Life continues to pootle by - how is it that we're almost 1/3 through the year already?! - while we don't seem to do anything particularly noteworthy. Still, isn't that part of the pleasure of life: enjoying what you do, even if it's nothing special?
I have been going through odd phases where I get worried and upset about minor things - often things that one can do nothing much about. I find myself getting oddly down. While I'm not a great optimist, I am usually a happy-kind-of-bod, but there have been days when my stomach has been in knots and I've not really known why. I assume this is somehow connected to my "time of life" but it isn't terribly pleasant.
Yesterday was a good day though. Mr FD was on a cycling tour with the Cycle Club, with a planned stop for lunch in a place called Lavoine, about 30 km from here. Some of the non-cyclists were meeting up for a walk beforehand, so I duly met with two other ladies and we drove to the village where we parked up and strolled for 30 minutes in one direction, turned round and strolled back. They chattered away while I tried to follow their rapid French. It wasn't great weather - a damp, grey drizzle - but still nice to get out.
The cyclists dribbed and drabbed to the restaurant, while I chatted with Sylvie, a friend of ours, who understands my need for a slower conversation! When they had all arrived we were served, first with a kir and snacks, and then with a huge plate of salad, with toasted cheese, ham and hard-boiled egg. This was followed by turkey in mushroom sauce, spaghetti and grilled tomatoes, then a good cheese board, and then tarte tatin with ice cream and crème anglaise. The wine flowed throughout, coffee and eau-de-vie was offered - all for the princely sum of 13€ (£9.50!)
Of course, if you'd cycled 80 km with another 20 or so to go then it's all good fuel. A leisurely stroll doesn't use up quite so many calories though!! We decided to go for another walk at the nearby Ski Station before we left for home
We only did 2.2 km more but it made us feel a bit less guilty!
Then when I got home, Mr FD had already arrived home after the ride down, and we had been invited to Gilles' house for apèros (Sylvie is Gilles' girlfriend) so we went there to drink our way through a bottle of fizzies. I didn't feel like eating much so I had a cheese sandwich for supper. Mr FD made himself a throw-it-all-in omelette with a couple of rolls. He had used up more energy than me though!
Planned meals for this week:
TODAY: Pork mince ragu with soufflés and green beans
(we're having the Nature ones, not the brochet (pike) flavoured ones!)
MONDAY: Beef, chilli, vegetable & noodle stir fry - planned for last week, but not eaten. I have Straight to Wok chilli noodles that require eating.
TUESDAY: Cod with chorizo crust (a Hairy Dieters recipe) plus vegetables. Mr Fd might have some potatoes with his. But he might not.
WEDNESDAY: Aubergine Bake - but I'll be using some of the ragu sauce from Sunday, instead of chopped tomatoes. I'm guessing we'll be down at Alison's (or up here) drinking apèros as Cathy is arriving this week - huzzah! so this is an easy pop in the oven & forget about it meal.
THURSDAY: Chicken and cashew nut stirfry
FRIDAY: Richard is taking us and Cathy out for a meal tonight. We're going to La Murette which is a Belgian restaurant serving delicious Belgian beer and good food too. I will be fasting all day but forgetting about the 500 calorie limit at dinner time!
My work hours are right down at the moment - I've finished my all day Monday lessons, my all-day Tuesday lessons are a bit hit-&-miss at the moment because the people are zipping all over France to various meetings/events, Wednesday is still busy, but Thursday is also thin-on-the-ground with a phone lesson every now and then. With four bank holidays in May (FOUR?!?!) I won't be earning that much. Luckily Mr FD is working very hard and getting paid well, so we won't be in too much difficulty. Also, I had this good news (if it actually happens, that is!) last week which will mean 300€ a month added to the coffers without me doing anything for it. Well, I've already worked for it, but now I will see the results of those labours. Finally.
As always thank you for your lovely comments.KEZZIE: I'm back!
FRUGAL IN FRANCE - was confused about why I baked carrot cake for my students and why I was coming to the end of my course with them. I explained to her by email that my teaching is not in school (Thank goodness! I did that one year. Once was enough) and that the carrot cake is so we don't have to learn anything in the last lesson!
POMPOM: Here's a lot of owls for you.
I discovered that the French have two words for "owl" - chouette and hibou. I was told that chouettes don't have visible ears, while hiboux do. I don't know if that's true. Any French speakers to verify?
Chouette - no ears to be seen