Monday, 19 November 2018

Autumn is lovely...

It was my wish to go swimming in the sea today before the weather changes and winter really sets in and John was happy if we incorporated our trip out with a 'light' lunch at the Souli.  It was glorious in Droushia this morning - bright and warm as witnessed by the weather station which was showing a very respectable 28 degrees even with the doors wide open.

We got ourselves ready and I made a shopping list for our trips to Paps afterwards and then promptly lost it between our house and the Souli!  It's not really a problem - as long as I had enough for lunch with Mum tomorrow I can always go back down to Paps on Monday afternoon for the remainder of the week.  Mum had donated some beef and John suggested we cooked it in beer rather than do a stifado and then put some mash on top as there is some mash in the freezer.  I decided I would get some additional meat and then cook extra so that both we and Mum have a meal ready for another evening.  I took the mash out and thought it looked a bit odd - not sure why and it bothered me for the remainder of the day - so much so that I decided to ditch it and make some fresh which was probably the best decision - who wants to be freaked out by mashed potato on a Sunday???  I remembered afterwards that we had mash the other week and John started mashing it in the pressure cooker without taking the trivet out and draining the starchy fluid underneath - I think that is why the mash was odd.  I shall blame John!

I was really looking forward to my swim in the sea as it was going to be so much warmer than our regular dips in the pool.  However, we had not bargained on a stiff off-shore breeze whch had whipped the sea up to a frenzy!!!  We decided to take a drive out to Tsakkas just for a drive if nothing else and arrived hoping it might be a little more sheltered there but it wasn't.  Tsakkas was empty as the taverna is now closed but there seemed to be one guy sort of keeping an eye on the place and the sunbeds.

We decided "what the hell" - the wind was strong but it was warm and we had made the effort so John went in first to make sure that if I went in I would be safe because the waves were lashing down and it is the back swell that is the issue if it takes your feet from under you.  He said it was lovely but that it was quite hard work to keep your feet!

Here is a picture of me when the back swell did actually take my feet away from me and I went under - John says that one minute I was in view and then next minute not - I was ok because I was well within my depth but I wouldn't have wanted to go out too far for fear that I wouldn't be able to make my way back in.

It wasn't cold at all and my skin felt absolutely fabulous when I got out as I guess that is the effect of having been sand blasted for about 10 minutes!!!

There is a little changing room at the beach which was great and thankfully I had taken a brush although I hadn't planned getting my hair wet but the sea had other ideas!!  Happy that I had got my wish to go for a swim in the sea I was ready for my lunch!!  Tsakkas looked beautiful - it is probably one of my favourite beaches.

So we went to the Souli for our 'light' lunch - this clearly got lost in translation!!!  We ordered a starter portion of calamari and a starter portion of grilled halloumi with one village salad and one portion of chips with some olives and then Frixos offered us some village bread with olive oil and oregano.  It was absolutely delicious.  We managed to find a table with some sun for me and sufficient shade for John and slightly sheltered from the wind.  We were absolutely stuffed!!!!

We got home where the temperature indoors was a very respectable 32 degrees!  I shoved some washing on which I managed to get washed and dried and brought back in which was a bonus but the current weather conditions have meant we have had warm evenings with very little condensation.

Apparently there is a sand storm over the island which would account for the strange skies as we drove down to the beach today and for the elevated temperatures and possibly the wind.  We are not due another coptic until 26th November and that one is down as a gale.

John settled himself down to put himself through the Mighty Blades versus Nottingham Forest (although it was the other way round as the Blades were playing away) - apparently they were absolutely useless as they lost so have now slipped down to second in the table.  I got food ready for tomorrow and then applied myself to sorting out Christmas Cards as I am hoping that Karen will take back John's family cards to save us a bit on postage.  I had started to make some in January planning to make five a month which would have left me with around 50 to chose from but I only managed to make some in January!!

I wrote up the cards I had and then set about making some more.  I really don't send many - only really to special people here and a few family and friends in the UK.  We prefer to make a donation to charity.

Sunday, 18 November 2018

I am all at sixes and sevens today with regard to what actual day it is - I had it in my head that it was a Saturday and I am not entirely sure why!

It was another glorious start to the day - I opened the bedroom shutter to see Chivvy-Pops staring in - he was waiting to be fed!

The glorious light which is shed by a much lower sun this time of the year and the warmth which comes with it because of the recent clock change makes you feel glad to be alive and ready to face the world.  We are lucky and we have so much to be grateful for - interestingly I was listening to someone on the tintyweb speaking this week who said "...rather than think you would be happy with things which you do not have just be happy with the things which you do have" and we have our health and we have food in our cupboards, money in our bank account (not much granted!), a roof over our heads and friends and family who love us.  Everything else is all really rather incidental when you think about it - which is all rather deep for what turned out to be a Thursday!

I had a bimble around the garden this morning.  I am loathe to cut things back just yet as they are still flowering - things like the clock vine.  We split the original plant earlier this year and happily the second plant has survived and thrived and is flowering.   I cut the vine back earlier because it had been struggling with whatever the problem has been this year with the vines.  I noticed this morning that it has begun to sprout again which is completely the wrong time of year.  I had put the allium bulbs and tulip bulbs mum gave me into a pot temporarily to make sure they were ok and this morning I decided I would transplant them into the front garden and then I used the leftover soil to plant some cuttings of the geranium we have in a pot which Dad loved - it is a dark dark red one which came originally from Christos's taverna.

It was such a beautiful morning that we decided to have our breakfast outside.  We were almost too hot sat under the gazebo which has been given a new covering with the leftover triplex from the conservatory project.

We decided that we would go up to the community office and pay our water bill and next year's community charge - our three monthly bill for water was under 30 euros and our annual community charge is just over 100 euros so exceptionally reasonable in our book!  We passed Marianna in her truck as we were approaching the office but she said she was only going to be 5 minutes so would be go in and wait for her.  We took the opportunity to have a look around the cavernous building that is our community office.  Downstairs we now have three looms - not sure if they are working but they look quite impressive!  The cleaner was concerned that Marianna wasn't there but in our pigeon Gringlish we explained that she was only going to be five minutes and so that was ok!  Bills paid we carried on down to Polis as John wanted to go to the wood yard as he is going to build some pelmets for over the kitchen door and over the kitchen window.

I went next door to have a little look around the furniture shop that is there - I forgot what a nice place this was - it has some smashing furniture in there and at pretty reasonable prices it you think you don't have to travel down to Paphos to get it.  I particularly liked the green high backed chairs - not that we need them - I just thought they looked stylish with the upholstery and cushions.  Anyway John got the wood he wanted and we called into Glykkis to get some curtain track and made our way back home taking in all the glorious scenery en route - although it is fabulously warm the recent rain means that the island is slowly turning green.

We quickly nipped into Paps where I bumped into Gillian Carbine.  Gillian was with her daughter-in-law B'a, sadly Gillian's son, B'as husband, is no longer with us he was killed in an accident on the island and in spite of all the tragedies which Gillian has had to face she is doing a Christmas shoebox appeal for those less fortunate and I had wanted to donate something.   She said that pasta and rice were good items so I purchased several bags and gave them to her.

So this was the temperature that greeted us when we got back home - a very warm 30 degrees in the conservatory!

We had a phone call this afternoon from George and Pam - amazingly the parcel we had sent, which was scheduled to take a week to 10 days, had already arrived and he had opened it.

Thankfully nothing had got broken in transit so he was the proud recipient of a little taste of Cyprus.  We had sent this for his special birthday on 11th November and were so glad that it had arrived in time - if not early!

Inside there were olives, shoushouko, salted nuts, zivania, red wine, oregano, halloumi, honey, marmalade and a Droushian lemon and possibly other things as I can't actually remember!

It was so lovely to talk to George (and to Pam) and to be able to wish him Kronia Polla!  We will call him on his actual birthday and raise a glass or two to him and have fingers crossed that he and Pam will be back over next year so we can actually do it together in person.

The sunset this evening was spectacular and it augurs well for tomorrow - it is going to be pretty hot playing pickleball if that is the case!!

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Fred Fernackerpan...

It's Friday and the end of the week and I had a complete brain-fart this morning - I got up and rifled the freezer to rustle up something for our supper this evening.  We had inherited a load of spare ribs from different eateries so I shoved them all together and decided I would let them thaw in the glorious sunshine and then shove them in the slow cooker so that they would be super tender by the time we got home from pickleball this afternoon.  John was dreaming about coming in, having a nice hot shower, pouring a glass of wine and then sinking his teeth into the ribs and the freshly made coleslaw along with a jacket potato or maybe some wedges.  The only trouble was, as we remembered when we were en route to Paphos and having put on the slow cooker, we were eating out this evening!!!!!

It is another glorious day even here in the hills where the temperatures seem much warmer for this time of year than they should be.  In fact this evening we were amazed to exit Fitos's and be greeted by a balmy 19 degrees!  The cats seem to like this time of year because it isn't too hot for them and if they do get chilly we have some snuggly throws around which they love.  They seem to spend much more time indoors at night so when I got up this morning Boris was chillin' on the sofa!

I found this on the internet today - that is most definitely John and I although we are trying not to expand our waistlines too much as the years go by.  Actually we don't eat as much as we used to but still love our food and you cannot beat a meal for socialising with friends.  My thoughts are turning to Christmas and we have agreed that we will still do a little walk on Boxing Day and have our pasties as we have done for years and years although maybe eat them at home in the warm.  I need to organise a day with Mum when we can make them together - probably with Dad's voice ringing in our ears that we aren't doing it right!  He was the master at pasties and I haven't exercised my pastry crimping skills for a very long time.

We know Christmas is going to be strange this year so we are trying to get ourselves organised so it is as good as we can make it so we are now looking for films and tv programmes that we can all enjoy together.  We have always had a Christmas Day Film, some have been more successful than others and we have always tried to find the right mix of sex/violence/bad language so that no-one feels uncomfortable - that isn't always easy particularly if you are watching a film for the first time - no matter what the review might tell you!!!   I have given Mum strict instructions to scour the TV magazine and highlight things she might find of interest.

We were just about to leave for Paphos when we bumped into Bassam who had come for coffee but unfortunately we didn't have the time for a good long chat so we arranged to see him on Moday.  We had a really good afternoon at pickleball.  It is not now so drippingly hot when we play but we have some good hard games with a lot of laughs and banter.  John played this week and his knee held up - he is currently trying to decide whether or not to renew his badminton membership which is due now - he doesn't want to pay and then not play nor does he want to lose his membership and not be able to renew when he does feel fully fit.  I think he should pay it and hope he will return.

So it was not to be the rib and slaw supper we had anticipated - in fact it was to be something even better as we were picking up Rob and Di and catching up with Mina and Claire before they go away for a week.  We had a lovely evening but boy was Fitos busy - so much more busy than we had imagined.  No-one eating outside so we were glad we had booked our favourite table No 1.  For a number of reasons we haven't seen these two for quite a while so it was good to catch up.   As I said when we emerged having eaten the temperature outside was 19 degrees and it felt so warm - having got hot inside we expected to feel a real chill.  It is so hard to think we are in November and Christmas is fast approaching - I shall have to get my arse in gear and get some cards made, written and posted!!!

Interestingly Mina used a word tonight that I have only ever heard my Dad use before - Fernackerpan - Dad used to refer to us all as Fred - Fred Fernackerpan - I thought he just made it up but I have found out it is a term of endearment Oooop North and apparently was more likely to refer to a Fanny Fernackerpan.  The only other reference was in a poem by the legendary Spike Milligan which goes like this....

I am a mystery fellow,
I'm Fred Fernackerpan,
I wear one sock that's yellow
The other dipped in jam.
I walk about the countryside
I walk about the town,
Sometimes with my trousers up
And sometimes with them down;
And when they were up they were up
And when they were down they were down
And when they were only half way up
He was arrested.
Spike Milligan

Friday, 16 November 2018


Today we were taking the bull by its horns and tackling the conundrum which is Mum's residency status.  She and Dad were awarded permanent residency way way back before Cyprus joined the EU but apparently these records are not computerised so apparently in order to secure her status come Brexit we have to exchange her current paperwork for the dreaded MEU3 and after Brexit for whatever form comes next (at a charge no doubt).  I had hoped that it would be a straight swap and no fee or a straight swap with a fee but no no no it has to be the full application with all the 5 years evidence of residency that goes with it.   We learned this after arriving at the Immigration office at 9.30 only to find that the receptionist had 'gone on a break' which lasted the best part of 40 minutes - the good news is that this was long enough for those in front of us in the queue to give up.  I wasn't going to give up because that was what I had earmarked to get done today so I was prepared to stick it out.  Fortunately I had Mum's passport with me so was able to make her appointment (no passport = no appointment) which is mid-March!!! and John and I left with the list of paperwork required and I got him to swing by the bank where they very kindly produced the five years' of bank accounts there and then for me.  We have just about everything else bar a bit of paper regarding her tenancy so she will have nothing to worry about for which John and I were very grateful - we know this has been bothering her.

I had arranged with Mum that I would meet her after I had been to immigration and then we would go for lunch and she had chosen Darcy's which was absolutely fine by me.  When I made the plans it was just going to be Mum and me but John was feeling a bit guilty about not coming to the funeral on Monday so he decided he would come along too.

It was an absolutely glorious day - so hard to believe that it is the end of October and John knew exactly what he was doing by coming today as Mum decided to treat us as a thank you for sorting her out - not that we need a 'thank-you' but it is very very nice to feel appreciated because sometimes these 'official' things are a right ball ache if you pardon the vernacular.

It was a lovlye way to spend lunch.  The venue is very nice - very clean, light and airy with background music that adds to the ambiance rather than encroach on your conversation.

Mum and John both chose the spare ribs (served with chips and coleslaw) and I had lamb shank with mashed potato, minted gravy and vegetables.  John enjoyed a couple of very nice pints of Wadsworth 6x (his description not mine!).  Everything was very nice and so a big big thank-you to Mum for paying for it.  This was to be our main meal of the day and to be honest we didn't need anything else for the rest of the day!!!

Whilst we were down in Paphos we got a couple of bottles of gin to add to our collection.  Today we snapped up a bargain bottle of Tanqueray (not saying where as we might go back and get the remaining two) and a bottle of After Work which was on offer in Paps.  I have to say I love the Hendricks but it is so expensive over here.

We had had a good day, we felt we had really got somewhere today even if it had started with a long boring wait at immigration.  Mum was in good form and we all three had a lovely lunch together and I had managed to get her some interesting DVD box sets so I know she will always have something to watch.  Once home we decided that Hallowe'en deserved to be celebrated with a couple of drinks and a couple of episodes of Making a Murderer!

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Helping hands...

It is obviously my week for being a nice person - yesterday I rescued David from the cold and today I was taking Diana's neighbour Judi together with Diana to Paphos so that Judi could get a new phone and laptop with us on hand to give a bit of advice.  We started out looking at what was available at Computer SOS in Chlorakas and I have to say Brian was really helpful but then we moved to the Mall and in Public Judi found a laptop which she really liked and only really because there was contrast in the colour of the keys on the keyboard which made it easier to see.  We were successful in getting her a laptop which we left so that they could load some core software and we were also successful in getting her a phone so mission accomplished.  After a quick  flit around Jumbos we piled back into the car having decided that we would be "Ladies Wot Lunch" and take the opportunity to eat at Oniros on its penultimate day before closing for the season.

It was beautiful today so where better to enjoy some lovely scenery and food than Oniros.  It is one of my most favourite places to go and because we only go a couple of times a year it is a real treat although somehow I always manage to be the driver!!!  It was understandably packed although we timed it just right to get a table with a view and in some shade so that we were not melting in the sun.

It is a day like today that makes me so grateful that (a) I dont work and (b) I live on a beautiful island where we have beautiful sunshine this late in the season.  We should do this sort of thing more often but then it wouldn't be a treat!!!  Diana chose the lamb farouk dish with couscous and I chose the aromatic chicken which is served in a focaccia bun with fabulous fries that are coated in smokey paprika and Judi opted for the chicken Caesar salad which she said was lovely but is maybe not quite so photogenic as the other dishes!!

Back home John had had a quiet day at home which he said he had thoroughly enjoyed (without me nagging I guess!!)  On my return he was skimming the pool and rescued a praying mantis.  This is not unusual but what was unusual was that this one got out its tail feathers to dry them off and I had no idea how colourful they are.  Good news, once dried out the PM lived to fly another day!

I felt a bit guilty that I had managed to get to Oniros before it closed - I know how much John likes it so to make it up to him whilst I was getting some fridge surprise supper ready I mixed him a cocktail - I had had a non alcoholic mojito at Onrios which was lovely and I fancied something with that lime and mint combo but didn't have any white rum for a proper mojito but we had gin and lots of it and who knew you could make a mojito from Gin - although it isn't called a mojito it is called a Southside Fizz and it is LUSH!!

Our fridge surprise supper was a pretty damn fine Thai style chicken curry.  I made the curry paste myself using fresh ginger, fresh chili, garlic, lime and peanuts and then added coconut milk.  I fried off some chicken, onion and red peppers then combined it all and garnished with coriander.  I made it like a 'wet' biryani by adding the lime and coriander flavoured rice to the mix and voila a one pot supper.

It must have been good - John and I both ended up with runny noses!

Wednesday, 14 November 2018


So a very big fat CONGRATULATIONS to my niece Elena (on the right) and her great friend Rosie (on the left) for completing the Dublin marathon yesterday.  It was clearly a very cold day but they did it even though Rosie picked up a knee problem en route!  We were so chuffed for them both and even more so because we had originally thought they were running a half marathon so were a bit surprised when using the app to see them get to the half way point and...they kept going!

I tracked them through our lunch which I know was a bit rude and had I been a spotty teenager everyone would have been tutting at me checking my phone but I wanted to us to feel like we were involved in their journey (such a cliche I know) and in so doing then we were.  So once again congratulations to you both - the girls done good.

So back to today sadly I was going to a funeral with Mum.  I knew it was going to be difficult for her because it was a dear friend Donald who had passed away and the first part of the proceedings was to be a service in the chapel of rest and neither Mum nor I had been back there since Dad passed away.  

It was very hot today when we parked up at the carpark and bumped into Charlie and Des.  Des has been Mum's hairdresser for years and also Donald's wife Maureen's.  We walked together to Angel Guardians and were so pleased to see a fabulous turn out for Donald on this his final journey to the winning post.  Donald was an ex-jockey who was, quite literally larger than life, he touched many people's lives.  In the end he suffered a series of strokes and was at home when he died having been in a coma for some time although we were told he looked longingly at a painting next to his bed showing racehorses heading for the winning line.  So goodbye dear friend, we will not forget that fabulous time you took us to the races on Boxing Day many years ago - it is a trip we will always remember.

I made sure Mum was ok and returned home.  It doesn't matter whose funeral you attend it is always rather draining emotionally because you wouldn't attend if it wasn't someone who mattered to you so when I got home I suggested to John that we make the most of the beautiful day and go down to Latchi for a light lunch and some time together.  We really don't do that enough - just take off the two of us.  We have so much beauty around us and sometimes we just let it pass us by.

We have kept on saying (since we went with Mike a few weeks ago) that we should go back to the Souli and have their calamari again as it had been so nice.  So that is what we did - John took no persuading to be fair!  We opted for just a simple lunch of calamari, chips and salad which just hit the spot.  It was so lovely down by the sea although it was everso slightly choppy!!!  We sent Mike a message just to show him where we were and then we sent one to our friends Carole and Paul who have spent many a holiday here and we passed on their best wishes to the owner who was there and who sent his good wishes back.

Whilst I had been out this morning John had been busy.  He had decided to turn the bread mould into a light fitting above our dining room and although he had asked Rob for a hand did his usual trick and struggled on and did it himself.  It is not the finished article - he has used the existing lamp to provide the electric until he can find a permanent solution and we would also like to have the larger old fashioned Edison lightbulbs to make a real feature of it.  So this is it in daylight.

This is the light when it is on and I LOVE IT even if it is only up temporarily at the moment.

I am so grateful that John had the vision he had for that board because I just think it is beautiful and it fits in so well with our dining area.  Our little house makes Winter such a pleasant time of year because it wraps us up in a big fat blanket of warmth and we love it.  We can't do minimalistic although we would like to be a bit better about not hoarding stuff but you can bet your bottom dollar that if we throw something away we need it the following week!

I did my good deed for the day today when I answered an emergency phonecall from David and Edda's grandson.  He and Edda were at Paphos Airport awaiting the arrival of Edda's daughter when David senior had rung, confined to his wheelchair, to say that the temperature had dropped and he was freezing but couldn't reach anything other than the gas ring on the cooker hob to keep warm and after his nasty accident being cold wasn't good.  So I raced up and located a radiator which could be wheeled in and got that going and picked up a duvet for him, had a chat and left when I was absolutely sure he was going to be ok.

The temperatures are beginning to plummet at night now and we were walking down to the Hotel to have a drink before it closes on Wednesday for a refurb and it makes it very difficult to work out what to wear.  The temperature in the conservatory seems to be holding steady so we are hoping that the money we spent on the triplex will have made the difference we were hoping for.  I opted for jeans - it seemed sensible and I was grateful on the way home that I had something on which was warming!

So we met up with Rob and Di for a final drink with the hotel as we know it.  We were practically the only people there - definitely the only ones in the bar and lounge save for the lovely Virginia who was looking after us.  Apparently Mr and Mrs Veasey left a bit squiffy and after the walk home in the cold air John showed signs of some social confusion I have to say!!!

So goodbye Droushia Heights as we have known you for the past nearly six years and don't stay closed for too long and don't change too much!

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Summer is over

 I wrote this well before Charlie's accident. 
He is home but very poorly having been in a car accident and sustained a brain injury
just now I would have him bouncing around at 5.30am in an instant

It is official at 2.00am this morning Summer ended and Autumn began but no-one bothered to tell Charlie who came as he always does to let us know that he was hungry - generally this is at 6.30am and today was no exception but with the clock change that meant it was 5.30am!!!  The routine is always the same - I hear him squeeze his bulk through the open window and onto my dressing table and then he jumps down with all the grace of Nellie the Elephant and then he stops hoping he has evaded detection - he waits a while and then continues on to jump up onto John's bedside table where he stops once again, not moving, satisfied that his entrance has truly been undetected and then he wacks the hell out of the backscratcher hanging from my wardrobe door, at which point I get up, close the window and chuck him out of the bedroom main door so he cannot get back in.  In the meantime Minnie Mou,  who has been sleeping on the towel which I have put out for her on the dressing table, gets up stretches and leaps onto the bed so that she can pad the hell out of my head until I tickle her tummy and then she settles for a while.  Peace reigns for a second or two and then Charlie uses his super long, super sharp claws to 'ping' the underside of the bedroom main door which, being aluminium, pings with a sound like a tubular bell which is quite nice to begin with and then increasingly irritating.  I relent and get up and feed him and any others who are around which, at this time of the year as it is cooler, is generally all of them.  I am exhausted and Charlie fills his fat little belly and then waits for our bed to be made before getting super comfy and then sleeps for the majority of the day.

Actually John was up really early - the thought of that third bag of drugs still being at large bothered him and so he kitted himself up to go and retrieve it.  This bag was actually the worst with so many untouched drugs and a completely new blood test monitor like Mum uses and some breathing masks.  The post I had put up on social media had caused quite a stir amongst the locals so we wanted to make sure we had everything safe and sound in case the police were to investigate - John retrieved the bags we had put in the green bin by Kelly along with this third bag and made a note of the drugs.

Normally the clock change at the end of October heralds a change in the weather - for the worse but today it was clear, dry, bright and warm and so I decided I would brave the pool.  Not having the cover on overnight has meant a drop of 2 degrees but actually it was really rather pleasant and once I had got over the initial shock I quite enjoyed my morning watery wake-up.  It prompted me to try and see what happened with the water temperature last year and it would seem that we continued to swim until towards the end of November.  Being able to look back on the blog to check these things is invaluable.  I smiled when I read about our first winter here in 2011 which turned out to be the wettest and coldest in 40 years.  In those days the buildings weren't connected so we had to run across the courtyard to our beds.  We had a gas fire in the living room and a portable SuperSer which caused all sorts of issues with condensation and nothing in the bedrooms but apparently we had a princess and the pea bed with a thick down topper and the electric blanket and mega-tog duvet!!!  How times have changed - we have all sorts of heating now, wood, electric, gas and internal combustion thanks to being a woman of a certain age!

I was being given a day off from Sunday Lunch cooking today and Mum was coming up with Mick, Anne and Gordon and we had decided as an homage to Dad to go to his favourite restaurant for Sunday Lunch which is The Farmyard in Kathikas.  We had been given the lovely round table in the corner which made conversation so much easier.  As we went for our starters I was helping myself to soup and talking to the woman in front of me when the woman behind me said "that sounds like Jill Wiseman" and I looked round to see someone I had worked with at Porter Dodson.  Helen Cabell and her husband Ray had bought an apartment in Polis before I left work and I had left Helen my contact details when I left and then I had forgotten all about her until today.  She has now finished work and it sounds like she and Ray will be spending more time over here if not all their time and so I may see more of her in the future.  I will admit that I had to hastily text my lovely friend and ex-workmate Gemma to confirm Helen's surname as it had escaped me!  And then when I was going to get my main course I started chatting to the lady behind me and it transpires that she lives in Droushia having moved here in February!

Lunch seemed to go down really well - I have to say that the beef was exceptional this week and I was careful not to over fill my plate - there is always a danger of doing that when it is a carvery.  The Farmyard was absolutely packed  - good to see them doing well.  Our guests seemed to really enjoy their meal - there is so much to chose from that it would be a very fussy person who could not get value for money particularly as there are no holds barred when it comes to the puddings - the two young girls in front of me must have gone for four each!!!

We had a quiet evening - we didn't need anything to eat obviously and we managed to stay awake long enough to watch a couple of episodes of Making a Murderer Series 2.  I know that this is probably being portrayed in favour of the man convicted, Steven Avery, but it is a compelling watch.

I have given Charlie a stern talking to about his sleeping habits but as he had made himself well comfy for most of the day I am not holding my breath.  I could shut him out but that would mean shutting out Miss Minnie too and she is at her most loving last thing at night and first thing in the morning - other than that she doesn't want to know.

I have a funeral to attend tomorrow morning with Mum.  Sadly Donald Barton has passed away although he has been in a coma for quite some time so it will be a happy release.  He and Maureen were long time friends of Mum and Dad's and I guess they are all of an age now where funerals are going to be more commonplace.