So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


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Re-released today on Kindle!!!!!

Newly revised AND with a taster for my upcoming book, ‘The Baize Door’!

Tom

Fleeing to the countryside from London to escape another bad relationship, Clare hopes to make yet another new start that will finally sort out her life. She finds things aren’t so simple as her best friend Sylvie is abroad leaving Clare to share the house with enigmatic and moody Alex. Clare soon finds work and a new livelihood but still finds that all her relationships with men seem doomed to failure. Alongside the tale of Clare’s new life runs the story of Tom’s troubled childhood and adolescence. Set in the 1990s, before widespread use of Mobiles and the Internet, ‘Tom’ is not only a sinister tale of lost identity, possession and mental illness but also a journey to fulfillment and love as lives are changed, healed and restored.

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Something to cool you down in the UK………

As the UK is enjoying a heatwave a bit like the summer of 76, I thought peeps might like these cool piccies!


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Summer Sunday

After a really busy week, Dave and I actually had Sunday off. It was tempting to laze in bed, but Linda asked me to take in the gear and set up for the Sunday service. Darn! So off we trotted, and found Ada, the ex church secretary was taking it. I had been asked again if I would be on the PCC, but had asked for time to think so didn’t really want to find out.So we set up, and waited, and no one else turned up! OK it’s summer and we have three services this month. So Ada chucked the service out the window and we sat together the four of us, and she read us her sermon. It was all about putting on qualities such as patience and kindness. She likened it to going into a shop changing room and trying them on. It was like an extension of Joyce Meyer’s teachings on how when waking we can decide how our feelings will be, not be a prisoner to them. After a blessing, we sat and chatted about all sorts of things, like how clothes can define us as people, we could put on how we are. Then we got on the beggars and even church planting. We were there longer than the normal church service and it was lovely.

Afterwards, Dave and I went on a now more usual walk from Einach to Stadl for lunch in the restaurant. It was such a beautiful day, in the low 20s, sun and clouds and a strong breeze. Dave and I are both reading the Prophets, and I was telling him how my reading of Isaiah is blowing me away. We then got to the Resataurant, and Swingle now knows to play this game and didn’t beg too much, and didn’t bark at anyone. Then to my joy, I found they had Rum and Rasin ice cream and I had a double cone!! Another walk in the sunshine then a peaceful afternoon watching Off roading on youtube and old british films.After my week of feeling so frustrated about getting on with my book, tired because the dog has had me up during the night, being annoyed that I have no English course to teach in the autumn, of hating the holiday houses and gardens, I know God has begun to change my bad heart yet again,today has set me up to this week with peace.

P.S. I get told off by Dave for being pessimistic, but after such a lovely day, as I write, this week has gone to pieces……………………………


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Family car

Seen at a local ‘Oldtimers meeting’, I guess these extras effectively makes your tractor a four seater family car……..


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Changing Lungau

We’re in our 12th summer here, and I’m still bowled over by living here, but I was suddenly aware of how it’s changed. There has been a cycle on the snow with poor years and rich years, the long term view on this I’m yet to see. The summers are definately warmer, but maybe that’s worse because with the business, being out grass cutting I can’t avoid it!When we first came here, we never heard a lot of grasshoppers (Heuschreckers- hay scarers), except when we  went over 30 km towards Murau and the low lands. In the past two years, they’ve worked their way up this valley, and now when I go through the fields, there’s the constant song, making me feel we’re getting Mediterranean. Of course there is the Prangtag at Zederhaus which celebrates God delivering them from a plague of locusts, not quite the same thing, but maybe we will be invaded!The bird population is changing too, I now hear Pigeons in the woods, and in the St Margarethen valley, I’ve seen a small flock of them, even in the winter. I wonder how they will affect the crops and population balance? The Fieldfares arrived about 5 years ago when there was a bumper crop of vogelberries, and they’ve stayed. I’ve also seen Magpies, which I’ve only seen once before here. There have even been sightings of Storks stopping on their way through, but no nests like in Germany!And the people? Definitely more foreign voices in the shops, and its not just that I can distinguish them now.  We have more supermarkets, and this is why we’ve given up growing veggies, not just the lack of time but also that we can now buy parsnips and sweetcorn. There’s a wider range of visitors here too. We never used to see French or Belgian cars, but they’re quite common now. Never seen a Spanish one!  Lungau is beginning to be more popular now that the Tourist boards have been dragged out of the dark ages. There are more events in the summer, but a singular lack of imagination, there’s only so often you can be thrilled by seeing a Samson dance, hear a brass band, drink beer and eat a frankfurter and semmel. But maybe that’s just me!There is a movement to promote Lungau foods and cookery. There are more potatoes being grown in the soil which is perfect for them. It used to be that thy were free from the blight, but that’s not so much as the temperatures in winter are warmer and don’t kill all the bugs. But the Lungau Eachtling is being promoted as something special.Some of the huts such as the Ludlalm on Preber have been rebuilt losing something of the traditIon, big plates, small portions and high prices.  Weisspriach, one of the most beautiful areas has had new car parks added after it won a national prize. People say to me that the tourists are wanted as they bring work into an area with little for the younger folks, but how long until the area gets ruined by the influx?

A shared breakfast

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