It was John $’s first day on a new job, and Sadie sensed something was different, though she didn’t know what. She ran to the front door and waited, hoping Lise and I would take her for a walk.
I’ve done fairly well getting clothes out of my room when I need them. I am determined not to walk in there while David is sleeping. Three of us have shifted where we sleep so that Lise can use David’s room as her office. She begins work between 2 and 4 am, matching her hours to Danish time. This day I forgot to get socks.
“John! Do you have a pair of socks I can borrow for walking?” I pleaded. Bless him, he let me have the pair he was about to put on.
Lise got $’s permission to take Sadie. He hugged the dog first, and we set out, knowing rain was in the forecast. John suggested we turn around half way to the stop sign. When we got to that point, we both agreed the rain was not imminent and went on. The rain clouds were watching, and they began to tease us at the stop sign. We hurried home in a steady drizzle. The wind lifted my hood, and I pulled it back over my head. Soon it was stuck there, plastered by rain that had permeated the flimsy material. It was water-repellent, not waterproof. It didn’t really matter, because I was a bit too warm, anyway.
We waved at the red car going by, and I realized it was $ on his way to work. Sadie had been trotting along with the leash taut. In an instant she stopped, lifted her head, and sniffed intently after the car went by. She knew John had passed us!
When we reached the front porch, we asked John for a towel to dry Sadie. I don’t know how Lise’s jacket fared, but mine had soaked up the rain and was not dripping.
I took a quick shower in the family bathroom, taking John’s suggestion of using a fresh towel because mine was in the other bathroom. I borrowed someone’s soap, washed, and realized I had not gotten the towel out first. Luckily, the bathmat was of towel material and could be scooted. Step. Shlump. Step. Shlump. I side-stepped, keeping the mat under my feet, until I reached the towels. Having no clean clothes available, I put nightclothes back on and downloaded photos.
Lise soon wandered in, taking a break for a second breakfast. I prepared croissants, bacon, and an egg for John and Lise. Halfway through my granola, I paused to get David’s meal on a plate. We all ended about the same time, and David rushed off to work. Things are quietly hectic here, but we are managing to get most things done reasonably well.
I’m so glad I started last week’s letter early — did it because we’d invited company for Sunday night supper. John and Tina J came to play with the trains. John works for Gotaas-Larsen, and we went out with them a year ago when we were here house hunting. He loves trains, and I guess Tina tolerates them as willingly as I do. Had I waited for Sunday evening to write, it wouldn’t have been done because of the upheaval here. A 24-hour virus hit me, and it was upheaval, indeed. Don’t think I’ve been sicker since the last gall bladder attack 12 years ago. Dear John even sat up in a chair all night to help me! That is true devotion! He worked for half the day Monday, and the girls did everything for $ except change him until John got home. They fed him, played with him, and put him down for a nap. We were all glad to get back to a regular schedule Tuesday when the girls returned to school.
They didn’t even complain about going to school!!! We are definitely making progress!
John $ totes his Paddington bear around all the time by the tag that admonishes one and all to “take care of this bear”. Don’t think $ is following those instructions, but the bear is greatly loved.
I saw a milk bottle commit suicide! I opened the fridge and out jumped the full bottle, hitting my hand, a shelf, and finally the floor. Milk was everywhere! I was cut slightly on the downward plunge and John while helping me clean up. I shall certainly be more careful about stuffing bottles in.
Home group from church met at our house, and we had to lead a discussion on last Sunday’s sermon on discipline. The topic really dealt with SELF-discipline. There was a good group here — all but one chair taken. They all loved the trains, and John had to cut them off to make play cease. After the meeting was over, the people stayed longer than usual to talk. We found out that Marilyn worked for Cunard before she was married. She’d started out as a secretary and worked up to be the assistant to somebody so that she was the one who arranged launching parties. She’d met some of the big-wigs that John knows of in the shipping business. Small world!
Mr. Clewes cleaned out the small garage during a rain storm, and I spotted the giraffe toy that we brought over for $. He has had more fun playing with it. For the most part, he just leads it around and chews on its horns.
Strutting in our garden inspecting crumbs was a Pied Wagtail. It is the funniest black and white bird. I also think I saw a chaffinch. The chaffinch isn’t as colourful (British spelling) as the picture in the book, but maybe he was having a dull day.
The antique market in the high street has been shut. According to Mr. Clewes all those stores had short leases because there are plans for demolition and rebuilding. I was glad to see this week a sign in the window saying they will reopen in Reigate before too long. I just loved browsing in there.
Finally went to the butcher shop near the girls’ school that so many people have said is the best in town. Except for the very modern computerized scales, it was like stepping into another age. It was so spacious, had meat displayed in sparkling windows, was lined in the rear with dark polished wood and old glass, and the men greeted several customers by name and asked how they were. I shall certainly make a habit of going there! I’ll leave here early, park near the school, and walk to the shop.
The night of the butcher shop visit, EUREKA!, we had the first decent hamburgers we’ve had at home since we hit this country half a year ago. I would never have thought I’d rave over a juicy old hamburger, but this definitely is worth writing home about. The rest of you probably won’t appreciate it fully if you’re served a burger here, but half a year of privation whets one’s appetite.
I asked Enid G (Australian) how their Christmas in Germany was. Their family had taken a coach tour. She said it took an awfully long time to get there, but they enjoyed seeing the little town where they stayed, going to the big Catholic church at midnight, and trying the good food. They were a little disappointed to be served hare on Christmas day.
You future visitors will be glad to know I’ve finally purchased a cheap iron. As most of you know, I don’t DO ironing! However, it is becoming necessary for the girls’ uniforms to be pressed. We’ve gotten by so far because the fabrics were new, but are now starting to be “pruny.”
On a rainy day the girls took $ for his first walk outdoors. You’d think we’d choose a sunny day, but this was more fun to put on his Wellingtons and see him chugging away in and out of puddles. They let him walk down the shallow steps to the tennis court and lurch about on the level surface. He loved every minute of it.
All our children had trims this week – Lisa 2″, Kate 1.5″ and $ wisps. The subject is hair, by the way.
Last night we went to Sten H-L’s for dinner. He is the one who went to the church picnic with us one time years ago. He cooked steaks over charcoal out in the rain — a habit started when they lived in Florida. The steaks, not the rain. He’d also cooked potatoes and onions outside while Gunnbjorg (not misspelled) fixed sprouts, macaroni and cheese, and fruit salad inside. In the living room they served coffee, Krumkake filled with whipped cream and a Norwegian Christmas cookie (new to me) for which I requested the recipe. They took us on a tour of their house, and it is lovely. The girls played with their girls while their boy felt left out. We offered to let him play with $. We were surprised and grateful that $ went to sleep with no protest in our playpen upstairs in a bedroom. Whew! That meant much more enjoyment for us.
Today we drove to London, found a parking place with no trouble, and went to Westminster Abbey. The girls and I sat in the choir right next to the men who were singing, while John did baby duty outside. We were impressed with the counter tenors. Marvelous! The boys weren’t there, perhaps still on holiday since Christmas. John $ walked on his two little legs up and down outside. We went to Burger King — might not be your idea of Sunday dinner, but it surely hit the right spot with us! $ fell asleep on the way home.
My name is Suki, my human is a writer, and this is about my world. The world according to Suki The Cat. My humans smell funny, look weird, and I can't understand a thing they say, but they feed me, so hey, what are you gonna do?