vaccination centres are now being dissolved gradually and you must go to your doctor for a jab which will now probably begin to cost money. Up to now it was all free.

I passed our museum on the way, which is mainly full of paintings from our Swiss artists. I have not been inside for a few years, although I would only have to press the lift button on the reverse side for entrance where someone would come and help me. I would not be able to get up the many steps at the front door with my walker.

I eventually arrived at the stores and did the necessary.

These are three wisteria bushes which were planted at least 25 years ago. They have a metal frame to climb up and I find it a good idea. They flower nicely once a year and developed very well.

We even have a catalpa tree that is at the moment fully of its hanging bean similar “fruits”. It is not something very common here, but this one does quite well and the cold temperatures and snow of Winter do not seem to have any effect on it. In the background are the houses forming the wall of our town and the West entrance gate can be seen on the left.

I was eventually finished with my shopping and made my way home. There were still very few isolated spots of rain, but nothing drastic and I arrived home dry. I had a few meat items to vacuum and freeze and afterwards had a relaxed rest of the afternoon and evening.

And now to today. It is not very warm for this time of the year and the threat of rain is hanging over our heads, so I will be spending the day at home. My excursions very much depend on the weather as you can get very wet on a scooter. Stay safe everyone, have a good day. I am hoping the clouds will lift from the local Jura mountains.

Good Morning

This is really going to be a quick one to show I am alive. Today the cleaning lady is here, No. 1 son also means I am a little later as I like to eat earlier at midday when he is here and I had my delivery of the online ordered goods. There are always meat supplies that I like to vacuum for the freezer when they arrive so time began to slip away.

I must show my highlight of the day yesterday. A tortoiseshell butterfly arrived in my garden and perched on the sweet peas. It is my first butterfly photo of the year and she even stayed a while for a few photos. I have not seen one of these for a long time.

I also spotted this little lady or whatever on one of my flowers. I am sure it is not a bee, probably just a common hoverfly, but was something new.

And now I must really go. Dinner is cooking the cleaning lady has finished and I have other things to do. At the moment the weather is reasonable and the sun is shining. I really want to go to town this afternoon for a few items although they have said there will be showers, but it really does not look like it. Have a good day everyone, I hope to see you later.

Good Morning

The sun has risen and according to the Swiss radio it will stay most of the day, although temperatures around 22°C which is warm but not exactly Summer. Yesterday, on our national day of fireworks the sun did eventually appear for an hour before the evening to allow it to happen. I heard the fireworks more or less until midnight so it seems the Swiss managed to achieve something.

I was amazed when the yesterday afternoon sky. In between grey clouds and rain, really began to look better.

I have already had a busy morning. As son No. 1 is on holiday at home I can make lunch for midday instead of half an hour later. Basically what does it matter, but I prefer to get my midday sleep half an our earlier and have more time in the afternoon for this and that. This morning my first work was to make a bread dough. It only really needs about 10 minutes and afterwards I quickly wash the machine and put it away and then I am ready to go. As I opened my kitchen cupboard I noticed there was a bad smell. I have everything packed in sealed special plastic boxes so it was a mystery. I only have the onions and garlic and potatoes that are open. Then I realised what it was. There was a plastic bag of potatoes that I had not yet unpacked from the store as I wanted to use the remaining few from the last delivery first of all. Then the smell became familiar, one of the worst I know. It was the smell of a potato deciding to go soft and brown. I emptied the bag and there it was: just one smaller potato, but that was all it needed. I have now disposed of the offending potato, and now my cupboard smells normal again (meaning no smell). Potatoes are one of the worst veg that can be offending. It only really might happen in summer, but even then not often.

Anyhow my bread dough is rising and I have more time during the morning for cooking. I have potatoes to peel and cook in my air fryer and that takes time, although Mr. Swiss helps me out with the peeling.

I had one of my feline visitors. They seem to be permanently hungry and naturally I have to feed them with something, otherwise they would be so disappointed.

I had facetime contact with son No. 2 yesterday so I could see how my grandchildren are developing. They are now both at the age where you need four pairs of eyes and four hands and legs to keep them under control, but he seems to have the routine. He is now off for a holiday with the family on one of the Swiss lakes for a week and will be visiting with the family when he returns. Luckily they also did not have any problems with the flooding in his part of Switzerland. It seems that the rainfalls were a record amount in the month of July since measurements began.

My garden seems to have benefitted from the rain and the slugs and snails are happy about the situation.

Today I will be at home. Monday is not such a good day for visiting town or the stores. There is never very much happening and the week’s special offers only begin on Tuesday. We golden oldies have nothing better to do with our spare time. I have another project. Since more than a year I no longer have my own cats, but still have two transport cages I used for vet visits. I will make a photo today and put them on Facebook market place to see if anyone would have interest in them. They are in a very good condition. I have a few other items as well, but have never done it before and decided to start with the cages.

Otherwise have a good week everyone, stay safe and may the hairy peas floating in the air stay away from you all.

I noticed the ivy has begun to spread on one of my garden borders amonst the sedum.

Good Morning

Not such a good morning. It rained all night, just once but did not stop. The sky has clouds hanging everywhere in more than 50 shades of gray and my morning did not begin so well. My first job is to empty Mr. Swiss ash tray. It is not such a bother as it is covered. I just have to take the lid off and empty the relics into a plastic bag. For the first time ever I missed the bag and emptied it onto the surrounds of the sink. Then No. 2 happened. Mr. Swiss had a half cup of cola on the side and I knocked it over: another mess to clear, but luckily also at the side of the sink. It was just not a good beginning to the morning. Of course Mr. Swiss should stop smoking, but at the age of 82 there are some things you cannot change. And as far as having a glass cola ready if you are thirsty – let us not talk about it.

In the meanwhile let us reflect on other events. Due to the wet night I spotted this snail on its way home. They seem to love wet nights. Now it has stopped raining and I am convinced it was now finding a nice crack between the stones for a warm wet relaxing session. At least it had the decency to wear a shell. It is the naked slugs I am not so keen on.

I also discovered this interesting fly yesterday sitting on my sedum in the garden. Even flies can be quite colourful

And let us not forget that today is 1st August, the Swiss national day, although the weather has dampened the fireworks and fires on the mountain sides that are our customs on this day. It might possibly dry out by the evening for the tradition of lighting fires on the mountain sides. As I am writing this the radio news is telling me that until evening it will improve, but will not be so warm. Perhaps there might be a chance to have a bar-b-que in the garden and watch a firework display. Me? No I do not think so, I am only half a Swiss and there are some things I do not bother with. No. 1 son might go into town to witness a few events.

I had a day at home yesterday, and today as well most probably. I am just getting too tired to go anywhere – some days are better than others. Have a good Sunday everyone, and a happy 1st August for the Swiss amongst us (certainly not a lot). I leave you with my buddleia flowers in the garden which also seem to be hanging their heads in the rain.

Good Morning

I take various photos of the morning sky. I have been doing it for the last couple of years and have quite a collection. I usually post one here, but the collection is my memory of the mornings I have seen. This time, for something different, I am posting as a beginning, the sky from yesterday evening around 8.30 pm. I have discovered that evening skies can be quite colourful. The blue background has disappeared but there are some interesting reflections of the sun as it sinks slowly in the West. This is a view of the south reflecting the sun.

Of course I also captured the morning sky – no sun yet, just clouds and a hint of blue. We had plenty of rain yesterday which I wrote about in a blog from yesterday afternoon with some photos. I was lucky. As I was leaving the local store it was quite dark and there were sounds of thunder.

Yesterday’s blog

However I made it home in one dry piece, although the rain drops had begun. I was lucky as when I got home I could watch the stormy showers from the window. It came and went throughout the evening but no deluge. There were other parts of Switzerland that were not so lucky and got their dose of hailstones. It seems to be the story of this years Summer. I cannot remember such a wet Summer like this.

Our neighbour’s cat, Roschti, decided to shelter on a comfortable chair outside on our porch, just as Mr. Swiss was planning to sit there. He had to move to another place, cats have priority. Here Roschti was just taking a relaxing yawn before settling down for a hour.

I was taking my usual stroll through the early morning garden and saw that the first bees were already at work. It is always wonderful to see them and good that they are still populating my garden. They also have their problems and it seems there are no longer as many as there should be. The photo is just a little blurred, but I had to snap it quickly with my mobile phone camera and get close enough.

As said I was on an excursion to the local store. I saw that my frozen supplies were not as good as they should be. My online deliveries cannot deliver frozen goods so I get them myself now and again and I also had a special rebate for them at the moment. You collect points on your purchase which means a good reduction when you get them once a month. It seems that for us golden oldies these are the highlights of the shopping experience. I noticed afterwards on my phone app that it was worth it. I would mention that they are really goods I would have bought in any case, and not just buying for the points or financial advantages. I also saw that they now have fresh green Swiss beans. It is now the season and I really prefer fresh veg to frozen. My freezer is now complete and so is my kitchen so I am all set for the next cooking experiences. Speak of that, I am planning on a meat loaf for today’s dinner so should get started on my daily chores.

Have a good Saturday everyone, avoid stress where you can and remember it is the week-end so do not overdo it with the work. I leave you with my buddleia bush which is now really doing its best for a pink showtime.

Good Morning

Even blue skies can get a little boring, but no. I should be satisfied that they are not damp, wet skies with rain clouds. According to the Swiss weather report we will be having enough of that at the week-end. That will dampen not only the surroundings, but the Swiss spirits. On Sunday we have our national day to commemorate the foundation of Switzerland, 1st August. It was when three Swiss guys were toasting their sausages at a fire in the middle of a field with a glass of beer, from three different Kantons in Switzerland. They thought it a good idea and decided form a country and do it every year – the birth of Switzerland? Not really, just my idea, although it was something on those lines. After last years disappointments due to Covid and keeping your distance to everyone, this year it is all allowed again, with celebrations, more or less. That means that anyone flying over Switzerland on Sunday evening might think the country is on fire, or perhaps at war. The traditional fires will be lit on the mountain tops and fireworks will be the sound track – so keep your animals at home. However it seems that nature is again mixing in and there willl be torrential rain, thunder and lightening and storms all throughout the day. It will be a wet b-b-que for the family’s celebrations. For us golden oldies it makes no big difference and No. 1 son will probably be in town hoping that not all the fireworks will suffer from the damp atmosphere, as he likes to see our local firework display.

Otherwise things continue as normal here.

A few friends of the neighbour’s cat, Roschti, called past. Unfortunately the feline delights I always have ready were not enough to eat, but they looked at me with delight in their eyes. Those cats are getting bigger it seems. Of course I took the photo from the TV screen. There is a daily half hour programme from Longleat which is one of the stately homes of England. Many years ago the family decided to turn their gardens into a safari park with various animals. They have a bit of everything, from lions and tigers, giraffes, and even koala bears. Mr. Swiss and I love watching the programme and they really have everything. It is open to the public. I have never been there myself – one of those adventures I missed out on my life in England. It seems they have one male lion and he has quite a few wives who seem to be doing most of the work and action looking after the kids.

Talking of wild life, I manage to capture the flight of the bee yesterday as it was winging its way to the food delights of my buddleia – one of the advantages of taking photos with the camera on my iPhone. There is a setting where every photo is a miniature video and you can choose the photo you want.

Yesterday was a day at home. No. 1 son left already in the afternoon for his music concert and arrived home again in the early hours of the morning. He is still sleeping in. It was really good weather for an open air concert – no rain and a clear night. I had a good restful evening as I did not bother with preparing the food for only Mr. Swiss and I. It was a serve yourself evening which made it quite relaxing. I am expecting a delivery from the store this morning for the week-end food, so I probably will not be going anywhere this week-end.

Have a good week-end everyone, may the sun shine and the rain stay away, although it will probably be raining here.

Good Morning

What a wonderful sky this morning. No sign of rain all through the night and now the sun is poking through. My rose decided to add to the photo and the world is perfect – up to now. I checked on the weather forecast and everything is OK, no rain.

I am particularly glad because son No. 1 is going to an open air concert this evening in a nearby village with one of his local bands. He knows them all and they know him and he is really looking forward to it after being so long isolated at home due to Covid. I cannot lock him up. He is vaccinated as many are at the moment. He called the organisation and they informed that it would not be necessary for him to show any proof of his vaccination. I checked on the 48 hour weather forecast and this is really the one day in the week where no rain is forecast during the day or the next evening. If I was more active I would go to the concert as well, but unfortunately those days are now gone for a golden oldie.

My buddleia in the front garden is at last showing its flowers. I was a little worried about this plant as I discovered that it had an aphid infestation a couple of months ago. I began to give it a shower daily and wash them away and after a few days they disappeared. A few leaves were affected, but nothing too serious and the plant eventually recovered. It is now flowering as always. I love the buddleia as they have the talent to attract butterflies.

The bees are also quite at home on its flowers, so what could be better.

However the bees are happy with anything that has pollen and my coreopsis is being besieged by the bees at the moment.

Otherwise today will be a restful day. No. 1 son will not be here this evening for the meal, which is actually just coldcuts and a salad, so I think it will be a selfservice meal. Mr. and Mr. Swiss will just take our pick from fridge, there is always enough to eat. I have to keep a check of my freezer and fridge supplies, one of the reasons why I inspect regularly the dates. If I freeze I always put the date on the day I froze it. I noticed I have quite a collection of minced meat, mainly beef but some pork. I decided it was time to make a meat loaf so I sorted it all yesterday. I like a meat loaf with a pork and beef mixture and I have enough for a week-end meal with some carrots and pasta.

Otherwise have a good day everyone. Life is never boring when we all have a computer. I realised that I know so many wonderful people, have regular contact with them, but have never met them or seen them in reality. They keep me company and that is good. So enough of being sentimental. I am now off to make myself busy in the apartment and otherwise. I leave you with one of my feline friends who decided to take a sleep on my porch yesterday afternoon.

Good Morning

Words fail me. It’s raining again, no pouring, since I stopped hugging the bed. I was listening to the local weather forecast for our area, and it will continue during the morning, but at midday we have the promise of sun for the rest of the day. Here it is not so bad. The river is down below, although the water volume quite high and there are some parts of our Kanton that has really had some street floods in their villages. Our village has stayed OK up to now, although the water collects here and there. This summer will remain as one of the wettest in my memories.

I had a feeling today would be a wet one so I made my way yesterday afternoon into town to enjoy the sunny, warm weather as long as it lasted. The field next to the railway path was looking quite green and luxurious which is no wonder with the amount of rain it has collected over the past couple of weeks.

Town was as always and the locals had also decided to enjoy the weather by strolling on the streets. One of the advantages of our old town is that there is almost no traffic: only tradesmen and hotel guests, although we have a lot less tourists this year, at least from other countries. I also noticed that the lines of people outside our old riding hall which had been converted into a vaccination centre have now disappeared. The vaccination places have now been abandoned. A good half (if not more) of the Swiss population have now been vaccinated and the idea is that they can now get their jabs from their doctor. All our family have been vaccinated, Mr. Swiss, both sons and my daughter-in-law, so there is nothing more we can do but wait for this trial we are having to bear to disappear.

I spotted this sparrow perched on a bike as I was on the way to the store. Someone had spread some bird seed around and the birds were making the most of it.

Then the piegeons moved in so the sparrow decided to leave.

I actually was really only in town to escape from the daily boredom. My store did have a few special offers for meat so I decided to investigate. I had already received my delivery in the morning so there was not a lot to get. The restaurants were quite fully occupied outside with people enjoying a break. Since the rules for Covid have been relaxed more people are venturing to the great outside.

I will be relaxing at home today with no excursions anywhere.

I will be observing the insects on the flowers and I will probably be observed.

I had already given Roschti, the neighbour’s cat, some feline snacks this morning but he wanted more. He even took a walk around my apartment, but he afterwards just waited outside for more. I was determined not to give him more, but when Mr. Swiss arrived he decided to spoil him further. How can you resist such pleading eyes.

And I will now move on to further exercises. There is food to be cooked and I also have a pile of washing to fold, but it is still quite damp. It usually dries overnight but with the amount of humidity we have at the moment it is still damp and waiting. Have a good day everyone, make the best of it.

It seems the local farmer mowed the wheat field yesterday.

Good Morning

After all the rain and the humidity we were bound to have a misty damp morning and that arrived this morning. Although the sun is now brightening things up, it was quite dull up to now. As it is Tuesday my cleaning lady is here for a few hours bringing my kitchen, shower and bathroom up to scratch. My son is also here now for the next two weeks, but is still sleeping.

To compemsate for the dull morning, we did have an interesting sunset yesterday evening.

On a walk through the garden with my camera I also discovered this guy/dame yesterday evening, probably training for the luxuries of the night. I always seem to meet it in the evening in the same area. I think it quite likes us and is becoming a pet. Luckily I do not have to feed him/her, it just absorbs everything that is in the way.

I met a cousin this morning on the way sliming up the wall to my raised bed. This one had the decency to wear a cover on his way.

Yesterday evening seemed to be quite interesting for some insect portraits. There were some colourful flies lounging on my Tansy. It seems to be a plant with a talent for insects.

I was glad to be able to capture a nice close-up of a bee on the tansy. At last I had a portrait with a few details. He really looks like something from a horror film.

And now I should move on. I am expecting a delivery from my store this morning. I am also thinking about making my weekly trip to town this afternoon as the weather should be rainless today. Tomorrow is more storm and wet, not so good for travelling by scooter. I should also get on with some cooking. Relax everyone, take it easy and take care. We have so many universal threats with climate change and Covid, life is one big risk at the moment. I have even managed a Good Morning greeting this morning.