Thursday, 29 September 2011

Queen of home hazards

Hmmm I just smashed one of the lovely champagne glasses the wise woman  gave me many eons ago. ( I put her name in pink because Ulla my shopping trolley is also pink and she is very wise). I suppose I was due a bit of  "scherben bringen gluck" and really I should be  impressed that it lasted this long. Besides my apartment does look a bit like a paper and plastic bomb went off in it at the moment so there were bound to be casualties.
Now there is, of course, a good reason for my mess (apart from my usual genetic disposition towards  this particular state) and this is because I am moving. I gave my landlord notice a month ago in my best German writing. Well I thought I had but then I heard nothing and worried perhaps I had insulted his favourite pony instead. So I rang him and he said it was fine. He had already found someone which is great because I hate showing people around. Now comes the hard work. Packing, sorting, liftng, smashing, trying not to become nostalgic about the floor that I have spent so much time on or about Abdullah the elevator who has been such a loyal friend to me over the past months and has let me cry on his 70s decor shoulders on more than one occasion.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

have your cake...

Yesterday I was feeling low ( actually I still feel low today and at a pinch I guess I'm going to feel low tomorrow too.) Anyway I was told to draw a picture of Black Forest cake to help me feel better... which dutifully did I. (I am a Taurean and therefore stubborn but sometimes I can be very obedient! Especially if there is the promise of any form.) I can't say it made me feel much better but I do know that last night for the first time in ages my dreams weren't full of crazy knife-wielding strangers,  sad men on bicycles, roller-coasters and angry unicorns. Maybe there was something in the cake after all. 

Sometimes I think - for a hermit - teaching is the wrong profession for me. I mean I like teaching. I like being creative. I like not being in an office. I like making students say 'comfortable' and 'th' but it is exhausting for someone with a reclusive gene such as mine.
But then I remind myself that my real, true-heart profession is to write anyway but until and unless I find the means to make this happen I must continue with the Joanna Show week after week.

It could be worse could be a lot worse.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Losing My Religion by REM

is a song I will always love deeply for the memories it carries.

Follow me if you will...........

 It was a sultry summer day in the summer of 1997. I had just seen Ephesus in Turkey and done my best to marvel at the ancient ruins for 6 hours straight. ( I am a kind of a two-hour maximum ruin admirer and that's on a shady day.) I was travelling with a handsome, brown-haired, blue-eyed boy who could sweat for an entire Olympic team if so required. I liked it!!  We had been flirting for a week and a half now. My best flirtation move so far had been to accidentally stumble in a shower in the tiny village of Kas resulting in a lot of blood and an ankle which swelled to the size of a football.
But I was shrewd - for now I was need in a constant human crutch to help me around (queue: handsome sweating boy!) 
Anyhow we returned from our day in  Ephesus to the town of  Selcuk and found a lovely street side restaurant to indulge in another plate of stuffed aubergine. I was almost at my aubergine elastic limit by this time but of course being in full flirt mode I did not moan of such things. No I launched into my hundreth such dish with the enthusiasm of a  cat at a pigeon festival. 
The whole night we talked and laughed and drank cheap wine and the only song the restaurant had on its stereo system was Losing My Religion which it played over and over and over and over and over again.

Thanks R.E.M.!

Monday, 12 September 2011

Tomato Handbag's adventures in man-land part 2

So tomato handbag and I decided to visit the epicentre of Bernese Man-Land - the 360° revolving restaurant on top of the Schiltorn. The Schiltorn is 2930 m high and  was used  in the James Bond film "On Her Majesty's Secret Service."
Obviously the first thing one must do is ascend the Schiltorn from Mürren via two cable cars. (Of course there is the climbing option too!!) The cable cars give beautiful views over the mountains for everyone except those who are genetically blessed with being the exact same height as the cable bar.

Once at the top there are a myriad of activites for a gal and her tomato handbag to do including:
Posing like Jame Bond                                 


Posing with other James Bond posers

Regarding the view from the revolving restaurant

Did I mention posing Like James Bond?
Oh and posing like JB's girlfriend too!

Soon it was time to leave and tomato handbag announced her desire to be the first fruit-shaped handbag ever to descend the Schiltorn on foot. After a few minutes pondering whether in fact this was a good idea ( as  most other climbers seemed to be more sensibly attired with backpacks and walking sticks) we took to the mountain. I mean who am I to deny a handbag her dream!

I believe the descent may have been a little easier on the tomato than my knees.     

But tomato handbag's safety was of course paramount!
Happily there were lots of opportunities to collect stones for painting!

And also to do some stone laying

And general appreciation of the rarver spectacular views.

Friday, 9 September 2011

Tomato handbag's adventures in man-land part 1

So tomato handbag and I decided to head for Lauterbrunnen Valley for the weekend for some mountain action. Actually I have decided that this whole area should be renamed Man-Land because it is a veritable feast of man-related words and activities (e.g. cog train, gondola, cable car, barometric pressure, altitude, helicopters, airplanes, paragliders, base jumpers, terminal verlocity, cubic tonnes of water, wurst, bier, Jungfrau etc) Fortunately there are plenty of things to keep myself and the handbag happy too... ( oh and my very sensible strappy sandal hiking shoes.)

Stay tuned for tomato handbag's fearless descent from the Schiltorn (minus the strappy sandals!)

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Phoenix Fattoush

Fattoush lives!!!!
She had an organ flown in from Taiwan and is currently under observation by her highly skilled IT surgeon.  She still needs a crash cart from time to time but she is no longer incomprehensible and upside down.  Of course the  final tests are not in yet but when I visited her yesterday and she looked up at me without blinking once I felt very optimistic that she may be saved. I admit though that I think she may well have left me on Skyros for a higher purpose (to allow me to discover the joy of painting stones) and for this I will always be grateful to her.
Apart from the revival of Fattoush I have to say I have found this to be a hard week. The longer I am back in Basel the more I feel the Skyrian sunshine slipping away. I am doing my best to keep it alive but it is hard not to fall into old familiar traps. Old patterns, old feelings, old worries, old ways. Although this week at least I asserted myself at work regarding my working hours - unglaublich! For the first twenty-four hours after I had done it I felt guilty but then I realised it wasn't guilt at all.  It was simply an uneasiness at having done something that I don't often do which is stand up for myself!