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June 7, 2014

One of the best things I ever learnt from the internet was to use a hot spoon on insect bites. It works! It’s great! It was from Lifehacker. They also have other hints which strike me as  … less helpful.

Today’s is about making a roux in a microwave. It sounds much more trouble than the original method. I won’t be trying it (not that I make roux if I can avoid them, anyway)

Swiss fish

March 8, 2010

Cette loi interdit notamment aux propriétaires de jeter des poissons rouges vivants dans les toilettes.

Did you know the Swiss had a law which makes it illegal to put red fish in the toilet? Only if they’re alive, though.


July 19, 2009

Read this:

Those ‘terrible French tourists’: a little enlightenment

Beautiful Place we live in

July 10, 2009

Last night was the annual quartier meeting, at which the maire shows us what a great job he’s doing in beautifying the town. So the car wreck that’s been sitting in full view of the village for most of the summer, and would be in full view of the maire in full flight, might have been a problem.

However, earlier in the day agitated discussion led to agitated action: the sapeurs pompiers arrived with a large green tarpaulin with which they cloaked the car. Problem solved.


July 9, 2009
From Sauveterre Rodez

Village Party

June 25, 2009

We don’t like parties :  you have to make conversation with people you don’t know very well (and will continue not to know very well because you don’t enjoy each other’s company enough), or with people you do know very well (and it would be much more fun to be doing it privately, at home), or ones you don’t know at all (chances are, that’s the way you’ll both prefer to keep it).

Add French to the mix, and the reluctance to face all of the above turns to near-dread. So we fortified ourselves with plenty of wine, crisps and nuts before strolling along the street.

It wasn’t as bad as it might have been. We found one person we might really enjoy getting to know better. Of course it turns out she’s just passing through, visiting a friend. Did duty by other expats we don’t want to get closer to, amicably. Ate lots of pieces of pizza style nibbles. Didn’t contribute to the reputation of foreign women as heavy drinkers (thanks to aforesaid tanking up). Came home, duty done for another few years.


June 25, 2009

A word much in evidence in French ads for almost anything, really. Our Angel must be infected since she told me, as I coolly reorganised two kitchens, the hall cupboard, AND all the plastic/paper bags, that I was looking very zen this morning.

(Later). It was nice while it lasted