Always take the weather with you?

brainstorm
brainstorm (Photo credit: Graela)

Yesterday afternoon, while I was at work, the sky suddenly went incredibly dark. The next minute, the heavens opened – I’m talking torrential downpour! Then the thunder and lighting started. Hail came next, followed by snow; proper big flakes that actually stuck. All the while it was still thundering. Then the storm stopped, as quickly as it had come. The sun briefly poked out from behind the clouds and all the snow melted.

Around eight hours later, I was in Karlsruhe at the pub quiz when it started thundering. Within seconds, it went from drizzling a little to full on torrential rain. This was followed by snow (I’m not sure about hail). By the time the quiz ended and we went home, the rain had stopped, it had warmed up considerably and most of the snow had been washed away (although there was still some on the cars).

Apparantly the weather followed me home from work yesterday. Do you think maybe labelling the image I put on my last Friday letters post “All the weather” was tempting fate?

Possibly THE best search term ever

I wasn’t going to blog today. My team came third in the pub quiz last night (YAY), and after claiming our prize, Jan and I ended up staying on to chat to the quiz master, which was nice, but resulted in me getting a grand total of three hours sleep last night. I can barely string together a coherent sentence right now, never mind think of a topic for a blog post. But then, checking my stats, I came across a search term that I just had to share with the rest of the Internets. And so, out of nothing, a (sort of) blog post was born. And the search term that got me so excited?
Here it is:

I must continue my quest to slay the red light 

Red Heart
Red light heart (Photo: that one doood)

 

OK, maybe not the best search term ever (did I ever mention I’m prone to exaggeration?), but certainly the best I’ve had in a while. My only question is what did the poor red light ever do to deserve such treatment?

 

 

Totally trivial!

It’s the first Tuesday of the month, which in my world means it’s quiz night. My team won last month (mostly not through my efforts – I knew two answers). I wonder if we can do it again?

In honour of quiz night, I thought I’d write a post with some (hopefully interesting) random facts. Just in case you ever find yourself in need of some trivia. You never know… it could happen!

Question Mark Graffiti
Question Mark Graffiti (Photo credit: Bilal Kamoon)
  • The shortest war on record – between the United Kingdom and the Sultanate of Zanzibar – took place on 27 August 1896 and lasted 38 minutes.
  • The first country in the world that allowed women to vote was New Zealand in 1893.
  • The Bee Hummingbird is the smallest bird in the world. An adult male measures about 2.2 inches and weighs about 0.06 ounces.
  • The first person on a British stamp other than royalty was William Shakespeare, in 1964. The first self-adhesive stamps were issued by Sierra Leone on 10 February 1964. (Obviously 1964 was the year for stamp-related trivia).
  • Hong Kong is made up of 235 islands.
  • The national bird of India is the peacock.
  • The unit of currency in Ethiopia is called the Birr.
  • The tallest waterfall in the world, at 3,212 feet (979 m),  is Angel Falls in Venezuela.  Second is Tugela Falls in South Africa, which is 3,110 feet (948 m).
  • The first ever official international football match took place in Glasgow between England and Scotland on 30 November 1872. It finished in a 0-0 draw.
  • The first SMS (text) message was sent over the Vodafone GSM network in the United Kingdom on 3 December 1992. It said “Merry Christmas”.

There you are – 10 random facts. Let it never be said that Confuzzledom is not educational 😉

Friday letters

Yes, it’s that time of the week again…
When I wrote my first Friday Letters post, I honestly thought it was going to be a one off. But I actually find it a good way to get at least one post in a week without having to put too much thought into it (I may only write my blog for me, but I still hate to neglect it!). And it means I have a sort of record of what I’ve been up to each week. Here are my Friday letters for this week.

Dear cough. I appreciate you allowing my to sleep for a whole five hours in a row last night, but it would be great if, tonight, you could let me fall asleep faster. A whole hour of having to cough every time I was close to drifting off was not fun!

Dear quiz team (who will not actually read this, because they have no idea this blog even exists). I almost didn’t attend on Tuesday thanks to my cold, but I’m glad I did in the end. First place! We rock 🙂

Dear whoever invented remote access and stuff like that. It’s thanks to you that I was able to stay at home today and not annoy all my colleagues by constantly coughing at them, yet was still able to do work (a bonus seeing as a) I didn’t feel ill enough to stay in bed and b) lying down actually made the coughing worse! Being able to work saved me from being bored rigid after the first few hours of being home alone). I am also very grateful to my employer for allowing us to actually use such technology. I know plenty of people who couldn’t work from home simply because they would have no way of accessing their company’s system from there!

Dear Germany. Why do you not sell Lemsip? I only have three sachets left and my next trip home won’t be til March! If anyone in Germany has managed to find a Lemsip/Beecham’s powder equivalent please tell me what it’s called! And all those hot lemon etc. powders from DM and the like don’t count! While they do temporarily sooth my throat, they contain nothing even vaguely medicinal. Is a hot drink containing paracetamol and decongestant really too much to ask, Germany?

Dear trees. You looked so pretty today with the sun shining on. Do you think you could stay like that for another week or two, at least until the Christmas markets arrive to bring some colour into the winter. And while I’m at it, perhaps you could also show your face a little more often, Mr Sun? All the rain this week really hasn’t done anything for my mood (or my cold for that matter!).

OK, that’s it. Sorry most of these are about illness, but coughing, sneezing and copious amounts of tea/hot drinks is pretty much what my entire week has been about…

For more Friday letters (hopefully slightly more cheerful ones than mine!) check out: Photobucket

Little snippets

We have been doing stuff recently, but not enough to make up a whole blog post. Nevertheless, I promised to post more this year, so here are some little snippets from my life for you.

First of all, to the person who found my blog yesterday by searching for the term “German shopping blog”… sorry, but you’ve definitely come to the wrong place. Can you imagine anything further removed from my ramblings than a shopping blog? 😀 And now to the snippets…

Yesterday we came third in the pub quiz. At the last one, three weeks ago, we were first. Go us! The team that usually come first did really badly last time and left before the results were announced, knowing they weren’t getting a prize anyway. Talk about sore losers! This time they came second and didn’t seem happy about it at all. I would never have thought someone could pull such a long face after winning a round of drinks!

Jan’s dad turned 60 last Thursday, so at the weekend we headed up to Lower Saxony for his birthday party. It was a bit weird at first seeing as I barely knew anybody (only the 3 or 4 family members who were there), and Jan kept going off to talk to family friends he hadn’t seen in years, but I ended up having a great conversation with his dad’s neighbour, so that was nice. Also, Jan’s cousin brought her daughter along, who is almost one and who we had only seen in photos until now. She’s incredibly cute and was so well behaved! Even when she was getting tired there was no major tantrum – she just cried briefly, then as soon as she was in the sling on her mother’s front she went to sleep. If I ever have children, I hope they’re just as lovely.

At the end of April, Jan and I went to Ettlingen (next town over) to se some English folk music. A duo called Broom Bezzums was playing, who we had seen by complete coincidence in Ludwigshafen a couple of years ago. One of them is from the same area of England as I am, so it was nice to have a bit of a chat with him when he was signing my CD during the interval. They were followed by a second act – an Irish group called Beoga – who I didn’t enjoy as much (they were good musicians, but after a while everything started to sound the same), but we were only there for Broom Bezzums really so that was okay. The second act was just an added bonus.

On 1 May (which was a public holiday in Germany) I met up with some colleagues to go to a performance by the University of Mannheim’s English Theatre. They put on Black Comedy, which was hilarious and very well acted (in my opinion). We also went to Heidelberg to see the King’s Singers in April  (apparantly the best A Capella choir in the world – says the boyfriend who is into that kind of thing and who I bought the tickets for as an anniversary present) so I’ve been very cultural recently. And I bet you’re all really impressed 😉

And just generally, life is good at the moment. Jan and I are getting on really well and have been enjoying spending time together just doing nothing (almost unheard of for Jan – he usually wants to watch a film, play Scrabble, read a book… anything but just sit and have a cup of tea and not have to be involved in any other activity). And I’ve been able to (almost) stop worrying about doing/saying the wrong thing and causing an argument. Strangely, knowing that our relationship could be over by January has made me less afraid that it could end suddenly the minute I do something Jan doesn’t like. I’m sure a psychologist would be able to give me a really good explanation for that, but honestly I’d prefer not to go there. I’m just enjoying being happy while it lasts.

Christmas is officially coming

I’ve been “deserted” this weekend (Jan’s had to go to Hamburg for work), and for the first time in a while I’m not invited to anything, so I actually have some time on my hands… which means I have time to write a proper blog post. Mircales do happen, it seems.

Well, the Christmas season is now officially upon us. The Karlsruhe Christmas market (and probably a number of other Christmas markets) started on Thursday. And I received my first Christmas card today. Therefore, it is official. The season has begun…
This year we’ve decided to spend Christmas in England. The last 2 years we’ve been in Germany so it’s about time. We’ll be there for 10 days, which I think will be the longest time my little brother’s seen me for in his entire life (admittedly he’s only 4, but still. That tells you something about how much time I spend in the home country). Then we’ve decided to do Edinburgh for New Year, since we only got to spend one afternoon there when we did our tour of Britain this summer.

Next weekend I’m cooking Christmas dinner for 8. Well, possibly for 8. Right now it could potentially only be 3 as only one person has confirmed that they’re coming (the other 2 being me and Jan of course). Then Jan’s choir is performing the following weekend, and we’re invited to a birthday on the same day (the choir performance is in the morning, the party in the evening so it works). In between we have my work Christmas meal, the monthly pub quiz (yes, it’s only once a month) and we want to fit in a few trips to some Christma markets. And all that before we fly to England on 18th December. Phew! It’s going to be a busy one…

And now I’d better get back to wrapping presents. Who knows when I’ll have another opportunity to do so…