Sunday, 20 December 2009

French word of the day: neige

This can be a noun, as in 'aeroport de Bruxelles fermé a cause de fortes chutes de neige'. Or the third person singular of the verb 'neiger' as in 'bordel je reste bloquée a Bruxelles et je ne sais pas rentrer chez moi pour les fetes de Noel parce que ce f***u neige ne cesse pas de tomber!' Actually I didn't use the verb there, did I? Well spotted. Ummm how about 'Il neige', tout court. There we go, nothing like stating the obvious.

Yesterday, there was Bach. There was Bach for two hours and an amazing bass soloist and gorgeous cor anglais and French horn and a sold-out Palais des Beaux Arts and it was fabulous.

My parents were supposed to come and watch and listen to said Bach, and I was to return with them to England via the Eurotunnel. Last time they came to visit I insisted that they use the ferry (because I like slot machines and Nescafé and I like my wipe-clean lounge chairs to come with a lovely sheen of chip grease. oh and those vacuum-flush loos.), so this time it was their turn to choose (my Dad gets seasick).
I'm sure you've all heard about the Eurostars that broke down in the tunnel because the sudden change of temperature between snowed-under France and the warm dark tunnel made the electronics crash or something like that. And the evacuations and the lack of water and electric light and the overflowing loos and so on.
Anyway the upshot is that my parents couldn't get on a shuttle and they had to go home, and I am now joining the mad rush to get out of Brussels before Christmas.

Ooh it isn't half dramatic. We do love a bit of drama here at Pinolona.

And this all seems somehow awfully familiar.

I'm left with a choice (here comes the interactive part!).
I could book a flight back for a couple of days time, trusting in the Belgian Météo; and hoping that Brussels international airport will reopen tomorrow and that amazing and lovely British Airways will get me home in time for Christmas Eve (I also need to book a flight back come to think of it).

I could get on a ferry somewhere as a foot passenger - this is a slightly risky strategy. It's certainly possible to get to Calais but it's a lengthy process. Trains are still running though so we could be on to a winner here. I could try and sail from Oostende, which has the advantage of being much more reachable by train (and doesn't involve going to France, for extra bonus points). However, TransEuropa Ferries calmly informed me that they don't take foot passengers, for insurance reasons. So I would have to count on being able to make friends with a British (or Polish) truck driver and hitching a lift onto the boat. A risky strategy.

I could try Eurolines, but their website doesn't specify whether they go via ferry or tunnel. Again a risky strategy.

I could hitch hike...

Or... I could stay in Brussels over Christmas, watch the Pasterka on TVP Polonia and brew up some of the barszcz recipe that The Polish Chick sent me. I have hot chocolate, I have a duvet, I have over 200 cable tv channels in at least four different languages and I have an emergency bottle of Absolut in the freezer compartment. Joyeuses Fetes indeed.

What do you reckon?

ps, here's my balcony snowman. It doesn't even compare to Laura's but I was a bit pressed for time. Will try again this afternoon. Wait. It is afternoon. Later this afternoon.

3 comments:

Laura and Ben said...

I hate to say this... but your balcony snowman looks a bit like a willy. I like it all the more for this reason.

Mine is now buried under the fresh layer of snow. My snowman, not my willy. I don't have one of them...

WV - noparsty. That's right, no cornish pasty for you if you don't get home!

Lilacspecs said...

Ugh. I don't even know what to tell you on this one.

pinolona said...

I know it's a bit pathetic. It's really not meant to look like a willy. I made it on Friday morning and I was a bit pressed for time...