So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria, God and life, teaching and gardening plus the occasional Duck

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I don’t think I can go on like this any more……


We recently had a visit from our son and his lovely wife. We hadn’t seen them since the wedding, 16 months ago, although we had exchanged infrequent emails, texts and face time on the phones. But not enough.

We had a time that was intense, such fun, chatty, learnt stuff about each other. Caught up.We even discussed what our future is here and how all we have in the UK is the kids. When they left, I decided that this time, I will let the emotion out, but I was in such pain at the Airport, I had to keep a hold on that in front of them.

I know it’s a reflection of how we are finding work and life here difficult. How would it be if they had moved away?

The next day Dave and I were both tired and ratty, and the following day I started the morning miseries, mild panic attacks, fear, light palpitations. Just like when our daughter left us in June.So it wasn’t a hormonal thing, it was my head and grief stepping in. This morning I cried. I prayed in tongues, letting it all out, and I was healed.  I am calm. But I can’t go on like this. It doesn’t change the situation. I don’t want to step on their toes or be the intrusive mother, but 16 months is too long. My family is my life. Sacrifice apart, God, you brought me here. I am a Mother, I will see my kids. If you want me to stay here, you have to trump up more money so I can go to see them more often. If not, next year, I’m leaving Austria. And going home. To where I can see them maybe every couple of months, or even more.

Have I talked to Dave about this – no. and I know that’s not good. I will not be putting this through Facebook either. But he doesn’t want to leave here. And it would be a great wrench to go to. We have quickly slipped back into our calmness and doing stuff, pottering about, filling our days and in six weeks I will be teaching again, having a shift on Meals on Wheels focuses our day.  What is the solution? Dave has been given a verse, about what is sown in sadness will be repaid in joy-he sees this as a us getting loads of money in the autumn, I see it as my situation, but I wasn’t given the verse.

I’m hanging on for Christmas, when we all get together in England. It is my focus.

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So how has your garden grown?


Following a warm and damp winter, we’ve now had a warmish and damp summer. The neighbours are blaming us, saying it came from England – and some of it did!!!!  There was one time in late spring when temperatures got to the low 30s,and today, August 30th, we have all the signs of an early autumn. We’ve harvested the carrots, as the tops were turning, but what a crop!  The parsnips are looking good, but they need to wait for the frost to sweeten them up. We also had loads of peas and broad beans. The courgettes and Okaido pumpkins haven’t liked the colder nights, and have slowed right down in growth, and the strawberries were lousy. The sweetcorn may not ripen with the continuing rain, we’ll see.  BUT loads of redcurrants for a first attempt at wine, and blackcurrants for jam and liquor. Such a difference form this time last year when the whole valley was drying up.

The geraniums haven’t liked the damp and cold, and have reacted by going nuts in their flowers, here another example of a white plant bearing a red flower.


Next year we’re planting less sorts of veggies but more of them, carrots, peas, broad beans, Okaidos, strawberries.

The summer has still gone too quickly. Some of the sycamores are starting to change. I don’t mind a early autumn, if we get snow in November and the crisp dry cold, rather than the soggy dampness of the past few years that went straight to Dave’s chest.

But it’s been an unusual summer. The hay crop has been rained off several times. Cold nights in August.  Sooo much rain. So how has your summer/winter (for those in other climes) been?


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Travel theme:Horizon


These are the hills to the south west of our flat.


It’s here we look to for a lot of our weather comes tripping over these hills.


Just in the edge of the Nockberge mountains. I just love the summer colours, much more than the snow!!!!!  Look at my blog header!


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Doing things I always vowed I’d never do……………


Bombed again

Getting older and doing the parent thing even though the kids aren’t kids anymore, has reminded me of all the things that hacked me off when I was their age. Now I find myself nearly doing the same things to my mortification.  I think their generation is far more verbal about being embarrassed than mine, and they will tell me to my face!

Firstly, I used to go and visit my mother in Somerset and we would go shopping together. My mother was proud of me, and to get his approbation was a hard thing. But that’s another story. I would trundle her around the shops and she would insist on introducing me to every shopkeeper, ‘here is my daughter from Hampshire’. Inside I would be cringing as I saw the uninterested look on their faces, but a little bit happy at her tone of voice. So yes, I found myself doing it when Stef visited and I introduced her to folks. I tried hard to be matter of fact, it was just a normal introduction.  I tried to keep the pride out of my voice. I found myself doing it again when I was telling someone about George and Michelle’s visit. Right or wrong? I want them to know how proud I am but not embarrass them in public- ahhhhhhh maybe I shouldn’t be writing this blog……

Then today I was clearing the spare room, and saw a coat Dave bought last year and has never worn. OH, wonder if George would like this. Then I saw some of the really awful old gits clothes I’ve been given in the past. By people full of love but not realising that one generation doesn’t wear what the other does. I put the coat back in the cupboard.

Any of this familiar to you??

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Just suddenly


I’ve been running a project purely for my own amusement in taking photos along the lane that runs behind the flat. It’ll take a year as I follow it through, but just recently, one trip a view caught my breath and I was 13 years old again. A warm summer,school holidays and I had my first pony, Emma. We would scoot along lanes and footpaths, probably where I shouldn’t and they were worn in the middle, just like this. Oh the joy after years of childhood dreaming of a pony, and now I was cantering, often bareback, fulfilling a dream. Things are felt differently and deeper and fresher and more intensely. And so for a couple of minutes I was back there.


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Meals on Wheels


My absence from posting has been due to a really busy time and I rejoice in that. One of our little forays into the unknown has been volunteering in the village for meals on wheels and we’ve just had our second stint. I do find that right in the middle of the day, it really cuts into doing anything, but what ho! the fun supercedes this!  Dave has been under the Doctor’s knife so I found myself doing the first of the two weeks on my own.

The first time, the Landlady came with us and showed us the new clients who are scattered all over the village. Mostly pensioners and different stages of health. The first new house was a sad case of a man with cancer and on the oyxgen but friendly. His Mum gave me the why are you here in Lungau conversation but she was so sweet, in fact, I think she could do with the meals herself!  We then motored off to a couple by the Church, she’s on a losing diet, and he’s a typical Sergeant major, every time  I back along their little lane, he’s there waving me in and then making sure I dont forget the empty boxes.

Then came the interesting guy. Half way up the hill to Karneralm, he lives in an old farmhouse which we had though empty. The first time I was there, a couple of goats were bouncing around on the road! He has a funny manner and we were warned he is,’difficult’ . My second time, he wasn’t there, but had left a perfectly coherent note on the doorstep asking me to leave the food on the doorstep, I lost my fear of him, if he could so express himself.

A few days later, they told me in the pub that I had brought back a full box. I was so embarrassed. Then they said it was from the Wednesday so I realised it was from this guy, he hadn’t eaten it, and I had the note to show. Phew, that would have been so embarrassing!  Then the next time I was there, I got the abuse about the S&//$§t food, the rest was in dialect which I’m probably glad I didn’t understood. He had again left the food. When I told them so at the pub, they said he had earlier thrown the entire lot out of the window because he wants the eat, ‘Schweinsbraten’ or roast pork every day. The next time I was there he was more polite, I think someone had had a word with him.

We still have the original two, Mr Posch is often on the hill looking after his bees, we thought he was up there dead one time, but he was just having a doze!  He says its a bad year for bees but has promised me some honey -wow!

I think its such a gas doing this, one bonus was  when  I was by the church I met a familiar face, she’s a local artist and has said she will look at my miserable daubs and give me some tips – wow!

Then on my last day, two of the customers gave me a tip and a bottle of wine – I feel humbled!


Weekly Photo Challenge:Texture


I always wondered if you could touch clouds, what they would feel like.


It was amazing the first time I flew, and felt the clouds bump the plane!


So they must have a texture we cant touch!


These shots are a result of the alpine storms we often have!



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