mercredi, septembre 27, 2017

A note to his father

This happened on thursday when A2 was at home after school with his father. I was bringing A1 to his music lesson.

Seb recounted the following. A2 came into the home office and took a piece of paper and starting writing.  Seb was having a conference call with his colleague then. He did not pay attention to what A2 wrote when A2 presented him the paper. Seb just put a cross on the box 'Yes'.

A few minutes later, he heard the gate opening. He looked out from the window and saw A2 wearing his helmet riding his bicycle to leave the house. Seb quickly shouted at him to come back. He read the paper carefully and realised that he had given permission to A2 to join his friend to ride their bicycles outside.

When I reached home, I saw A2's friend Lucas lingering at our gate. I told him to get his mother's approval to come play with A2 in our garden. 5 minutes later, the two boys were having fun in our garden.

I read A2's note. It was no fault of A2. Seb admitted that he should have taken time to read it. A2 is a witty boy. He knew he could not speak to his father so he wrote a note.

It reads "Il y a LUCAS DEOR (dehors) avec son vélo je pe(peux) ales (aller) avec lui DEOR (dehors) avec lui en vélo. Coch (coche) ui(Oui) Non. LES-clés silteplai (s'il te plait) papa."

Translated to english, it would be "There is Lucas outside with his bicycle. I can go with him outside with him on bicycle. Tick Yes No. The keys please father."

There were a few french spelling error but it was a clear request in my opinion for a 7 year old who was determined to get permission to play with his friend.

When he got his father's approval, A2 looked for the house keys. He called the dog to enter into the laundry room and shut the door tight. The laundry room connects to the garage. As he was not sure which button on the remote control key opens the main gate and which the garage door, he did not want to accidentally open both the gate and garage door and risk having the dog run out of the house.

This he explained to me during dinner time. We all find it amusing but told him that he should have known the answer even before writing the note. Seb and I do not think the boys are old enough to ride their bicycles outside without an adult.
This little boy really has lots of tricks up his sleeve.

mercredi, septembre 13, 2017

Farewell party for our family doctor

Our family doctor has retired. Her colleague organised a surprise farewell party for her and invited all her patients.  Though we were told to bring food for four, potluck style; there were still too much to eat and drink.

Our doctor was happy to see her patients and chatted with everyone. She gave a touching thank you speech. Her husband also gave a speech thanking us for being great patients to his wife. It was a jovial event.
I got the doctor a book and left my gift on a table full of flowers and gifts. That's when I saw a beautiful cake. What an appropriate cake. :-)

Speaking of the book, it was recommended by the book shop owner. It seems interesting. I would go check the library for it.

I never thought I would attend my doctor's retirement party. Living in the countryside does make a difference. People are more personal and there is more human touch than living in a big city.  I hope the new doctor will be just as warm as the retired Doctor Thery.

dimanche, septembre 10, 2017

Gargano, South Italy

We spent 4 days at our second Airbnb in the Gargano region. This place used to be a convent. The structure collapsed about 50 years ago and the owners bought the place and divided it into 3 apartments.

Inside the apartment, the walls were very thick and kept the place cool despite the hot summer weather.

This was our apartment with two bedrooms. There was a big swimming pool and we were the only ones using it in the afternoon. The boys had fun jumping into the pool. 

We could hear the bells of the cows and barking dogs as there was a farm just beside. A2 being the animal lover went to look for the farm dogs.
We visited Foggia, San Giovanni Rotondo, Vieste and Monte Saint Angelo. And each day, we either stopped at a beach or headed to the swimming pool.

We visited Foggia after lunch and all shops were closed. They only opened from 5pm. The streets were deserted in the afternoon. At San Giovanni Rotondo, we were looking for dinner. Seb suggested eating Chinese as we passed by a chinese restaurant. We went in and while ordering, a chinese man came over and asked if we were from Singapore. He had overheard my mum and I talking. He was a Malaysian living in Singapore and had come to Italy to help out his chinese friends in the restaurant. He hoped to open one in Rome. What a small world. I did not expect to meet any Singaporeans or Malaysians in San Giovanni and it was rather inland and there were only locals. I wished him the best.

On our second day, we saw a mother cat with her 5 kittens just outside our appartment. They were very thin and the left over food we gave them were quickly finished up. A2 insisted to give the cats more food. When visiting Foggia, we stopped by a supermarket and A2 bought a box of cat food. He was very eager to go back to feed the cats.

There were almond trees where we stayed. The cats ate the peeled almond nuts. We were amazed. The boys had fun cracking. A1 ate the broken almond nuts and kept the perfect almond nuts for his father and the cats. Such a sweet boy. My mum enjoyed cracking the nuts and became a pro. She found the technique and I had to keep up her pace plucking almonds from the tree for her to crack.

We had sunny weather throughout our stay except for the day when we drove 20mins to visit Monte Saint Angelo. It was rainy and cloudy. We visited the castle and the famous sanctuary of Monte Sant'Angelo. It is the oldest shrine in Western Europe dedicated to archangel Michael and is an important pilgrimage site. We had to walk down many steps to reach the grotto where the shrine was. The architecture was interesting.

After Monte Saint Angelo.,we headed to the beach. It was deserted due to the weather. It was very cloudy but the water was still warm. The boys just loved to be in the water.

After Gargano, we drove to Rome, our last destination in Italy.