Sunday, 21 January 2018

Photo on Sunday 2018-03

A sort of ussie this week. Miss Oswin wasn't interested in looking at the camera. 

Friday, 19 January 2018

More snow

When I woke up this morning, it was snowing heavily and it didn't stop for several hours I think. Which meant that roads were nearly impossible to clear and conditions in some places could get tricky. I was okay though: the bus and I took it easy and we got everywhere we needed to without too much delay.

I finished at midday and my first stop (during another bout of heavy snowing) was the physio. After that it was home. Now, to get to the house, I have to drive UP ↑ the hill. Which I did. Until I didn't. The car started spinning, the direction changed and I stopped. I put it in reverse (right into the grass), back in forward gear, but nothing. No movement. *Sigh*

Definitely not its regular place.
Since there was enough room for the other cars of the household to drive past, I felt I might as well leave the car until the snow is gone again. I won't need the car for a few days anyway. I made my way to the house and as I tried to enter, my landlord's brother came out. He had had difficulties as well, although not to the same degree) and was now going to shovel snow. 

After about an hour I thought: even though he is shoveling snow, it might freeze over later and then there could be trouble. Because if somebody tries to get past my car, gets into trouble and then hits my car... So, I decided to get the car out. One way or another. 

On with the heavy duty snow clothes and shoes and out I went. Brother had just finished shoveling and drove off (past my car, no problem) and I started the car. Within seconds the car started beeping. Seat belt! That sorted, I drove forwards. Well, I say drove, more like tried, because it wouldn't budge. Reverse was a bit easier, but still not enough movement. 

I got out, removed snow, removed some more snow and got back in. Beep beep. Oh *&^%$&^&*!! In the end the car was at right angles in the drive. In other words: no car was getting past me! And then it hit me (figuratively speaking): don't try to go up ↑ the drive, go down ↓ it! Which I managed in about three seconds flat. And because the drive had been shoveled, it was easy backing up ↑ the drive again to park the car in its regular spot. 


Thursday, 18 January 2018


In my footsteps
When my family and friends were here over the Christmas holidays, most of the time the weather was dreary: rain, rain and rain. Then on the one day we did have snow, it was more sleety and it wasn't that nice either. Since they have left however we've had nice weather, sunshine and today...


Relatively snow free under the bush
It already started yesterday, but today it continued off and on. My last trip of the day was a school run and it snowed. Up the mountain, down the mountain, around the hairpin bend, around another hairpin bend. Snow, snow, snow! I took it slow and made it up and down without trouble. It did take me nearly half an hour to get home though. For those of you who haven't been here: a straight road, just over a mile and a half. It is supposed to take about 5 minutes. Tops. 

Our tracks
On getting home though, it was off with the work shoes and on with the snow boots. Find a camera, find Miss O and go outside. She wasn't amused. Snow is not nice on kitty's feet apparently and she tried to get under stools, bushes and wherever there was no snow. Or she would follow (literally) in my footsteps. 

We got in again after about 10 minutes. Much better! More snow is expected though this week, so perhaps I can even make a lovely snowman. I love making snowmen...

Wednesday, 17 January 2018


As you probably all know I raised money for charity last year by selling mice on my other blog Mice for Mama. The charity was the Stomach, Liver and Bowel Foundation in the Netherlands because of my mother who was diagnosed with bowel cancer last year. 

The total amount raised was 233 euros, which was sent to them at the end of last year and I also sent them a mouse. Which arrived this week. Dave (one of the fundraisers) sent me a few photos which I would like to share.

The top photo is of the mouse next to one of the collection cans they use to go door to door to collect money. The second photo is a close up of the cheque. I did not send them that, they kindly made it themselves to show the amount. And the last photo is the complete image of the second photo, showing several of Dave's colleagues.

Hopefully I can raise a similar amount for this year's charity.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Photo on Sunday 2018-02

She likes it up high and this is the highest she can get by herself. Usually jumping off the television table (on the right) or the weapons/blanket chest (on the left).

Isn't she gorgeous??

Friday, 12 January 2018

Snakes and ladders

This photo from my last major move from the Netherlands to Norway
Some of you wondered whether another move is on the cards and I will tell you all now: yes. Another move is very much on the cards. Where to is still a bit of question mark though.

So, what exactly is on those cards? Well... as you all know my mother was diagnosed with cancer early last year (very happy to say she is completely in the clear again), but that hit something home: I miss my family. And especially somebody who knows my parents more or less like I do. My sister. 

Which is why I have decided that my best bet would be to try and find a job in Northern Ireland. Of course there are some snakes, one of the major ones being Brexit*. Another choice would be West Scotland or the Republic of Ireland. Scotland would have the same problem as Northern Ireland (it being part of the UK as well), the Republic would be relatively snake free. 

Yep, a real snake. Fortunately it was well-fed
What are those snakes then you ask? Here they come.

1. Even though I have 19 years' experience right now and have driven in both the UK and Ireland and got my first (car) licence in the UK, I have never driven a right-hand drive bus or coach (only car).

2. My 19 years' experience also puts another snake in my way: pay. I don't want to start at the lowest pay level again and with the amount of experience I do have, the top level would sound more reasonable. Which means that if they can get people with lower pay levels, they might go for them.

3. Brexit*. You might have heard about the UK leaving the European Union, which has an immediate effect on all European Union citizens working in the UK. Even though I now live in Norway (a non EU-country), I am still Dutch (an EU-citizen). There might be costs involved for keeping me there which could have a negative effect on considering me for the job. 

My sister. Hopefully my ladder will still have all its rungs
Are there any ladders then? Well of course there are!!

1. 19 years of experience! It may be a snake, but it is also a ladder. I have driven tours and public transport, children and adults. I have been abroad, both European mainland and the UK and Ireland. I should think that counts for something.

2. I speak English. In a fairly decent manner I believe. When listing all the languages I speak (five in total), English got a C1 level. Meaning I have 'Effective Operational Proficiency'. The next one up is C2 and then it's native. I also speak German (C1), French and Norwegian (both B2) and of course Dutch (native). 

3. I am only (yes only) 46. Which means that for the greying profession that bus driving is, I still have twenty years in me! That is a lot. 

Beginning of April is when I will hear more (or not). I will keep you posted.

Thursday, 11 January 2018


As I finished work early this morning (8.30 am and I was done for the day) and drove to my physio appointment, all of a sudden, my car conked out. It just stopped! I got it going again, but at the next roundabout: the same thing. I managed to start it again and it almost stopped as soon as I had started it. Fortunately I had arrived and was able to roll into the parking lot.

After my physio appointment (ouch, ouch, ouch, my shoulders, neck and back had tensed up completely again), I started my car without any trouble, but figured it wouldn't hurt to have someone take a look at it anyway. So, I drove Cookie to my garage and asked them to have a look. 

They drove it around without any trouble (of course) and then they checked it. I think there was something with a filter somewhere and something to do with spark plugs which they both changed. And a headlight, which I didn't know was broken. 

Nearly 2000 kroner lighter I left. But Cookie should be in fine working order again...

Monday, 8 January 2018


The last of the Christmas stuff had to be packed away. Of course I had done most of it already last Wednesday, but some things could not be rushed. Things needed to be washed for example. And then dried. And then (oh yes) even ironed!

So, on Sunday I took out the ironing board, found the iron (in its box, not having been used since I moved here) and started ironing. First it was the napkins. Easy. More napkins. And yet more napkins. Don't worry: there were only ten. Then it was the turn of the table cloth. Which is big. It took a long time. I had to use the spray bottle. Miss Oswin got a bit worried. 

In the end, while Miss Oswin was outside not being worried by the spray bottle, I finished the table cloth. For good measure I ironed the one shirt and a handkerchief. A few pillow cases. 

Now? The last of the Christmas stuff is packed away, as is the iron again. And even though the Christmas crates (10 large ones if you please) are still in the living room, it does look okay here. Tidy. Well, apart from Miss Oswin's toys that is...

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Saturday, 6 January 2018

The old head

My head. From the back. In 2010.
Despite doing much better shoulder and back wise, the last time I saw the physio, he said my shoulders had tensed up again. And guess what: my head told me so as well. As headaches go, it wasn't a bad one as such and the first few days were quite okay. Not needing any pills, but doing great with a mandarin or a small sandwich.

Yesterday it was a bit worse, but still nowhere near the badness it used to be and definitely not 'calling in sick' bad. Even today, the worst day so far, is still good going compared to before. 

Next week I will be back at the physio and there will be more sessions to come. Because even though we've made great strides, it's not over yet. For now however, despite the headache, I am doing great.