Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Roaming the bookshelves

One of the fun things I like to do in my parents' home when I am there on holiday is check on the bookshelves what I used to read and what I have not read yet among the books there. Sometimes I just take one or two of them and flick through the pages, or sit down and give it a good read. Our time here is ending soon, I will miss it. I found a few books that I had forgotten we had since my teenage, books I had promised myself to read when I had the time. I am tempted to bring them home, but 1)my wife forbid me to burden our own bookshelves with more and 2)I feel like they belong to my parents' place and can only be read here.

Fin de décennie

Nous sommes le dernier jour de décembre, dernier jour de l'année donc, c'est la fin d'une décennie. Je n'aime guère les célébrations du Jour de l'An et ce, depuis mon enfance. Le Jour de l'An, c'est hier comme aujourd'hui les vacances qui se terminent. Aujourd'hui, je range d'ailleurs les décorations de Noêl avec mon père, le plus lentement possible. Ce n'est jamais plaisant, la fin des Fêtes. Mais cette décennie a été plutôt bien. Vers la seconde moitié, elle a même été excellente. D'un point de vue personnel, je serai au moins devenu père avec l'arrivée de petit loup. Je vais me garder ça en tête dans les moments difficiles et mes moments de mélancolie, qui sont en général nombreux en janvier. Plus encore qu'à l'habitude, ce qui n'est pas peu dire pour moi.

"I read past my bedtime"

Sometimes, there are gifts you give to people and you wish you had bought it for yourself. This mug is the Christmas present I bought for my sister-in-law, the girlfriend of my brother Andrew, in a local coffee shop called Passion Café. My wife and I love it there. The staff even did the wrapping there, so I killed two birds with one stone and they did a much better job than I could ever have done with the wrapping. I have my own mug at home that certifies me as a bookworm, but this one is just as good and I find the mug as funny as it is accurate. Apparently this suits my bro's partner too, as she really liked it. We have plenty of mugs at home and more than we have room for, but I was very tempted to buy another one for myself.

L'Auberge des 21

Nous sommes allés à La Baie il y a deux jours. J'y ai pris en photo l’Auberge des 21. Je partage ici parce que c'est une pas si pire photo hivernale. J'y suis allé quelquefois, pour des brunchs surtout.

Monday, 30 December 2019

The comfort of old clothes

One of the good things I rediscovered coming back to my childhood home for the holiday: the comfort of my old clothes. I have some very, very old jumpers here, some that are about twenty years old. Worn out, out of fashion (of course), sometimes with fainted colours, but so very, very comfy. My wife is a bit embarrassed by the look of them and begged me not to wear them when we go out or when we receive visitors. I still wear them inside.

Le fromage en grains

Petit moment de plaisir rérional aujourd'hui (hier quand vous lirez ces lignes): nous sommes allés faire une petite virée à La Baie et nous sommes arrêtés à la Fromagerie Boivin. Nous y avons acheté du fromage en grains frais du jour, on a même vu comment il se faisait. Du fromage qui fait squeek, squeek. Mon fils l'a adopté immédiatement, à ma grande fierté. Il l'appelle "sticky cheese". J'aime cette expression, qui je crois décrit assez bien ce qu'est du fromage en grains. Petit loup a aussi été impressionné de voir la fabrication du fromage. Parce que oui, il y a des vitres où l'on peut observer le processus.

Sunday, 29 December 2019

New (Anfibio) boots

Something terrible happened recently: my old Pajar boots broke apart (almost) shortly before e came here. The same thing happened to my wife's boots. So we decided to buy new ones here,I wanted to buy Pajar again, but they had none at my size where we went, so I went for the something equivalent: Anfibio. Also Quebec made, because I only trust something local for my winter boots. They sure look good and they keep me warm and dry in the snow.

Café en canne

Non, non, je ne veux pas parler dans le titre de ce billet de café en canisse. Je veux parler de café à saveur de canne en bonbon, ou canne de Noël. Ma femme en a acheté une à Passion Café, un spécial du Temps des Fêtes. Je n'y ai pas goûté, car je déteste le café, mais j'ai trouvé que ça avait l'air assez cool, alors j'ai pris une photo. Les cafés, je trouve souvent qu'ils ont de plus belles apparences que de bon goût. Si ça avait été u n chocolat chaud, je l'aurais peut-être même essayé. Je n'ai pas mangé de canne en bonbon depuis des années, je pense que la dernière fois je devais avoir quinze ans tout au plus. Ceci est sans doute mon dernier billet de Noël d'ici à l'année prochaine, mais je vais essayer un jour de bloguer sur le sujet des cannes de Noël plus en détails. Parce que oui, je suis parfois porté sur ce genre de sujet trivial. D'ici là, vous avez une photo festive pas pire.

Saturday, 28 December 2019

Christmas leftovers

Here comes the post-Christmas blues. On the 28th, it had to be expected. I have something to sooth it, at least for a bit: we still have leftovers from the Christmas supper and we will eat them tonight. Like for the réveillon, there will be turkey, stuffing,apple sauce, cranberry sauce, pork pies, olives and so on. Not as much as when Christmas was in full force (see picture), but enough to calm for a moment my melancoly.

Le premier bonhomme de neige de Wolfie

Il fallait que je partage ça sur le blogue: vous voyez le premier bonhomme de neige fait par petit loup, avec l'aide de son père, son grand-père et sa mère. Il a pas mal neigé hier ici et la neige était assez collante aujourd'hui pour en faire un. Il avait déjà fait il y a quelques jours un tracteur de neige (c'est ce qu'il voulait faire d'abord, je vous jure), aujourd'hui il a voulu faire, ou nous faire faire, un bonhomme de neige en bonne et due forme. Il est pas trop mal réussi, je trouve, même si la neige n'était pas des plus collantes. Et, comme c'était son premier, je me suis fait une obligation de le partager ici. Il aura vraiment vécu son premier vrai hiver à la fin de notre séjour.

Friday, 27 December 2019

The "real" Yule log

I had wanted to blog about it for a while, so I am doing it now, as it is still Christmas. You can see on this picture a real Yule log. I am not taking about the bûche de Noël cake, which we also have every Christmastime (two bûches in fact) but a proper log of wood, which we put in the fireplace at midnight exactly on Christmas morning. We also attach on this log pieces of paper where everyone of us has written a wish. The log is supposed to grant the wish within a year (or eventually). So far, it happened only once: my brother PJ had wished for a Pound Puppy as Christmas present, and he received it that very night. We had learned the tradition from one of our TV programs when we were children and we have made it our family tradition since then.

Question existentielle (354)

Une question existentielle qui est je crois encore inédite sur Vraie Fiction. Enfin je crois. La voici donc:

-Est-ce juste moi ou est-ce que Noël et les Fêtes se terminent de plus en plus tôt d'année en année?

Thursday, 26 December 2019

Because it is the Feast of Stephen...

...I am sharing again, as it is a tradition on this blog, Good King Wenceslas, sung (again) by Loreena McKennitt in one of the best take of the carol (in my opinion of course). For others, today is/was Boxing Day, for me it is/was the last bit of true Christmastime, when the Christmas season is not quite over yet. And you?

Anneau viennois (noeud à la crème)

L'un des avantages de retourner chez soi pour les vacances, c'est qu'on peut redécouvrir la bouffe qu'on n'avait plus mangé depuis des années. Pour moi ça veut dire pleins de choses, dont ça: les anneaux viennois de la Pâtisserie Mergeay. J'appelle ça comme ça, parce que ma mère leur donnait ce nom, mais le vrai nom selon leur site c'est un noeud à la crème. Grosso modo, un croissant fait de deux anneaux avec de la costarde au centre. Et ce n'est que chez Mergeay que j'en ai mangé. Je n'en ai trouvé nulle part ailleurs.

Wednesday, 25 December 2019

Leontyne Price for Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! It is a bit late in the day and in the holiday, but I thought I would share some Christmas music here. It is a very old Christmas album from Leontyne Price, recorded in Montreal, which you can find nowhere anymore, but my dad put it on YouTube.


Joyeux Noël!

Petit mot, petit billet pour vous dire Joyeux Noël 2019! Vous voyez ici le sapin de Noël familial cette année, avec les rails du train électrique au pied que l'arbre. Le sapin, c'est un vrai de vrai sapin naturel, avec des glaçons comme on n'en voit plus et des décorations de partout dans le monde. Le train électrique c'est la fierté de notre famille et maintenant, il est LE jouet de Noël de trois générations de garçons dans ma famille. Ma femme s'est résignée à cette réalité, mais dans tous les cas c'est beau de voir notre petit loup qui s'amuse avec.

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

James Bond on Christmas Eve

This is Christmas Eve, and as this is getting closer and closer, when I have a few minutes, I try to read Christmas related things. One of my favourite, as my readers know, is On Her Majesty's Secret Service, a James Bond novel set during Christmastime. I find it almost sad that I have so litle time to truly appreciate it, as this the perfect Christmas read, where the beauty of an idyllic looking Christmastime hides danger and violence. Well, that's Yuletide for many of us. In any case, I thought I'd share a quote from the novel, since it is Christmas Eve. For context: Bond her eis escaping the headquarters of his archenemy Ernst Stavro Blofeld and there are killer pursuing him. I hope nobody has a Christmas Eve that dramatic, but I know some can feel Bond's pain.

La gratte qui passe

Notre petit loup a (re)découvert une réalité québécoise de l'hiver et de Noêl: le chasse-neige et la souffleuse à neige, souvent deux en un, qui fait les allées et les rues. Ce qu'on appelle ici (faussement sans doute) une charrue. Je crois que ça l'impressionne plus que le Père Noël et quand il la voit arriver dans la rue. Il ne s'en blase jamais. En fait, il a même reçu par sa mère un jouet Playmobil qui est justement une gratte/souffleuse, jouet qu'il a d'ailleurs amené avec lui chez ses grand-parents. Morale de l'histoire: mon fils a beau être né de l'autre côté de l'Atlantique, il a l'âme bien québécoise et assume sa nordicité.

Monday, 23 December 2019

The best Christmas present so far this year

We received the family of my godson for dinner tonight. It was lovely and too short. I was a bit anxious of seeing them, especially my godson: he is 14 now and I thought he would be a bit... Teenagery. I needed be worried: he is just the same sweet kid as he ever was, only much taller. He was grateful to the boring gifts we had for him and his family, he was interested about our lives over the Atlantic and was talkative about his own, not sulky at all like some teens are, he was simply adorable. He also gave me the best Christmas present so far this year: a small painting he had made especially for me, of mountains and the northern lights. This was the second painting he ever did (first was for his grandmother), of his own inititative. I was close to tears. It was so thoughtful and so original.

Parce qu'aujourd'hui...

Il est tard, mais je crois que je devais le mentionner et le partager... Chanson nostalgique obligatoire en ce 23 décembre:


Sunday, 22 December 2019

Christmas Days ('Tis the season to be reading)

'Tis the season to be reading. I thought I would give another reading suggestion for Christmas, one of the happy discovery I made last year: Christmas Days by Jeanette Winterson (a fitting author's name for Yuletide stories if there ever is one). It is twelve short stories and twelve Christmas recipes (!), one for each of the twelve days of Christmas. It is a rich and dense book that truly encompass the season's aspects. Winterson give us mostly ghost stories or stories with an element of supernatural, not very scary ones, but all very touching. You also have some very heart warming tales, one about mistreated pupils in an orphanage run by a tyrannical matron, who are saved by magical frogs, another about a dog, a retelling of the legend of Mistletoe Bough and Winterson's own take on the Nativity Story, told by the donkey who carried the Holy Family to Betlehem ("The Lion, the Unicorn and Me", which is one of my favourite). The recipes are stories unto themselves, as each one is associated with a Christmastime memory of the author, not always a happy one. Christmas Days is one of the best discoveries I made last year.

La Griffon roussem pour les Fêtes

Vous voyez ici mon poison de choix depuis mon retour au pays (dès mon premier jour ici d'ailleurs, parce que fuck le décalage). C'est bien entendu une Griffon rousse de la Brasserie McAuslan. Ma bière des Fêtes, même si ce n'est pas une bière de Noël à proprement parler. Ce n'est pas la meilleure bière de microbrasserie québécoise, mais c'est ma bière québécoise préférée depuis des années et j'y reviens toujours. Dans tous les cas, son goût et sa couleur se prêtent bien aux Fêtes, une bière rousse de caractère qui réchauffe et accompagne bien à peu près tout repas traditionnel.

Friday, 20 December 2019

Cate Blanchett and Eyes Wide Shut

Sometimes you learn things about your favourite film or work of fiction that makes you rediscover it and appreciate it even more, even if the new thing is of almost anecdotal level. So recently, I have been rewatching Eyes Wide Shut, as it is one of my Christmas movies (no joke, read this for more info). I learned recemtly that Cate Blanchett had a small part in it. She's only a voice, basically playing the voice of the masked prostitute/sex slave at the manor who warns the character of Tom Cruise of the danger he is puting himself in, then redeems him at the end. This is because the actress playing the part could not take a credible American accent. You can read more about it here. So it was a small part, only a voice, but that is really cool nonetheless. My favourite actress in one of my favourite films. And I didn't even know. For the record, I thought the voice sounded familiar, but I would never have guessed, being a masked role and all.I will enjoy the movie even more.

En direct de Chicoutimi pour Noël

Juste un petit billet pour dire que je suis avec ma femme et petit loup à Chicoutimi. Nous allons célébrer les Fêtes avec mes parents, mes frères et la blonde de mon plus jeune frère. Mais comme d'habitude, ça tourne autour de petit loup. Je vais bloguer autant que je peux, mais le rythme va forcément ralentir ces prochains jours.

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

Wolfie, poetry and Carol Ann Duffy

Something really strange happened tonight, during Wolfie's bedtime. As I offered him to read one story before, he pointed to Frost Fair, the most recent seasonal poem/story (I guess story in verse) of Carol Ann Duffy. I don't read much poetry, but around Christmastime I do like to read Duffy and it was by my bedside. Not sure why this caught his eyes and not another book, but strange as it may seem, I actually read it all to him, and stranger still, he did not seem bored once. In fact, he was fascinated by the illustrations. So anyway, he fell asleep quickly after that. I am still amazed by what happened.

Noël, version Les Trois Accords

J'ai pensé mettre un peu de musique de Noël ce soir, un truc québécois que j'ai découvert récemment et qui m'est resté en tête. J'écoute assez peu des Trois Accords, mais Noël est arrivé, c'est festif à souhait et comme je le dis, il m'est resté en tête depuis que je l'ai entendu... Pour une chanson de Noël contemporaine, ce n'est pas si mal, même pour le traditionaliste que je suis.

Sunday, 15 December 2019

Christmastime at the fish and chips shop

You can see here the picture I took of the window of a small fish and chips shop in a nearby little village. We were not going for fish and chips, but we have been a couple of times there before and they do great fish and chips, maybe the best of the area. But I always pictured it otherwise as a nondescript fish and chips shop like they are so many here in England. I never thought they could be so creative and so festive. It is by far the best window I have seen for the season. Evocative of a Christmastime long gone in this country, when there was actually plenty of snow. On such a cold and snowy day, this fish and chips shop would certainly have been a haven. I never thought I would associate fish and chips with Christmas, but it kind of makes sense, since it is a time for comfort and fatty food. In any case, I am now craving them and imagining myself devouring some after a walk through the snow to this shop.

Poudrerie

Photo prise par mon père pas plus tard que ce matin. Il y avait de la poudrerie par chez eux. On l'a d'ailleurs fait découvrir à petit loup via f
Facetime. Je ne sais pas s'il a été vraiment impressionné. Il va falloir qu'il en fasse l'expérience en vrai.

Saturday, 14 December 2019

New Cluedo, new character

Christmas is coming, board games are getting out, as 'Tis the season to be playing. For tonight's post, I decided to blog about one of my favourite board game. I might be late in the news, but here is what I found recently: yet another release of Cluedo (or Clue as I have known it growing up). The setting and characters are the same, except for one detail: Mrs White the maid was replaced by Dr Orchid, an Asian woman dressed in black and pink. I have two questions about this new Dr Orchid: Why? And was it necessary? Yes, Clue is old fashioned, has stock characters based on English whodunit stereotypes, it's neither inventive nor original. But it is part of its charm. I can bypass the way the old ones are pictured, much younger than they should be, with a sexied up Reverend Green and a rejuvenated Mrs Peacock. I don't think this new femme fatale (and apparently all female characters on the board are now young and sexy). So this Christmas, if we can, we will play the old Cluedo game, with the the true classic characters. All of them.

Les flocons

Je partage à nouveau une photo envoyée par mon père. Je le fais sans raison précise, je veux juste en partager le plus possible jusqu'à ce que je puisse en prendre moi même. Noël arrive bientôt. ce n'est pas les neiges d'antan, mais on va sans doute avoir un Noël blanc (touchons du bois).

Friday, 13 December 2019

Radio Times ('Tis the season to be watching!)

The Christmas' Radio Times is available now! 'Tis the season to be watching... Except that we won't be watching much or indeed any British telly this Christmas, as we will be celebrating it away. So I saw this Radio Times, the Radio Times, the most famous issue (they call it legendary issue on the cover), but I did not buy it, although I was very tempted. All the same, we'll have real snow, family and friends we have not seen in years (literally), so I will not miss Radio Times all that much. Still, it's a very cool cover, as always, with the reindeers and the snowy surroundings. And I'm sure it's a great read too, whatever is on television during Christmastime.

Glaçons


Mon père m'a envoyé cette photo. Une autre photo hivernale comme je les aime et qui me rappelle bien des moments.

Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Cassandra Darke

'Tis the season to be reading (fa lala, lala..) For tonight's Christmastime reading suggestion, Cassandra Darke by Posy Simmonds. My happy discovery from last year's Christmas reads. Apparently, it is a very freely adapted adaptation of Dicken's Christmas Carol. I must confess, while I did see a good bit of Scrooge in the main character, the parallels between the two works are not that obvious. This graphic novel (with emphasis on the novel bit, as there is a lot of text) stands on its own and the Dickensian source material is more easily identifiable when you read it a second time. But I digress. The action is set from one Christmas season to another. Title characer Cassandra Darke is an elderly art dealer, mean, ugly, selfish, arrogant, wealthy, utterly despicable. She loses her reputation and part of her fortune when she is recognised guilty of fraud. A year later, things go from bad to worse when she finds a gun in the basement where her ex lodger Nicki (who is also the daughter of Cassandra's stepsister and her ex-husband). This is a thriller with brains and heart, it is also a moral tale and a bit of a tragedy, with a protagonist who is not devoid of redeeming qualities... which might not be enough to save her soul, or her life.

Les cèdres enneigés

Autre photo envoyée par mon père il y a deux ou trois jours, cette fois-ci des cèdres qui entourent notre terrain. Des cèdres, c'est mieux qu'une clôture, en tout cas c'est plus beau, surtout en hiver quand il y a de la neige dessus. J'ai pas mal hâte à Noël au pays natal en regardant cette photo.

Monday, 9 December 2019

Excitable Edgar

There is something I must give to the Brits: they can make absolutely brilliant adverts. Especially during Christmastime. Here is the one made by John Lewis this year, the adventure of Edgar, the good natured but excitable dragon, and the little human girl who is his friend. This is too cute for words. It is like watching a Hollywood epic for children in three minutes or so and it is so adorable. Wolfie finds it a bit scary sometimes, yet he is fascinated by it. Tell me what you think about it in the comments.

La remise enneigée

Voici une photo envoyée par mon père hier. C'est pas encore les neiges d'antan, mais ça s'en vient et c'est joli. Je commence à avoir hâte à Noël et à le passer au pays, là où on peut encore, bon an mal an, avoir un Noël blanc.

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Wolfie and the Advent Calendar

I bought for this Thorntons' Cheeky Elf Advent Calendar for Wolfie, for a number of reasons. Because it is not one of those cheap Advent calendars but a fairly fancy calendar that has a chocolate of fairly good quality, with plenty of games to keep him entertained and patient waiting for Christmas. Or so I thought, in my naivety.I also thought that it is fitting that he has an Advent calendar featuring a cheeky elf. Better than Santa Claus himself, as he dislikes Santa Claus. It turned out that Wolfie understood very well the principle of eating chocolate for Advent. But he did not understand very well the principle  of one chocolate a day. The first day was a real torture, when I told him he had to wait the next day to eat another one...

La crèche sur la cheminée

Mon père m'a envoyé cette photo de la crèche familiale, au dessus de la cheminée, avec les bas de Noël qui seront remplis bientôt. Ceux de mes frères, de ma femme et celui de petit loup. Il va vivre un Noël féérique, je crois. Et j'espère qu'il ne croira pas au petit Jésus...

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Tea's the season to be drinking

I know this title is an atrocious pun, but I think I had to do it. Anyway, my wife recently bought at Sainsbury's this Christmas Black Tea. Twelve (pyramid infusion ) tea bags flavoured with Christmas associated spices, in a box that looks like a Christmas cracker. She did not buy for herself as she hates tea, but for me. Isn't it sweet. Twelve tea bags for the twelve days of Christmas, but I had one already today. What to think of it? Well, it's all right, although I had spicier teas. The flavours are a bit faint, but maybe I need to let it infuse a bit more. And just for thesake of having a Christmas cracker with tea bags, it was worth it.

Encore les beignes

Je publie encore une fois une photo des beignes faits par mes parents pour Noël 2019. Je n'ai pas de raison précise, sauf que j'ai la photo et queje veux la partager ici ce soir pour se mettre dans l'ambiance des Fêtes.

Friday, 6 December 2019

December in a nutshell?

I saw this on one of the Facebook walls of one my my friends. I just decided to put it here tonight, because I found it very funny and pretty accurate. Is this how you too spend Christmastime? Is this also your own experience of December?

La légende de Saint Nicolas, une vieille version

Nous sommes aujourd'hui la Saint-Nicolas, la fête du prototype du Père Noël. C'est aussi le saint qui est le héros de cette légende, qui depuis l'enfance m'effraie autant qu'elle me fascine. Tradition oblige, je partage une version de la chanson qui la met en scène. Une "nouvelle" version pour Vraie Fiction, mais elle est assez vieille: selon YouTube, elle date de 1959. Une assez intéressante utilisation je trouve des illustrations et des vidéos en prise réelle pour raconter une histoire. Alors la voici (et en passant, l'autre chanson que les petites filles chantent, avec le bâton pour les garçons, ça ne passerait plus aujourd'hui):

Thursday, 5 December 2019

Mozart, Lacrimosa

Today is kind of a sad anniversary to remember: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died 228 years ago today. Not sure if we can grieve after that long, but we can certainly commemorate his departure. At 36, he was so very young to die, yet had accomplished so much. So to commemorate my favourite composer, I have decided to show a scene from Amadeus, showing his funeral (not sure if there should be a spoiler alert, but here it is). It is obviously not meant to be a historically accurate account of what happened, but it does feel real (and from what I read not all that far from the truth). With the Lacrimosa from his requiem as music, it is so very fitting.

La production de beignes pour Noël 2019

Mon père a envoyé cette photo à mes frères et moi. Ils ont fait des beignes pour Noël qui s'en vient. On va se le dire, elle est importante, mais nous allons être au moins sept dans la maison en tout temps (sans compter les invités), dont un enfant de trois ans avec la dent sucrée qui leur a fait honneur par le passé, alors faites le calcul. Ça devrait être mangé dans le temps de le dire.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

No Time to Die (the trailer)

Well, I blogged about it on Monday, I was anticipating it, and here it is: the trailer for No Time to Die, the upcoming James Bond movie. I watched two or three times. You can see it below. What do you think of it? I think it is quite promising and it got me quite excited. Of course I have a few concerns here and there (always fear they might dwell too much into scifi, something I am never keen on when it comes to Bond), but overall I'm very excited. One last thing that comes to my mind watching this and thinking of his tenure so far: Daniel Craig will be a really tough act to follow.

Le polar de l'Avent cette année?

J'ai blogué à quelques reprises sur ce bouquin publié par Série Noire et que j'ai vu une seule fois par hasard sur les rayons d'Olivieri. Je regrette depuis de ne pas l'avoir acheté. En fait, je me demande pourquoi je ne l'ai pas acheté drelà. Je ne sais pas s'il est encore en vente quelque part, je veux dire autrement qu'en seconde main. Dans tous les cas, je veux l'avoir, en seconde main ou pas, alors je le mets depuis dans la liste de mes cadeaux de Noël. Que ce soit neuf ou de seconde main, je m'en moque un peu. Je veux lire ce livre un jour. Je ne le lirai pas cet Avent-ci, bien entendu, l'Avent étant commencé. Mais j'espère bien le lire pour l'Avent de 2020.

Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Masks for Christmastime?

I took this picture last year, right before Christmas (I believe it was literally the 24) in a nearby garden centre, right in the Christmas section. Masks. I have to say, they intrigued me, because one would not expect party masks, these kinds of party masks, for Christmastime. Then again, I thought, maybe you could. It reminded me of the scene in Eyes Wide Shut showing a, ahem, secret ceremony. I looked at them and wondered if there was such... special events, on invitation only, where masks and anonimity were de rigueur. Especially since the garden centre was very near the hotel where my brother PJ and parents stayed during their time here. A hotel which reminded PJ of EWS. Since I saw these masks, and as I associate the film with Christmas (see my post here), I can't help wondering how people with lots of money do to celebrate Yuletide...

Question existentielle (353)

Noël approche, alors j'ai une question existentielle que je pose maintenant pour savoir quoi répondre à petit loup dans quelques années, quand il me la posera:

-Les rennes du Père Noël n'ayant pas d'ailes, comment font-ils pour voler?

 Je suis certain que plusieurs par le passé ont tenté de donner une réponse à cette question, mais dites-moi ce que vous en pensez, ou ce que vous en savez.

Monday, 2 December 2019

No Time to Die (teaser)

I had been waiting for it, I was getting impatient and now I know: the trailer of No Time to Die, the next James Bond movie, is... schedule for this Wednesday. That said, we had the chance to see a teaser. And what a tease. It is 15 seconds all in all. No matter: I am happy all the same, as there are lots of goodies in it, however short in it: some neat pieces of action, some exotic locations, a Bond girl or two, and what I believe a very short glimpse of the villain, which face is covered by a hood/mask. To conceal his identity, or hide some deformity? I suspect it is the latter. But anyway, see it for yourself and tell me what you think in the comments:

La chaise haute

Alors que les vacances de Noël approchent à grands pas, nous préparons déjà notre séjour au pays natal. Enfin, mon pays natal, pas celui de ma femme ou de petit loup, mais le pays des ancêtres paternels de petit loup. Ses grand-parents pourront donc le faire asseoir une seconde fois sur la chaise haute qui a servi à son père et ses oncles, celle-ci. Sur laquelle j'ai déjà blogué. Jusqu'ici, elle sert à tous les deux ans, et elle devrait faire encore à petit loup. Ensuite, il devra s'asseoir à la table des grands, avec l'aide d'un tabouret. Morale de l'histoire: le temps passe beaucoup trop vite.

Sunday, 1 December 2019

Blood on Snow

'Tis the season to be reading! Today is the first day of Advent, so Christmas is getting closer, so I am giving you some reading suggestion for Yuletide. As a crime fiction aficionado, I thought I started the season with a crime novel (or novella). Nothing is more fitting for Christmas than blood of snow. And tonight's suggestion is aptly titled... Blood on Snow. Written by Norwegian writer Jo Nesbo. Strangely enough, it is my very first venture in Scandinavian crime fiction. I often go Scandinavian for my Christmas read, but so far it has been Norse sagas. Come to think of it, this book has a lot in common with these sagas of old: it is short yet very dense, has larger than life characters, a (anti)hero living a life of never ending violence, betrayals, double crossings, tragic ironies and enough people killed to make Valhalla overcrowded. The story? Professional hitman with a hidden soft side Olav is given a contract on his boss' wife... By his boss. And through his surveillance before the hit, Olav falls in love with his target, or at least becomes infatuated with her. And that is just the start of his troubles. Set in the days leading to Christmas, Blood on Snow is maybe the Noir Christmas book to read.

La marche des rois

J'ai pris cette photo à John Lewis, où nous sommes allés aujourd'hui. Vraiment pas géniale comme crèch, mais nous sommes le premier jour de l'Avent, alors comme c'est la tradition sur ce blogue je présente une crèche et je partage La marche des rois. Car même si Noël se rapproche, on a l'impression que c'est un long, long trajet jusqu'au 25...