22 July 2010

What’s Happening at Le Brin ?

Jaws - I could have been like this!

Well my guests have gone home now and quite a trip they had too - courtesy of Sleazyjet. They were an hour late when arriving at Nice but it was even worse returning to London. The plane sat on a sweltring tarmac for quite a while and when some muttering started amongst the passengers about the heat, the pilot must have remembered the near mutiny on a flight from Glasgow which sat on the tarmac for 6 hours and so he started the engines and put the air-con on. The plane eventually arrived at Gatwick 90 minutes late, well past my brother's check-in time for his next flight to Glasgow

Having watched the Sleazyjet documentaries on TV and taken on some tips, my brother stormed up to the check-in desk and was about to ‘let rip’ when he was quickly ushered through to air-side only to be informed that an air traffic controller’s strike in Spain had delayed his plane to Glasgow by an hour! 
The next day I read that EasyJet actually had a worse punctuality record than Air Zambia – ha ha!
The weather’s still hot out here – about 30-32 degrees each day and therefore the brambles have escaped yet again so I chose to take my dead PC down to Wolfgang, our ‘tame’ PC engineer who said he’d repaired loads of HP DV6000 series machines. ‘Once I’ve fixed it Tom, it will run like new’. ‘But it is new (well relatively so)’, I told him. I await its return.
Whilst I was down at the coast, J and her pal went off to Ed’s our supermarket which has had a recent refurbishment but still looks like a shed with fluorescent lights. We didn’t need any food but try keeping J away from a shop! As usual in France, you have to watch out for the queue dodgers, old and young alike but Linda (J’s pal) decided to take exception when an Arab looking gentleman did the old 90 degree trick and tried to push in acting as if he’d been queuing all the time. Dirty looks did not work so after he made his last and decisive move, Linda burst forth in French and said ‘excuse moi monsieur – you’re skipping the queue – get to the back and queue like everybody else’, whereupon he said ‘mais je suis handicappe’. ‘I don’t care’, said Linda, not believing a word he said, whereupon the cashier beckoned him forward, pointed to ‘this is the handicapped and elderly aisle’ notice hanging from the ceiling and admonished Linda for being so nasty and cruel. Just then the handicappe Arab whipped out his disabled badge and uttered something in Arabic.
Well – I wish I could have seen Linda’s face. In the car park, desperate to escape the humiliation of it all Linda was cornered by an old French woman. Linda was expecting the worst but she praised Linda and shook her by the hand. We don’t know what she said but ‘bravo’ will probably suffice.
Guy has just left for a month in Ireland and Estonia having just spent last weekend at the Le Mans classic with his dad. They drove up and did a couple of laps in his dad’s Porsche but all that enjoyment evaporated when I took him to the dentist on Tuesday to have the last of four teeth removed. I have to say, his dentist was rather tasty and I was desperately looking for an excuse to have my teeth examined when I remembered the one and only time I previously went there.
Unlike England, the dentist does all the work including any hygene required and when he delved into my open mouth and proudly pulled out a piece of pork I’d had the previous evening (I had brushed my teeth but must have missed it!) and displayed it to everybody in the room, I decide there and then that Mr Zenouda would have no more of my business. The fact that he wanted €7,000 to reconstruct my mouth making me look like ‘Jaws’ in the James Bond films, was definitely the final straw.
And finally, I heard on the radio that there was a major riot in Nice the other night. I immediately thought that the immigrant kids from the dreadful social housing estates to the north of Nice had started their annual summer rioting but no – it was a full scale riot between – wait for it – the police and striking firemen. The police won with 7 firemen being taken to hospital! Only in France.

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