Well not much is happening here at the moment - just what has now become my new "normal" - my different classes and clubs are all up and running with me seeing if this amount of "busyness" suits me - and so far it does! I started the week with my morning yoga lesson at our young teacher's home on Monday. She is limited for space so we are a maximum of five people per lesson but that's not a bad thing at all. She was telling us that she has now received permission to build a yoga studio in her garden so hopefully by next autumn she will be better set up to take her association a step further. I have to say, though, that she actually lives and breathes the entire "yoga" lifestyle and while it doesn't all appeal to me, as yet (the chanting for instance), she certainly looks wonderful on it. She told us she has a newly-retired gent who will be joining us on Monday for a trial class. He is apparently very into different sports and wants to add the flexibility of yoga to his list of strengths. We'll see what he makes of it, of course, as men are often very strong but don't have the flexibility that women seem to have so it will be interesting!
Then on Tuesday my neighbour and I had our Tuesday afternoon yoga session - you know, the one I virtually dragged her to kicking and screaming and which she now loves! Actually, it gives me a lot of pleasure to see her get so much out of it as I am very fond of this neighbour. She is a very "nervous" type, says she can never sleep (this I believe as I often hear her up and around throughout the night) and suffers from various aches and pains, in part due to scoliosis! Anyway, "Mrs Hyper" here actually fell asleep in the relaxation part at the end of the yoga class yesterday! I know!!! I actually had to wake her and we were all laughing - as was she as she said she never would have thought that just a 90-minute lesson could do that for her! To be fair she wasn't the only one though. The lady next to me seems to start snoring at the drop of a hat, but this is the first time my neighbour has done it. So I guess we now have a new "in joke", but good for her!
Our Monday night sewing club has grown fairly exponentially too. I don't know where they put out the advertising but all of a sudden we have eight new members, making our relatively small sewing room fairly cramped, but I'm sure we'll get something figured out. And they seem to be a nice crowd so here's hoping. I was talking to one of the new ladies as I left and she was saying that one of their group had taught sewing for about 20 years at another local MJC (community college) but that suddenly they wanted to add extra classes to her schedule and drop the amount they paid her so she told them to get lost! So now that particular MJC no longer has a sewing group and I guess that is where our new members came from. It sounds to me like someone had an ax to grind but .... Our group didn't have a paid teacher until last year in fact. We had a couple of ladies who knew how to sew and would help out as and when necessary. Since they have both decided to stop (they are both a fair old age), we now have Patricia who we actually pay, but I don't feel €100 per person per year is a lot to shell out for such a group. On top of that the local commune actually gives us the room rent-free so we really have nothing to complain about do we!
And talking of sewing, I finally got my new curtains put up in the living room. If you remember my others shrunk by about 10 inches after I washed them so I dashed out and picked out two new sets, hemmed them very roughly and got the new rods put up in time to get them all up and hanging over my lovely clean windows by yesterday evening!
It's been peeing down rain today so I decided not to go in to work to use the gym as bad weather inevitably brings with it accidents/tailbacks on the motorway and I didn't feel I could face it today as I've got my Italian lesson tonight and need to be back out my side of the lake in good time for that. Goody Two Shoes that I am, I've done my homework already though! And I've actually starting going through the paperwork contained in the "handbook for French citizens", trying to learn all about the French political system, it's values and French history. I don't think it'll be too bad actually, but since I could have my interview for French citizenship sprung on me at any time (although I doubt it'll be any time soon), I suppose I should get moving on it!
In other news, I mentioned the other day that I seem to be getting more and more scam artists coming through on my email. You know, the ones who have millions of dollars they want to put into my bank account out of the goodness of their hearts! I've been updating a word document of all of their scams and each time a new one comes in I send my word document back to all of them and suggest they may want to keep in touch with each other. I guess that's why their numbers are multiplying but at the moment it tickles me to keep doing this. But I've received about 15 since my birthday on 24 September, including one supposedly from Yahoo saying that my yahoo account would be closed unless I did X, Y and Z but I was not to change my password/log-on ! Crikey! That one I forwarded to the Yahoo abuse line and no, strangely enough, my account didn't get closed yesterday evening after all. I'm also being bombarded with info from the British Government about "what to do after Brexit" - I received 15 in just the last 10 minutes, would you believe! Now admittedly I signed up for these emails and most of them aren't relevant to me anyway but crikey, talk about being bombarded!
And talking of Brexit, last night Jordan invited me, Jen and Jen's mom out for dinner near them for our respective birthdays - mine on 24 September, Jen's mom on 30 September and Jen's 30th birthday on 7 October! It was just a five minute walk from their place so he could actually enjoy himself and have a rum cocktail for starters and wine with dinner. I stuck to a glass of white wine as I had to drive, but it was a really pleasant evening with the kids I have to say. On the way back to their place I was walking with Jordan and he was telling me that he has two jobs in Switzerland "ready to go" as and when he wants them (think double, or even triple his French salary) but ... "bloody Brexit"!!! For the one job he just has to give the date when he would be available - i.e. give his notice in with his French employers but I told him to hang fire because when Brexit rolls around he will need to prove that he has an income and that he has been gainfully employed for some time. He actually likes his French company but says it is so badly run that they can't keep the staff. For instance, he has to be at the office to pick up his work load for the day by 7.45 a.m. and then they very often have him making his first maintenance call 30 km away at 8 a.m. in rush hour traffic, and of course it's impossible! The night before last he finished at 8.45 p.m. because he couldn't get all his appointments done during the day because of the traffic! They have all told their employers that the scheduling is all over the place and they keep promising to do something about it but it doesn't seem to be happening. Then his other problem is that to take up one of the offers of employment in Switzerland he has to prove that he is legally-resident in France - which he is until ..... and even though he can get residency and citizenship in France as he fulfills all the requirements you can't actually get a bloody appointment to hand in your dossier because the French won't set up the appointments until they know where they stand! I can't blame them for that but bloody hell! Living on a knife-edge is just so bloody miserable and yet we are the lucky ones. There are some British expats who may well end up having to go back to the UK because they don't meet all the new requirements for residency in their respective countries! Can you imagine! You've been legally living in country A for X number of years and all of a sudden they rip up the rule book and move the goal posts! I know I bang on about Brexit but hey, people's livelihoods are at stake here and we are being sold down the swannie, as, I fear, will Northern Ireland be. I hope to God not, but I really think the powers that be will cut we expats and Northern Ireland adrift without a second thought and God alone knows what will happen on the island of Ireland after that!! Again, "piss up" and "brewery" spring to mind!
And finally, I have taken to watching Strictly again after a couple of years of "nah, I can't be bothered" (to US readers I guess that equates to your "Dancing with the Stars"). Now I love Kelvin and think young Karim stands a very good chance of winning, but I have to say I am very impressed with Michelle Visage! She's not my cup of tea in any way, shape or form (she'd be what I call a "brassy blond" if she wasn't a brunette), but I have to say she just oozes confidence and she can actually dance! Add to that that she is dancing with the gorgeous Giovanni who seems to have so much fun with his partners, she has actually been a pleasure to watch. Do I think she'll go far? No, not really, but you just have to admire her chutzpah!