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Business as usual

Now, I can't keep saying "no news on the UK-book-deal-front" every time I post.

Well I could, but it would get a bit boring - not to mention embarrassing - so lets just say it's a No until you hear otherwise. And you will hear because I'll be shouting so loudly.

Instead I'll mention that I've just been to Ghent in Belgium with Lovely Husband for a weekend break, which was nice. Sunshine, music, canals and fireworks (and that wasn't a euphemism, I literally mean fireworks) and lots of yummy (fattening) food.

Very relaxing it was and plenty of writing inspiration too, from the woman crying into her mobile phone on the train on the way over, to the pretty American girl who couldn't understand why the elderly couple she was sitting opposite to on the way back were so rude to her, to the group of guys who talked about nothing but beer the whole journey. I guess you had to be there ...

I'm not an experienced traveller as anyone who's stuck with my ramblings over the last couple of years will know (don't like flying or being on water, would prefer to travel via time machine etc) but I couldn't help noticing how much more civilised the attitude to drinking is in Europe.

Considering there were around 7000 people gathered round a canal on Saturday evening - on it, in boats, in some cases - and the festival was around an hour late kicking off, the atmosphere was remarkably relaxed and friendly ...

... and so was I until I came back and realised just how much work still needs doing on the kitchen, but that's a whole different tale. Although I used the chaotic kitchen saga as inspiration for a story for my writing group last week so I suppose something postive has come out of it.



Hannah Stoneham said…
Sounds lovely. I have always wanted to go to Ghent - (that sounds like it should be the first line of a novel!)
I hear that the getting pubished thing is all about perseverance, so I am surethat you will get there in the end.
Thanks for sharing
Jenny Beattie said…
Well I might be considered an experienced traveller - given where I live - but I'm definitely with you on the 'Beam Me Up Scottie' method of travel.

Looking at the UK from the long distance of my temp home I do think there are some worrying attitudes there to do with alcohol.

Good luck with the kitchen. I hope the pixies come in and fix it in the night.
Queenie said…
I knew that one was yours - I rarely spot who's written what, but it had to be! I do hope the kitchen saga soon reaches The End. Belgium is a fab country for a weekend break, and so easy, now, on Eurostar. Glad you had fun.
Christine said…
So, it's good news from Ghent. You sound cheery and I'm pleased. Great journey-time writing inspiration.
Anna said…
What a wonderful getaway! I went to Belgium beofre we trekked back here, lovely country, and such great chocolate! I think you came away with plenty of fiction fodder, definitely!

Will be checking in, can't wait to here WHEN you get that UK deal! :)))
jenny wilson said…
great post, i'd love to go to belgiumx
Debs said…
Glad you had a great trip. I love people watching and it's a great way to spend travelling time too.

So sorry to hear the kitchen is still unfinished, I remember those days well. Hopefully it'll be transformed soon.
Tom Foolery said…
Lots of yummy (fattening) food.... sounds like my kindof place Clarkey :O We're off to Bruges in October, (hopefully!) providing my new passport arrives in time!
SpiralSkies said…
Oh, that does sound marvelous - I've never been to Belgium but if they have fattening food, it sounds like my kinda place.

So, I have to ask: why WAS the elderly couple being so rude to the poor pretty Yank? I demand an answer, I do!
HelenMHunt said…
Sounds like you had a great time and you've picked up a fair bit of story fodder as well.
Lorna F said…
You've definitely got a writer's eye, Karen (and ear!). You notice things and see everything as potential for a story. My fingers are still crossed for you!
Ann said…
Glad to hear you had a nice break from the chaos of the kitchen renovations. Sounds like a wonderful break.

Funny how the angst in our lives give us the fodder for our writing.
womagwriter said…
Ghent sounds lovely - bet you'll write and sell some stories after your trip there!
Sounds great. Looking forward to reading the stories.
Amanda said…
So glad you had a lovely break, Karen... and have lots of writing fodder - good and bad ;-) x
Suzanne Jones said…
Glad you had a good time away. Hope the kitchen's sorted soon.

Alis said…
Sounds like you had a great time. Glad there were plenty of sources of inspiration!
LilyS said…
Belgium is a lovely place and so relaxing. It's very civilized how the locals sit having a beer on their lunch breaks. It's not the same here sadly.

Glad you had a lovely time and got inspiration.

Hope the kitchen is sorted soon.
Lane said…
I love Belgium. Very underrated country.

Glad you had a great time. Love all those snippets of conversation and like Spiral I'm intrigued why they were rude to the young girl.

Hope the kitchen is nearing completed splendour:-)
joanne fox said…
A friend of mine lived in Belgium for several years and we visited Ghent a few times. I really liked it. Less touristy than Bruges, but the same style of architecture - and plenty of canals, of course!

Hope your kitchen gets sorted soon.
Karen said…
hannah - It's definitely worth a visit, but then everywhere looks better when the sun's shining :o)

jenny - Some people are all about the journey, but I definitely prefer the destination!

I'm afraid there are no pixies - kitchen STILL not finished :o(

queenie - It was the first and last thing on my mind - I couldn't not write a story about it really!

Still no end to the kitchen saga unfortunately.

christine - It's the first time my husband and I have been away on our own for a few years, and made us realise we should do it more often!

anna - Oh yes, definitely plenty of great chocolate! In fact the food there was really lovely, what with the waffles, chips and casseroles - all Belgian style!

As for the UK deal - might be waiting a while :o)

jenny - I can highly recommend it - might try Bruges next time :o)

debs - The blummin' kitchen still isn't finished - beyond a joke now. It really will be Christmas at this rate!

tommo - We were going to pop over to Bruges, but didn't have time in the end. Hope you have a lovely time :o)

spiralskies - The couple were rude because, according to the old man, some 'dreadful lunatic' had bashed into his wife at the station and hurt her arm and they could 'do without any loud conversation' during the journey. Miserable buggers.

helen - I'm always looking for story fodder these days :o)

lorna f - I think it's a habit now - the thing is remembering to jot the ideas down before I forget them!

ann - I think the kitchen angst is building to a point where I'll be writing a murder story quite soon!

womagwriter - I was really impressed with it, but then we were so desperate for a break I reckon Cleethorpes would have been just as enjoyable!

colette - I just need to get them written now!

amanda - Thank you :o) I think the bad outweighs the good at the moment!!

suzanne - It flippin' well isn't. And that's all I've got to say on the subject for now!

alis - It really was lovely - must go away more often :o)

lily - The kitchen still isn't sorted, so I'm going to concentrate on the fact that at least we've had a lovely break!

lane - See above re: rude couple! There really was no need for it.

Just getting the kitchen finished would do right now - the splendour can wait!

joanne - I am rather drawn to that style of architecture and saw most of it on a boat trip down the canal. Very interesting place :o)

As for the kitchen ... least said soonest mended. (Or not, in this case!)
KatW said…
Sounds like a wonderful trip with lots of inspiration to be had. I especially relate to the fattening food inspiration because yesterday my writing group had a chocolate themed writing meeting. Its amazing what you can get written when high on chocolate & good company. Lol.

Glad you had a good break. Hope the kitchen is a haven of calm soon.
Kat X
Karen said…
Everything should have a chocolate theme in my opinion!

Still no good news on the kitchen sadly.
Marieke said…
Ugh. I'm green right now. I lived there as an exchange student and I try to go back as often as possible. But it's been almost a year for me and I miss Ghent so much it hurts. :) Fortunately I do have a visit coming up in a few weeks!!!

Anyway, just wanted to say hi! Great you joined the Crusade! :D

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