Tag: cats

Sunday Column (375)

I am sitting by the fire. A cosy 25 degrees, wine at hand, heating off, and just above 3 degrees outside. The temperature plummeted over the weekend. We donated blood on Friday, and it was late and I ate that little, that I almost fainted. So Saturday I felt drained. Not sure why, maybe a bug, maybe the donation, maybe the temperature drop. Maybe my old age 😉

So sitting here by the fire on Saturday night is nice. Cosy. Comfortable. A nice Shiraz, my paper and the kids are in bed. We had garlic chicken for dinner with 40 (!) cloves. No vampires for us tonight then.

I get a lot of positive comments about my blog, and appreciate every single one. Even if I get notified of spelling mistakes. I actually appreciate being corrected, no way of hiding my heritage, despite close to 15 years in the country. Let’s see how long it lasts with the potential Brexit looming.

This week has probably been the most stressful one for a while to be honest. Not only was work challenging, I even had problems sleeping. Not even wine helped. It got better towards the end of the week and I chilled out a bit more. Still doing my runs and exercises in the morning. I am feeling pretty fit.

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However, next week I am in New York. For the first time in 23 years I am going to one of my favourite cities in the world. Not sure how I can say that but then again how can one not like New York? It has been a long time coming with about three occasions I remember where I was supposed to go to NY but never did. Now I am going. The flights are booked. Will I get a chance to jog through Central Park or see any of the city? I tell you next week I suppose.

I am dreading the flight a bit. It’s a bit longer than usual and I just hope to get an aisle seat or extra leg room at least. We shall see. One day it will be business class, right 😉 I got a few European trips coming up, some from Heathrow as well, because Easyjet has been changing their flight timetable against my schedule. Less business friendly to be honest. Actually I am surprised but guess they have done the research.

The world of business, travel and life life balance. Nothing has changed, yet in between I am doing an office job which feels like an ever growing responsibility, strategic mission, sales and product development. I am enjoying the challenge and it feels good to push boundaries.

Life is funny in that sense. I was home early one night and decided to completely engage with the kids. And I read two books with the youngest and did maths with the oldest. That was fun! It was a real pleasure to be able to switch off. I seem to be able to separate work and life better the deeper I get into either of them. That’s a bit odd but it seems to work.

There haven’t been many other developments. Without wanting to comment on politics it scares me what’s going on in the US re elections. It scares me to think what people think and do and what they think ‘is funny’ and what consequences it might have. Yet we don’t need to look too far, considering the discussion around a possible Brexit. It also surprised me to learn that Saudi Arabia had to borrow money as the oil price is so low and Korea as well as Russia launched test missiles. Hello? Get over it and make peace, live in harmony and sort out global warming. Never mind, why would Ballueder be able to change the world?

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Yet I changed a bit of the world this week. We took on two cats that needed rehoming. So we now have three tabby cats that are lovely and get to know each other 😉 When I say three, one went AWOL but I am sure she comes back at some point. And she did on Saturday night, putting up a fight to come back in. We hope it all works out. The kids are super excited. So after the dreadful animal experience with rehoming cats and letting the dog go, we are on an up in regards to the Ballueder zoo. Fingers crossed.

So I shall raise my glass to all of you out there. To those that don’t have a living room that is nice and cosy. The ones that are unhappy. I have been thinking a lot recently about my responsibility for others. For the world. The world we live in. I mentioned it in last week’s post.

You know sometimes you are waiting. You are thinking. And you are evaluating. Then you think you should do something and never do. Because there is always something that is not 100%. But nothing ever is 100%. What holds us back? What drives us on? What makes us decide?

Have a great week,
Volker

German Engineering – or how to potty train a cat

Our cats are now almost 6 months. Gretel has been sterilized and therefore, they are outside quite a lot. However, they still have not been going outside to the loo.

It was definitely going to be too much, so on Saturday I decided to take the litter tray outside. When the cats went to their usual place in the house looking for the tray, we carried them outside. And, they both did their poo outside. Yippee!

Wow, what a progress.

Now, I was worried that it might rain. So I used my imagination and engineering skills (if you didn’t know, I have a mechanical engineering degree :-)) to build a poo tent.  My wife gave me some practical hints too. Maybe not quite a portaloo but surely something all other cats will envy our cats for, don’t you think. Let’s just hope the wind does not pick up.

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German Engineering I guess, hehe.

Btw, have you seen the new matrix style Volkswagen Ad on TV?

Busy Week – on the road again….

….I was away for 2 days again in York.

Whilst I write so often that I do not like travelling, it is good to get out of your daily routine. But, there is nothing like coming home. Your home, your wife, your kittens….I love home.

My wife put on more pictures of the kittens. So it is nice to know that there is someone at home, waiting for someone. I supposed I get quite settled, don’t I?

On Thursday I am at a conference in Barcelona speaking about “measuring the impact of design“. It is nothing else than a trip to York, 2 hours flight from London, only difference that you won’t get wifi on the plane yet.

So it is a rather busy week but I try to give you another update on what is happening later on this week.

Volker

Our family is growing – update 1

After all the technical hype of last week, I am back at home for the weekend and keep busy with my family. As you know I am married, and as married life is, you start thinking about growing the family.

Update 1 I want to call this….

No, no kiddies yet but “kitties”. My wife and I decided, in order to get used to getting up at night, feeding at certain times of the day and to take on responsibility for small creatures, to grow the family by 1 or even 2 kittens. Latter depends on what we can find 🙂

So, yesterday we started with the essentials and went to Pets at Home.

What we got – and please let us know what we might still need. This is a first one for us:

And, what we are hoping to get are similar ones to those, as kittens of course:

Haensel?
Haensel?
Gretel?
Gretel?

I keep you posted. Hopefully we have them by next weekend!

Volker