Hey Blog,

How has your day been? Up and down? Too many exclamation points giving you a headache?


My family are well and truly onto me.

Not the family I have haphazardly produced…..no, the original of My Family. The mob who created, molded, fashioned the person that I am today. Which means, I molded, fashioned and created them too ? Don’t shake your heads!

I used the term MOB in it’s truest sense. 8 of us. 6 boys and two girls. Wild, as a collective (some of us may have been wild individually but I can’t comment on that). Could have been wilder had we not had Mother who ruled over us with love, care, devotion and a lighting quick ability to whack 5 of us with one swipe of the arm.

Don’t think that Father was absent. Actually, in the physical sense he was, as he disappeared to work before the birds woke (you know how we all knew what time the Father left? He gave us his own, particular wake up call – longer and louder if he’d eaten onions the night before) and came back around the time dinner landed on the table. We felt his presence through his absence. This materialised in the form of ‘Wait until your father gets home! I’ll tell him what little [x[”0= you have been.’ It was a good threat too. He had and has, very large hands.

Anyway, my family all know about you, Blog. They all know because I’ve told them. So, I’ve given this some thought:

-do I self edit what I put for fear of the Family not liking it? No, else the blog is pointless.

-are they allowed to disagree with me? Of course.

-will I publish their comments? Only if they agree.

Welcome Family. May we take many blog journeys together.

Big Boy Bed

So for the past two weeks or so, Fatty has been uncooperative at bedtime.

Still uncooperative at 10.30 p.m. in fact.

You’d think, this being the youngest of 5, I’d be able to nip this behaviour in the bud?

Well, he showed me a thing or two.

I’d used up all my best bribes (sweets, new toys, stories, films,…..PLEASE FATTY….. burning his favourite teddy, throwing his dummy down the toilet…mummy is leaving now…FOREVER….) during the first night which meant, on night II of Phase Ultra Git, he definitely had the upper hand and knew it.

It dragged on and on until we asked if he would go to bed nicely if he had a big boy bed, just like the Prof and the Lips.

‘of course.’

Like the good parents that we are, during the day, we forgot all about our promise…..idea and as we never, ever learn, forgot for a few more days/nights (the difficulty being that the parts to change the cot into the bed were……..in a box……..of 50 boxes……somewhere ……..in the barn of our neighbour…….in a place with no electricity). This HAD to be done in the day.

‘Fatty! Stop crying like a baby. I thought that you were a big boy now?’


‘why not? come on, this is what a baby does.’

‘…..I don’t… have a big boy bed.’

Translation: How do you expect me to behave when you make me sleep in a baby cot?

Parents: 0        Fatty: 1

The cot was transformed. He got into bed. He laid down. He didn’t kick up a fuss………for an hour.

‘I don’t like baddies.’

I brought him up his toy gun, put it on his big boy bed and told him to shoot them  (great parenting tip number 2).

He slept………….like a baby.

Driving in the department of Also Nowhere, France




that I get into the car and drive

I am putting my life, and those of the passengers, in danger.

No, no, no, I’m not criticizing my driving (I’ll leave that to others and ok, yes I reversed into a boulder and made it roll under the car and yes, I took off some piece of metal on a tree stump – also from under the car but……other than that….and driving on the wrong side of the road…..very RARELY these days…). I’m talking about the driving style prevalent down here. Even for the French, these folk drive like the breaks have gone, their feet are glued down on the gas pedal and there is a Win a Baguette Every Day for Life competition at their destination.

Overtaking on blind bends

crests of hills

narrow country lanes (in fact, PARTICULARLY on narrow country lanes)

Better still – narrow country lanes…one lane only in fact….then waiting for a blind bend at the crest of a hill and THEN taking over….I see this DAILY.

All of the above happens whilst they chat on their mobiles, are doing 120km/hour and smoking a cigarette.

This, the department of Also Nowhere, is a pays of Near Misses!


The Village of Nowhere (and of no one)

This will be a topic that I’ll cover regularly. But as I’ve already bored you to death interested you sooo much with my other topics, this evening, I’ll just make a quick mention.

Monsieur Felix.

It’s actually not his name.

His dog is called Felix.

I can never, ever catch what his name is and now, as it has been 3 years since we have been having our (lost in translation) discussions, I just cannot ask him.

He ambushes me when I take the dog out for a walk. He used to catch me regularly and stand and talk at me for 30 minutes but (after a year), I caught on and now sidle along walls, crawl under bushes, jump over hedges, walk after dark (and it gets DARK here. Walking along the back lane with a black dog (helpful) with your hands out in front of you to avoid (the black dog?) trees and other villagers) to avoid him.


What do you know?

He only bloody knocks at the door the other day.

30 minutes later (still at the door. If I let him in, I’d be finished) and much jumping up and down and making throat slitting actions (yep….who KNOWS what he understood me to have said. I though I was talking about the weather) and I only got rid of him by saying that our dog had fleas (true). He stepped back but not before he asked me which sign I was. I answered. He stepped back again – obviously crossed a charming Scorpio before.

The prodigal and I drove back into the village the other evening. It was a balmy night but still light. We saw 8 people wandering around the village (this is unprecedented unless there is a funeral in the village church):

‘Reminds me of 28 Days Later.’

We laughed so hard that we nearly (not quite so nearly, as she is a large presence) knocked over the village hairdresser who was standing in our (muddy, grassy banked, dog turd littered) parking place, holding one of her little (bastard) dogs and giving us bad……although, not quite zombied, looks. She owns another (bastard) dog and I hate the pair of them as they make my dog, CRAZY. They are also ‘put out’ of the front door to come and shit down where we park our car DESPITE the Mayor indicating (by letter and signs) that dogs should be kept on leashes and to PICK UP YOUR DOG SHITE YOU LAZY BASTARDS…or something like that, all around the village.

Anyway..trying to park the car (whilst checking the mirrors in case any of the people wandering around the village, were zombies. Hard to tell them apart)..

She did move, eventually. Probably in the confusion of working out exactly what I had said to her from my car window (I thought I had stated that we were about to park there but only she can tell you what I actually said) but continued to stare back at us in a not very welcoming, happy, smiling way.

Turns out, little (bastard) dog the smaller, was run over and left to die along that stretch of mud track.

Clearly, she though it was me.

(I’m convinced it was a tree stump I reversed over the other day……………)


actually, I should say, good night. Farewell makes it sound like I’m off to Switzerland on a one way ticket to end up in a better place?

Blog, my friend (my family, my followers and others), sleep tight and remember:

Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking

sweet dreams.