Saturday, October 01, 2016

One of those weeks

I've been all over the place this last week - literally and figuratively. Following my rather close relationship with gravity and tendency to embrace concrete too warmly (see previous post), I've been nursing my bruises carefully and taking life rather cautiously. That said, I've been very busy with work so my blogging rounds have been interrupted and I see I have a whole list of them to catch up with.

Just as a round up, I had to go to Amsterdam on Monday to teach at the university there. This is something I do regularly, but not often (if you see what I mean). The courses I teach for UvA are mostly online, so I only do the first session face-to-face, meaning I only need to be there about six times a year. Anyway, as I was walking from the station, I had to follow one of the lovely grachten (canals) that the city is famous for and I thought of Jenny Woolf, who asked me about the houseboats in Amsterdam a few weeks ago. So, here are a couple of photos to give an idea of what it's like there.

Looking through a typical granny bike at the canal

One boat that doesn't move very often, I fancy

An old hull with a practical build-up
On Tuesday, I was back in Rotterdam, starting a new course at Erasmus MC, the largest hospital in the city and an important part of the university too. I am teaching a group of HR staff there who have to help people from all over the world, so English is the common language. It's fun and they are lovely, so we all have a good giggle. They liked it especially when I took out my Swiss St Bernard's rescue dog pencil case. Always an ice breaker.



Then on Wednesday and Thursday I was back at the main Erasmus campus, but this time teaching academic writing to PhDers, so as I said...all over the place.

In between these sessions, I've been prepping for lessons, but also trying to work on the Vereeniging. You may remember that earlier in the year I posted some photos of the woodworm effect in the floor of my little back cabin. 



Since then, I've been keeping the bugs at bay with regular doses of anti-woodworm spray, but I realised I'd have to remove the floor after all - it really was way too far gone. However, this was a task far easier thought about than done. I've got most of the honeycomb-that-was-a-floor out now, but there are still two planks I can't seem to budge that will take more drastic measures. Once I have them out, I'll be installing a new floor made from thick plywood. Apparently woodworm don't like it, so it's the safest option, even if not very authentic. I shall paint it, though, so hopefully no one with a critical eye will notice. I'm also doing some more renovations inside, so watch this space for the photos.

So that's been my week! I'm back in Zeeland now and have Hennie Ha jobs to do too. As they say (and I've said too) koop een boot, werk je dood. Well, there are two in our family...my days are numbered, I think... what about you?

18 comments:

  1. Goodness, you have been busy Val.
    On the topic of the English language. I read early this morning that a prediction has been made that by 2066 the TH sound will no longer be used. Hard to believe (?) and yet many people of here in Ireland do not use it either, so perhaps it is not quite so inconceivable. What are your thoughts Val ?

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    1. I didn't know that, Mel, but in the Netherlands they have great trouble with the TH sound, so I imagine they will be very happy to hear this. And yes, you're right, in Ireland the TH sound is barely discernible. I don't suppose either of us will be around in 2066 to know if it's true though :)

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  2. Goodness, Val - do you ever manage to sit down!!!

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    1. During the week, no, Jo, but I make up for it at weekends. I rarely get much going before midday on Saturdays and Sundays! Hope you are well!

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  3. Val, I have tried to post here three times. If my previous 2 posts have appeared in your list, just choose whichever one you like the best! Thank you for the glimpse of the houseboats, was the main message in both previous posts. There seems to be some problem with choosing a profile so I am posting as Anonymous now and hope this appears to get accepted. Jenny Woolf

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    1. I'm so sorry you've had such problems, Jenny! It's odd when we both have Blogger accounts that it's so difficult! Anyway, I'm glad you liked the images. I'll take some more next time I go.

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  4. What I want to know, Val, is how the blue blazes do you find the time to read about nine times more than I do??!

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    1. Umm....maybe ask Grace? I seem to remember she reads a lot too :)

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  5. You are incredible, Val. Simply incredible. I realize that God creates us as individuals and no two people are alike - but there is simply no one else in the world like you or even close. It was fascinating to see the woodworm damage (distressing, too), because I've heard of it but didn't know what it looked like. Wish we lived closer. I'd help you get those boards up. You'll get it done, however. You always do. The price you pay for being simply amazing!

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    1. Now I feel I need to crawl under those floorboards, Steph. You do me far too much honour, but thank you, dear heart! Maybe you've heard the expression it takes one to know one? xxx

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  6. Val, I am open-mouthed! How do you do all this? Your life sounds so full and fascinating...and woodworm on top of it!!!

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    1. Ah, CarolStar. It's no more than you do...just different and in a different place. It sounds a lot, but it's a bit of this and a bit of that...you know how it goes xx

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  7. Super woman or what? How does your brain manage to keep all those balls up in the air? I have done nothing for four weeks as I've been ill and in and out of hospital which has very frustrating as I can't see my kiddies. On the mend now. I wrote a blog post today and changed my bed so I must be getting better but send me some energy please!

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    1. I'm so very sorry you've been ill! I didn't know! And of course you can have my energy...It's winging its way to you, Anne! But be careful! I've managed to hurt my back by wrestling with those floorboards, so don't go thinking you can move mountains yet :) xxx

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  8. Am impressed Val, with how you organise your brain to do the academic stuff as well as the work on the boat...

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    1. I never thought of that, Stephanie. The two aren't mutually exclusive though. I can think about lessons while I do practical stuff. Not sure that it works the other way round though!

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  9. You make me seem perfectly sloth-like in comparison!! The pencil case is just squee, by the way. Hope you've recovered from the fall. I'm almost scar-free now. :)

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    1. Ah, Anne-Marie, I'm glad you liked the pencil case too. I think it's too cute myself. Good to hear you're fully mended and recovered, dear heart! I'm still nursing my bruises, but I'll get there!

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