Well, anyway, it's in my scheme of things to make life easier and more pleasant for the remaining five years that I have still to work. Yes, still five years to go. That's the result of the increased retirement age here. Such is life.
Anyway, in the nearer future, we have a few things to look forward to and I am clinging on to these metaphorical pieces of driftwood to keep me going.
|Spain...where I'm going in April!|
The first is a trip to Spain to visit a friend in April. I visited her last year, and also discovered another former teaching friend from Rotterdam lives close by, so I'm hoping to see her too. It is a lovely area south of Valencia and inland from the sea. I loved it and although it's not quite warm enough for my winter plans, it would be a good contender otherwise.
|The historic boat lift at Thieu near La Louviere|
The second is a boating trip. In May, we are taking the the Hennie H to Belgium and going to the famous boat lifts at La Louviere and also to the really monster 72 metre one at Strépy Thieu. I am so excited about this I can barely wait and would love to just hibernate between these two trips so I can get this cold spell over and just go. The ascent of these lifts in our own boat has been on my wish list for years. I hitched a lift (excuse the pun) on the historic ascenseur on someone else's barge a few years ago, but I've never been up the monster at all. I'm so glad I haven't lost my ability to be awed by these things.
|The seventy two metre lift at Strépy|
|And another view of it. This section on the right is the|
upper canal. Now imagine starting at the bottom of
the building and ending up cruising along this top part!
As for the current situation, my group of Syrians are doing well, although we've hit a bit of a motivation plateau. I can't say I'm surprised as this time of year gets to most of us and I can only imagine what it's like for them being so far from their loved ones. I am aware some of them are really homesick, so it's quite sad and I really feel for them. I only hope I am helping them with some light and laughter during the lessons.
In other news, you may have noticed I've published a new book. African Ways Again slipped onto Kindle at the end of January, so I'll need to add a page about it here, but for now, I hope you don't mind if I shamelessly put the link below to the preview. Thanks a million, allemaal, and have a great week!