Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Up so early, feel so bright....

...didn't get much sleep last night

Actually, I did, but a few times last week, I was a little behind in the 40 winks. Last Wednesday, Dave, Maarten Tom and myself headed off to the newly opened Lotto Arena in Antwerp (oh so far away...!) to see Kele Okereke and the rest of Bloc Party. I was quite impressed with the venue - typical U shaped concert hall, but we could choose to sit or stand (being over the age of 25, with all of us out on a 'work-night' we opted for the sitting option. But this didn't stop Maarten and myself from sprinting down the 3 flights of stairs when the dancy numbers started.

Lowlight of the night: FUCKING FREEZING outside; strange sounding supporting group (very monotonous, repetitive, musically unchallenging songs)

Highlights of the night: 2 encores, with Kele re-appearing in the mascot outfit for the Antwerp Giants basketball team (see clip I have attached from some lucky bird who must have been in the front row); plus the audience involvement - 2 girls even went so far as to show their boobies to the unsuspecting group. This brings me back to the big day out, 1999... I never saw so many boobies as when Blink 182 took stage...

Then, on the weekend, we first babysat Natalie, then had to quickly finish organising the surprise 50th birthday party for my other mum - Loreine or Moe (east Flemish word for mum - pronounced moo (yes, like a cow...!)).

Tom and I were on bar duty - skulling the cokes (so buggered after babysitting) but luckily, we had help from Philippe, Jan and Maarten. Thank god!! So, thank you guys - many grumpy 50 year olds would have gone thirst if it werent for you!

We were busy there until a little after 3am, then came home and crashed. It was a fun night, but don't recommend the bar work at a party to anyone!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

I can do anything I want because I look good in leather

This week has been quite a tiring and emotional one.
We made our way to Brussels last Sunday (only to get lost and do 3 laps of the Basilique - grrr!!) and were welcomed with open arms at Louis' girlfriend's family home. After a few minutes of uncomfort, this was quickly replaced by a huge cup of tea with lemon and some friendly happy chit chat (in French. erhm....)

The whole intention of our trip was to have some nice photos taken: Louis and his father in law are keen hobby photographers and have a huge setup in the garage, and he has been offering us to come for a good 6 months so we finally took him up on his offer (along with another classmate of theirs; Mieke and her boyfriend, Jornd).

After a few hours of some single shots on digital, Tom and I expected that we would make our way out to the local bakery and buy ourselves something, but since Louis' girlfriend (Daphnè) works at a bakery, they had already a huge delicious buffet planned for us to feast ourselves on. Made up of millions of soft cheese, italian fine hams, sun dried tomatos with capers and all sorts of different antipasti delicacies (not to mention the ever flowing vin rouge) we went back for more photos. After the digital tests were done, we moved to the precious analogue device - however, the photograhers were having some slight problems with the flash etc...

When it was my turn to take the stage, I suddenly felt pressure (typical ingrid style stress) and after a few shots, was unsure how to pose (although this was more about spontaneous shots) and acted like an absolute petulent child and just had a little 'model breakdown' I like to call it! But I think that Louis took some fantastic shots and we will definitely go back again.

Then, this week, while at work came the huge emotion spinner: my sister has offered to pay for a ticket for me to come home for Christmas. Apparently it is a 'big one' this year with all the Christiansen's and extended Morris's (apart from us...) and Emme (being in the high salary category) has kindly offered to fork out for a ticket. Two problems to overcome: Seat availability AT CHRISTMAS (ha!) and the fact that I have 0 days left until 1 January. The first problem was quickly overcome (although a little dearer than normal, at $2500 AUD) and not too steep, but the second problem is still yet to be decided. The belgian holiday system is different to that of Australia. Very complicated, but in short, you receive ALL of your holidays for the year on the 1st of January (31 for me). Then you plan your year around these days. So I have asked my boss if I could 'steal' 4 of my days from 2008) but he is afraid that if he allows it for me then other people will ask for favours as well etc. So I can understand him. All I have to do is wait until Monday, but in short, I am not getting my hopes up!

And to make this blog a little longer, I cut a chunk out of my thumb this week! Would enclose a photo, but it is a little yucky!

Let's hope next week will be better (starting today!). We are babysitting Natalie Flies for a few hours this afternoon, followed by an evening of partying drunk 50 year olds for Toms' mother's surprise 50th birthday party. Tom and I have elected to do bar duty (and will probably be standing there until 6am. Grrrr. These old teenagers!!)

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Last night, after many months in the planning, Carla, Nathalie, Stefanie and myself treated ourselves to delicious steaks and dessert (followed by a complementary bottle of Champagne from the boss) in the 2140 in Borgerhout (a suburb of Antwerp). After quite a crappy day for 3 of the 4 of us (with Nathalie taking the cake on worst and me having a relatively sober day), this was an evening which nearly didnt go ahead. There was all intention to go dancing in a poxy top 40 club afterwards, but after a full week, we were all starting to feel old and tired and chose for our own beds instead! Next time, we will plan to go in the weekend!

Tom and I decided to play with the apple functions and took a picky - didnt turn out so badly actually!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Sweet seduction from a magazine

Not entirely too much to say today, but it is a public holiday here and with Tom studying for most of the day, I will amuse myself with non-costly exercises like reading, speaking to my gorgeous sister on skype and eating!

It seems that there are always public holidays here in Belgium, but I think this must be because they are nicely dispersed throughout the year. We have 2 in november, so this little Gen X-Yer will not be working her bum off too much this month.

Anyway... this week, Tom went to see the Cold War Kids with Maarten in Leuven. We bought the CD while we were in Australia and Tom took an immediate liking to them (with me being absolutley sick of hearing the line 'I promise to my wife and children...'). So on 29 October, they played here and according to Tom, while they were technically fantastic and have great music, the concert lacked any sort of atmosphere and they ended on a wierd instrumental number. Apparently, this is the first concert tom has been to where the supporting act outshone the main. So, Tom is now a fan of Patrick Watson and will be following him until the next craze comes along!

Next week we will see Bloc Party (once again) - probably not as cozy this time, but I have a thing for Kele and think he will entertain regardless!