Some fun after the rain in the apartment

30 August 2010

The leak in our apartment was fixed the following day. After I had rung the estate agents again, they acted swiftly and got a plumber out to investigate. The problem was the plumbing of the shower basin of the flat upstairs: whenever they had a shower, we got rain in the kitchen. Now that is all fixed, the ceiling has to dry out for four weeks and then they will hopefully send someone out to tidy up the ceilings in both the toilet and the kitchen. I am so grateful that we were around when it happened! Just imagine we had been on holiday still while the flat would have steadily been flooded… I consider us lucky!

This last weekend we had some fun after the rain in the kitchen, we went to see friends who live in Ferney-Voltaire, a small place in France, but right next to Geneva, only about three kilometres from the French-Swiss border. On the way there, we went into Switzerland and out again,then back into France to get to their house. We also cycled from France into Geneva to spend a bit of time on the lake. On the border, their was a designated lane for cyclists and pedestrians to cross over between France and Switzerland as well as a tunnel for cyclists and cars that ran right underneath one of the runways of Geneva airport. As you probably already noticed, I found all this really cool 🙂 . Our friend who works in Switzerland does this commute every day so it’s not that exciting for her, but I like the idea of crossing borders to get to work. Somehow one must feel very much away from work on the days off if living and working in separate countries.

Anyway, I liked Geneva, although the place literally stinks of money with all these posh cars, flash houses and everything looking extremely trim and proper. We found this little beach and playground close to town, the kids absolutely loved it. It was a bit cold for swimming due to the wind but the playground made up for this: It was a had fantastic swings and climbing ropes attached to really beautiful old trees. The whole playground was one big recycling project: old car tyres had been used for swing seats and inner tubes of bicycle tyres to make ropeladders, ropes and loops to swing on. It looked super. Below you may be able to get an impression of what it looked like.

We had a fantastic BBQ in the evening and rather too much alcohol…. Rolf’s big downfall was the Chartreuse, which is in my humble opinion a satanic drink. Although this liqueur it is brewed by monks in a famous cloister of the same name, I think it’s colour alone makes you want to run away: It’s bright green and apparently made with 127 herbs. The recipe, of course is kept a secret (much as Coca Cola) but Coke does not claim to be healthy. Chartreuse in contrast is supposed to have healing powers. I don’t know. Seeing how Rolf fared after just three of those I think it should be taken in homoepathic doses. On the other hand, drinking beer, red whine and champagne AND Chartreuse in one evening is probably not a healthy mix. Maybe the Chartreuse kept Rolf from further damage ? 🙂

Anyway, we made it to a different beach the following day. The drive there was funny because we had to go into Switzerland and we were stopped on the border by a Swiss border official. Knowing that Rolf’s ID had expired we felt a little uncomfortable, but when we had wound down the window and established which language we would use to communicate, it turned out that he just wanted to enquire about our campervan and how happy we were with it. He also told us about his special edition VW van and what a bargain it had been. He was a lovely man, but kept us for a good while… I guess life gets boring on a Sunday afternoon even for border control officials. Our friends in the meantime got a bit worried, but did not want to come to our aid, because they had on ID cards on them at all :). Anyway, he let us go eventually without checking our papers and we got our swim in the lake that certainly cleared our heads beautifully from any toxins such as Chartreuse The water was VERY refreshing although it might look very inviting on the picture…

Plage de Versoix

The lake itself was lovely and clear, but there are ducks and swans who hang around on and near the beach, I presume with the intend to snatch a bit of food from the people picknicking there, and therefore you have to watch your step. Swimmers are also advised to shower well after swimming in the lake. I was more than happy to oblige.

I actually wanted to write this post last night, but I have terrible trouble with my computer, which seems to be on its last legs. I’m not happy, I don’t want a new one, but the computer is obviously asking to be put out of its misery: It was unable to cope with the photos on the SD card and the window for this blog at the same time. It complained by heating up to 84 degrees Celsius and making unhealthy noises. So I think my hero will have to buy me a new one soon. He has been predicting some months ago that the machine was not going to live much longer, and I didn’t believe him. Is it not strange that computers age so rapidly? The thing is only 4 years old and I personally think it’s awful that they die on you after such a short period of time. They age faster than dogs, mine has probably aged by 20 computer years in just one human year….

Anyway, Rolf is never too reluctant to buy computers, so I am sure he will be happy to oblige. It’s wonderful to write this blog on Rolf’s Mac, it does not complain, downloads photos in no time at all and even the keyboard is working. Bliss.

I have to play a board game with Lucy now, we’re playing a lot of ‘mindspace’ at the moment, a general knowledge game. The questions about cricket are deathly and we tend not to answer them — they are too far removed from our own little universe. But you learn such interesting things. For example that the biggest flower in the world is called Rafflesia and this flower stink of rotting flesh to attract insects. I hope I never get a bunch of those for my birthday :).

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