Thursday, February 02, 2006

It Could Have Been A Mocking

Sometimes things inexplicably go wrong for me ... and having a large number of friends who enjoy mocking, I find it wise to apply caution to which of my stories get out. Yesterday had the makings of one of those stories ...

Life has been reasonably serious and straight-forward here in Antwerpen. No one has fallen past my balcony screaming yet, as happened in Istanbul. I haven't had any problems with exploding light switches and issues with communciating my dilemna to elderly non-English speaking neighbours ... I haven't had to find a fusebox down in a basement in this organised Belgian world.

No wheels have fallen off taxis between the airport and home, and as yet I haven't ridden in a bus chasing another bus in an effort to engage in furious argument with that other bus each time they stop at lights.

In fact, it could be said that life here is just about learning Nederlands, learning how to run and wondering if the Immigration Department will ever process me (5 months in process next week) - it would appear that New Zealand has moved to a high point on the spawning of terrorists threat list.

Mmmm, or that's how it feels on the -4 degree celsius foggy days in the middle of winter. However would I complain ...?
No no no .... being unable to work for so long can surely only strengthen my character and that of my Belgian man. And who needs hair salons, new clothes and the freedom to travel ... hah to all that, my ancestors were rumoured to be calvanistic in outlook ... I too can step up and be tested.

But back to yesterday ... I caught all my connections to Brussel. The tram, the train to Brussel Nord, and the airport however ... Alison smsed me en route from Antwerpen, asking where I was. I smsed back that I had been wondering, as we were stopped at an unscheduled station. I carefully typed in the name Schaarbeck.

The Canucks left for the airport, a pick-up point that is close to their home. I caught the next train effortlessly ... and that's not always a given, I have been known to occasionally reveal a geographical ineptitude that leaves me breathless and quite quite lost.

But it was that final train, the Airport Express, that behaved very badly ... it was slow, stopping here and there and generally not living up to its name. But that was okay, I had a book, I could sit there all day. Alison smsed, 'Where are you, Andrew is parked in a no parking zone' I looked around while writing that my 'Express wasn't expressing' and what did I see out the window but SCHAARBECK again.

Dammit, accidently catching a train back to Antwerpen was going to take some living down and Alison mocks, as does Andrew ... I looked around the carriage, saw a woman with a suitcase and smsed back that I thought I was close but the train was so slow ...

Okay, so it turns out that the train does travel back through Schaarbeck, I just hadn't noticed before, and why would I really.

I had a lovely day with the Canucks. Alison is a superb photographer and we spent quite some time selecting the best of her work, and drinking a little French wine as the day wore on.

I missed running last night but have an appointment with a running friend at 1.30pm. I'm not sure what I was thinking with that, as it's unbelievably cold out there ... so foggy, with thick white ice all over the ground.

Tot ziens.


Alison said...

you failed to mention the North/South confusion... :)

woman wandering said...

well that was kind of embarassing and quite frankly, that was one of those things that i thought i might keep quiet about ... ;)