Samantha and SUNCT

Posted by on July 14, 2015

JULY 2015

Bonjour All,

Well, its 36 degrees here and 38 degrees tomorrow!! I live in the pool and JS lives in the fridge; we occasionally meet in the garage next to the freezer.

Having struggled with our changeover from Wanadoo to SfR, both sites trying to compete with each other, I think we have mastered the enigma of both, and our emails are now crossing the channel.


JS had a special birthday in February, a perfect excuse for a party I suggested, but he was adamant that it was to be a holiday in Thailand.
Who was I to argue?
Vaccinations essential. Told JS he needed everything going, just in case he got bitten by a rabid dog, slept with an HIV positive male, drank drain water or ate a curried cat!

It took him a week to recover from his injections poor man. However, it was all worth it, and he was in his element in Phuket: Thai massages, stretching his little body into positions even Houdini would be proud of, yoga classes (he hated these but the teacher was to die for) and daily 7am beach runs with Samantha.

JS Checking out her milk teeth…

Samenthas Milk Teeth

Desperately trying to impress Samantha…

Impress Samantha

I’ve got 2 daughters already. Don’t need another…

Got 2 daughters


How’s the suntan going?…


52 shades of Grey!

50 Shades of Grey


SUNCT Syndrome.

John’s facial problem now seems to be well controlled medicinally.

A recent MRI in Marseille proved a little traumatic.

He is very claustrophobic, so was prescribed an anti-anxiety tablet (any excuse to add another tablet to his long list!) to be taken 30 mins before the scan.
The radiographer calls him into the room.
A totally relaxed JS then starts taking his trousers off!
“This is a head scan Monsieur Speer; keep your clothes on please!

Result:- A dodgy trigeminal nerve, but has been advised by Dr Matharu (consultant neuro. in WW1) to have an MVD of the trigeminal nerve (don’t google it, especially you JS, it sounds like something that Hannibal Lecter performed on his victims!) Trust me John, it’s nothing compared to having babies or a hysterectomy!



Living here has certain advantages besides the weather. We have Dutch, Danish, Belgium and of course the French living close by.

We have visited Brussels curtesy of Jean Pierre and Tiny and we were escorted by Caspar and Ellen to Amsterdam to experience, trams, space cake and the red light district, to mention just a few tourist attractions! We did see the Rijksmuseum and Ann Franck’s house as well I might add. Trams and cyclists rule the roads there. Pedestrians are at the very bottom of the pecking order.

Taking no notice of the green for go, because it’s green to go for everyone else at the same time, not to mention the tram lines, strategically placed to trip you up mid centre of the road, the smile on the tram drivers faces as they come closer to JS and Ellen struggling to reach the other side of the avenue, stiletto heel jammed solid in the metal rail, “That’s 6 of the buggers I’ve flattened this week”

A few days in the UK, which is quite enough on Tessa’s organic diet? Natural soya yoghurt, coconut Virgin Olive oil, whole earth peanut butter and raw sunflower seeds, not to mention the suggestion of a colonic irrigation!

My body almost became 100%pure!



Despite all these jollies, we have been hard at it on the DIY front. From a man who could perform a gastric tortion on a St Bernard in the middle of the night to one who refused to change a plug, or remove a light bulb will now attempt anything and everything, with the occasional “phone an expert” Colin or Jean Pierre.

I, the practical physio, capable of changing ferrules on walking sticks, POP removing, always available to attend Mr J’s ward round at the Priory, even turning up on time, and on sunny days, had a brilliant team at Welly Road, had Les the cleaner/plumber, Pip the consultant radiologist/joiner and Ikea expert, John O’Shea the nursing director, garden and drain ladder man, Kate the University lecturer, problem solver/dog walker and reluctant window cleaner, and finally Carole, my Rock and diamond white partner; my Dad used to arrive occasionally, helped himself to a gigantic G&T, watched me struggle with an intricate bit of wiring, then clearly bored, gave me £50 and said “Get yourself a professional Vanessa!” and then left.

NOW? I just sip champers and watch JS at work, or guide visitors to the Jobby list pinned onto their bedroom door.

Get me a glass of wine!

Get me a glass of wine

 Where’s John?

Wheres Wally (I mean John)

 Bloody thing!

Bloody thing


 The Batchelors

Tess and Keith visited Monaco last weekend. They arrived at Nice, were picked up by a chauffeur in a stretch lionize, and wined and dined on a floating palace for the whole weekend. Sometimes I think my eldest is surpassing even her mother!



Tash continues to drive miles, persuades the army to buy sprouts on culinary days at head office, shows the chef how to cook proper apple crumble, English style, and has been known to try and explain what Toad in the Hole comprises of.

Tash and Franklin, like Tess and Keith are proud owners of dogs, the only thing they have in common, is both Arni and Jackson are absolutely besotted with their mummies and are completely bonkers.


Fawlty Towers

We had to do a Nice airport run two days running last week, so decided to pop over to Italy for a cheese and pasta shop. Booked a hotel on Sounded OK to me, but I blew it once again.

Only read one recent review = 7/10 – “<hotel name deleted on advice of the now worried about litigation Gerbil> – pool, restaurant, shuttle bus to the centre of the town, large room, a big bed (very unusual in Italy but essential when ones husband snores), a bar, Wi-Fi and parking.”

The closest thing I have ever been to staying in Faulty Towers.

Basil greeted us, all 7ft high, ears at a 90 degree angle, an enormous smile but sadly no teeth. Needed to be introduced to Mum underarm as well!

“We have upgraded you to a sea view room” However, the courtesy bus driver is off sick, so no courtesy bus, the chef has the same lurgy as the bus driver, so no food or room service.

“It will cost you an extra €4 each if you need pool towels, 6 euros to use the Wi-Fi in your room. Don’t even attempt to open the safe, it has been jammed by the last guest”.

And finally, “Breakfast is included in your room rate, but it’s in the basement because we had a flood in the dining area last week. Do have a pleasant stay, and if there is anything I can do for you please do not hesitate to ask, however, I am off duty in 10minutes.” Bring back the Yurt.


JS books a room!

As a surprise, JS booked Rome for a few days.

Now, this is a first for him and last attempt to book anything on line.

A highly excited Olif, mainly because JS has organized this trip entirely on his own after 25 years of marriage, but also because I have never been to Rome. EasyJet from Nice to Leonardo de Vinci airport for 25 euros, catch the coach to the centre.

We arrive at the hotel – “Your booking Mr Speer is for next week, not this week!!” Have you ever tried to find a reasonably priced hotel in Rome in the spring??


To hell with the diet!

To hell with the diet


Bug Hoover

Every month here brings a different insect, always larger than anywhere else in Europe. In June we have butterflies, green tree frogs and masses of horse flies.

Last night Shipman sucked up 38 of these buggers (in the hoover not in his mouth). “Horseflies, nil point, Shipman 38!” It’s sad what amuses him nowadays!

We have been assured by Mathias that come the 30th June, at precisely 10pm, these horrid things will disappear; only the French could possibly predict this!

Meanwhile, and 5 days into July, they are still here, however, they are really really furious trapped in my hoover,


And finally

And finally, excellent news, in 8 days’ time, I receive my OAP allowance. The bad news is that JS has suggested I put it into the joint account and not my designer outfit account!!. HOW UNFAIR IS THAT?

So on that note…

All my love

Olif. Xxx

…You’re not 62 Nessie, your 18 with 44 years of experience. (Thanks JS)









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