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Monday, October 26, 2009

Touch And Go

I've barely arrived from Congo and I'm leaving again... to Congo. This time to the southwestern part instead of the northeast. I'll be back in ten days, so you'll have to make do with the other blogs that you may find in the dark pathways of the internet. Not that I can imagine that any of them are as interesting as my weblog, of course.

Farmers meeting near Mbandaka (Congo)  

Posted by Bart at 8:53 PM
Categories: The intrepid explorer

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Feel Like A Wreck

Aaah, la Picardie...

Ship wrecks in Le Crotoy - Picardie (France)  

Ship wrecks in Le Crotoy - Picardie (France)  

Ship wrecks in Le Crotoy - Picardie (France)  


Derilict fishing boats at the end of the harbour of Le Crotoy

Monday, October 19, 2009


When Mrs.B carried a plant indoors to protect it from the first winter chills, she succeeded in getting a branch in her left eye, it swung right underneath her glasses. It stung like hell, but she put on a brave face (read: whined about it the whole evening) and went to bed.

The next morning, it was still hurting a lot, and I must confess that I was really worried. Her eyesight is not getting better anyway. So we decided she had to go and see a doctor. That was Friday morning. A couple of hours later, she called me at work. The doctor was very worried about her eye, because that branch had made a scratch right on her pupil. She had patched up her eye (literally) but refused to put Mrs.B on sick leave.

So my wife had left the car behind at the hospital for me to pick up in the evening, and had ventured on an adventurous trip by bus to work. There her boss cast one look at her and sent her home. ‘You’re in no state to work’, he’d said, and he was right.

So later that evening I swam from the bus to our car – it was raining cats and dogs, until I got in the damn car of course – and drove home. There I found my Piratess of the Caribbean listening to the TV – watching was too painful for her and not just because we have such crappy shows on every single Belgian TV station.

So we spent the whole weekend smearing ointment in her eye, then patching it up again; and running to and from the hospital to get daily checks. We also went to two birthday parties, although Mrs.B had to rest-rest-rest. And birthday parties are no fun when your eye either itches or hurts like hell and you MUST’NT TOUCH IT!

But luckily, yesterday the doctor told us that the eye is healing well and as from today, Mrs.B’s days of plundering innocent vessels at the high sees are over. She doesn’t have to wear the patch anymore during the day, although she has to keep the parrot and the patch for when she sleeps. I must confess I tend to prefer the wooden leg in bed, because although it’s harder when she kicks, it doesn’t have a cold foot attached to it. I will be glad to see that hook go, though.

During all this ordeal Wolf and I tried to be supportive as possible. I washed the dishes – no single dish or pot had been washed since my departure to Congo – and we sang a song to cheer her up. Belgian readers may know the Pete the Pirate-song (Piet Piraat):

Pete the Pirate

Pete the Pirate

Ship Ahoy – hoy – hoy

He is my


Ship Ahoy – hoy – hoy

With his ship

The Crooked Tub

He sails out

Every day

Pete the Pirate

Pete the Pirate

Pete the Pirate

(x 1000)

Monday, October 05, 2009

The Bus To Uganda

Tomorrow morning, I'll take the 7:45 bus to Uganda. Via the airports of Brussels-Zaventem and Kigali, that is. And Wednessday, I'll hop on a small plane that will take me from Entebbe to Arua, a town on the western border not far from East Congo. There my colleagues will pick me up with their brand new Toyota Landcruiser and together we'll cross the border to Mahagi, the eastern most outpost of Congo.

I'll be gone for ten days, so you all behave and I'll bring you a small present, like I do for Wolf.

Posted by Bart at 8:20 PM
Categories: The intrepid explorer

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Autumn Colors

Oak leaves colored red in autumn (Belgian Ardennes)  

Posted by Bart at 8:30 AM
Categories: Framed

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