Good Morning

Clouds

Looks like the cumulus clouds are gathering, meaning a sunny day which is gradually rising in the east. A litttle rain in between would be a good idea. We have already removed our hoses from the front and back garden so are hoping that things will not dry out too much.

Hedgehog remains

For some time we have had a night visitor. I have never seen him, but Mr. Swiss spots him now and again as he walks across our patio in the back garden only to disappear again. The only clue I have to his presence is the remainders of his re-cycling process. Mr. Swiss, growing up in the country, of course is nature man and recognises who this belongs to. We have a hedgehog that visits regularly. He probably stops for a drink of water, as we always have a bowl outside. It is mainly for our cat, but it has become a general drinking place for most of the animals living here.

I have never actually seen our hedgehog, only the traces. When No. 2 son lived at home, many moons ago, he had the habit of returning home in the early Sunday morning hours after a Saturday night excursion. He told me that he had to be careful where he was walking as there were hedgehogs everywhere. They are nocturnal animals and we never see one during the day.  I am waiting for the chance of a photo, but in the meanwhile I just have to make do with his digested food supply.

Avocado

I have a few plants that I keep indoor during the colder months, and only have outside in the garden during the summer. One of these is my avocado which I planted a couple of years ago. I usually leave it to its own devices in Summer: As the weather is now getting colder it is indoors and I was astonished to see how well it has grown during the Summer. It is even now making small shoots at the base of the leaves. Perhaps one day I might have my first harvest – who knows? I have a second avocado which I planted last year, but that is still a junior. It is growing, but not as spectacular as this one. Yesterday I made one of my famous prawn-avocado salads. I now have a third avocado pit that I have placed in water. I just cannot throw them away.

And that is all the I have to offer for today, but Sunday was never really a day of excitement. This evening they are letting me and Mr. Swiss out for an evening meal with friends in a restaurant in the next village with musical accompaniment – colleagues of Mr. Swiss will be playing.

In the meanwhile I will be blogging around now and again and at last remove my Dodder plant to the furnaces of doom where it belongs, although it is still attempting to cling onto my basil (read all about it in the link).

Enjoy the day, relax and take it easy, our governments are looking after us.

Basil and dodder 18.09 (5)

Good Morning

Apple Tree

Autumn is around the corner by the look of the apple tree. Mr. Swiss says the harvest will begin in a week. At the moment we have nice sunny weather, quite cool, but ideal for the picking apples. We are no experts and eat them as soon as they leave the tree. Of course, Mr. Swiss makes his famous apple tarts which we all enjoy. Some of the apples on the lower branches serve as a snack for various insect babies, but they also have a life.

Talking about plants, I have now discovered what the strange growth is on my basil plant, the wiry growths that resemble something from an Alien film, but they have not yet engulfed me or my computer. It is now sitting in a high place where no-one and nothing can touch it and will be tranported to the large plant container some time today, after I made a few goodbye photos – blog follows.

And now to the next exciting news in my part of the world. It is unbelievable I know, but the Odyssy of the renovation of the block where I live is now approaching the end.

New colour 22.09 (3)

Half of the building is now reflecting a slight shade of green. Here you can see one of the painters putting finishing touches to a window frame perched on the scaffolding. He even asked me what I thought about this new shade of green. I did not want to disappoint him, so was careful with my choice of words, omitting profanities. Of course, he is just following instructions. It seems the forumula for this shade of green somehow got lost, amongst the other 50 shades, but it was found, probably illuminating the surroundings with its green reflection. We were told it was a very light shade of green, hardly noticeable. It now seems that in the sunlight it could become very noticeable. Note that when I took the photo the sun was not shining on the walls.

I informed the painter that I am not really a “green” fan. I wore a green uniform to school six years of my life, and it is not really my colour. It clashes with my blue eyes. For me green is an institute colour. In my younger days hospitals were painted green, asylums were green and my school was green, all usually with a corresponding off white contrast. Even government offices were painted green. Perhaps it was a special offer for pots of green paint. And now our wonderfully new renovated building, with new cladding isolating it from everything including radioactivity I hope (are you listening Mr. Kim and Mr. Trump?) has  been painted green. Wait until we get the green sun blinds. I have seen a sample and that will really knock you off your computer chairs. As soon as they are put into position, a photo will follow.

Next week the new metal blinds will be mounted, the painting should be at the finishing stages and there will be nothing more in the way for the scaffolding to be removed – we hope, but you never know.  It seems there is a slight miscalculation with the size of the new steps to the outside world from the windows. On our ground floor it does not make such a difference as they are firmly anchored on the underground surface, but the balconies have problems. They tremble if you tread on them. However, we are now confident that the work will be completed by Christmas after almost nine months of work and a life shared with builders from various nations. Yes, we have been quite international this year.

Clouds 22.09 (6)

I am still busy cloud spotting and found this one quite interesting as it hovered over our local Jura mountain chain.

And now to the normal daily work of  a golden oldie housewife. The vacuum cleaner is waiting and it will be an adventurous day. Mr. Swiss is already planning his release to visit the local supermarket for a few last minute buys. Enjoy the day, it might even be the beginning of a relaxing week-end.

Good Morning

Dawn

Wow, I managed to leave my bed this morning and make my way to the kitchen to prepare my frugal breakfast of two slices of bread, wholemeal, with a layer of butter and blackberry jam: nothing spectacular, the usual morning routine. After making my tea, not stirred or shaken, just left to diffuse with a tea bag, I grabbed my mobile phone and did the usual morning photos. Who knows perhaps I can use them on my blog. This morning was a difficult choice. I took three photos but decided this one was the most artistic, catching the sun’s rays on the next block with a sky of “altocumulus” clouds.

Yes, I have a new hobby, the study of clouds. It seems they all have their own name, and prompted by a co-blogger on WordPress I will be ordering my first cloud book. There is a cloud appreciation society, as I am not a member, but on their mailing list and receive a cloud photo now and again, but me being me, I want to know more. I would love to join this society based in England, but at the age of 70 and being a golden oldie I decided it would be another stone on the way to deal with, so I am just happy with my camera, a sky and clouds.

Cow

In the meanwhile there is a politial problem arising in Switzerland in connection with our population of cows. I am not an expert and was basically of the opinion that bulls have horns and cows do not. This is wrong. All cows have horns, but they do not realise it. As soon as the calf arrives on the farm it horn buds are removed.

According to Wikipedia “Horns are removed because they can pose a risk to humans, other animals and to the bearers of the horns themselves (horns are sometimes caught in fences or prevent feeding)” but no-one asked the cow.

This has now become an important point on the Swiss political agenda. We are a direct democracy and if you collect enough signatures for your wish, all on an official government approved document, you have a referendum. Yesterday a Swiss cow famer, knwn as Capaul (not the name he might make history) dressed his knitted cap and showing a large grey beard, took his idea to the government. He is still collecting signatures, but it looks good. Some of our politicians found that he was correct, and the Swiss cow should be allowed to keep its horns. Others were of the opinion that horns were a blemish on the cow face, and not necessary. Up to now no-one has asked the cow.

I am not really a political person, although I have my ideas. I leave the Swiss to get on with it, I can always vote no or yes and we vote basically every two months for something or the other, but this time I am adament.

Yes, the cows should keep their horns. What is a cow without a horn? And the photos I take of the Swiss cows look much better. We have a few exceptions in our neighbourhood where farmers allow their cows to have horns. I took the photo in a nearbye meadow on the river bank. There are three cows, all with horns, living with a bull who naturally has horns and even a bit more: he even gets a little horny now and again, but that is something completely different. I call to any Swiss reading this blog (there might be 3 or 4 of you) to support this idea by Mr. Capaul and vote for the protection of cow horns. We want happy cows and not cows with an inferiority complex.

Here is a link from the english languge Swiss Info The Man trumpeting in favour of Cow Horns. If cows are persecuted in your country then begin a campaign about it. I am sure Mr. Trump will list it as No. 1 priority on his agenda.

And now to go. The week-end shopping is established, we know what we will be eating, and it is all hanging on a cloud – this time a stratus cloud because it spreads between two iPhones, mine and Mr. Swiss.

Dawn Clouds

And do not forget, “PRESERVE THE RIGHTS OF A COW TO ITS HORNS”  vote YES.

Good Morning

 

Misty morning

Looking out at the world this morning, I discovered it was one of those misty mornings, our typical Autumn weather. We blame it on the river that runs through it. Everything taking its usual course, it means that we will have a bright a sunny day, although probably cold. We were used to an early morning noise from our builder colleagues. They have now left us for other victims, and we are left with the painters.

We are now noticing the difference. We have been allotted three painters for 13 appartments to give the finishing Picasso touches on both sides, so it will be anther month until it is finished. It is rarely you actually see or hear a painter as their brushes do not make so much noise and most of the time they are probably watching the paint dry. However yesterday I managed to corner the man in charge, and soon his two colleagues arrived. They were painting the appartments on the two floors above us and now it will be our turn today. We will again be incarcerated in plastic and there will be no free passage outside. I have warned our cat not to leave her paw marks on the new painted surfaces. I am not sure if she knew what I was talking about, she likes to mark things.

We just want our private life back.

No. 2 son called yesterday by phone and so there was a long conversation catching up on the development of baby Alexander. We are well supplied with photos and videos and it is wonderful to see him growing. I will not be posting baby photos as the family have decided against a social site baby. There are some babies in Facebook that seem to grow up online day by day. My only attachment to Facebook is when I have something to say which is not very often, my last rant being about the new exclusive iPhone. And of course my crosspostings from WordPress, but on a separate site and not on the public site, although everyone sees them in any case.

Further to the mysterious growth on my basil plant (see the last two good morning posts with illustrations) we have come to the conclusion that it is probably a common bindweed, convulvulus) which is looking for a place to live. Eventually it will return to the happy hunting grounds together with my basil which cannot withstand the cold Swiss winter temperatures.

Rolling Stones Concert

No. 1 son arrived home safely from his Rolling Stones concert in the early hours of the mrning. As he went with a local coach company, he had no trouble with catching last trains and I heard him enter at 1.00 a.m. in the early morning hours. I borrowed his ticket for a photo before he went yesterday. This was only a standing place and the concert was in the largest football stadium in Zürich. At the price of CHF 164.35, I would say the Stones must be living a good life. I am also a fan, but my fanship remains within borders at this price.

And now there are beds to be covered with fresh linen (already done half) and other daily housewife chores to complete. I am not on a tour of the supermarket this morning, so have time to listen to the vacuum cleaner and the conversations of the painters as our home becomes pale green – yes that is the chosen colour – go figure.

I leave you with a view from the top floor of the parking space at the local supermarket, looking over the village of Bellach with the Bucheggberg hills in the background – yes, another free geography lesson from my place. Be good, keep the keyboard clean on your computers, and beware of the trojans and other such attackers.

Clouds 20 (1)

Good Morning

Basil

I know that you are all waiting for the latest news report on the strange vine-like growths that have appeared on my basil outside on the porch. They are still growing and now hanging down. They seem to be searching for something, but we are not quite sure what. At the moment we are refraining from adding basil leaves to the tomato salad, at least not from this particular stalk. The question now is what will happen when the basil eventually dies due to the colder weather. Will this invader continue on its journey on our porch, will it engulf our newly painted surfaces on our appatment, or will it dwindle, disappearing to an unlnown place, only to return again next year in full force. I notice our cat Tabby makes a large detour around this plant when outside and hisses.

Sedum

On a lighter note, our sedum in the garden is flowering and the colours are becoming quite intensive: not a bad colour for a normal cheaper iPhone 6 camera, however yesterday we got an update. Yes, we now all have the newest IOS 11 which is apparently necessary because of the new expensive, record breaking iPhone 8+++++ with all its benefits and Zeros after the price.  I am still thinking about how nice it would  be, but it will probably remain as a thought

However, I uploaded this new update to two iPads and my iPhone, to make sure I was missing nothing. On the way it asked me if I wanted to replace my entry code with a fingerprint. My answer was not. There are fingerprints all over my iPhone from constant swiping and it might get confused. I was also asked if I would make all the information on my iPhone available to the prying bytes of Apple, which I also answered in the negative. The whole process took about 40 minutes on two iPads and an iPhone and eventually I was finished. However, after a while I again got a suspicious “1” on my settings button on my iPhone/iPads in red. It reminded me again to confirm what I had installed, as if it could not believe that I was rejecting all its suggestions, and it was confirmed. Now I have peace and quiet. The photo programme has apparently been improved, although it is the same as before, just is a different way.

Today our government is voting for a new minister and I am getting regular reports on my “i” news stuff with the latest developments. We have 7 ministers and one is leaving, and so we must have a replacement. It is not so easy in a country speaking 3 main languages and an extra on on top and they like to keep a language balance. It has been some time since we had an Italian speaking minister, although the french speaking do not like to be ignored. I have not been following this thing intensely. I think there are three candidates. In any case there is an italian speaking one, so my bet would go on him. The politics have to be right, but so does the language it seems.

No 1 son has taken the day off as he will be going to the Rolling Stones concert in Zürich. He got his ticket some time ago. It is well organised as there is a coach company in town that takes the fans to the concert and brings them home afterwards. No. 1 son always visits the Stones concerts when in Switzerland.

Today I will again be staying at home, listening to the painters applying their brushes to our outside walls and in between watching the paint dry. Compared to the builders they are a ghostly appearance, as they are very quiet and dressed completely in white, except for a few paint stains.

I am now off to deal with other important work, we cannot sit on the computer all day, there are places to go and things to be seen, like the supermarket and its offer of food. Be kind to your computers and enjoy the day.

Clouds 18.09 (12)

Good Morning

Hedge

This is the current state of our hedge, if you can call it a hedge. Since at least 4-5 months it has been left to do what it wants to and so we called the gardner last week as Mr. and Mrs. Angloswiss are not longer as fit as they were and cutting hedges is no longer possible.

Today the gardner arrived and they are busy with their hedge cutters in the back and front garden. We live in Switzerland and it is an unwritten law that hedges must be hedges otherwise the neighbours will begin to talk. Our garden is also looking a little neglected, but with builders trampling everywhere it is difficult to make a prognosis. The lawn is not what it used to be, but there is no point doing thing in Autumn. We will have to wait for the Spring.

There is a gardner involved in the renovation work and it is decreed that he will bring everything back to its original state before the builders arrived with their destruction programme, although I very much doubt it. He cut down a privet bush because it was obstructing the builders path, he completely destroyed one of my flower beds and removed a hosta bed. Miracles no longer happen in my part of the world so I have no great expectations. At least my own gardener knows what to do.

Basil 18.09 (5)

I showed a photo of the strange growth on my basil plant yesterday. I have now taken some more photos and naturally asked the gardner what he thought. He confirmed he has never seen anything like it and it has nothing to do with the basil plant, but probably grew out of the earth. He says it must be some sort of creeping plant. It is all very mysterious. I looked to the sky buy found no strange lights or comets, perhaps it is all in the imagination.

Clouds 18.09 (8)

Yesterday we went on our normal shopping trip and I noticed some strange cloud formations. There are signs – strange growths on a basil and clouds that are forming strange shapes.

And now I must move on. There is a guy standing outside in a cloak with a hood hiding his face,  with a scythe in his hand and I do not think he belongs to the gardening team.

Enjoy the day, I will not – I should clean the bathroom which is not my favourite housework.

See you around.

Road to Langendorf 18.09 (13)

Good Morning

Morning Sky

And another day breaks over the tiny village of Feldbrunnen in Switzerland, illuminating the scaffolding and the vegetation. What daily excitement will occur today, what actions will take place. In the distance the noise of an electric saw can be heard – are they sharpening the guillotine once again? And suddently three men appeared on the edge of the garden: all were looking upwards. One was dressed in white, the uniform of the builders, but no, the builders have gone, moved on to their next victims. I was watching from a safe place in the kitchen, half hidden by my computer. Suddently I saw one of them quickly glance in my direction, but turned his head again. He did not want me to notice that I was under observation.

I was debating whether to approach them with the words “take me to your leader” as I had never seen these particular examples up to now. Could they be the painting team, organising where to begin? The leader was the man that was pointing his fingers everywhere, upwards and directly ahead to our living quarters. I became suspicious. His sidekick had a hard board with paper clipped to it and was writing notes. Yes we were again under observation, they’re here, the poltergeists are amongst us again. Suddenly they moved on – the second phase begins.

In the meanwhle Mr. Swiss found it was about time that we got our permanent metal blinds back again. Will this never end?

Basil

In the meanwhile strange things are happening to my  basil. It was a super arrival in the local supermarket. Instead of the normal small economy pots, it was a mega pot with a promising Summer harvest of basil leaves to garnish my tomato salads with the accompanying mozarella cheese, one our our favourites. It was ideal, however, even this basil became possessed, infiltrated with strange yellow strings growing from the top. They resemble economy sized lianas from a rain forest. Admittedly it rains now and again here, but I have never seen this before. If they were roots, they would grow downwards, but these are growing horizonatally, even upwards. Strange things are happening in our village this year. I decided to remove these curious growths, but changed my mind. Did I hear a scream as I tried to remove one of these yellow strands, and did I see the others now stretching in a combined movement in my direction. I decided to leave this plant alone. It is now outside. Last week three of my favourite builders suddently disappeared and have never been seen since.

Yes, there are strange things happening in Feldbrunnen.

In the meanwhile life goes on as usual. A journey to the supermarket this morning to replenish food supplies. We have decided on fried potatoes with the national Swiss sausage, a cervelat. I notice that brussel sprouts are again appearing after their summer interval. No. 1 son is working all day, and does not eat green vegetables, so here is our chance to make the most of the opportunity.

I must now move on, the vacuum cleaner is calling. Enjoy the day and beware of strange men in the garden and strange growths on your plants – you never know.

Garden Ornament 16.09.2017