Daily Prompt: Yes, I got spikes

Renovation

You really have to like those builders. After lunch I was enjoying my golden oldie sleep, and I slept. It is usually a quiet area where I live, in the middle of the country, just birdsong and the perhaps a cat fight or neighbours talking outside. However, not a cause for disturbance. I have noticed then when I sleep, the building noise becomes part of my dreams. Today it was thump, thump, thump – very rhythimic and it almost lulled me into a deeper sleep. However, when I did sort of have a wake moment I took a glance at my clock (digital, mobile phone clock) and realised it was time to rise.

The next thing you do is take a glance at the daily prompt theme and I saw “spike”. Now what am I going to write about spikes. In the country the only spikes we have are the thorns on a rose bush, or the spires on the church towers. Admittedly in the earlier days the Swiss mercenaries would probably have a halberd under their beds in case they had to fight for someone that paid enough. This was a sort of pointed spear with a chopping head at the top. Today every Swiss soldier has a rifle at home, usually in the cupboard, ready to protect his country if necessary, but without bayonet as that would probably be too messy for a practice.

Every Swiss is a soldier, almost every Swiss, the fit ones. My No. 2 son was, but has served his days and is no longer needed. He also had his rifle and would have to use it once a year at the local shooting range, to ensure that he would not forget how to use it. When his duty as a Swiss soldier was finished he returned the rifle. I think he could have kept it for a price, but had no interest. So are the patriots in my family.

Imagine my surprise when I entered my garden this afternoon and found these spike similar objects in my garden (see photo). Of course they are some sort of support for the scaffolding which will now be built on the West side of my appartment. As I sit here outside, I can see the beginnings of what will become  fortress similar organisation of my appartment. If I disappear this week not to reblog, it is because they forgot to leave an opening for me to leave and enter my home. Perhaps I should now organise drones to deliver my food.

And before I leave you, here are some real spikes, on the dome of our cathedral in the town of Solothurn, just to show that we do have spikes.

A September Walk through Solothurn

Daily Prompt: Yes, I got Spikes

Daily Prompt: Patterns of Life

Shadows 12.02 (4)

I take photos everywhere and of everything, but patterns fascinate me most of all. If the sun is shining into a darkened room it throws shadows and shadows become interesting. I grab the camera and there I am taking photos – of shadows. I even have a file named “Shadows” in my photo programme. I have a choice of shadows, but not every day is a shadow day. We now have wonderful spring weather, the sun is shining but in such a way that it is not making shadows, there is no light and dark and everything melts together.

The shadow pattern in the photo is caused by the sun shining through the venetian blinds in the living room, reflecting on the opposite corner, where there is our wooden television cabinet with the doors closed. If you have to stare into the screeen in the evening, you can at least hide it away during the day, that being our philosophy. Now you can see me as I was taking the photo, in the middle disturbing the horizontal pattern of the slats of the blinds.

Shadows

I cannot even remember what this one was. Perhaps someone gave me a strange lamp and I decided to give it a polish. It was then that the genie began to appear granting three wishes. I must have decided that feeding another mouth at home would be too much, so I wished he would go back to where he came from. At least that is my story and I am sticking to it.

Since being a computer disciple and following various web sites, I have realised how much we become attached to patterns. If a certain  site, for example WordPress, because it is our common denominator, decides to change the pattern of their layout we can get confused, things are no longer where they were and the immediate reaction is to complain. I no longer complain. My mother-in-law had a fixed belief in politicians “they do what they want in any case”. I have discovered that these  wise words also can include our daily social network. Of course it is all in the interest of the victims – us, so why bother. The most recent pattern exchanged happened yesterday on my microsoft computer. Everything that ws left is now right, a pattern disturbane.

Today I am working on my apple computer and have discovered that everything that is left has remained left. This makes sense. Some time ago the pattern for our reader was changed, everything becoming minimised. Of course it was for our own good, we just do not always understand the methods in a madness. However, my apple computer still has the old proven reader pattern and has not changed. There must be a reason somewhere, but I cannot be bothered to find it and does it really matter? We professional computer freaks find our way through the complexities of these external influences.

Facebook also has a makeover with its pattern once a year, but who remembers how it used to be? And there is always an advantage in these mysterious make overs. It keeps the brain of a golden oldie alive and ticking.

So before concluding this patternised work of writing, let us not forget that nature also has her patterns. It is now approaching spring, so here are my anemones from last year and I hope they arrive again this year with this natural look – the leaves have already appeared.

Anemone

Daily Prompt: Patterns of Life

Daily Prompt: Scents of Life

If you grow up in a place, then the smell of that place becomes familiar. You only really notice there was a scent if you leave and return. London did that to me. Growing up in London had no particular smell for me until I left, returning perhaps once a year. It was London of the buildings, pavements and rain. What did I smell? Wet stone, concrete, the streets of many people.  Yes people smell as well, like it or not. I spent my first two years in Switzerland working with a family that also owned an Indian restuarant. I ate Indian during the day, I sometimes helped out in the restaurant in the evening, although I was employed for the office belong to the man of the family. You think you do not smell of curry? Of course you do. The spices seep into the skin, it is everywhere. It did not bother me, because I liked the food and also learned how to cook a genuine curry and I did not really notice it. So what about us Europeans? What do we smell of? Beef, potatoes, vegetables, the sauce we cook it all in? I do not know because I am a European and generally you do not smell your own perfume, but we definitely have our aromas.

Perfume

I just had a look at my perfume collection. Of course I have one, although I rarely use it. I never really think of using it, until prompted by Mr. Swiss if we are going somewhere. He also has to prompt me to use make-up. I do not think of things like that, but perhaps I should.

Due to my annual visits to London to visit my dad, I passed through the duty free section of Zürich airport and London Airport once a year. In Zürich I would buy perfume as a gift for my friend. In London I would buy perfume for me. They had various collections in boxes, the so-called “Designer Collections” and the mixtures were Dior, Givinchy, Guy Laroche, Lancome, Cacherel, Armani and even Picassoet etc. etc. They were miniature bottles and I still have the remainders. Even the small bottles need time to use completely. These remainders must be at least ten years old if not more, so how do they smell today? Yes, perhaps their smell is no longer the exclusive fragrence it was, but I am also no longer as exclusive and fresh as I was. Wearing perfume for the visit to the supermarket is not really my thing, and who would notice it amongst the smells of meat, cheese and vegetables.

There was a suxxessful novel “Das Parfum” by Patrick Süsskind (Perfume in english) which I read some time ago. It was a success and also a film was made. A baby is born in a market, amidst the smells of the goods sold, and left an orphan, but he has a fantasitc sense of smell. He becomes obsessed with scent, especially that of a woman and does what he can to capture the scent, including murder. I can only recommend this book. I read it in the original German version.

Daily Prompt: Scents of Life

Daily Prompt: Doubters Alert – the end of the world is nigh according to a few Facebook links

What commonly accepted truth (or “truth”) do you think is wrong, or at least seriously doubt?  Why?

Sunset over Feldbrunnen

I do not know whether it is a commonly accepted truth, but it was with shock I read in a newspaper article, broadcast through a link by our famous and “trustworthy” Facebook community, that at the end of September the world will be hit by a few stray asteroids, six or seven, but let us not argue about quantities. How dare they?

I am planning to go to London at the end of September to celebrate my dad’s 100th birthday with him, and it does not come into the question that he will postpone his birthday just because of a few asteroids. I booked my plane tickets yesterday. On the other hand I have just read that it will hit Puerto Rico of all places. My dad is in Dagenham, London and probably has no idea where Puerto Rico is and could not care less.

The main date is between 21th September and end of September, so we might be lucky. The 24th is included somewhere, but my plane will be flying from Zürich across Europe and will not touch Puerto Rico luckily. After reading further the NASA assures me that there is no big chance of anything hitting earth in the next century, so as I am now 68 years old you will not find my remains crushed beneath an asteroid in the back garden. There is more chance that I will fall down a few stairs, or knocked down when crossing the road. In any case I am insured against accidents and included is definitely being struck by lightening and asteroids, although you never know.

“Hello dad, how are you?”

“Just the same, just the same. I have just had a shave and my carer has just brought me a cup of tea.” Then everything is fine in dad’s world.

“Oh good, I will be coming over for your birthday on 24th September, arriving on 22nd.”

“Will be nice to see you. Then the flight is booked.”

“Is there anything you would like me to bring you?”

“No, not really”, which is fairly clear as we only have foreign rubbish in Switzerland according to my dad.

You see, no word of the destruction of Puerto Rico, which probably my dad has never heard of. If I had said West Ham Football ground might be destroyed by an asteroid in the meanwhile, he would have been alert and wanted to know all the details. How many asteroids, whether the Boleyn Arms would be hit (the local football supporters pub), and all sorts of important details.

Reading further it seems that asteroids generally avoid London, probably because of the english traffic system where they drive on the other side of the road, and the food which most people shun if they do not know it. Yes, asteroids are allergic to fish and chips and pie and mash. It seems the last big asteroid landed somewhere in the Russian wilderness in 1908, leaving a bare space where there was once trees. They probably wanted to tank up on some vodka.

I think we will all be safe although I can hear a suspicious chugging noise in the air right now above the garden. I must quickly have a look in Facebook to see what it says – no danger, it is just one of those zeppelins flying over for a show.

Zeppelin

Daily Prompt: Doubters Alert – the end of the world is nigh according to a few Facebook links

Daily Prompt: Comfort Zone

What are you more comfortable with — routine and planning, or laissez-faire spontaneity? 

Three cats waiting to go out

“That’s an easy one Mrs. Human, routine and planning all the time, although you humans do tend to wander off the path now and again.”

Chief cat Nera decided to voice or meow her opinion.

“Nera, felines are not asked, it is a human thing and it seems to me you have a very secure and planned life with me and Mr. Human.”

“Not quite. What day is it today Mrs. Human?”

“Friday, although I thought felines have no sense of time, they do it all by instinct.”

“We felines find that instinct is a word humans used when they are unable to cope, like being overstrained. To continue, today is Friday according to human time operation. For us felines, meaning me, my sister Tabby and apprentice Fluffy, today is the day when our delicate and sensitive taste buds tell us that Tuna fish should be on the menu. SO WHERE IS THE TUNA FISH?”

“Ok Nera, do not meow so loud, the higher tones hurt my ears, and just because it is Friday I do not have to serve tuna fish. You can have it tomorrow instead.”

“Nera, where’s the tuna fish, it is human Friday?” and Tabby arrived in the kitchen sniffing around the food bowl.

“Seems that Mrs. Human has had a senior moment of forgetfulness Tabby, and has forgotten to serve it.”

“Mrs. Human where is the tuna fish” asked Fluffy who was actually blind, but was waiting next to the bowl of feline vitamin pellets.

“You see Mrs. Human” continued Nera, “you have three disappointed felines. It cannot be rocket science for a human to open a tin and serve.”

“Nera is right” said Tabby “and don’t forget we like it laced with a fair portion of tuna liquid.”

As I did not have the heart to disappoint three fish hungry felines, I did as ordered and served the fish. At least I now have some peace and quiet to continue this prompt.

My human opinion is that I like a mixture of both, planning and being spontaneous. I have certain days where I clean certain rooms, have particular days when I go shopping, but I am flexible enough to change the routine if necessary. I just like to have an organised life. I have no stress. The appartment next to mine, also ground floor, was broken into three days ago and some valuable jewellery was stolen. As the lady entered the appartment she heard the two thieves jump out of the window, which they had forced open, so I will not go into details about when I do what. It is bad enough when your movements are observed by complete strangers planning a break-in, as was the case of my neighbour.

The police arrived at the scene and the result is that my neighbour and us are now having a motion detector assembled outside, although I am not so sure if it is a good idea with three felines.

“Did you say something Mrs. Human” Nera looked up from her half eaten dish of tuna fish.

“I just mentioned that we will have a motion detector put up outside to register movements made in the evening. A light will then be switched on automatically.”

“What do you think about that Tabby and Fluffy, do we want a motion detector?”

“As long as the light isn’t too bright” the two felines answered.

“Err, felines, if I may say something, the motion detector will be assembled and it will not depend on the felines saying yes or no.”

“Whatever, but do not expect us to tread carefully around its range. So back to more important things, such as half a plate of tuna fish. And Mrs. Human, do not forget to write on your iPad, iPhone or whatever, that Friday is tuna fish day. Put one of those signals in so that it rings to remind you. You humans can be so laissez-faire sometimes.”

Daily Prompt: Comfort Zone