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Category: Chronicles

Yay for hot water!

The hot water is back. It seems that the “immersion” heater was wired improperly and lacked a rather essential fuse. The effing thing never ever worked before!!! And nobody – not the landlord, not his agent, certainly not the repair guys – knew about it. Anyway, the slightly harassed repairmen…

Cold and unwashed

No hot water in the house and – although we are not yet in dire need of it – no heating. The heating unit has lost its ability to pump hot water, instead filling the house with loud banging in the pipes. It had to be turned off. There is…

A swim at lunchtime

About a year ago, I started going to the gym. And a few months later, I stopped (an event not expressly commemorated on this blog). Part of that was certainly that I lack mental make-up to enjoy the tedious process of exercising. To put it more bluntly, I hate it.…

A trip to Legoland

Taking advantage of what might be the last – and first – nice-weather weekend in September, on Saturday we took the kids for a long-promised visit to Legoland. Of course, half of London had the same idea as us… The amusement park, located near Windsor, failed to make a great…

Sunday with friends

We went to a child’s birthday party on Sunday. Lyuba and Pasha are among our closest friends, so even though little Tim, at 4, is a bit younger than my children, our family presence at his celebration was a given. The rest of the guests had kids right around Tim’s…

Open those doors!

Visitors to European capitals with metro systems (for instance, Paris) are undoubtedly familiar with the concept of manual door opening on subway cars. The doors are equipped with buttons or handles both on the inside and the outside that need to be operated in order to enter or exit the…

Weird feelings

It struck me suddenly: My life is actually a bit less exciting without the morning trip to drive Becky to school. She firmly refused any further chauffeur services from either of us, preferring to take public bus routes both to and from school. I can now get up a whole…

Nothing going on, 08/22/08

In the few days that I’ve been back home, I have tied loose ends at work, waded through piles of e-mails (both personal and business), caught up on my internet reading, watched a few movies from my PVR queue, ate some kebabs and doners, did one load of laundry –…

A dyeing failure

Becky has been pestering me for quite a while to dye my hair black – she thinks I’m way past looking distinguished with all of that gray, and now just look old. So I bought Just for Men dye and tried it last night. Amateur that I am, I realized…

Back to Costa Brava

Can you guess where I am?  Come on, you hardly need more than one try…  Yep, you got it!  I’m back on the beautiful Catalan coast of the Mediterranean. It was a bit of an impulse decision.  As the prospect of a lonely weekend in London loomed, I figured that,…

The last busy weekend of the season

The weekend was spent in various activities involving our latest visitors, which explains the first non-travel two-day post gap since sometime last year. With our approaching long holiday, it should be the last active “home” weekend for a couple of months. Anyway, here is a brief re-cap. On Saturday, we…

Happy 4th of July!

No, that’s not the view from our window. Would be nice, though… Becky sang Star-Spangled Banner and later went to the grocery shop wearing a T-shirt with a “Proud American” slogan on it, an American flag pin, an American flag necklace, and the letters “U. S. A.” written in a…

Changes to morning routine

Becky’s independence continues to grow. It was only a few months ago that we allowed her to take a bus on her own for the very first time. The practice quickly expanded to cover every day of the week where she did not have an after-school activity – and with…

Of folk meteorology

It’s a well-known folk wisdom1: Clear starry night skies herald good sunny weather the next day. Right? Natasha knows quite a bunch of such tokens and rarely misses a chance to invoke one. I normally approach these in a non-argumentative way. I recognize that they originate from centuries of collective…