Two Dutch Girls on a Road Trip to Wiltshire

Road Trip 2017 (2) - Richmond to Chawton to Salisbury.

Good afternoon! Would you like to join me for the second part of my road trip in the South-West of England? A long time wish of my daughter...

Thursday, 12 November 2015

How to give an instruction?

Good evening!
Today was your typical day at college; yawning (somewhat smelly and sometimes even hung-over) young men mixed with fresh-faced bright-eyed peppy young men and everything in between.
I love my job, most of the time.

Yesterday (and the day before - let's not go there) were tough days. I blame the pending storm that's waiting just to the North of here. It's due to hit The Wetlands tomorrow, with wind speeds of up to or even over 100 kph. Young adults they may be, but my guys sure do react to weather conditions!

Anyway, today I taught how to instruct. I always try to make this sort of fun as well as educational, with lots of examples from real life and referring to popular TV shows I know they watch, etcetera.
Yesterday (okay...sigh, let's go there for a bit then) this turned into a shouting match and can be written off as a total disaster, causing my math-colleague-and-neighbor to come storming into my classroom through the dividing door, absolutely livid because "he couldn't hear himself speak anymore". This man is a bit of a prima donna, but he had a point. Let's be fair.

What happened? I had instructed (see titel) the class (of 29 guys and 1 girl) to watch a short video about how to turn your smart phone into a security camera and to list all the imperative verbs they heard. Two guys had to write the verbs down on the whiteboard, and the class (divided into two teams) had to write them down too and afterwards help their team members.
The only thing was, I had forgotten to instruct them not to shout...
So, in the heat of the battle, they screamed their verbs to the front; hence my irate colleague.

Today, mindful of my neighbor, I made sure I instructed the other class (I have 7 of them to teach this curriculum to) to keep their gobs shut, at all times, and to whisper their verbs after walking quietly to the front.
This worked. I had fun watching them skulk up to their mate with the marker, and whisper their verbs into his ear. 

They liked my example about a spider (How to weave a web), especially the bit where I instruct them to insert a time-frame ("Time-frame: A couple of hours. Have a beer whilst waiting") but told me my drawing sucks. They are right. It does.

I found this picture on the internet, it is brilliant and has nothing to do with the subject of this post. Still. I feel like that owl sometimes.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

A Goodbye (by Viggo and Me)

Good afternoon, where ever you are!
This is an Autumnial goodbye of sorts.
I have finally found myself another house, you see. But with a small garden, yay!
This post is to help me say goodbye to my present garden, which I have put in a lot of hours and heaps of love to make it beautiful.

When we arrived here almost 23 years ago, the garden didn't deserve the name! It was a barren plot of land with an untrimmed conifer hedge, a load of nettles and one clump of red tulips. Which has survived to this day, mind, so that were some sturdy tulips!
We started by putting in a liguster hedge and trimming those conifers, and then slowly but surely dug it over, created borders, planted trees, built sheds, put in a greenhouse and finally dug a pond.

Due to circumstances I am leaving this garden, and it is the one thing (although to me it is more than simply a 'thing') that I have trouble leaving behind.

Hi fans, Viggo here!

Yep. It is true. We will be leaving this property in a couple of weeks time. 
I have mixed feelings. On the one hand I will be shot of that Maine Coon, absolutely a positive development. But on the other hand, I grew up here! My woman brought me here as a youngster of tender months, and I walked my first walk outside and caught my first mouse in front of that shed. Not to mention my frogs... I will miss my frogs so much!

But I understand that my woman has no other option. And in fact that I am lucky and should count my  blessings. I could easily have ended up an apartment cat...with only a litter tray. The horror!!!

Most of the plants are already going dormant, but some of them are still making the effort to look their best.
Where I am moving, another part of the same town, I am near the polder as well, so that will be good. And there is a small garden, mostly paving stones but with some shrubs, so I can try to entice the small birds there as well. No room for a pond, but never mind.

She'll do everything to make that garden a tiny paradise for me as well, wanna bet? 
And there will be mice there as well, I'm sure.
She's told me there are quite a few other cats in that street though...I will have to have loads of crunchy nibbles to keep my strength up!

Right, tar rah!