This is just a quick note to warn everyone about a rogue online store called Irisruby (Irisruby.com). We bought an item from them and it turned out to be completely not as described online. It was supposed to be a knitted garment but it turned up as just a print of the pattern on a synthetic fabric. We wanted a refund. On their website they say;
Fast Refund: Send the returned purchase in its original packaging with original label back to our return center. We will issue a refund to your original payment method within a week.
but it’s very suspicious that they don’t have an address for their refund centre anywhere on the website. It’s also very suspicious that their “Contact Us” page only has an email address and it’s a very weird looking email address (MAIL:firstname.lastname@example.org). These should have been enough reasons to avoid purchasing from them, but we didn’t realise until it was too late. It’s impossible to find out where they are operating from just from their website. Read more
I spent a couple of days in Oslo, Norway, last week and I must say I really enjoyed it. There’s something about the Norwegian people and the Norwegian way of life that I really like. It’s hard for me to exactly put my finger on what gives me the feeling of enjoying Oslo, but I’m going to give it a try.
First, at the airport, the immigration staff are courteous and polite. That doesn’t always happen and it’s nice. Then I go to catch the airport train to the city and I’m amazed how everyone on the platform seems to be calm and respectful. I find the same experience when I go to Oslo central station to catch a local train as, in general, everyone is calm and respectful. People actually stand back to allow others off the train first, and then they board in a polite way. Maybe I was just lucky with timing, but I did find it a noticeable pleasure. Read more
When I was living in France a few years ago, I decided I wanted to make my own margarita cocktails. I looked online and found plenty of recipes that were all quite different. I tried quite a few of them but didn’t really like the outcome – I was searching for a particular margarita taste that I liked.
One day, I was discussing this with my French language teacher during a lesson and she told me that her husband had a good recipe. At the next lesson, she brought in this recipe and it turned out this was almost perfect. After making just a few small tweaks, I’ve been using this recipe ever since, and most people who try these margaritas really like them.
Beware though, these margaritas don’t really taste very alcoholic, but they certainly are. There’s a lot of alcohol in each one, so be careful and don’t overdo it.
My favourite margarita recipe
Last weekend, I was doing some early morning scything to cut some grass around my vegetable patches. It’s a very peaceful start to the day that I enjoy very much. The ideal time to cut grass with a scythe is around dawn when the grass is wet with dew. Sometimes when I’m doing this, there are pheasants in the adjacent field, sometimes a fox, and sometimes other birds. It’s like we’re all out and about to get the day started. The image below shows a strip that I’d just finished cutting with the scythe.
[Click image to see full size]
After putting the scythe away, I noticed there where a couple of pheasants (and a crow) on the lawn near the house looking for food (see image below). I didn’t want to scare them off so I stayed quiet and wondered how close I could get to them if I moved very slowly and quietly. Read more
In the middle of March, Gloria and I went skiing in the French Alps. As you can see from this photo, it’s a long way from where I was born – 18,525 kms away to be exact!
It was quite an interesting and eventful holiday and there are a few more photos below, plus a little more on what happened.