Monday, May 16, 2005

For People visiting (and my third post today!)

Quite a few people have asked about visiting again and are too lazy to search back for the old post. Anyway, here is the link to it:

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Summer Time part 2

It is great with the summer being here, we get all the fresh fruit etc. The smell of fresh bread I have made in the mornings, fresh fish and tomatoes to die for. I made fresh Lemonade tonight as well which was GORGEOUS! (Lemons from the garden)
Not sure why I felt the need to tell you about this but......
The people we rent the house off (who live next door) are away in Switzerland at the minute, they are great. We always spend a lot of time with their dogs who are fab. However, last week, we got home and somebody had left the gate open and the dogs had escaped. One was sitting by the gate and I didn't see the other immediately. She eventually came running towards me from her kennel and would not leave my side. She was also shaking. Justine said it must have been gunshots (we get quite a few around here) as she is really nervous anyway but I sensed something more. There was a look in her eyes that I can not describe. Anyway, because of this I decided to stay outside with her for 10 minutes. over the next ten minutes she went from looking a little odd to weeing and pooing (my Mum reads this you know...) everywhere, collapsing and foam coming from her mouth. To cut a VERY long story short, I managed to get the Vet from his bed and made it to the surgery where Cindy (the dog) collapsed outside. The vet gave her injections and various other things to try and keep her going. It turns out she had been poisoned (probably ate food near a bin that was put down for any rats that may have been lurking after Easter) After about an hour we left, she was ok but we didnt know if she would make it through the night. At the time the vet said that we only just made it and another 10 minutes and she would be gone. We got home very weary to find the other dog with foam coming out of her mouth. Back on the phone to the vets, vet back to the surgery. The following morning 'Chocolate' (the second dog) was fine. This amazed us as we thought she was the bigger worry. Unfortunately Cindy had gone downhill rapidly. She did not move for four days literally, not even her eyes although they were open. They put tiny bits of food next to her both to try and get her to move and eat (she was on a drip). We took the other dog in to see her in the hope it might brighten her up, it was so funny.... we lifted Chocolate onto the table so Cindy could see her and, although she didnt move, she realised that Chocolate was near her food so started growling at her! That gave us hope. As we left, the vet said that the following day she would probably die. We went in to see her the following day (as we did everyday) and as I went in I saw her eyes following me so we knew there was a little progress. The followng day she was well enough to be bathed, which was a good job because she stunk (imagine she could not move and still needed the toilet, not pleasant). Two days later she was lifting her head up a little and they left the kennel door open but she would not move to come out. We arrived quite late that day and they explained the situation. She was wagging her tail a lot when I got there so I moved about 5 metres from her kennel and called her. You could see the desperate look in her eyes as she wanted to come to me so badly. She started trying to get up, fell about a bit and slid out of her kennel and VERY slowly staggered all the way to us. There is a youngish girl (23) that works there and she had really fallen for Cindy. She saw and went running to the vet so excited that we had got her to move and walk a little. She then went and did the biggest wee all over the floor (Cindy, not the girl that works there. They would have sacked her for that I think.). I mean literally two or three minutes. Having told us she wouldn't be going home for a day or two, the vet let her go home that night! She had to go back for injections for a few days but now, we think she is fine. A nice end to a horrible story.
One of the worst things about the whole episode was ringing Switzerland to tell her owners. My Greek is not great but trying to explain that on the first night was not easy. They were so thankful for what we did. Anyway, thats it for now
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Summer is Here!

Hello. As the title suggests, it has been so hot here for the last few days. Not that I am complaining but I am not getting to see to much of it because of work! Talking of which, it seems to be going quite well. In the main I am enjoying it although I am not entirely happy with the hours, more precisely the days off. You work a 5 day week for three weeks and then a 6 day week. It doesn't sound that harsh but, the days off change and as a consequence it can mean a tough few weeks. Four weeks ago I didn't have a day off (well, I did but they count the day it takes to get to London and the day It takes to get back as days off!!!), last week I only had one day off, next week I only have one day of and then three weeks after that I only get one day off. So I am sulking! I do actually get a week with three days off but that falls right before my holiday (for Mum & Adrien coming over) so the timing is not great. Anyway, I promised myself three months to see how it goes and we will see how I feel then.
I ordered a new computer which arrived last week. The laptop is brilliant but when you are sometimes in front of the screen for 12 hours in a day (with work and playing poker after) it can be brain numbing as the screen is so close. You try and move it further away but then you can't reach the keyboard. D'oh. Anyway, it is really cool.
I bet you are really glad you came to read this now, I have done nothing but moan, ha ha.
We went out for quite a nice meal yesterday (it was very average actually but I don't want to moan again!). The wine was superb (really!). It is fast becoming my favourite drink. The wine is called Niko Lazaridis. It really is a remarkable red. Of late that is getting preference over Moet & Chandon or Veuve Cliquot so that gives you and idea how much I like this wine. Try and find some if you can. It is not too expensive either, maybe £10-£15 a bottle in the UK if you can find it.
Whilst we were having the meal yesterday we had another earthquake/tremor. It was pretty funny how we (and the Greeks) just went about their business but the tourists were amazed..... And talking of which...... The tourists have started to arrive now and the island is starting to get pretty busy. Its frustrating because all of the prices go up so much. In the winter the shop owners know we live here because there is no tourism, now, if it is a shop we have not been in before, we get charged more. It was funny, I went to our usual phone shop to purchase a Bluetooth headset for 'Skype' (see the past post) and the price was 70 euros. I talked to the shop owner about it and he said, "oh, that is not the price for you, you only pay 40 euros!!"
The Greek language is soming on now as well. I went to the supermarket (where we normally go) and was in the queue talking to an English woman in front of me. The guy at the till heard us speaking English. So, he talks to her in English. Then I arrive and as he knows I live here, he insists on speaking Greek (very fast at that). They make us work for it here.....
Poker has been going ok. The start of the month was great and I was up quite a lot, the last week or so has been dreadful though. Not getting any good cards and what I do get I play badly. Still doing well over the month but now it will just be average instead of excellent. Won a couple of $100 entry SNG tournaments and even did ok in a cash game the other day!
I am wanting to start thinking about a holiday soon. Maybe a long weekend in the middle of July to go and watch the Grand Prix at Donington (motorbikes!). I fancy somewhere new. I still want to see the Northern Lights but I am not convinced they are that easy to see at this time of year? Maybe Canada around December / January, perhaps take in some Skiing as well (don't worry, no snowboarding this time, I am not sure this job will be as understanding if I need over three months of work again! Also, I think learning to walk twice in a lifetime is enough for anyone!)
Oh well, my apologies for the 'miserable git' type post this time around, that's what work does for you ;-)
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Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Lightning Strikes......

This is a joke right? It surely has not been nearly a month since I last updated my blog. Wow, time really does fly. Sorry!
OK, so what have I been up to. Alot.
Firstly, we went Athens for a week, mainly to go to the hospital for Justine and find out about her allergies (Hair Dye!). It wasn't very pleasant for her, the put about 60 small 'plasters' on her back, each with a different ingredient on. We had to wait for two days, then go back. The plan was, if we did not find any answers, we would then have to go back again and have another 60-ish plasters on. Within about an hour of the first lot going on we knew we had found the asnwers but still, they wanted to wait for the two days. It really was not nice for 'J' as she was blistering quite badly. Anyway, after all of the pain and discomfort, they said to her 'Yes, you have an allergy to something in the hair dye'. OK. Thanks for that. In the end they did actually give us a list of 6 things she is allergic to, one of which can be found in anesthetic at the dentist.
After that, we came home and it was a quick turn around for me as I had to go to England for a week to start my training course. (I think I said earlier but, I ogt the job that I applied for). It was good but very tiring. The trip also gave me possibly the scariest moment in my life.
We were about 10 minutes outside Heathrow, after a smooth flight, when all of a sudden ew heard the LOUDEST bang you could imagine, everything lit up incredibly bright. At this point I really thought we were under a terrorist attack or something. Then, as calm as you could imagine, the Captain of the plane came on to the tanny..... 'Hello Ladies and Gentleman, just to let you know about the very loud bang ew all just heard, we have just been hit by lightning. There is absolutley nothing to worry about, we will land safely without any problems at all. We have lost our radar but Heathrow control room will guide us in without problems. There is no damage to the plane.' And that was it! When we landed, there were what appeared to be 'bullet holes' all of the nose of the plane. Apparently there is a 'conductor' at the tail of the plane and the lightning went out of that. One of the most worrying things about it was, it seems, my last 4 or 5 flights have been getting worse and worse. Then I get hit by lightning. I was dreading my flight home.
Anyway, the course went well. The only downside was the dreadful Hotel I stayed at but.....
I got back on the Monday and started work the following day. I worked until this Sunday when it was Easter here. The celebration were brilliant. The food was even better but I am not sure I could eat another piece of Lamb if my life depended on it.
I am also off today and we have been at the beach for most of it. It has been incredibly hot the last few days, 30 in the shade. The tourists also started arriving on Sunday so, my peace and quiet has now gone for the rest of the year!
Finally, a quick word about a superb 'program' I discovered whilst I was in the UK. It is called 'Skype'. It is the same as MSN Messenger except for phone! If both parties are running it, it is free to talk for an unlimited time. If the other party does not have it, you can call there land line. It doesnt matter where yo uare in the world, just where you are calling to. An example is the UK. It costs only $0.03 per minute. Very cheap!! The web address is and is certainly recommended. Until next time...
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