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236. BEWARE OF THE DOG

This is the injury I received last June when a German sheperd (not German and not a sheperd) bit me hard on my left ankle and a second time higher behind the knee. 
I was cycling to get back home at about 7.30pm in full daylight in June through the town of Argenton-sur-Creuse, France, to get to St Civran some 20km away. To avoid a heavy traffic road at that time of the day, I took a shortcut I knew through a residential area with little traffic. Wrong choice! To avoid cars I went through DOGS, each bungalow of that area inhabited by 3 dogs each, or just about.
At one stage after cycling some 50 meters past a long hedge, I suddenly saw the head of that dog biting hard into my flesh. I screamed, kicked him in the face, kept on going full speed as I felt in danger if I fell. The dog bit me a second time higher on my left leg and then disappeared. I was wearing long pants so that the first bite was direct into my flesh at ankle level but into the fabric of my pants for the second bite. I…

235. Transparency, honesty, privacy

Shrugging my shoulders at what I disapprove may not be the right attitude. Maybe I should keep writing here what I have in mind. For what purpose? I don't know. For the odd reader like me silently disagreeing.

Those three words in the title - transparency, honesty and privacy - are three different entities as three separate concepts. Yet in the air nowadays they tend to be used one for the other.

Privacy is now seen as a need for hiding, i.e. not hiding away from perving eyes and pathological curiosity, but hiding because you have something bad or evil to steal away from normal curiosity. The wrong doer has changed sides. The bad guy now is the one who wants to hide his private life, his private parts, his private family, his private time and space. Peevish perving curiosity is regarded as normal and healthy...

...because you have to be transparent to be honest. If you have something to hide you must be doing something wrong. It reminds me of something right now. As a young woman …

234. BREACH OF TRUST

When the news came out in the media that the National Security Agency of the USA had been (and probably still is) tracking and spying on everyone of us in Europe, I was happily exchanging thoughts, facts and figures, and photos on FaceBook. When I realized that our European heads of States and ministers were spied on thoroughly as if they were the most dangerous enemies of the American people, I felt sick. As if I had been stabbed in the stomach.

The reaction of a lot of people was to play cool: "Come on, be realistic, spying is a sport, all nations do it"... No, no, not that type of 'spying'. Two things came to my mind, one, the famous book by G. Orwell, and two, a film I had seen in Germany of the way general surveillance was used on the people in East Germany during the communist regime there, called 'The life of others'.

On internet you get used to be tracked. I didn't like it at the beginning when I had to state everything all the time. But recently…

233. New Year 2014

To anyone reading this blog, friend or foe, I have to say thank you. Even though I haven't come up with new posts since my return to France from Ireland there are still people coming here to read my lines. Thanks.

It is strange how a certain way of life shuts you up. Nowadays I just shrug my shoulders and shut up being totally marginal and feeling completely unwelcome, unwanted and useless.

In the English customary habit I am going to write a newsletter of the main characteristics of my past year. The French don't do that. Family news remain more private perhaps and the Christmas mandatory correspondence does not happen. So here comes my 2013 newsletter.

In June a young woman Helper from Japan came to stay with me. She was very friendly and sweet and spoke enough French to converse. She was eager to help me in my garden in Chazelet but as she had no notion of gardening at all, I realized I would not be able to manage that garden for the year anyway. In a garden, there are def…