The view from my window

The view from my window
The view from my window

Friday 31 December 2021

Happy new year!

I've been off-line for a few days (like most of us, I suspect) as there were things that needed doing, like family to see and food to eat, but first of all I'd like to thank all the lovely lady bloggers who sent me Christmas cards. It's such fun to get a Christmas card from half way around the world (mine were all from the US this year), but to those who received cards from me, I have to apologize for my handwriting. I think we started learning beautiful cursive writing pretty young - and then somehow someone forgot lesson two! Oh I write in cursive of course (I'm not that bad) but I have to admit my hand-writing is dreadful, so sorry about that!

Christmas Eve we had a small "raclette evening" at Jordan and Jen's (which I suspect will be where most of their festivities will be held while the babe is so small). There were only six of us plus the babe and it was really nice. After dinner we played a board game (can't remember the name), but I have to admit that I tend to zone out a bit after a while so I usually offer to take care of the babe (well that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it)! It's hard to explain but we obviously play games in French so it can be a bit like asking a French person to mime "Cheech and Chong", or an American to mime "Eric and Ernie" (or anyone non-French to mime "Louis de Funes" - you have to have been brought up in the culture), so I guess you can see why my mind tends to wander. Or maybe we should stick to card games - now there's a thought! That being said, I used to zone out a bit playing Trivial Pursuit when I lived in the States because I know bugger all about baseball or American football (or Cheech and Chong, for that matter). Anyhoo, one time I decided I was going to cheat next time so spent a while memorising questions and answers for "the time when". Anyway, I can't remember what the question was now, but I remember the answer was Sandy Koufax - and I almost gave my father-in-law a coronary when I gave the Koufax answer to a question about baseball!

Getting home that night wasn't much fun though as it had frozen pretty hard by the time I left (the parking lot was dreadful) and I wasn't looking forward to the drive home. Basically you can go one way round the mountain through a place called Findrol (which is an accident black spot even on a good day), or you can go "the other way" down the Giffre valley which is well known for accidents involving deer and wild boar! Well actually you can go over the mountain past André's place but that goes back down the mountain on the side of a ravine so I decided to give that a miss! It seemed to me that everyone was taking it carefully on the way home though and thankfully I didn't run into any "strays". Once I got back down to Bonneville it was back up another mountain again to where I live (and where, again, you have to look out for the animals). There was a guy behind me most of the way from Bonneville to home and I thought I was holding a good speed, but when I got to my turn off point he blasted his horn and yelled something which I'm pretty sure wasn't Merry Christmas so I reckon I might have been driving a bit too slow for him, don't you (although that could just be female intuition)! Still I did get a little schadenfreude when the eejit hit a spot of black ice about 100 metres away and bounced merrily over the sidewalk a couple of times until he managed to get the car back under control!

Christmas Day was at my place and again there were just five of us plus the babe. I can't believe he's already nine months old and has had his first Christmas! I kept my kids' high chair all these years but when I dragged it up from the basement to clean it I couldn't find the table part for love nor money! I know I wouldn't have thrown it away and just kept the chair but .... Still, it worked out well enough as it was the perfect height for him to sit at the table with us and throw green beans around with gay abandon! Of course presents meant nothing to him but he got an awful lot of pleasure trying to eat the wrapping paper and any empty box he could get his hands on! I thought Jen was very good though because she made a point of saying that she really didn't want him to be spoiled (neither do I) and how did we feel about giving just a few presents in future and sewing gift bags instead of buying wrapping paper? I'm all for it - though I'm not sure how Jordan and André feel about the "sewing" part!

The next day Jen sent me a notice from their local Mairie. Apparently there had been a very strong smell in the surrounding area and along the river Giffre that had entailed around 100 firemen being called out looking for a gas leak, so they called André and asked if they could move in with him for a couple of nights if necessary. I told André they could come here but he'd have to have Leni the Horrible Cat! It wasn't necessary in the end but the smell did linger for a couple of days and everyone was asked to check their fuel tanks for a possible leak. I'm not sure what happened but I think it's been sorted now (or at least I hope so)!

Jen's mom very kindly invited me to her new place (she moved in two weeks ago) to spend NYE with her and her boyfriend, Fabrice, as she didn't want me to be alone. I thought it best to be honest and thanked her for her invite but told her that I genuinely dislike NYE and dislike being on the roads even more. That's when she said "but my friend Niko will be here too" and the dreadful thought occurred to me that she might be trying to set me up with Niko. Ehhhh, no thanks. I've met Niko and I'm definitely not interested, any more than I'm interested in being set up with anyone, thank you very much! So I'll be spending NYE all on my lonesome (and very happy about it too), while Jordan and Jen are having a couple of friends over and André is going to a friend's in Geneva and spending the night!

On another note, I'm now 14 lbs down (and very happy about it) as I still haven't really got my sense of smell or taste back. I had to laugh on Wednesday when I went grocery shopping because I walked out of the shop having paid just €14 for my groceries (I usually spend around €100), but nothing seemed to appeal to me. I'm guessing I'll start putting weight back on soon enough and goodness knows I'd like to be interested in cooking again, but in the meantime bread and cheese seems to be the extent of my culinary expertise at the moment. Mind you, I'm sure Weight Watchers is probably an infinitely preferable alternative to weight loss from catching covid! And to think of all that walking I did and got absolutely nowhere with the weight loss (1,200 miles in 2021 - definitely needs improvement)!

My nephew sent me an email the other day (after I'd been whinging about the state of British politics) giving me the name of a book - whose author he knew slightly - and which was quite a best-seller, telling me that it might give me a better understanding of just how dire all three political parties now are in the UK! I'll have to look it back up again when I've finished my current read!

Wow! I've almost gotten a
repetitive stress injury from bookmarking
pages and I'm only on chapter 3!

The book is hard-going and a bit like wading through molasses but occasionally I like to really get my teeth into something like this. I had hoped to get it in hard copy but apparently it's only sold in electronic format because at the end of each chapter there's a "QR code" where you can update your copy for more up-to-date information!

After a couple of hours of wading through that I decided I needed something a bit more light-hearted (ya don't say!) and ended up watching Being The Ricardos - the Lucille Ball/Desi Arnaz story - and I really enjoyed it. Man, they were a firey couple, but so well-suited - when they weren't scratching each other's eyes out. For some reason many people don't seem to like Nicole Kidman but I thought she was very good, and as for Javier Bardem (who played Desi), well that man could just stand there and not say a word and I'd be happy - but he actually can act!

And finally, I was chatting with my sister on Christmas Day and we got to talking about just how hard mom had it on Christmas Day (in particular) and wondering how on earth she managed with all those kids, that tiny kitchen, three pots and pans basically, and no appliances! We had a good laugh but I had to ask her if she thought maybe we were glorifying the past and oddly enough she said "no, I don't think we are. We were much poorer but I actually think we were maybe happier"! And I tend to think she was right!

So on that note, I'll wish you all a happy new year and hopefully 2022 will be kinder to us all!

Monday 20 December 2021

Time to change jobs?

I got an email this morning from the Direction Nationale de la Gendarmerie in Paris because apparently I'd been "caught looking at child pornography" on my computer. They kindly gave me 72 hours to respond to their email with all justification as to why they shouldn't go ahead and prosecute me! I guess it makes a change from the widow of the former Director of Finances at the World Bank in Ouagadougou who wants to put $10 million in my bank account right? I know I shouldn't, but more and more I write back to these jerks and tell them exactly where they can shove a cactus - and then I block them! I guess it might get me into trouble one day if I fire that off to the wrong person, but since I've never looked at child pornography I'd guess I'm pretty safe on this one! Which reminds me of my brief foray into online dating in 2010 after my husband left (and yay me, I'll be divorced 10 years next week)! As a woman of a certain age you do tend to get some guy who looks like a gorilla sending you his picture with the caption "I'm just what you need"! I guess they think all divorced women over the age of 50 are just gagging for it, right, and while it never happened to me I knew of other women who received unsollicited dick pics. An Irish friend of mine replied to one such gem with "that looks like a penis, only smaller", but I did see a text message which I thought was pretty good and saved just in case - although thankfully that never happened to me! Still, if it could get rid of World Bank widows and accusations of looking at child pornography I'm up for most things!

Oh and I meant to write about the North Shropshire by-election last week but somehow it slipped my mind. Wow and just wow! The Tories (Conservatives) have held the North Shropshire seat for almost 200 years so I guess you could say it was considered a safe Tory seat - until now! It came up for grabs when Bojo's crony, Owen Paterson, had to step down in a cash-for-influence scandal and I guess the Tories were so confident it was a safe seat that they ran a candidate who wasn't even from the local area and didn't know anything about it. So the seat went to the Liberal Democrats with a fairly convincing majority - and the Conservatives are running pretty scared, what with all Johnson's screw-ups in the last few weeks/months/forevers! Not that I think it will make much of a difference in the long run because there seems to be no front-runner candidate to replace Johnson - and no real opposition from either the Labour Party or the Lib Dems! God helps us, but it's the same thing here in France. Macron has not, as yet, declared as a candidate for next year's Presidential election and yet the other night he was on TV for over two hours patting himself on the back so hard for all his "achievements" he almost dislocated his shoulder - a move that pissed off the declared candidates because as a candidate they are all bound to have an equal amount of air time - and yet Macron, as an as yet non-candidate, is getting to use the airwaves as long as he wants! The elections will take place in spring but I have no real hope that we will get rid of him. I think it will be either him or his female clone, Valérie Pecresse, that will get in because they've got the big money behind them. It's sad as there are other candidates (and I know who I would vote for if I only had a vote - which I don't), but I suspect they won't be able to counter the deep pockets of Macron's backers! It's just awful to think we might be looking at another five years of more of the same - or even worse!

And finally, I met André at Ford this afternoon as he was dropping off his car to get winter tyres put on. When we got back to the house he told me that he'd just learned that yet another colleague had dropped dead last week of a sudden heart attack!!!!! Wow, if people were unsettled before I can only begin to imagine how they are feeling right now! Time to look for another job maybe?

Sunday 19 December 2021

A brief period of being almost normal!

I posted some time ago how a pass sanitaire was introduced into France about six months ago allowing unfettered movement only to those who had been double-vaxed, those who could show a negative PCR test less than 72 hours old, or those who had recovered from covid within the last six months. This pass was supposed to be in place until 15 November. Well we all know how that works because - in no particular order the pass was extended until 31 July 2022 (beyond the mandate of the current president????), the PCR test validity was cut back from 72 hours, to 48 hours and now stands at 24 hours and "fully vaccinated" is now taken to mean triple-vaxed (or however many more shots can be inserted into the definition of "fully vaccinated" before this house of cards comes tumbling down)! Those without the pass are not allowed into restaurants, bars, cafés, theatres, gyms, museums, on long distance transport or into hospitals for routine medical appointments! Hold on to that last bit as this is important because of what follows!

I went grocery shopping on Monday and bumped into J, who used to be the sewing teacher about five years ago when I joined sewing club. I think she's 78 years old - in any case, nearer 80 than 70 - and after I'd pulled my mask down so that she recognized me, we got to catching up on how she/we'd been over the past five years. I always liked J as I think she is a kind, gentle soul (who liked to practice her English on me)! Anyway, she remarked that I'd lost weight so I told her I'd not long gotten over covid and had lost my appetite, and that was when she told me she'd recently gotten over covid too, even though she'd been double-vaxed. Turns out she had pretty much the same experience as I did in that, while it wasn't pleasant, it really was no big deal and other than the tiredness, the symptoms were pretty much done and dusted in about four days. Then she told me that she had lost weight, though not because of covid, but because she had been having problems with her oesophagus and the doctors wanted her to go to the hospital in Thonon for more tests. She told me she was afraid it might be cancer as her throat kept closing up - but wanted to avoid her mind going down that rabbit hole if possible, as she was really worried!

Anyway, about a month ago this government, in its wisdom, decided that "fully vaxed" for anyone over 65 would now mean two shots and a booster before 15 January, otherwise the pass sanitaire would be deactivated! So everyone 65 and over was "invited" to get their booster shot and while initially it had to be done no more than six months after the second shot, it was then brought down to no more than five months after the second shot, and has now been brought down to no more than four months after the second shot! Oh, and that "invitation" has now been expanded to include anyone over 18! The last figures I saw showed around 400,000 people over the age of 65 had "politely declined" the government's invitation to get the booster shot since they were told "two and done" and are not at all happy to hear that "two and done" never actually meant that! This third mandatory shot seems to be making a fair few people rethink their stance on this issue, but who knows what they will decide to do in a few weeks' time - I honestly don't know!

Anyhow, back to J. She was telling me she does not want to get the third shot because she was so ill after the second, so I said but "if you've recovered from covid your pass is valid for at least another six months anyway"! Not so, apparently, since the third, booster shot apparently trumps the fact that she has recently recovered from covid! So all that is to say that she cannot go for the tests she needs at the hospital without that booster shot - oh and because the powers that be have now decided that they will no longer accept PCR testing either! Damn those bastards, what is this, Nazi Germany where you have to show a pass to see a doctor? This lady played by the rules and she is still being screwed over by being denied treatment because of decisions made by Pinnochio and his henchmen! At this she started to cry so I leaned over and hugged her - I mean, what else could I do? So now I'm fully expecting the Thought Control Police to be tracking me down via cc-tv for "intimate contact outside my mind control bubble"! Sorry folks, but can you see why I get so mad!!!!

Actually it will be interesting to see what happens with the "recently recovered" (which would include me) and the pass sanitaire! I mentioned before that my neighbours got covid around the same time as I did. The kids (16 and 19) sailed through it, the husband never contracted it, and Isa had pretty much the same experience as I did. I took a parcel in for them the other day and she was saying she was happy that she could put off getting her booster shot now that she'd got the "recently recovered" pass, but since she's in the same situation as J, above, I'll be curious to see how the overlords treat her!

Another lady from sewing club's partner is much older than her and recently contracted covid also (she never got it), so I called to find out how he was doing. She laughed and said after his 10-day self-isolation he had gone off cross-country skiing as he was just fine (thank God)! So there you have it, a group of people who have all recently had covid and, for us anyway, we've all had the same, fairly mild experience (all the others were vaxed, I would add)! I actually don't know whether I had Delta or Omicron, but if it was Omicron hopefully it might prove true that while Omicron is pretty contagious it's much less serious!

In other news André heard that his colleague who died suddenly (age 37) last month had had a heart attack and people are still pretty shaken up about it! What sad and weird times we're living in right!

Since I finally have a pass sanitaire (although for how much longer if they are now changing the rules? - oh what it feels like to be "briefly" normal), I was able to join a few colleagues at a restaurant in Geneva last week. While I was waiting for them to show up a retired Indian colleague came and sat with me and we got chatting about retirement and kids and so on. I had worked for her father-in-law when I first came to Geneva and while he definitely had his issues he was very kind to me and I thought well of him. She was telling me she would like to visit family in India but the situation being what it is there is no way she would even attempt it right now. So I commented that despite a fairly catastrophic start to the pandemic (because of their sheer population size), India seemed to have managed this pandemic well! At that she said that as far as far as she was concerned, Modi (their PM) was an angel, and had it been anyone else they would have been in big trouble! Isn't it nice to hear someone say how their elected politicians seem to have got it right!

So who knows "what sauce they will eat us with next" (that's a French expression). As from January they are going to present a draft law to take the PCR test component out of the pass sanitaire definitively, but goodness knows where that leaves me as a "recently recovered"! I do see people baulking at this third shot though, even more so since the Health Minister is already talking about a fourth!!!! Who knows, maybe this will be the straw that breaks the camel's back! Either that or pushing the jabs on kids (with the attendant pass sanitaire being dependent on it for those over age 11) - that could well do it where people say "no more"! Oh and about 10 minutes ago I just read where the PM was in a vaccination centre set up for children in Le Mans (in the north of France) yesterday and they've just found out that they accidentally administered adult doses to six children while he was there! I tell ya, if I had a bottle of wine to hand right now ...  but I don't, which is probably a good thing!

In an effort to try to cheer myself up, the other night I watched The Greatest Showman on streaming. While it was good (and Hugh Jackman is gorgeous), when I found myself fast-forwarding through the song and dance bits I knew it wasn't really for me. Still, at least I tried right?

And I finally finished the book Wintering (I flit from book to book) and I think I get what she was trying to say. At the very least she went through a depression - if not a breakdown - and the book describes how she "gave herself permission" to practice self-care and lick her wounds, as it turns out during winter. Her basic premise is that animals give themselves permission to hibernate and just take care of themselves during winter so maybe we would do well to follow suit and allow ourselves time to heal and just "be" occasionally! Something to think about in these dark times perhaps!

Sunday 12 December 2021


You'll be glad to hear that the post title has nothing to do with Boris Johnson for once (although it's pretty appropriate, all the same)! No, the other day quite by chance I stumbled across a Youtube interview with a man called Randy Rush, who won $50 million (Canadian) in 2015 and has seemingly used that money to benefit many individuals and charitable causes. Google describes him as "an author and social justice advocate". Whether that's true or not, he certainly came over as a very likeable man. He wrote a book called 13 Billion To One describing his megawin, and while I've downloaded a sample I haven't actually gotten round to reading it yet. More interesting to me, though, is another book he wrote called Bloodsuckers. It is the story of how a couple called Jeremy and Amy Crawford - a couple he knew through Jeremy's father before he won the money - used him and his money in one of their many "marketing opportunities". According to Mr. Rush, this couple were con artists of the highest order and he outlines their various rackets in great detail going back as far as he can! They created businesses, pyramid schemes, luxury magazines that never published an issue and conned mainly "little people" out of money they could ill afford to lose. When Randy won the big one they must have felt they'd hit the jackpot and, I believe, did indeed con him out of a significant amount of money. I haven't finished the book yet but I understand he got some of it back and wrote this book to set the record straight and hopefully bring them down (if that hasn't already happened)! As I say, I haven't finished the book yet but it is just amazing the bare-faced lies this couple told to ordinary folk and got away with for so long! I'm not sure which televangelist it was that begged his stool pigeons to "send however many dollars you can because otherwise I fear God will call me home" (apparently God called him to prison instead)! It's a bit dry as a book, mainly just detailing the cons, but I go to bed to read most nights and think whaaattttt????? I probably shouldn't still be surprised that this BS exists - but I am!

It took a while but I'm finally feeling my energy coming back after covid and sinusitis. I'll whisper this but I think I may also be over the sinusitis too - but don't tell anyone as I don't want to jinx it! So with that I've started putting up my Christmas tree/decorations - something I hate doing actually - but needs must. I guess it says more about me that I prefer taking them down than putting them up, although I really do enjoy it when it's all decorated!

And remember my writing a while ago about collecting stamps from the local supermarket in order to buy bath towels at what turns out to be about half price. I lucked out when a gent handed me a whole packet of stamps so ordered grey and white (they only had those two colours) bath towels and hand towels for André and Jordan and Jen. Well I got a message from the supermarket to say that my order was finally in, but when I stopped in to pick them up yesterday the lady apologized and said that the truck had got stuck and only the grey towels had come through and did I want to wait? I told her I'd wait as it was easier to pick up the whole order in one go, but I had to laugh at the lack of tenacity - true grit, if you like - of the white towels seeing as how they just wimped out while the grey towels made it through!

I mentioned earlier that one of the side effects (of covid?/sinusitis?) was that I lost my sense of taste and smell. I have to agree that something might have been off with my sense of taste because I made two different soups this week and I reckon both of them were capable of either blowing my brains out with the chili in them or sending my blood pressure through the roof with the amount of salt I used!

Then yesterday I finally got to see the Munchkin. I'd put it off for a couple of days because of the snow but yesterday I decided to go over there and take the shorter, mountain route as I really think I was starting to become a wimp re driving on the snow. I'm glad I did because it was fine! Okay, you don't go belting round any bends if you've got any sense, but the road was ploughed and very driveable so I'm glad I didn't wimp out on that one. When I got there Charlie had just woken up from a really long sleep. Jen asked if I would hold him while she got on with some stuff but mentioned that he'd been a bit lethargic as he'd been constipated for a couple of days. No problem, we just sat and watched mom going about her business, when all of a sudden there was a humongous "ripping" sound and I reckon Charlie suddenly didn't feel quite so lethargic any more! One thing it did confirm to me, though, is that my sense of smell has very definitely come back! Ah, God love 'im!

Friday 10 December 2021

Letting off steam!

I was going to go over and see the Munchkin today but Mother Nature had other plans. It just wasn't worth risking it. It snowed overnight and while it's calmed down a bit now we're due more snow continuing until tomorrow morning. After that it's forecast nice weather so hopefully it'll melt! Still, there's one thing to be said about shovelling snow - it lets off steam, which is good for both my sinuses and my temper tantrum from yesterday! 

Down the road from here!

Out front - the plough had been round first thing though!

Out back - they weren't bothered!

And I know I've posted this before, but I needed to change the thoughts clattering round in my head so had a bit of a binge-watch of Only Fools And Horses! "Play it nice an' cool son, nice an' cool!"

Thursday 9 December 2021

Bloody hypocrites!

I guess it's a good thing I went to Annecy to do some shopping today because I reckon if I had written this post last night or this morning my blood pressure would have gone through the roof! I'm much calmer now thankfully - but then I haven't finished writing either have I?

So the latest example of Boris Johnson's assholery to hit the fan stands a chance, in my humble opinion, of being the one that brings the arrogant bastard down - eventually. Let's hope so, is all I can say! The problem is, he's far from being the only one who thinks he gets to dictate the rules but that they only apply to "the little people"!

There's a leaked video doing the rounds of Macron and a whole bunch of people having an unmasked, non-socially-distanced knees-up at the Elysée Palace recently (I can't be arsed to go looking for the link, but believe me it's out there)! Then I wrote a post recently about how the French PM had come down with covid - goodness knows where he caught it, but masking up and social distancing weren't his forte either!

Castex and the French Minister of the Interior recently!

Then what about California Governor Gavin Newsom who, while exhorting people to keep socially distant and wear masks, was caught out with his wife and a whole bunch of other people at the fancy French Laundry restaurant! See, the rules don't apply to them do they!

And of course they definitely don't apply to Boris Johnson and his cronies - never have, never will! Johnson likes to play the "loveable buffoon" but he's actually a callous prick who once set light to a £50 note in front of a homeless man! Yeah, loveable buffoon my arse!

Then there's the rest of them - in no particular order:

Matt Hancock, the then Health Minister, not keeping at all socially distant recently with his side-piece, something which eventually cost him his marriage and his job!

Matt Hancock

Or what about ol' chipmunk cheeks, Michael Gove, who flew to Portugal to watch the football and then claimed he "didn't have to self-isolate" on his return because he'd suddenly become part of a never-before-heard-of trial to see how people travelling overseas got on if they didn't self-isolate!

Chipmunk Cheeks Gove

Or there was "My Brains Are Too Big For My Head" former Johnson "bestie" who "thought there was something wrong with his eyes" so got in his car and drove 100 miles to "test them out" (as you do) while the country was in strict lockdown!

Dominic Cummings

Or how about Hooray Henry in Chief, Jacob Rees-Mogg, who inherited £180 million when his father died (do any of them ever get anywhere on merit?). There's a video of him somewhere around the age of 14 speaking with an accent like he's got a poker up his arse while being driven to school in a Rolls-Royce! This is the genius whose solution to the U.K.'s truck driver shortage was to make the test easier by "cutting out the part of the test where they had to reverse"!!! No kidding, that was the solution poker arse came up with????? And of course, the only time Rees-Mogg was ever seen "socially-distancing" was when he felt it appropriate to have a lie down when Parliament was in session!

Jacob Rees-Mogg

Anyway, what bought this rant on is that a couple of days ago news/videos were leaked of (I think) three Christmas parties that were held at No. 10 (Downing Street - the home of the Prime Minister) this time last year while the whole country was in strict lockdown. People were banned from having contact with anyone outside their immediate bubble, they couldn't be with their loved ones in hospital or as they were dying alone in nursing homes. And then of course they were obliged to have "zoom funerals". What the bloody hell is a "zoom funeral"? - where all but immediate family were prevented from seeing off their loved ones in person!!!! On a side note I'm glad both my mom and brother died before this shit happened because I can't even begin to imagine how devastating it would have been for them (and us) to have them die alone!

So back to the plot. Boris Johnson and the current Mrs. Johnson (they say when you marry your mistress you create a vacancy and he does have form!) live in the apartment above the PM's offices at No. 10 Downing Street, where last year definitely two, if not three, parties were held. Last week E.T.'s big brother, Sajid Javid, categorically denied that any parties had taken place - categorically!

Sajid Javid, the new Health Minister

Things then started to go pear-shaped and Dominic Raab - ah yes, Dominic Raab ... He used to be the Foreign Minister who once, when talking about increasing covid cases in Réunion (which is French) made some comment words to the effect that "wouldn't it be terrible if they got on the metro in Paris and the numbers exploded" and someone had to explain to the poor dolt that Réunion is an island in the Indian Ocean so the likelihood of them catching the Paris metro was little to none! Anyway, after he categorically refused to come back off his fancy holiday when they started withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, leaving some poor underling in the British Ambassador's office to get as many British citizens out of there as possible, Dominic Raab was transferred to the new position of Justice Secretary????? Just a couple of days ago Raab said he "had no knowledge of any parties going on at No. 10, but if they did (what? they were banned!!!!) he was certain protocols had been followed! Say what? Then he tried to say that as it happened a year ago the police wouldn't look into it as it was "old news". Again, say what??? They are still prosecuting the plebs at the moment for holding parties last year, and if there was any doubt in Raab's mind that parties actually took place at No. 10, why didn't he ask the police officers who are permanently stationed outside the front door?

Dominic Raab - light's on, nobody's home!

Anyway, as rumblings got louder and leaked videos found their way into the public domain, not a single Conservative Minister was available to talk to mainstream media. Apparently Javid was scheduled to be intereviewed by one media channel but pulled out because there's not one of them that can find a single pathetic excuse for what happened at No. 10!

So why is this all coming to light now, after a year? Well it's obviously politically motivated. Someone waited until Bojo was flailing more than usual and leaked the videos the day before Prime Minister's Question Time (PMQs) so that he'd have less time to come up with an excuse! Oh he tried to bluster his way through it of course, saying that "he had no idea this was going on" (he lives in the flat above the office and didn't hear 50+ people having a party???) but he would ask one of his flakies to "look into it" and he would take "appropriate action"! What's the betting more leaked video comes out actually showing him at one of the parties? Not saying it will, but I think that's where I'd put my money!

Keir Starmer, the new leader of the Labour Party, is a lawyer and a smart man, and he, and the Scottish MP, Ian Blackford (and others) did a good job of pinning down Johnson who was squirming like bait on a hook. And oddly enough, while it was expected that Conservative MPs would avoid PMQs, they didn't and it was they that were yelling out "hypocrite" as Johnson was denying all knowledge of any parties! (On a side note, the former leader of the Labour Party was Jeremy Corbyn, who was so unpalatable as a leader that Johnson was elected to power because there was basically no opposition. My nephew is a life-long Labour supporter and works in the Labour Party archives and I think even he has hope for Labour at the next election)!

You might not want to watch the whole video, but if you do, Ant and Dec (see 15 seconds) are two British comedians who picked up on the brewing storm even before the papers published anything. At 1.40 minutes you see Allegra Stratton, a Johnson adviser, and a whole bunch of other people a couple of days after one of the parties joking about how they would respond to questions if "it ever got out", and at 2.30 minutes you have Mr. Poker Up His Arse, Jacob Rees-Mogg laughing and joking about what a "jolly jape" they were all having and "of course they were all socially-distanced because they only had to be two inches apart didn't they"?

Allegra Stratton has already been thrown under the bus and has resigned, but methinks Boris will have to order a whole new fleet of buses for all the other people he will throw under the bus while he desperately tries to cling to power!

Today, as I was leaving home to drive to Annecy I drove past the village primary school, where a whole bunch of little kids were running around outside playing with masks on, thus solidifying the idea that the rules only apply to "the little people"!

Rant over, I'm going to bed!

Monday 6 December 2021

A good move!

I wish I'd thought to take a picture from my balcony first thing this morning, as the sun was shining, it had snowed heavily overnight and the farmer had his sheep in the field behind my house and it was all so pretty, with the sheep looking like miniature snowmen - albeit horizontal snowmen!

And no surprise here, but I've spent the last however many days at home until today as while I was over covid (three negative tests, including the last one today) I was still really, really tired - which seems to be one of the most common side-effects! Then on Friday morning I woke up with a pain in my ear and a blocked nose and somehow managed to have contracted sinusitis! Damn, I haven't had so much as a cold in years and this year I'm definitely making up for it! I expect it's got a lot to do with being run down actually as I had no energy and decided to spend however long I needed just sitting on the sofa reading. I also had no appetite (still don't really) and on a positive note I am down 10 lbs this morning from when I tested positive for covid! I was still drinking gallons, mind, but I just couldn't be bothered to eat (another common side effect apparently). Anyway, in view of the sinusitis I thought I'd better get back to the saline solution and the ginger and honey tea so I'm kinda hoping it'll be gone in a day or two! I knew I'd seen somewhere that someone mentioned dabbing the inside of the ear with a drop of hydrogen peroxide to disinfect it and I'm hoping that will have helped also (or maybe I'll just go totally deaf - who knows)! When I spoke to Jen on zoom she told me that she'd seen a home remedy of someone cooking an onion (in a microwave), wrapping it in a cloth and placing it on the ear and while I'm sure it works (I believe onions and garlic, in particular, have wonderful healing properties), I could just imagine the neighbour letting herself into my home and finding me passed out on the sofa with an onion in my ear!

Ms Moon mentioned today that she'd had the sweetest dream last night and all I can say is lucky her, as I had yet another nightmare about my ex-husband. It's always him (not that I get nightmares very often) and I think I read somewhere that they can occur when the body is overheated or run down. Could be true because when I get them it's usually early morning, which is when I tend to feel too hot. Anyway, last night "he" had yet again come into my house while I was out and rearranged my entire kitchen - moved the oven, switched everything around in the cupboards and so on. And then "a friend of his" came over and I couldn't get either of them to leave. They don't last long but I think it tends to prove that my ex can still bother me (even if only subconsciously) if I have to think about him for any reason! He did, indeed, have a Drunken Asshole Friend/drinking buddy (DAF) who was a complete waste of space, always wanting to go out drinking in Geneva and perpetually broke - but then DAF was a single guy who rented a room in Geneva (when he managed to pay the rent) and had the rest of his salary to go out boozing with my husband. While none of this excuses my husband's behaviour, this particular DAF definitely intruded into my family life and was the biggest pain in the butt!

I remember his employer was contacted by a court in Germany for non-payment of debts over there and I ended up spending my entire weekend drafting letters to his creditors offering for him to pay lesser amounts if they would accept it. With two young kids and a full-time job, I mean, it's not like I had anything better to do, right? Came to find out many months later that he never even bothered to mail the letters! Then one weekend he was yet again sleeping off a hangover at our house when my husband came to me and asked if I would drive into town and buy DAF a carton of cigarettes - it had to be me as DAF had no money and ex-asshat had no driving licence! What a pair of winners those two were - a real pair of Chuckle Brothers. So folks, I guess if you ever want dating/lifestyle advice you know who not to come to!

In other news the Munchkin has finally figured out how to crawl forwards and since Jen has put me to shame and actually got her Christmas tree up I guess she's gonna have to watch out now! I stopped in at the pharmacy to get some more saline solution today so then decided to head off on my first outing in goodness knows how long. I knew a walk would be the best thing to get rid of the cobwebs and gunk in my head and it certainly helped! I walked around the lake at Thyez, which was only a 30 minute walk and just five minutes from Jordan and Jen's place, but I thought better of stopping in as I didn't want to pass my sinusitis (or anything else) on to them after they've had a rough few weeks! I guess I'll have to wait a few more days to see the Munchkin and his forward-motion crawling achievements!

And finally, I saw that someone had recommended the Netflix film Red Notice so I decided to give it a shot last night. Frankly starring Dwayne Johnson didn't really do it for me as I figured it would be all "bang, bang, you're dead" and him walking through 1,000 bullets with just a scratch on his cheek (I was right), but after I made it through the first couple of minutes I have to say I enjoyed it. It was, of course, ridiculous and silly but Ryan Reynolds (who I didn't know) and The Rock played the silly dialogue to the hilt and I ended up enjoying it. So I guess you really shouldn't judge a book (or a film) by it's cover, should you!