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Bonjour! Bonjour!

“Where have you been lately, you laaaaazy teapot?” are some of the words I’ve heard bandied about this morning…..including a reminding poke from Mr. ATasteOfGarlic…..who says a lack of posts could be held in evidence against me…oooer-er! Best get blogging!!

In case you may have missed some of my recent tweets (I had time for a quick tweet or two, y’see!), this is what it all means: Teapot Towers played host to visitors last week, and Himself & Herself went gallivanting all over the place with them – sightseeing here, eating & drinking there, taking photos here, getting caught in thunderstorms there – you know the sort of thing, yourselves ;p

Whenever Herself was able to snatch a minute to herself, so to speak, she participated in the limerick competition featured on A Taste of Garlic (link to the site on the side of this page). The competition prize was a copy of Norman’s Folly by Clare Norman (about the Norman family’s new life in France).

Herself is an avid reader, and threw her literary (!) hat into the ring 19 times apparently, so keen was she to get her hands on the tome. The rules were: sum up an aspect of life in France in a limerick, that did not have to include references to nuns or blue 2CVs. So she attempted to write about everything else she could think of, whilst also sticking strictly to the technical aspect of limerick writing: ie rhyming couplets, a good beat, and a good punchline – and keeping it clean! (A few efforts from a couple of the other writers were trés rude!!) ;p

She didn’t win, alas, but – bless ‘er – thought one or two of her own efforts were quite good, all told. The winner, by the way, was a limerick about poledancing – in Lyon !

Herself says she knows nothing about poledancing in Lyon – so will, purely for research purposes – investigate when she gets the chance! Himself was quite amused by that, but said nothing. Man of many words, he is! Anyway, Herself says I ought to reproduce one or two of her efforts here, so here you are:

* On French eating times (you know she still can’t get her head – or her stomach – around ’em!!):

French eating times made her aggrieved
her stomach was always quite peeved
but at half past seven
until nine – it was heaven!
She ate like an expat, relieved!

* On the difficulties of French grammar, etc:

The verbs remain unconjugated
the grammar is so complicated
Would you have a clue
if you say tu or vous?
Me neither, I’m very frustrated!

* On her weight issues (!):

The thing about France is the wine
and cheese, it’s too easy to dine!
I’ve put on so much weight
since joining my mate,
my diet is well in decline!

* Lastly, a word on behalf of the visitors (much betaken with France):

Our visitors have found France a treasure
as they sight-see with us at their leisure,
They don’t want to go home
all the way ‘cross the foam,
this country has brought them such pleasure!

So there you have it! And apparently, there’s a new limerick competition set up this week – closing date is this Friday (which incidentally is the birthday of Herself – when she’ll be 21 again, she says!!!!) – and the rule is this: write about Andouille. She says she’ll have to actually eat it first so she can write with a little more knowledge on the subject 😀

So limericks aside, Herself has another busy kind of week on the go already. Himself is away on a business trip for the next couple of days, so she’s going to get stuck into baking, she says. They bought cake tins and what-have-you in Leclerc the other day……she says she’ll make her own birthday cake! And with cake, what do you have? That’s right, tea! 😀

Oh yes, now that I mention myself and tea – I must tell you about the latest additions to the ‘red with white polkadots’ pottery family, and their cutlery cousins. I’m the leader of the pack of course…but keeping me company in the kitchen these days are:
2 mugs/ 2 eggcups/ 2 bowls along with 1 sugar bowl/ 1 milk jug/ and 1 small receptacle bowl thing (for putting creamers or sweeteners into, maybe)

The cutlery cousins (handles are red with white polkadots): 2 knives/ 2 forks/ 2 soup spoons/ 2 teaspoons were pressies from the visitors…….so taken were they with all things red & white 😀

Herself says she loves the addition of all things red in the kitchen, but is also keeping an eye out for a mug with the Breton flag on it (or something similar) to represent her new surroundings. If anyone knows where a nice one can be obtained, post a comment below! 🙂

So yes, back to her birthday this Friday……she’s off to Paris on job-related business (which will only last until around midday) and is looking forward to spending the rest of the day in the capital, with Himself who will join her there. She says it’s a pity they can’t stay in Paris for the whole weekend, but one or all of the young ‘uns are visiting this weekend, so they’ll have to TGV it back to Nantes again on Friday night. Seeing as she’ll be in transit late on Friday night, she’ll not be able to post any limericks at that point – so says she’d better eat & write ‘Andouille’ earlier in the week.

The France/English Forum has suspended official meetings at the moment due to school holidays (you know how everything stops for school hols, including half term, etc). They usually meet every Thursday, 18:30-20:30. However, some of the ‘hardcore element’ (ie: the Brit expats) have been meeting every week anyway, in a local pub. Only one French person turned up at the pub (as the remainder of the French crew in the group prefer a more regimented, structured meeting, apparently). Herself says it’s a pub job this Thursday night as well – but she may have to miss it, due to having to get up at Very Stupid O’Clock to catch a TGV to Paree!

She’s volunteering some time at a local radio station this morning, so says she needs to go and get ready for that any minute now (she’s still in her PJs here at the kitchen table, supping tea). She opened the shutters there a while ago – lovely sunlight streaming into the place. She says it makes such a lovely change from the lashing rain, of which she is heartily sick!

She’s writing a post-it note and sticking it to the fridge…what does it say? can’t quite see…..ahh…yes… ‘DO YOUR FRENCH HOMEWORK & LESSON PREP’ (lessons were suspended last week to accommodate visitors, y’see – and no study done at all!).

She’s up and moving towards the sink to rinse out the mug – methinks I’ll log out now, and report back later with any other juicy bits & pieces about visitor week, or ‘Gite Week’ as she calls it.

Until later, peeps!!
Bon journée

TP

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Howdy-do peeps & peepettes!!

Another über busy day at Teapot Towers…..no time for tweeting or blogging or anything! Shocking!

Off to mid-eastern France at first light for the remainder of the weekend. It should give me plenty of stuff to write about though…so that’s something, at least

In the meantime folks, have a TEAmendous weekend 😛

Á bientôt!

TP

Howdy peeps!

Proper blog-post on the way later.

Teapot Towers has operated along the lines of a 5-star hotel this week….visitors staying with us. Lots of daytrips were squeezed in. Everyone’s exhausted!

More later,
TP

Zzzzzzzzzzz

Time for Zzzzzzz

Howdy folks!

Been a laaaazy teapot this week…no blogging! TUT TUT!!

Herself was presented with a dozen red roses at dinner on Monday night…so she’s been feeling very loved up all week, bless. She also made a huge pot of stew that lasted 3 days (mega stew she says). She’s really pleased with the outcome this time…much better flavour than the previous attempt, and with extra ingredients (here they all are, if you’d like to try some, yourself?):

* Potatoes, leeks, carrots, celery, cabbage, turnip, onions, garlic, parsley, stewing steak, and a couple of crumbled beef-stock cubes. With a bit of basil and bay leaves thrown in on top to add extra flavour. Uber tasty, she says!

The French lesson on Tuesday proved tres difficult…(trying to conjugate verbs). She says she’s studied a lot of things in her time, and this is probably one of the most challenging (conjugating verbs). Makes her want to run away and hide in the wine cellar (that’s if they had one, that is!!) ;p

All day yesterday was spent investigating the cafés in Nantes centre with one of her new partners-in-crime, also a newbie expat. Herself says they spent about 4 hours exchanging opinions and ideas on what Herself terms ‘French Weirdisms’ …you know the sort of things yourself, if you’re a newish expat:

* strict, disciplined eating times in France/ feeling absolutely starving with hunger but at the ‘wrong time’ (before 12:30/ between 2-7:30pm/ after 9pm)
* how dessert and cheese are expected at dinner time
* table manners or lack of
* shop opening hours
* cheque-books/ paperwork
* length of time for a Carte Vitale to be processed
* job interviews that are not actual interviews for a job, but are meetings just to see what you are like (!)
* verb conjugation problems
* people speaking far too fast
* rude people on the phone (if you must phone a utility company, for example)
* the French-born kids who refuse to eat the food you’ve just prepared and call it ‘tres bizarre‘ (because it’s classed as ‘different’ and somehow ‘not French’)
* inviting people over for an Aperitif
* what time should neighbours go home after an Aperitif in your house and how you can’t have dinner while they’re there because the invitation didn’t extend to dinner, and then they stay until 10pm having munched on at least 3 rounds of snacks (and now you’ve no snacks left), and that makes it all kind of awkward, sort of thing!!!
* when should you invite them over to dinner at all/ etc, etc
And finally,
* breaking all the French rules and doing it your own way!! Hurrah, she says!

They concluded by saying they will each invite the other (and partner) round to each others’ homes for Aperitif AND dinner (which may – or may not – include cheese & dessert). Only if they feel like it!!) ;D

Then Herself thought it might be romantic to accompany Himself home from town after he finished work yesterday evening, so she sent him a quick text, asking him to let her know when that might be, as she was in town and ‘around’. In true old Sod’s Law form, he had the phone on ‘silent’, didn’t spot said text and therefore Herself looked like she’d been stood up, hanging around the tram stop in the rain!! Attracted all sorts of funny looks, she did. Alone in a crowd, and all that sort of thing! She must really love him, she says, she waited nearly an hour & a half!!! Bless!! ;P

(She eventually got tired waiting for Himself to appear, and trammed it home alone..soaked to the skin). Y’see, there have been some almighty biblical epic-style downpours in Nantes for almost a week now. Great weather for ducks! But she is delighted to announce that the sun is splitting the trees today. Proper order, she says! More of that! (She has now closed her eyes and is ‘channellling sun vibes’) 🙂

Now, she has to settle back down to conjugation, she says. French lesson this evening has been rearranged, so she won’t be attending this week’s English Forum…although Himself may pop in on his way home from work, to be social. She’s looking over at me, on the worktop, thinking about having a brew. All good! Busy day for me..I felt quite abandoned yesterday, all told! Sniff!! 😉

A bientôt!!
TP

By the way, here’s one of Herself’s random pics from around Nantes at the weekend…this is the fountain in the Parc de Procé..

Cold water on a warm day!

Hello and a Happy Valentine’s Day to you, folks!! 🙂

Happy Valentine's day!! 🙂

It’s been a busy couple of days here at Teapot Towers. ..so Herself is feeling guilty for not dictating a blog post…and so this is a short one whilst she prepares tonight’s dinner….a large pot of stew! So far, the large green salad bowl is full of chopped veg, and the onions have made her eyes water. She’s now sporting very fetching mascara streaks down her face! Lovely, eh? 😉

Herself & Himself swapped cards this morning. After all her worrying about not being able to locate Valentine cards, she found one in a nearby store (and so did he, by the looks of things). She’s been surfing facebook today, and remarked that this year sees an upturn in the amount of people being presented with flowers…..lots of people have posted pictures of the longstemmed roses, or bouquets they received today.

No Flowers here in the Towers, but she’s happy with her card (picture of pink roses on it), and just happy to be with Himself…awwww! 😉

They spent the weekend ‘gallivanting‘ around the place….walking around Nantes, taking photos, going for a drive. She hasn’t uploaded any pics yet, but when she does, she says she’ll post a few on here. Mountains of French homework to be tackled first though (she didn’t do a scrap of study all weekend!!)..Tut Tut!!

So now it’s back to chopping garlic, slicing meat, and sprinkling parsley. She hopes the stew will be ready by around 8pm. Perfect!

They’ll have an aperitif though…a local speciality: Kir Nantais…..and a chocolate dessert treat. I say treat because they don’t normally eat dessert at all. After all that though, she’ll be wanting to drink tea! Hurrah!!

It’s lashing rain here at the moment…nice weather for ducks! 🙂

A tout suite!
TP

Celebrate with Kir Nantais!

Morning peeps!

Herself has been up for hours, chores all done! She says it’s such a beautiful day here today that she’s not going to waste it – she’s off out with the camera on a trip around the city to capture it at its sunny best! 🙂

She says she’ll post the pics here later (if they’re any good, that is!) 😉

A bientôt!

TP

Daffies in Nantes

Hello folks,

Quick posting as Herself has been out most of the day, and is due to run out again, shortly. French lessons this morning, and trip to Lidl afterwards. She’s just been preparing a meal for the two of ’em to eat later after they return from the English Forum weekly gathering tonight. Apparently there will be wine & nibbles tonight, which will be sure to give them an appetite, she says.

She says she ought to have time to sit down and dictate a more newsy post tomorrow, after she has gone on the hunt for a Valentine card for Himself, and a birthday present – it will be his birthday this weekend!

It has just started to pour with rain, so she says she’s hunting for a more waterproof form of footwear, and an umbrella!

A demain,

TP