The view from my window

The view from my window
The view from my window

Saturday 18 May 2024

Day two in Corsica!

The maintenance technician came out yesterday morning to look at my heating system and after about 45 minutes showed me something they call a gicleur (nozzle/spout?) which was blocked and thus not allowing fuel to flow. He changed that to the tune of just €20 so I figured I was all set to go - but I'm not totally convinced as yet. I asked him to turn the heating off for me as the programming on that thing is probably similar to the dashboard on the space shuttle (in my humble opinion) but I still don't seem to be getting the hot water kicking in. Think I'm gonna have to call them out again if it doesn't kick in tonight! Anyway, thinking everything was going swimmingly I set off to go to Jordan and Jen's yesterday afternoon as I was going to take care of Charlie for a few hours while they were out. Only problem was, when I went to lock the front door, it wouldn't lock!!! This isn't the first time this has happened, so taking my trusty can of DW40 (which I just happened to have handy) I hosed that bugger down and set off with fingers crossed as I didn't want to be late. I'm thinking I may have to get the lock changed, which in and of itself isn't a big deal, but sometimes it's the little things that really get to you isn't it - or is that just me?

Anyway, day two of our trip was spent heading north to Ile Rousse, which was where we spent three nights in our first hotel. It was "founded by Pascal Paoli - considered to be the father of the country - in the 18th century" and while our guide went into his life in great detail I find I tend to tune out if I'm standing at the back of a group and someone near me is yacking. That being said, he seemed to have gone into exile on more than one occasion, having spent 21 years in London alone the first time, so me being a peasant I often wonder how people can "win wars" by being out of the country. I'm guessing he was more of a statesman/politician, but more than once I've wondered why de Gaulle was so revered when he spent much of the war in London - but then I guess a dead general is no use to anyone, is he!

Our first excursion this day was to the hilltop village of Sant'Antoninu, which was very pretty indeed but where my friend and I preferred to wander around on our own rather than follow the pack. After a few hours everyone headed back to the bus and guess what - the driver blew into the alcohol monitor and the bloody bus wouldn't start! He was a local driver and was mortified that he couldn't get the bus to start because of the alcohol monitor as he swore he'd had nothing to drink, so he asked our own driver - who was along as a tourist this time (talk about a busman's holiday) - to blow into it too and he confirmed that it wasn't working. So that meant waiting about an hour for the bus company to send someone out to take a look. Turns out there was something wrong with the monitor and after about 15 minutes we were on our way to lunch. Here we ended up at a great little restaurant but where our driver had to reverse the bus down a narrow winding goat track in order to be able to get back out again! Sometimes it's best just to keep your eyes shut!

Balagne - where our first hotel
was located!

Sant'Antoninu
(a google picture - it was impossible
to get a picture from the bus)


Sant'Antoninu - another google picture!

Lunch was excellent but the ceilings in the restaurant were very low, and as I'm sure you all know, some people are just extremely loud, especially with a few drinks in them. There were about four people in our group who fit the bill, one in particular being a bald guy who, while nice enough, always managed to sound like he was yelling through a foghorn! I went onto the terrace to get some fresh air, only to be joined by about another 10 people from our group who were having the same reaction!

From there we headed off to Calvi, which was, I'm guessing, a small town rather than a city, and quite a few of us chose to do our own thing here for the next few hours. There was a lady on the trip with very glacial-looking pale blue eyes (I found her eyes fascinating) and as we were sitting having a drink we got chatting. Anyway, she started telling me about how one time she had been hiking in the mountains when she and her friends came across a man hiking naked!!! I don't remember if she said he was Swiss German or Norwegian, but being a group of women you can imagine what the comments were like - we were in stitches (which was more than this guy was wearing)! Apparently he was picked up by the police and told to put some clothes on - so it would seem it was not a case of naturism as it wasn't allowed there, but rather a case of exhibitionism!

For some reason this lady and I ended up chatting for quite a long time, and she ended up telling me that "her son-in-law had killed her daughter"! I was shocked, thinking that he had murdered her, but she said that no, he was an arrogant bastard and a speed merchant with a big motorbike - hence how her daughter had been killed. Her daughter had substantial life insurance and she was fighting him in court in order for funds from that insurance to be put into trust for her grandchildren, since SIL quickly took up with a new woman and was going through the money at a rate of knots! Luckily for her, her daughter had worked for a firm of sollictors and they were taking up the case on her behalf so she was praying that she would be able to claw back at least some of the money for the children before it was all spent!

Calvi!




Since my friend and I couldn't possibly learn everyone's names on this trip, we got into the habit of giving everyone a nickname. There was "Maggie Smith" (who was nice enough but had an opinion on everything), "Saint Sixt" (the lady who had worked at the ch√Ęteau there as a nanny), "Baldy" (for obvious reasons), "Mimi (a story to be told later) and "Madagascar", who, as my dad used to say, always had a face like a smacked arse on her (my dad came from the Bard's own country, as you can tell)! The blue eyed lady knew Madagascar from her time working at the Post Office and disliked her intensely. Apparently the man we took to be her husband had met her through the internet and brought her over to France. She was definitely no looker (I'm being polite here), was probably the only unpleasant person on the trip, bitched about everything - waiters, food, the hotels etc. - and talked to her husband like he was a piece of sh*t in front of everyone! There was hardly any difference in age between her and her husband, so she wasn't ordered from an internet bride catalogue, from what I could see! One night at the hotel our guide took a beautiful shawl to the hotel manager and said that someone had left it in the dining room. Madagascar had walked in wearing just a t-shirt and when she claimed the shawl was hers, Blue Eyes almost had a fit, saying that she was stealing the shawl. Turns out she was, as the true owner came back to reception and asked if anyone had handed it in, so Madagascar had to hand it back! Blue eyes disliked her because she had worked at the Post Office when Madagascar would come in, dragging the husband behind her and "demand" that the Post Office look into money that was disappearing from his account. So of course the PO did - the first time, the second time, the third time and so on! But of course she was spending him out of house and home and when he asked where the hell the money was going she blamed the Post Office every time! The things you hear on a bus trip eh!

Anyway, after that it was back to the hotel where after a stroll along the beach my friend and I came back to the hotel to find emergency services ferrying not one but two of our group out to waiting ambulances. Turns out the bald headed guy was having chest pains so they took him in and one gent had not felt well right from the beginning of the trip so they took him in too - with blood clots as it turned out! The bald headed guy was allowed out the next day and was able to continue on with the trip and the other guy - well they kept him in for a week - and his wife continued on the trip without him???? There's nowt so queer as folk is there - but that's a story for another time!




14 comments:

  1. OMG, you get some good stories out of people! I’m more interested in the people stories than the places!!!

    If I was on your trip, I’d be one of the fog horns. I don’t mean to be. Years of being a teacher, maybe.

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    1. I find that people tend to tell me their stories for some reason and I agree, it's the people that often make (or break) the trip. To be fair the restaurant was packed BUT this particular group were overwhelming throughout the trip, although the bald guy was a bit quieter after his trip to hospital!

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  2. A lovely place to visit.
    It seems the theme of naked men is running parallel in our lives(if you've peaked at my blog lately).lol

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    1. I'll have to hop over to your blog when I get back today (we're off on a day out). Now I'm intrigued!

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  3. What a very interesting group you were with on this trip. I hope your water heater issue is solved soon. Gorgeous pictures.

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    1. They were an unusual group to be sure, but I think people for the most part are decent!

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  4. Lord but people can be annoying. This is probably why I could never travel on a tour like that. You're stuck with them!
    But you do hear some interesting stories, I must admit. "Hi. I'm Jane Doe. My son-in-law killed my daughter."
    Excuse me?

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    1. For the most part the pain in the arse types just go straight over my head - unless I'm stuck sitting next to them! And yes that lady's confession did shock me, but I hope she is successful in getting at least some money set aside for her grandchildren!

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  5. If you can count on anything, your trips will come with characters! My goodness. I hope your heating issue is fixed and yes, replace that lock!!

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    1. There did seem to be rather a lot of "characters" on this trip compared to usual, but for the most part I enjoy that (not always though of course). At the moment I have heating (which I don't need) but the hot water is still buggered up, although this morning it was ok. It's frustrating trying to figure this stuff out but I suppose I'll get there in the end, and so far (touch wood) I haven't locked myself in or out this week so there's that!

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  6. I am still envious, but not just of the trip. I would love to be around such an assortment of characters

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    1. And I haven't gotten to the others yet!! I guess we're both people watchers then!

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  7. Oh my.. everything looks beautiful. The stories you will tell.. you met quite a few interesting? people.

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    1. Hi Hena, and thank you for stopping by my blog. I guess if you spend 10 days on a bus with someone you do get to meet "interesting people" - but then you're glad to get back home too!

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