I have come to the realisation that I may have to learn French. After all these years.
This paltry blog post and my language musings come to you courtesy of 36 hours in Geneva and very little sleep. I was requested by Daughter to accompany her there, when she went to do a little recce, as it seems she might spend the next few years there. And reccing is better done in company.
I recced a little extra while she met with important people out near the French border. The kind of place where your mobile phone believes it is in France. I got to go and look at the nice parks where you can sit in the shade of the trees, staring out across the waters of the lake. Where you can maybe have some ice cream while doing so.
In which case it helps to know if you want that ice cream in a hmm or a hmm. By default I ended up with a cone, as it seemed clear(-ish) I didn’t want the ‘other thing.’ It’s interesting being like an immigrant again, but in a situation where you don’t speak the language.
It is of course possible to speak Swedish. You can say adjö and trottoar and toalett and you’ll be quite right. But I might want to learn to string those very useful words together, to make sentences. To make sense.
This post was brought to you by Hot in Geneva.
I did the unthinkable and agreed to cross Öresund on The Bridge. As the Resident IT Consultant said on the way out, it’s what normal people would do. I decided I would be as normal as I could. The reason I felt able to do it in the end was that I remembered my eyelids. They can be used for things like covering your eyes with. So it went well, -ish. I did feel him swerving rather when overtaking, and I harboured less enthusiastic thoughts about the venture at those points.
He and Daughter asked how I am with tunnels, as there is a tunnel at the end of The Bridge. I explained that vertigo is less bad in most tunnels.
At the airport I was intrigued to hear they were trying to get the family King to contact the ‘authorities.’ I do hope they found the King in the end. It’s nice that he came along.
In my suitcase I carried some well-travelled side plates. I bought them in London back in the mid-1970s and packed them carefully in my oversized ‘handbag’ to make sure they got home safely. Security poked at them and asked what they were, but that was all. The plates then came with me when I moved to England. And then, for reasons I can no longer recall, they were driven back across the North Sea (in a car on a boat, obviously) in the last fifteen years, and forgotten about.
I was happy to encounter them in a locked cupboard (maybe to prevent escape?), and covered them in bubblewrap and took them on their fourth journey, back ‘home.’
Daughter was the last to leave Bookwitch Towers before this holiday, and was unaware of the bread in the breadbin, which is why it was still there when we returned. I am impressed by how un-mouldy it was. Four slices were a bit green, but one on its own in a bag was completely free from any growth, which makes you wonder what on earth they put in it.
Generally Bookwitch Towers smells a bit fishy. No doubt we will get used to this.
The things a witch sees when travelling…
We went into town on the bus a couple of days ago, and miraculously they had not changed anything major at all. About the buses. Apart from the timetable.
When we got into town and the bus drove round a corner, I spied a well dressed man on the pavement. He wore what Swedes wear when they want to be fairly formal, which is shirt and jacket with jeans or slacks. He looked to be about 35, so not old. Not young, either.
On his head he wore a sort of bicycle helmet, and looking back, I can almost swear it was turquoise. And, between his lower legs was a turquoise attaché case. It moved. I.e. he rode the attaché case along the pavement.
I thought maybe this could be a common occurence here, but judging by the reaction of the young girls behind me, I’d have to say not.
When I told the Resident IT Consultant about it, he felt it was a bit like Terry Pratchett’s The Luggage. Only more turquoise.