Fortea Morgana :) PeteByrdie certificated Princess
- Jul 14, 2014
- Reaction score
- An Eochair
What hidden depths you possess!
What hidden depths you possess!
Got to admire anyone with a range of favourite mustards. My compliments on your condiments.
And there I was, thinking 'it's Grey Poupon'.In case anyone was wondering:
Gulden's Spicy Brown: A good all-around mustard for hot dogs and sandwiches. Very mainstream and therefore often found on sale. They seem to have changed the formula slightly recently but this hasn't significantly altered the taste. This and Kosciusko spicy brown - similar and maybe just a little better, but harder to find - were the mustards I grew up with.
Kosciusko Coarse Grain: A recent variation of the same brand's spicy brown. Has some horseradish in it, which counters the reduction in spicy taste you sometimes find in coarse grain mustard. This is my wife's favorite, and the one I use when I need a little extra kick.
Alstertor Dusseldorf Style: A simple, yellow colored mustard that is neither overly hot like pure "Chinese" yellow mustard, nor disturbingly bland like the yellow "salad" mustards. I like to use this on foods that have their own spiciness that might conflict with the flavor of the other mustards. I was attracted to it because it comes in a little glass beer mug like Kosciusko used to. I got rid of my old Kosciusko mugs, and now I miss them.
Someone in the Dutch Consulate is a cat-lover!For reasons I have explained elsewhere, my family and I need to return to the UK PDQ. It would be a mammoth undertaking at the best of times - we left the UK in 2015 - and of course these are emphatically not the best of times.
Actually, the mammoth is not the real problem. The elephant in the room is our cat. He's a rescue, and we will not let him be abandoned for the second time in his life. His usual somewhat standoffish nature has changed over the past few days: he has become much more affectionate and companionable. A true emotional support animal, in the phrase du jour.
In its infinite wisdom, the UK has banned the entry of animals into the UK as checked baggage on aircraft. To send him cargo would be prohibitively expensive: in the region of US$5000. And even then, our vet advises, there aren't actually any places available, as the carriers are reducing their cargo flights. Some unscrupulous agents are nonetheless taking fistfuls of money from desperate pet owners.
My unwhinge is this: at present, the Netherlands is closed to third-country visitors. However, the Dutch Consulate in HCMC are arranging a laissez-passer for my family, so that we can fly into Amsterdam, transit across Holland, and catch the ferry from Rotterdam to Hull. With our cat. They have no reason to do this for us: we are not Dutch citizens. We are no longer even EU citizens. And yet they have spent the past week in negotiations with the Dutch Immigration service and the Dutch police to make this happen for us. We are simply overwhelmed by this gesture of immense kindness.
Francis of bloody Assisi, you are.I thought this was going to be a whinge but, phew, luckily not.
A couple of nights ago Mrs Cycleboy and I were watching TV when I heard one of our cats growling in the hall, which is an unusual sound for him to make. On investigation he was standing over what I thought to be a dark flower head, but a closer look proved it to be a tiny bat, maybe an inch and a half or two inches long. I thought it was dead but it moved so I picked it up and it didn't look well, but there was no blood and nothing obviously broken. I was in tears at this point.
Anyway, the more I held it in my palm the healthier it looked, so we put it in a box and my wife took it to our 24-hour vet; I was in no state to drive.
The good news came yesterday in a phonecall. The vet could find nothing wrong and it was released back into the wild.
I'm guessing our cat didn't 'catch' it, as he's rubbish! But he must have brought it in, and all without killing/maiming it.
My wife suggested taking a photograph of the bat, but I didn't want to as I didn't think there was going to be a happy ending. Now I wish I had as I'll probably never get to hold a teeny-tiny bat in the palm of my hand again! I'm guessing it was one of the pipistrelles, but apart from those with huge ears most British bats look pretty similar.
It worked! All the weak links in the chain held, and we are now safely ensconced in Leeds. All five of us. It took a long, long time to check in in Ho Chi Minh City, such that they nearly closed the gate on us, but after that it all went smoothly. They didn't even check the cat's papers at Hull... A huge, huge thank you to the Dutch for making an exception for us.the Dutch Consulate in HCMC are arranging a laissez-passer for my family, so that we can fly into Amsterdam, transit across Holland, and catch the ferry from Rotterdam to Hull.
It worked! All the weak links in the chain held, and we are now safely ensconced in Leeds. All five of us. It took a long, long time to check in in Ho Chi Minh City, such that they nearly closed the gate on us, but after that it all went smoothly. They didn't even check the cat's papers at Hull... A huge, huge thank you to the Dutch for making an exception for us.
Yesterday, the Vietnamese authorities banned all public transport in Ho Chi Minh City, including taxis. If we'd been planning to leave just two days later, we wouldn't have got away - we simply couldn't have made our way to the airport...
I got a letter from HMRC too!I've just had a letter from HMRC saying they owe me £378.60 because I've been over taxed so I've phoned The Mrs because I owe her about £500 from when I was ill and she was rescuing me ..... but her boss answered the phone and she was too busy and "Can I pass a message on?" .. "Please can you tell her I've got three hundred pounds for her." .. "you've got three hundred pounds for me?." .. "Nice try. Very quick. No." ...