Crikey, what a week it's been! As was expected, my favourite neighbour's mom died about 10 days ago. She was 93 years old and it was, as I say, expected, but the sad thing is she died a day or two before my neighbour got there. While I guess these things happen, I'm sure relations next door won't be improved one iota by the fact that they had to wait to leave until after a doctor's appointment for him, since, as I've mentioned before, he walked out of the hospital before his operation last time because he was "pissed off at having to wait"!
I then heard that the farmer had also died (pancreatic cancer). I only found out after the funeral but I would have gone if I had known. He was definitely "a character". His son died about four months ago and never had any intention of taking over the farm anyway, so I'm assuming the girls will sell up. I thought I saw him about 10 days ago, but it was obviously someone else taking care of the animals. I don't know what will happen but I already miss the sound of the goat bells in the upper field and, of course, the beautiful donkeys in the field at the back of my house!
After that I heard that a former colleague of mine had died at the age of 78. She had been ill for a few years, so again it was expected, but I do remember her fondly as I took over her job in HR when she retired and had nothing but respect for her professionalism. A funny story she told me - although not funny at the time - she was English and married to an Italian from Naples. One time when they went to Naples to see family, they were staying in a hotel and as it was hot they had the window cracked just a little. When they woke up the next morning they found they had been robbed during the night! Apparently the thieves had pumped sleeping gas into the room through the crack in the window and must have had a small child go in and take their valuables! The police reckoned they were followed to the hotel since they had Swiss plates. You would have thought, being a native, that he would have known better about sleeping with the window open, but she said it was a hard lesson well learned!
Then my friend sent me a FB message regarding her return trip from Spain today (I was to pick her up at the airport) and told me that her cousin in England had just been found dead at home at the age of 60. They were thinking it might have been a diabetic coma but the family have asked for an autopsy so that they can be sure. I didn't know him, but 60 still seems young to me to be dying so suddenly! Anyway, my friend had a PCR test booked for the day before her flight and wouldn't you know it but it came back positive - despite the fact that she had no symptoms whatsoever! So flight cancelled, pick-up cancelled and she's stuck in Spain for at least the next 10 days, not only because of having to isolate but also because it will depend on when she can get a flight out. Mind you, being "stuck" in Spain doesn't strike me as such an awful thing to have to endure, although having to isolate would be a pain. On the positive side, she and her sister own their home over there so she won't be running up horrendous bills, except for extending the cat's stay in the cattery!
Moving swiftly on, Jordan showed up at the depot for work last Monday to find no-one there to open up. Max has been off for a while as he broke his arm skiing and as Jordan waited for his brother to show up, he found out that A, the brother, was also off sick after throwing up violently all night (it only lasted a day though). So that left Jordan stuck with no way to get into the depot or load up the van. The two apprentices were also off with covid - one quite seriously (although better now), and the other just a mild case, like Jordan's, so Jordan was well and truly on his own. When Max's dad showed up to open up they had already agreed that Jordan needed to have a key to the depot and they are apparently getting him his own van - so some good news came out of it. On the down side, instead of asking him to head to the site near me where he has been working for a couple of months, Max asked him to go to the Chamonix site as it was more urgent. Jordan told me he had no idea what he was supposed to be doing up there so he just picked up the jack hammer and started "jackhammering"!
Also last week Max's gf 's dad had to be helicoptered off the mountain when he'd been out skiing (turns out he had injured his back - hence the helicopter, but it was not as serious as initially thought), and then the gf broke her own arm while out skiing - this being the young disabled woman in a wheelchair. I know, she goes skiing???? More power to her but I'm sure she could have done without breaking her arm! So Max and his gf only have one pair of hands between them at the moment. Somehow I don't think I'll be going skiing much in the future, and for good reason!
I stopped in to see the Munchkin this week and he was on fine form, but when I left there it was already starting to get dark and the fog was horrendous! As I got up nearer to home I was so grateful that I knew the roads because I could barely see 10 feet in front of me. No street lights, winding mountain roads and even a couple of idiots out running - wouldn't you think they'd wear reflective jackets if they wanted to stay safe????
On the positive side, I finally got an email from the French authorities for me to upload the rest of my documents regarding my citizenship request - just 30 months after I started! So I had a look at it this afternoon as I already have all the documents, but bugger me if my bloody scanner has stopped working. After a couple of hours doing other stuff I decided to just give up for today and then luckily googled "the best scanning app to download onto an iPhone". And that was when I found out that iPhone has a handy little app buried in the "notes" section that allows you to scan documents into your notes and save them. Old dog, new tricks I guess!
And finally, after the horrible fog we've had, this weekend has been just beautiful, so Jordan and Jen decided to take Charlie on his first sledding outing with their neighbours, who have a little boy about six months older than Charlie. The weather was glorious, the skiing crowds haven't started to arrive yet and Charlie and his buddy had a whale of a time!
|Charlie's hidden under a huge snow jacket|
and of course his orange binky!