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Everything posted by tegwini

  1. I can't make this facility work for me- I have tried, and read the instruction, but still il ne marche pas! Can some 'techie' please help ? Many thanks Tegwini
  2. Debs If your son was told to stay behind, but got out when the others left,  he's not doing as he's told. Only if you can be a fly on the wall can a parent really know what is happening in the class & how difficult it can be. We had a daughter who was very difficult at home even at primary school age, but we constantly emphasised that she must behave at school and that we would support the teacher.   Constantly the school told us how good she was - no change at home where she could be a right little .......   ! Hope you do sort this problem out however. Regards Tegwini 
  3. No, not actually Norman - only for 3 years - after their 1st budget they started spending massively in the public sector (3 m. more 'jobs') costing the taxpayer 30Billion. The OECD have long criticised GB for his tax & spend.   But it's typical for a socialist government. Tegwini
  4. I note that a poster above queries that UK universities might not accept a Bac. This is not so -  many of the UK's top schools now offer the Bac, and the best  universities  eg.  the Russell Group do accept the Bac. Perhaps it is even welcomed, or preferred by them! I have a colleague whose daughter is doing the Bac at a local LEA (county council) college and she has an interview for Cambridge university.  And,  she left a grammar school  which cannot afford to offer the Bac(in the top 50) to do the Bac at a local LEA college.  It seems to me that without a degree from  one of these universities it will prove hard to get a half-decent job.  It's more than silly that the UK gov'ment wants 50% of school leavers to go a 'university'.   And this is the origin of the results inflation, and the move to the Bac. In any case, the Bac is a far more rounded and well-balanced qualification, and its results are respected.   GCSE & A levels  have at present results that are quite silly. The latest results showed as many as 99% in some schools getting  A/A*   !  And most of the top hundred LEA schools with well over 50%, most above 60%.   This makes no sense at all.    This is not happening with the Bac or the IB. Tegwini   
  5. Since Gordon has spent the next  FOUR years UK tax revenue the UK is in more of a mess than France.  No 'boom and bust' !??? GB as chancellor was bad enough for 10 years, and NO improvement as PM  ! Tegwini
  6. Hey Wooley  Also an undignified end :  At school  the thingies that teachers used to use for demonstration on bananas had to be large for the often enormously fat bananas,  and  some were also a little bent or twisted.  And the kids used to laugh and giggle. Not a nice end for a banana, as no one wanted to eat them afterwards. Regards Tegwini
  7. We humans are known to be cruel, but this is the limit! I have just discovered a book on using all sorts of things to do various tasks - but banana skin  for cleaning things!!    Mind you, as a teacher I was almost forced into teaching PSHE and nearly made to really misuse  bananas for something quite unimaginably scary.   Bad enough that we eat them, and doubtless I will be shot down for this  by those who believe that we humans have a 'right' to do what we want with everything, but,  using their skin !     Wooley & family will be hurt to hear of this,  or will they ? Regards Tegwini  
  8. Nothing surprises me anymore about Mugabe & Co. During the 'liberation' war the 'liberators'  thought nothing of killing missionaries & bayoneting their babies at a rural missionary station.  And, shooting down an Air Rhodesia plane which  the very skillful pilot managed to land, only to have these terrorists kill the unarmed & wounded passengers.  Such atrocities were often by the Ndebele, but the Shona, (Mugabe's tribe) weren't far behind. Doubtless some will think the whites deserved all this, but it's common knowledge that the majority of the blacks would prefer the return of Ian Smith's government -   if only!    Sadly, the British government helped to bring about the fall of Ian Smith's government and thus should have some responsibility for the tragedy that  is happening now.  Interesting that they were quick to go into Iraq etc but not Zimbabwe. Tegwini
  9. Not many Ernie Just the ones who can't really get out now. But, you could see this coming decades ago, and it's what the outside world wanted - isn't it ? Tegwini
  10. Many applicances are 'badge engineering' and may even have the same internal components.   Many these days, are made in China. We discovered that a Nef double oven  & Bosch dishwasher with integrated/internal controls were  both more easily available (not special order - 3 day delivery ...)  and cheaper so we took them from England to France.  More convenient for us & we could be sure they were delivered when it suited us in England.   No trouble fitting them, and we were told by Bosch/Nef that the guarantee will be honoured too. Tegwini
  11.   This seems to have taken off in France and people have now got them in their cars + a triangle.  They seem to have them actually on show in their cars - aiming to keep 'les flics' away.  I expect it would be useful to keep safe should you break down, but modern cars seem to do this less frequently-   touch wood! Tegwini
  12. Thanks Odile I can remember seeing tiny (dead)  birds on sale a couple of decades ago, but didn't think they were still netted etc. Perhaps we birdlovers do need to do as much as possible to compensate for the birds lost, and I do think that this is awful, and neither do I think that  'tradition'  is a reason for pointless cruelty. Regards Tegwini
  13. Quillan Anything 'extra' the government here does invariably leads to extra people & costs, and loads more 'jobsworth jobs'.   Since Labour has been in power they have added over 1 million people to the state payroll with no noteworthy improvement in anything. Take the NHS, and yes it is overstaffed in many aspects. Is it still the biggest employer in Europe ?  Billions more spent and no real improvement.  My local hospital - Salisbury District Hospital has lots of admin. people, and you can see  as many as 4 receptionists working, for example in the eye clinic, and a shortage of the specialists that patients do want/need  to see.   And surprisingly they are still using old WW2 prefabicated buildings for some of their departments, with patients even being moved across a road between buildings. We have a new main building, which could have had a centralised reception system, but that wouldn't make sense to them would it ?  My local GP seems to have 2-3 receptionists and certainly much less than 9 doctors, 6 perhaps.  More paperwork with a centralised state system??? I still can't see means testing as an alternative here - it would be so unpopular and no gov'ment here would have the guts to do it.  And, I suspect that it would cost more to implement than it saves. Tegwini    
  14. Quillan Might as well  means test for the pension too - and while you're at it, how about a graduated fees cost, with a sliding scale based on income  for all hospital treatment.  You could also start to charge people for use of schools too! Where this would end  -   ???   And £1000  fuel allowance  per person, crumbs !!   That would heat a large house.     And,  Fuel Oil was cheaper here when I bought it a few weeks ago - less than last year.  But, means testing would require an even larger army of civil servants.  As a UK tax payer I would not like that.  And, few people would accept means testing these days - would you? A really silly idea! Tegwini  
  15. A person earning about £1500 per month nets about £270 per week. This woman & her family also get extras - free dentistry, free prescriptions, and many other freebies.  I recently priced a course at my local FE college - £400 - free to those on income support. Noteworthy that the daughter had her first child, minus husband/partner/father very young. Could this family earn as much as this ?  Many working couples earn less than this and do not qualify for freebies. Tegwini
  16. Hoddy you were very brave to thrash one - I started teaching in the days of caneing - and it was a deterrent.  None now, so they can do what they want, and they do know their rights.    Like you - such a variety - Rhodes Scholar, consultant surgeon  etc ... NormanH I do like your expression :  " fake pearls... " so very true. Tegwini
  17. Obviously the firemen at Manchester airport are not local gov'ment employees - someone mentioned firemen, BUT their working conditions and pay ARE similar.  My friend's husband spoke with pride how a strike could close down the airport- and he was the no.2 there!    Consequently, their pay and conditions matched other firemen's - including then,  the chance to retire early- including  cheating the system.   And, they do have other jobs too. Other posters have written about retiring on the sick, and this is not a whim-  I was told about the plan to retire on the sick and  it was planned over months, perhaps years, and many  others did it too! And, it's true, as someone else posted above, they get lots of applications - hundreds for 1 or 2 vacancies. Teachers do get above average leave, but often work in the holidays, and 18 hour days during the term time are not unknown. And,  their initial  pay is less than many civil servants : eg the initial pay of prison warders, policemen & etc - none of whom have much, if any, prior training or qualifications.   And, teachers do meet criminals.  I have taught 2 murderers, and 1 murder victim, (did my duty and attended her funeral),  and they have to teach these potential criminals in large numbers 30:1 - and no protection, big hats, handcuffs, coshes   ... - if only !!     Obviously most kids are not all like this, but it only takes one or two disruptive delinquents to mess up a lesson, and the chances of the others.  The costs of 'going on the sick' whether from a job or not  costs the UK billions  Quillan - the heating allowance, and I have just received mine (£250),   is a  minimal  cost for ex-pats.   The cost is tiny, almost  nothing compared to the enormous amounts wasted by this  useless government.    ALL  OAP ex-pats should get it too. tegwini 
  18. Thanks all for the cheerful news - perhaps more effort from me  needed!   I should have mentioned that we never use pesticides, herbicides  either.  The only danger to our visiting birds is our neighbours' cats - and we are careful there too with nesting box and feeding table positioning.  Regards Tegwini
  19. Yes Quillan emgencency services can have messy, grim aspects to their jobs - but not often, thankfully, at Manchester airport.  The only plane crash in his time happened when he was off duty, they do  get lots of leave.  They keep themselves busy on duty watching TV, keeping fit, cooking, cleaning fire engines & the firestation - not bad really. The problem I have with the system is that it is so easy to retire  early from his fireservice 'on the sick' and many do just that - and at 50, and the pension is good enough to live on even with such an early retirement.  This fireservice did strike, and this closed down the airport - perhaps more than once. "So Tegwini you could have become a civil servant, joined the forces, be a policeman, ambulance driver, para medic, fireman, teacher, nurse etc and get a good pension, so why didn't you, you could be enjoying early retirement with a few bob in the bank" .Quillan Quillan,  I did become a teacher (6 years self-funded/overseas university training in my case) but stayed out of the state system for years, (taught in indep.& foreign schools) and and stayed home as a mum too so don't have that much of a pension.  I am really retired, do only a small amount in a top school nearby as I too dislike the rude, stroppy kids - "little swines" (quote Quillan) in many schools.    I  enjoy that   as it keeps the brain going and the teens are mainly lovely.  Also enjoying retirement in Wilts.  Husband is younger than me and wants to work, he is a CA and surprisingly seems to enjoy his job and plans to work for a few more years. It makes sense to have 2 paid for houses. One is already paid for.  Our retirement plans will be to travel  not clean etc for others.  And,  the timing is not quite my decision really.   The trouble is the UK cannot afford  so many  people 'on the sick' at present,  goodness know what the future will bring ... Tegwini
  20. I don't know much about other  'emergency services' but an old school friend's husband was the deputy fire chief at Manchester Airport  until retirement at age 50. His retirement 'on the sick' was planned, supposedly 'back problems' and his 'golden goodbye' paid for a boat, and they retired to a Scottish island where they bought a second home.  Naturally the airport's fire service  have  many dozens of applications for each vacancy- when they have a vacancy. The 'working class' are expected to work to 65- or older, and fund the pensions of civil servants. tegwini  
  21. Many thanks all Odile - we're in the Vienne - NE (30 mins) of Poitiers- overlooking the River Vienne - La France profonde,  but we love it here! Many thanks Chris, interesting list of birds,  my definite favourite is the Hoopoe.   I would love to visit the APP and find out more about French birdlife.  I am not sure what the APP and LPO are.    For decades I have had this interest, here & in S Africa, and have a shelf full of bird books including Roberts, although I am not a 'twitcher'!  It would be lovely to see some wild life in the garden/forest and not just the fouine that visits our roof occasionally. We are hoping he will go elsewhere! At present we only get to France as and when, but about 4-6 times pa - next visit this Christmas, perhaps we might try again to help them out if it's as cold as last year. Regards Tegwini
  22. It certainly is  much easier in the UK. Most supermarkets, DIY & town centres have wheel chairs available at either f.o.c. or a nominal sum. During the last summer we took mother in law with a gammy knee (aged 85) to France and we took a wheel chair with us from England as I knew that no - or few such facilities are available. Tegwini
  23. tegwini


    Hi Belle Hope your're well! This is probably nature's way of keeping the birds alive over winter. The birds need a bit of a change in their diet & fancy  the berries which are probably good for them.  At least you have some birds in your garden - we don't in the Vienne. We had an acre's worth of them as hedging plants, over  6 ft tall,  in Bryanston SA - they did get raided, but always recovered. Regards Tegwini  
  24. Here in rural Wiltshire - almost in Hamphire, overlooking part of the New Forest, and close to a large Woodland Trust forest, we have  numerous birds visit and live in our garden.  Perhaps 20-25 species.  And this year a large family - or two ?  of blackbirds have sucessfully raised a very large brood.   Admittedly we do encourage them & make some effort to feed them, especially in winter and have had nesting boxes around the garden for a few years. We find some of them them almost tame, especially the robins. And we love having them in our garden. In France by contrast, on the edge of a forest, with most of the garden left wild with a natural forest, we hardly see any birds.  We can hear them, and have tried to put out some treats, but these are not eaten and we have hardly seen any near the house or on the lawn. Can anyone explain why, and suggest what we can do - bearing in mind that we are not in France full-time at present. Thanks Tegwini
  25. Does anyone  (Sunday Driver?) know anything about this road - opening next Spring I believe.  I have tried to research it & not found enough to understand which way it will go, and why it is being built when the existing roads, by UK standards, seem OK Will it perhaps make the D749 quieter ? Many thanks Tegwini
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