Events, Flashbacks, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

September Sum Up

More than three weeks ago, I stopped blogging regularly because I needed to prioritize and place my attention elsewhere. Taking a break does not mean stopping completely! So, here is my September summary:

  • 7th: Bought broodjes and cycled to the Gavers with D to have a picnic lunch while enjoying the nature. Went to container park, library, and did grocery in the afternoon. Have barbecue for dinner.
  • 8th: Finally used up the rest of the moss remover on the terrace. The rinsed out container may go into the PMD bag for recycling.
  • 9th: D’s new computer arrived!
  • 10th: Went to Colruyt to stock up the pantry.
  • 11th: Cycled to Hoeve De Kerpel to have a beer. 20km baby! Oh by the way, Bijenhof café had stopped since 30 September 2019.
  • 12th: Open Monumentendag. Met a woman at one of the monuments we visited. She told us interesting stories of her years growing up in the house. I love stories like that.
  • 13th: D’s first day of attending a one year programming course.
  • 14th: Walked to the baker for bread, and then did some promo purchases at Delhaize. The bag of grocery ended up to be rather heavy!
  • 15th: Tidying up and reorganizing the refrigerator and freezer.
  • 16th: Renewed my library membership on Malaysia Day. Because I did not show my ‘ancient’ library card, the process took longer than I expected and was a bit chaotic.
  • 17th: To the library again, this time with D, to get our Covid safe bracelets. After dinner, we used these to attend Prebraderie at the city park.
  • 18th & 19th: Stadsfeest Harelbeke. Music, people, drinking, eating, and late night cycling!
  • 20th: Finished the silicone touch ups in the living room.
  • 21th: Made grape juice.
  • 22nd: Baker and Delhaize walk. Made grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch using grated cheese for the first time.
  • 23rd: Cleaned windows. About time! 😛
  • 24th: Pay Malaysian and Belgian bills.
  • 25th & 26th: Easy going ‘no events’ weekend. I am having sneezing fits. Uh-oh, Covid?!
  • 27th: Made yet another batch of grape juice. Someone besides me needs to be drinking these…
  • 28th: To the baker and Delhaize. Bought leeks because they were on promotion. Said to a woman whom I walked pass on my way home, “Ook voor de prei?“, and dangled my grocery bag in front. 🙂
  • 29th: Sister’s birthday. Sent her a photo of my vase of wind-blown sunflowers and today’s cat trivia. Harvested a cucumber from the vegetable patch and pickled it. Repaired and spray painted a flower pot. Moved a few potted plants indoors.
  • 30th: The last day of September. Did some home projects of dusting off the shelf tops and filling up hairline cracks. Harvested two of my six pears!

Cheers to productive days, memorable events, and exciting changes.

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Events

Pause

For years, I have made it a habit to write a blog post every other day. This will be my last entry, for I am hitting the pause button for now. Current events have made it necessary for me to allocate time and effort in doing some major ‘course corrections’ in life. Time to research, ponder, and then take action.

Blogging stops being a ‘have to’ activity.

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Belgium, Events, Food & Drinks, Travels

Beer Festival 2021

Yesterday afternoon, D and I left for Ghent to attend a well-loved beer festival that was cancelled last year. The car was parked at a free park+ride zone and we took two short tram rides to reach our destination. Public transportation was painless, despite the compulsory mask wearing measures.

Beer festival was as normal as it gets in this Covid-19 era. D and I enjoyed six beers in total, enjoyed being amongst people, and the better weather in the beginning. It started raining when we were at our last glass of beer, but it was alright because we moved closer to a tent and I had my umbrella up.

Because of the worsening weather, we did not visit the city centre as I originally wanted to. We just took our two tram rides back to the parking. City trip will be for next time…

On our way back to West Flanders, D had to drive through a heavy rain storm! Scary, but we got home safely.

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Belgium, Events, Numbers

Sixteen Days

Olympics 2020 in Tokyo has ended. The past 16 days went by unnoticeably fast!

Belgium won seven medals. Not bad for a country which does not invest much in top sports.

Olympics 2024 will be in Paris. I wonder what the world is going to be like by then. Three years is not such a long time from now.

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Events, Flashbacks

Garage Sales

Today, our neighbourhood is having our first ever garage sales. Because D and I do not have much to sell, we have asked his mother if she is interested. Currently, our side-walk is filled with the stuff from D’s sister and her family.

My first ever garage sales experience was in 1994. How fun it was visiting neighbourhoods which were having their annual spring cleaning garage sales, going through the mountain of stuff, and chatting to people who were just as interested in us international students as we were over them. Back in those days, almost every Asian you meet in Kalamazoo have something to do with the university. 🙂

In our first outing, my cousin bought a $50 television which we could hardly fit into the car. I do think that the joy and laughter we derived from that old thing made up for the monetary cost and transportation.

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Events, Jibber Jabber

Play Street

It is that time of the year again. Summer holidays. Schools out. Parents have to think of ways to occupied their little ones.

This afternoon, our street is blocked for the speelstraat. Right now, several of the neighbourhood children are actively running about, cycling, playing with each other, and screaming their cute little heads off!

D and I do not mind the racket that much, we slept through Gentse Feesten for goodness sake. Happy children who play well together make for a lively and healthy neighbourhood. Maybe we will join the parents for a drink later in the day. No kids of our own, no responsibilities, no pressure…

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Belgium, Events, Flashbacks, Jibber Jabber

Burgers & Beers

D, his mother and I went to a nocturnal shopping event at a garden centre yesterday evening. The parking was packed. There was a line going in. And a line coming back out.

At the check out counter, the cashier gave us coupons for a burger and beer each. As we sat there enjoying our free burgers and beers, and listening to live accordion music, we realised that it was more than a year ago that we attended such an activity. My record shows that our last normal activity was the lunch we three had at the hospital cafeteria on the 10th of March, 2020! Talk about pre-corona era…

Nonetheless, I do believe that we have adjusted our lives effectively to the crisis all this time. Shortly after the first lockdown, D and I have enjoyed drinks, amongst other people, at the Lokaal. We have also participated in simple careful activities with the neighbours last summer. Despite the restrictions and health measures imposed upon us in the past year and a half, D and I did adapt and still get to do our usual activities in reduced mode. We carried on with grocery shopping and errand runs as normal as possible. We even enjoyed the occasional city trips and train rides. Most importantly, we have survived this without getting sick. Amen to that. 🙂

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Belgium, Events, Health

Vaccinated

D and I left the house at eleven twenty this morning. And I was out of the vaccination centre at ten past noon. The whole process was quick, detailed, systematic and efficient.

When being ushered from one segment to the next, I do feel like I was going for the slaughter. However, that thought dissipated immediately when I think of the protection and freedom I am going to get in exchange for a single jab. 🙂

Now that is done, my objective for the next two weeks is to build up enough antibody against Covid-19. Yeah to that!

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Belgium, Events

Golden Anniversary

This afternoon, D and I plus the sister-in-law attended an official ceremony recognizing the parents’ 50 years marriage. Even though the event was held outdoors (one of the health measures), the mayor (yep, the man himself) managed to talk and chat with us for an entire hour.

Aside from the official ceremony, my parents-in-law also got several gifts from the city. What a lovely gesture, to reward and recognise couples who have gone through life together for decades. To appreciate these long standing relationships that serve as the foundation of a stable society.

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