Tuesday 30 November 2021

Last Day of #Noirvember

I know I plugged it before, but today is the last day of #Noirvember, so if you're looking for a crime book for the month, ot maybe this month next year, I suggest The Last Hunt, by South African writer Deon Meyer. It is very dark, it has suspense, violence, political intrigue, in fact like many novels of Meyer, it mixes crime fiction with espionage, so it could just as easily be considered a spy thriller. Oh and it made me discover Rovos Rail, the luxury South African train company. I now want to travel the country in one of their trains. If only I had the money... But I digress: while the novel has a good deal of glamour (because said Rovos Rail), it is nevertheless very gritty, often grim, sometimes gloomy. Nevertheless, and again this is a staple of Meyer, there are as many good men (and women) as there are scheming, heartless bastards in The Last Hunt. It may be Noir, but there are lights that shine through.

Le chemin de neige

 Photo prise par mon père. Pas de commentaire.

Monday 29 November 2021

Snow at last!!!

Well, I had heard snow was forecast, but I did not believe it, or at least I took it with a barrel of salt. But in the night of Sunday to Monday, it did snow, not much, but still, enough to cover some of the ground this morning. Doing the school run was hazardous, as there was black ice. But after leaving Wolfie at the gate, my wife and I stopped for a moment and I took a few pictures. This early, right before December, in this country, it is borderline sci-fi. I am starting to dream of a white Christmas. I know I should not, I will end up disappointed. But still. Winter is here.

La gratte...

 Mon père m'a envoyé une photo de la gratte qui passe. En fait, quand je dis qu'il me l'a envoyée, je crois qu'il l'a surtout envoyée à son petit-fils, qui aime tout ce qui est gros engin et qui est fasciné par la gratte depuis qu'il en a vu au Québec. Sa nordicité se manifeste comme ça et ça me fait toujours plaisir.

Sunday 28 November 2021

Grandad's Workshop

 We went to see Wolfie's maternal grandparents recently. I could say my wife's parents, but once you have children, your parents are promoted or upgraded into grandparents and really, all that matters in the family are the grandchildren. Anyway, so I saw this on one of the shelves and I thought it looked as cute as it was funny. And very true. I don't know who thought of buying that, I think it is my sister-in-law. I completely forgot to ask. I took a picture anyway, because it really shows what a granddad (or a "daddad" as Wolfie calls his grandfather) is all about.

Butte de neige

Mon père m'a envoyé des photos de la neige qui tombe chez nous. Enfin chez nous de l'autre côté de l'océan, chez nous de l'expatrié que je suis. Ici, on en espérait, il n'y en a pas eu, bien entendu. Mais enfin bref, j'ai grâce à cette photo pu expliquer à petit loup ce qu'est une "butte de neige". On n'en verrait pas ici.

Saturday 27 November 2021

Will it snow today?

As I am typing this, BBC Weather has issued for the area we live ina yellow warning of wind and a yellow warning of... snow. Now I don't get my hopes up: amber or red warnings are generally reliable, something is bound to happen with them. But yellow warning could go either way, and we could only have some normally annoying nasty British rainy weather. And the Beebs tends to be dramatic when it comes to snow: they are quick to send alerts and in the end we only get a bit wet. But if it did, then I would be very, very, very happy, as it would mean winter is truly started and started properly. It has been very cold recently, at least for England this time of year. And there is that snowy smell in the air. We will probably stay in all day and do house chores, but if it does snow Wolfie and I will play in the garden and I will take a few pictures for here.

Le séisme de 1988 du Saguenay

Mon frère PJ m'a rappelé que le 25 novembre, c'était l'anniversaire du tremblement de terre de 1988 au Saguenay. J'avais bêtement oublié de le souligner. Qu'à cela ne tienne, c'est samedi, comme le lendemain de cette journée-là, enfin cette nuit-là quand ça s'est produit, il y a maintenant 33 ans. Je présente donc le bulletin de nouvelles de Radio-Can de l'époque pour en souligner l'anniversaire:

Friday 26 November 2021

The Maltese Falcon for #Noirvember

As I mentioned before, I read , The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammet for this year's #Noirvember. The first time in decades, but I watched the I watched the movie over and over again. I read it at a snail's pace, shame on me, but it was great to read a proper old fashioned hardboiled novel and to revisit a classic in its original form, and meet again so many larger-than-life characters, private eye Sam Spade and all the array of shady, vulgar, obscene villains the plot has to offer. And at the heart of the plot, the Maltese Falcon of the title, the most perfect and maybe the most emblematic MacGuffin crime fiction (or indeed fiction in general) ever offered. I don't think any other book or film ever gave us a MacGuffin that is so perfect. Anyway, I don't want to give anything away for those who have not read it or watched the film, but if you are still looking for some #Noirvember read, this is the novel for you.

Sept de douze (pâtés à la viande)

Ma mère m'a envoyé hier une photo des pâtés à la viande que mes parents ont préparé pour les Fêtes: en tout et pour tout, sept douzaines.Il faut ce qu'il faut, même si nous ne serons pas tous là cette année. Petit loup, c'est je crois ce qu'il a préféré comme met typiquement québécois de Noël, il a littéralement passé deux semaines à se bourrer la fraise de pâtés à la viande. Il faut dire que ceux que mes parents font sont vraiment bons.

Thursday 25 November 2021

Ed McBain for #Noirvember

 "The city in these pages is imaginary. The people, the places are all fictitious. Only the police routine is based on established investigatory technique."

This is of course the start of every novel from Ed McBain's 87th Precinct series. It always gives me shivers when I read this. November is almost over and it struck me that I haven't blogged all that much about #Noirvember. It is kind of ironic, come to think of it: I used to dislike that month and could not wait until it was over and start getting properly into a Christmas mood, now I think it's going too fast and I barely had time to read and share any crime fiction on this blog. Anyway, I have started reading Money, Money, Money by Ed McBain. The novel also fits my Christmas reading list, but I digress (more on that next month, obviously). I wanted to mention that any McBain is very fitting for #Noirvember, especially if you like police procedurals. Once I am finished with this 87th Precinct's story, I will probably hand it to my parents-in-laws, who both are avid readers of McBain, as I mentioned here. Heck, maybe I can hand them one or two McBains before the end of this month and in the meantime introduce them to #Noirvember!

La tire de la Sainte-Catherine

Nous sommes le 25 novembre et donc la Sainte-Catherine et ça veut dire... ben, pas/plus grand-chose. Il était un temps où au Québec on mangeait de la tire pour la Sainte-Catherine. Ou bien on la faisait soi-même, avec de la mélasse, ou bien on l'achetait. La petite tire cheapette, ce n'est pas vraiment vargeux, sauf si vous aimez les bonbons durs, ou si vous avez vraiment, vraiment envie de manger sucré. Mais tout le phénomène de faire et d'étirer la tire (d'où le nom), sur dela neige de préférence, ben c'est assez plaisant. On l'a fait au moins une fois à l'école, en maternelle si ma mémoire est bonne, peut-être aussi en première année. À la maison, nous ne l'avons fait qu'une fois, selon mes souvenirs. Mon père a pris des photos, mais j'ai oublié de lui demander de m'en trouver (pas trop grave, ça rssemblait un peu à de la m*). Alors j'ai pris ça sur les internets à la place. Je ne sais pas pourquoi la Sainte-Catherine était si populaire dans mon enfance. Peut-être qu'elle permettait de nous faire patienter jusqu'à Noël?

Tuesday 23 November 2021

Mince pies cogs

Today is my wife and my meeting anniversary. 19 years ago. As we met over a mince pie (more details in this post), I bought some mince pies from M&S. I always have them on that day, even though neither my wife nor I are big fans of mince pies. Yesterday, I was having one as a dessert and I tried to explain to Wolfie how his mummy and I met. I did not manage to keep his interest for very long about it, I think too many concepts needed to be explained (university life, friends of friends, a time when he did not exist). But he did enjoy the mince pies. Not only eating them, but playing with them. In fact, that was his great discovery yesterday. As I was telling the story of his parents meeting, he said: "Look daddy, I made mince pies cogs." And well, he did. Of course I had to take a picture. I love how his mind works.

Question existentielle (374)

 Puis que je me suis réconcilié avec le mois de novembre, je me pose maintenant cette question existentielle:

-Est-ce que novembre a une mauvaise réputation non méritée?

Monday 22 November 2021

Wolfie's new scarf

 We went to see my wife's parents recently. Wolfie's grandmother had a surprise for Wolfie: a scarf for him and another for one of his plush toys. The scarf is green (his favourite colour), with a few white stripe. You can see it has a button, so Wolfie can have it tight on him. It will keep him warm on cold days. I love these kinds of home made presents, far more, I must say, that I did when I was myself myself a child. I received a few knitted jumpers from ym grandmother, which I never cared about all that much, until years later when I rememered them fondly. Wolfie is far more grateful than I was at his age: he loves this scarf and wears it even inside.

La petite école sous la neige

Mon père m'a envoyé des photos dea la neige sur mon école primaire. Enfin celle où j'ai été enfant. Ce ne sont pas tout à fait les premières neiges, mais presque, et elles vont je l'espère rester et s'accumuler. Je trouve toujours ça excitant, les premières neiges. Ce l'était encore plus quand j'étais d'âge scolaire. Ca m'attriste un peu que mon fils ne connaîtra pas ça: l'hiver ici commence sas qu'il neige, souvent il se termine sans qu'il ait neigé. Et quand il neige, les écoles ferment.

Sunday 21 November 2021

Preparing my Yuletide reading

We recently went to the Wallingford Bookshop for a short visit. I had promised my wife that I would behave and not go on a big spending rampage. She was very skeptical at first, but I mostly behaved. In fact, the one and only book I bought it was entirely her fault. We were checking around and her eyes fell on A Scandinavian Christmas: Festive Tales for a Nordic Noël. It is of course an anthology. And she foolishly told me what she'd found. So I had to buy it. That's going to be for my Yuletide reads. Well, we have a bit more than a month until Christmas, better be prepared. For me, Christmas is all about Scandinavian folklore and imagery anyway. My wife was not enchanted, but she was resigned. When she saw me taking the book, she told me, deadpan: "I know you too well." Which I think deserves to be a great unknown line. Anyway, I got my reading all planned for the upcoming month. Yay!

Le passage secret maintenant

J'ai blogué à quelques reprises par le passé sur le passage qui mène de notre jardin à la rue. Passage que j'ai affectueusement appelé le passage secret. Pas qu'il soit secret à proprement parler, mais il me fait penser à bien des "passages secrets" de mon enfance, qui étaient en fait des ruelles, des sentiers ou des allées d'arbres dans des coins perdus. C'est quand même pas mal cool, avoir notre propre assage secret, même s'il n'est pas si secret que ça. Je l'aime encore plus ces temps-ci, avec les feuilles mortes tout le long, pour nous rappeler que c'est toujours l'automne pour quelques jours encore.

Saturday 20 November 2021

Mr Ripley for #Noirvember

 As it is still #Noirvember for a little while, I thought I would make another reading suggestion. It struck me that The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith would make an excellent read for this month. I've read it a decade ago, after I had developed an obsession with its movie adaptation. I must confess, I actuallyprefer the film to the novel. But both are perfect for #Noirvember, especially if you like a good Hitchcockian thriller and if you like a story following the perspective of a villain protagonist. I actually watched the movie two years ago for the occasion. I never get bored with it.

La cuvée Ciné-cadeau 2021

J'ai blogué mercredi que je l'attendais avec impatience, mais maintenant c'est confirmé: l'horaire de Ciné-cadeau est enfin arrivé. Je peux donc voir de quoi a l'air la cuvée 2021 et voir ce que je manque... et ce que je ne manque pas. Impression générale: comme d'habitude, ils ont joué de prudence, mais c'est peut-être la nostalgie qui parle. Tout de même, je vois quelques classiques que j'aimerais bien revisiter (avec petit loup, bien entendu). Je vois aussi au moins un film, un film québécois en plus, que j'aimerais vraiment découvrir. Je bloguerai plus longuement sur le sujet, mais ça me donne espoir que Ciné-cadeau est encore capable d'inspiration et de prendre certains risque. Finalement une dernière observation: il semble y avoir plus de films de Noël que dans mon jeune temps. Comme s'ils voulaient souligner un peu plus son appartenance à la période des Fêtes.

Thursday 18 November 2021

Preparing clothes for winter

Winter is coming: it is much cold outside, especially in the morning and at night.In fact, as far as England is concerned, since temperatures in this country don't change as much compared to mine, we can say that winter is practically here. It will probably get colder, but not by much. So I have now prepared my clothes for winter. Not autumn, but winter. English winter, that is. I got my winter boots out. I also bought new Thinsulate gloves at Mountain Warehouse and one new Thinsulate wolly hat (forest green, my wife hates it, but Wolfie wants to wear it too as he loves green), as well as more thick socks. Because I always end up short of thick socks as I use them a lot in winter. I think I'm now fully prepared. There is not many things I like more about winter than winter clothes.I love how heavy and comfy they feel.

Muffins au chocolat

Petit billet bouffe, rien que pour le plaisir: mon frère PJ a fait des muffins au chocolat. Si je ne me trompe pas (je me trompe peut-être), la recette vient des cours d'économie familiale.La seule et unique chose utile qu'onait apprise durant ces cours, c'est la recette de muffins au chocolat. Du reste, j'ai détesté le cours. Mais les muffins sont pas mauvais, quand vous voulez des muffins desserts et pas des muffins déjeuners.

Wednesday 17 November 2021

How to Put a Duvet Cover On

 Sometimes I find silly but very funny and very true things on the internet. Like this comics. I don't know if like me you struggle to put a duvet cover on, but this is pretty much how it happens every time we change bedsheets and duvet covers. I mean I don't call Neil deGrasse Tyson, but the 5th corner and the ripping of the space-time is absolutely 100% accurate. Or at least it must be, because it takes a lot more time than it should when we put a new duvet cover on.

Attendre la cuvée Ciné-cadeau

Bon, c'est officiel, la moitié du mois de novembre est passée et donc je commence à avoir hâte à Noël, enfin un peu. Graduellement. Et je commence à m'y préparer. Graduellement aussi. Je ne crois pas que nous irons au Québec cette année, ce qui ne m'empêche pas d'attendre avec impatience l'horaire de Ciné-cadeau cette année. À en croire le site de Télé-Québec, ils vont lancer l'horaire aujourd'hui (au moment où j'écris ces lignes, on y indique sur leur page que c'est le Jour 1 avant le lancement). Dans tous les cas, je devrais bloguer sur le sujet bientôt et commenter sur la cuvée 2021. Et je me ferai mon cinéma des Fêtes ici, avec ce que je peux trouver sur YouTube (chut!) et ailleurs. En espérant pouvoir partager un peu avec petit loup.

Tuesday 16 November 2021

Wolfie's water bottle

There was a little bit of drama yesterday during the school run that got Wolfie quite upset. His mummy was carrying his water bottle and we were rushing as it was getting late. She dropped the bottle and the lid broke on the ground. Now this water bottle was kind of special to Wolfie. First, it was meant to be my one: it's an adult size one and adult looking (kind of black or charcoal grey) I bought at Mountain Warehouse. But as Wolfie's bottles were all leaking, we started using my one for him, as like all Mountain Warehouse products it's quality stuff and very reliable. Well, it turned out not quite as solid as we hoped. But Wolfie got really fond of it, maybe because he felt like he was using a grownup bottle. So for the next few days, to his dismay, we will have to use his least leaking one, until I buy a new water bottle in Mountain Warehouse, hoping to find the same model and the same colour.

Le Parc Lafontaine en automne

 Ma mère m'a envoyé des photos du Parc Lafontaine. Je partage parce que c'est encore l'automne...

Sunday 14 November 2021

Veneziana Pizza

Last week for my wife's birthday, we went to Pizza Express. It is a sort of almost acidental tradition for her birthday: we often end up there, even when we don't plan it. But Pizza Express is always reliable: it serves good food at decent price, Wolfie is sure to enjoy it and we are never disappointed in the meal. It is especially true for me, as I always go for the Veneziana, so I know exactly what I am going to have. It has black olives, capers, red onions and 25p is given to the Venice In Peril fund. So I feel like I do my good deed of the day every time I go there and order it. And my wife is happy because it means that I eat vegetarian.

"Dites-le avec des fleurs..."

 J'ai lu hier ce gag du Chat et je l'ai trouvé très drôle, dans le genre grinçant. Bon, pour parler sans ambiguïté, c'est vraiment un gag bête et méchant. Cela dit, jecrois que chacun d'entre nous a, à un moment donné eu envie de lancer cette vanne aux funérailles de quelqu'un de détestable dont on a appris la mort.

Saturday 13 November 2021

The Dark Flood (#Noirvember?)

Well, I have some good news for crime fiction fans: the latest novel of South African crime writer Deon Meyer has been translated. Its English title is The Dark Flood. It is available to preorder now. Unfortunately, it will be released in April 2022, so too late for this #Noirvember. I will not be able to wait until next November to read it, in fact I was planning to read it now, but oh well. You can't go wrong with Deon Meyer and his books are perfect for #Noirvember reads: they bring a merciless sunshine and its light makes it impossible to escape the spectacle of violence and brutality. They always deliver.

Une coupe en métal

Mon frère PJ a acheté cette coupe en métal à Berlin il y a presque dix ans. Je la partage ici aujourd'hui parce que je suis retombé dessus par hasard. Je n'ai jamais eu de coupe en métal jusqu'ici, mais j'ai toujours aimé de quoi elles ont l'air, surtout celles qui sont pseudo-médiévales comme celle-ci. Je trouve qu'elles ont de la gueule. Cela dit, je suis sceptique quand au goût de ce qu'on boit: me métal doit l'affecter au moins un peu et pas à son avantage.

Friday 12 November 2021

Minnie Mouse and Brio train

It was the birthday of my wife recently, which is always a bit of a challenge for me. Because it is fairly difficult to find presents for my wife. But I got pretty inspired for one of them. As anyone with young children knows, the birthday of a parent is truly all about their kids. So I found out that Brio was selling a Minnie Mouse figure with a pink steam engine. I bought it so she could play with Wolfie and his rather impressive Brio train set. I'm quite proud of my discovery. My wife loves pink and everything Disney. And she will feel less out of her depth when Wolfie spends ages showing her his elaborate railroads.

Relire Corto Maltese

Tiens, ça m'est venu il y a quelques jours, sans doute à cause de ce billet: ce serait bien de lire et relire les aventures de Corto Maltese. Je n'ai pas tout lu de Corto et franchement il faudrait que je le fasse. Également, il faudrait que je relise les histoires que j'ai déjà lues. Enfin bref. Je crois que ces temps-ci, je relirais La Maison dorée de Samarkand, je ne sais pas trop pourquoi. Pour l'exotisme de l'Asie centrale, peut-être? Il me semble qu'on voit ces paysages et ces cultures assez peu en fiction.

Thursday 11 November 2021

"Lest we forget"

Today is Remembrance Day. So I am sharing a picture of the gates of our local park, covered with poppies. "Lest we forget." I will not say more. I don't think it is necessary.

Soupe à la betterave

Il y a un mois, lors de ma journée au bureau (la seule jusqu'ici), j'ai eu un souper d'affaires avec notre client principal dans un pub gastronomique. On s'est bourré aux frais de la princesse, autrement dit. Et bourrer est bien le mot: j'ai mangé en entrée cette soupe à la betterave. Elle était très bourrative, avec de la crème et si je me rappelle bien une huile aux truffes. J'aime la betterave, sous toutes ses formes, mais je crois que c'est la première fois que j'en mangeais en soupe. Ce ne sera pas la dernière. Sauf que la prochaine fois, ce sera tout mon repas.

Wednesday 10 November 2021

The French Connection for #Noirvember

It struck me that I haven't blogged much about #Noirvember and I thought I would do it today, very briefly. If you are looking for a crime movie to watch for the month, I would suggest The French Connection. Because it's a great film, but also because it is partially set near this time of year. It is one I try to watch every November. Its atmosphere just fits the month. Talking of atmosphere, listen to the music of the opening credit and tell me in the comments how Noir it made you feel afterwards:

"Épais dans le plus mince..."

Je n'apprendrai rien à personne, mais je voulais le souligner, parce que c'est important: Valérie Plante a gagné contre l'adipeux Denis Coderre une seconde fois dans l'élection municipale montréalaise. Je ne suis pas le plus grand fan de Plante, mais contre Coderre, j'aurais voté pour elle sans hésitation. Coderre est le genre de politicien démagogue, opaque, populiste et affairiste, qui administre avec ses chums, pour ses chums. J'ai dit tout le mal que je pensais de lui ici et ici. Montréal n'avait pas besoin de lui, ni de son style. Dans mon dernier billet sur lui, j'avais mentionné une phrase de sa mère. Dans les années 90, il y avait eu un article (obséquieux) sur lui dans L'Actualité. Après l'avoir lu, ma mère m'avait dit: "Coderre, il est épais dans le plus mince." Je crois que ça résume bien l'homme qu'il est et pourquoi il a fait patate dimanche. Et je ne sais pas si ma mère tient cette expression de quelqu'un, mais comme au mieux c'est une expression obscure, ça mérite d'être une grande réplique inconnue.

Tuesday 9 November 2021

Tea in the Train

As I mentioned here, I went to the office a few weeks ago. It's not a great looking office to be honest and I think I am more efficient working from home, but it allowed me to travel by train for the first time sine the beginning of the pandemic, which was great. I had really missed train travels. I also enjoyed buying food and drink from a Puccino's stand. I had a cup of tea of course, because that is my hot drink of choice. I love what it says on the teabag: "Coffee is SO over." Kind of ironic since they also (and especially) sell coffee. But nothing beats a nice cuppa tea taken during a train journey, especially on a cold morning.

Mon pays, c'est l'automne

Avant-hier, nous avons fait une promenade en famille dans le plus grand et le plus beau parc de la ville. J'y ai pris cette photo. Et puis? Et puis rien d'autre, j'ai beaucoup aimé: novembre, c'est encore l'automne et c'est magnifique un parc en automne.

Monday 8 November 2021

Gate of poppies

 We had a walk recently and we visited the biggest (and nicest) park of our town. This time of year, its gate is always covered with poppies, which I find really cute. They are crocheted or knitted and they look lovely. They give colour to dreary days. And it is a reminder (if one needed reminding) that Remembrance Day is imminent.

Gâteau de fête personnalisé

C'était la fête de ma femme il y a quelques jours. Comme je ne suis pas un très bon pâtissier et que mes gâteux, bien que mangeables, sont souvent pas présentables, j'ai acheté un gâteau à Cook, qui est toujours excellent et très riche. J'ai quand même décidé d'y ajouter une touche personnelle, avec petit loup: des petits chocolats en coeur et surtout des Smarties. Ca donne de la couleur et de la variété dans ses saveurs.

Saturday 6 November 2021

Christmas Books already?

 We received this catalogue from the Wallingford Bookshop (which is one of my favourite independent bookshop in this country, or indeed any country). It is their Christmas catalogue,to be precise. It looks quite nice, but I can't help to think it is still a bit early. All the same, I quite enjoyed flickering through it. Maybe it is the right time for Christmas shopping, both for presents and for myself.

Premières neiges, prise deux

Seconde photo envoyée parmon père des premières neiges. Ah comme la neige a neigé! En fait non, pas beaucoup, mais c'est un début. L'automne qui tourne à l'hiver.

Friday 5 November 2021

The Maltese Falcon (#Noirvember)

 No, no, I did not forget the 5th of November, I just don't care about it all that much. Right now, as it is #Noirvember, I have started reading crime fiction and to kickstart the month I am reading a classic, The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammet. Obviously, it's not the first time that I have read it, but I haven't revisit it in years. In fact, while I watched the movie countless time, it will be the second time that I read the novel and the first time that I read it English. I saw it in the local bookshop and I thought that it was long overdue. (On a side note, this is one of the things I love about local bookshops: you bump into a book and you know it's time to read it.)

Premières neiges

 Mon père m'a envoyé cette photo hier. Premières neiges automnales. J'aime quand elles arrivent tôt en novembre. Ce n'est pas l'hiver, mais ça s'en vient.

Thursday 4 November 2021

The smell of snow

It is something I noticed. I always find it strange when it happens, like clockwork almost: comes November, the temperature takes a dramatic drop, as if on cue, and we feel like autumn is on its last leg and mutating into winter. Neither September nor October are like this, they are never, or at least rarely, that predictable. And sicne the beginning of the month, there is even the smell of snow. Sadly there won't be any snow, or at least there is no forecast of snow. In this country, it rarely snows in any case. But all the same, the smell is here and it is one aspect of November which I really love.

Le S'quatre Novembre au Soir

N'oublions pas que ce soir c'est...

Wednesday 3 November 2021

About train stations

 As I mentioned a month or so ago, I was required to meet my colleagues and my bosses in the flesh. I did not have time to mention it, but I went to and through London last month, for the very first time since the pandemic. More to the point, I traveled by train for the first time in two years or so. And oh how I had missed it. I took this picture on the way back, in St Pancras. Maybe the most beautiful train station in London. But I love the atmosphere and the beat of pretty much all train stations, big and small. Anyway, this post is an excuse to share this picture. I should post more about my train journey in the coming weeks.


 Photo prise sur l'une des caméras de surveillances du lot de mes oncles. Je n'ai rien d'autre à ajouter.

Tuesday 2 November 2021

Time for #Noirvember

I used to dislike November as a month and now I am a bit ashamed to admit it. But since the last few years I learned to enjoy it quite a lot. There are lot of things to love in the month: it is still autumn, it is my wife's birthday, etc. It is also time for #Noirvember: a "festival" of crime fiction, whether it is in novel or in movie form. So this month, I will read a lot of crime fiction. I mean more than usual. The bloodier the better. I can barely wait, as I already have a reading list. I also intend to watch a few crime movies, old and new. I will of course mention them on this blog, so watch this space.

Une perdrix

Mon père m'a envoyé une photo d'une perdrix, je crois qu'il l'a tuée lors d'une partie de chasse. Enfant, j'allais chasser la perdrix avec lui, mais il n'a jamais pris quoi que ce soit avec moi: j'étais beaucoup trop bruyant.

Monday 1 November 2021

About the post-Halloween blues

Well, another Halloween has come and gone. It went too quickly and I don't think I had enough time to fully enjoy it or do all the things I wanted to do related to it. To make matters worse, today is Monday. Never a good day to grieve the end of a holiday. That said, in spite of my initial and long standing dislike for the month of November, mainly because it marks the end of Halloween, I have made peace with it in recent years. I have even grown to like it. More on this on subsequent posts, but let's just say here that, while I am feeling the Monday and the post-Halloween blues today, I will live with it.

"Je suis l'océan Pacifique..."

"Je suis l'océan Pacifique et je suis le plus grand. On m'appelle ainsi depuis très longtemps, mais ce n'est pas vrai que je suis toujours pacifique. Je me fâche parfois, et alors je donne une raclée à tous et à tout. Aujourd'hui par exemple, je viens de me calmer mais hier, je dois avoir tout raflé sur trois ou quatre îles et autant de coquilles de noix que les hommes appellent bateaux... Celle-ci... Oui, celle que vous voyez ici, je ne sais pas comment elle a pu s'en sortir. C'est peut-être pârce que le capitaine Raspoutine connaît son métier et que ses marins viennent des îles Fidji. Ou bien parce qu'ils ont fait un pacte avec le Diable. Mais cela n'a pas d'importance, aujourd'hui c'est Tarowean, le jour des surprises, le jour de tous les Saints, le 1er novemvre 1913"

Ce n'est pas la première fois que je cite l'incipit de La ballade de la mer salée d'Hugo Pratt, première aventure de Corto Maltese. Mais bon, je me suis dit qu'il faut bien commencer novembre du bon pied, alors autant le faire avec cette citation absolument magnifique.