You have probably noticed that I am without sidebar. Not me, but my blog. It's not even hanging down, it just has disappeared. The worst is, that it has disappeared in my blog insides too, there is nothing in "add elements" besides "about me" and there is nothing to add, or "archives".
I wrote to Bloogle Glogger help group. Nothing happened. All these savant men apparently were also stumped. Finally I wrote a mail to Rat who is quite a specialist and for once he couldn't help me either and suggested to write to Blogger itself. That's what I did and very polite, although it itched in my fingers to write "repair my @<%¨§@ page elements and before yesterday &@#% !!
What happened ? Nothing ! Not even a standard Robot answer which you probably know so well too :
"Thanks for contacting Blogger Support. Since we cannot always respond personally to every message we get, we encourage you to check Blogger Help, where you can find answers to many common questions. Here are some of the top articles which could help you out:"
Addresses of the top articles in question? None of them spoke about missing "page elements". As usual I must be an exception and the first "strange" case in ex Blogger Beta.
Now I have sent already 5 mails with the same message always pointing out that I tried everything : cleared cash, rebooted, switched from IE to Firefox, republished, locked in again (doesn't work with IE anymore on none of my blogs)I even tried to change the template without any result, the HTML Java script button is still missing.
Deadly silence so far. I already had once a similar problem with my sidebar but only hanging down. As a complete newbee I had also asked Blogger for help and wrote this post :
"I have sent a mail to Blogger Help . Now answer. Without any patience as usual 2 h later I sent again a message to Blogger' highness submitting again my problem. 5 min later I GOT A MESSAGE ! I red it : see above.
Same text. I got angry and told Pookie my personal cat who slept on my bed, war is declared now ! Pookie opened an eye and agreed. That's nice she always agrees with me. I think it's much better complaining to a cat then talking to walls, that looks kind of stupid. So I autoreplied too with the same text and suggested on my mail to wake up because it's already late afternoon. Nothing happened.
I wrote to Blogger god again, adding that I would NOW really like an answer ! and .... I got it! 5 min later ! and from his highness himself, amazing ! I opened the mail and ..... see above.
I informed Pookie that they use a computer robot always with the same text. I mean at least they could change a little bit i.e. instead of "encourage you" "suggest you" that would already make a difference, no ? Pookie agreed, this time without opening an eye, just a movement of her tailtop. I decided to be amused. I sent a reply again, this time in red with bold and font 20 and suggested to switch off the Robot and answer personally. No answer. I filled in again the email form of Blogger support and suggested them a staff increase. And oh yes ! I got an answer : see above.
I asked Pookie what to do now. Pookie agreed. So every hour I filled in Bloggers support mail form and thought about the face the Blogger guy would make when finally he had to check the mails, because one day they will have to clean it I suppose. This will be my revenge ! and then maybe I will get an answer ! Never give up hope ! Meanwhile I continue. It became a habit. Each time I am at my computer I send a message. I prepared several texts ! Naaa. I said to Pookie still on my bed, I will do this until I get an answer ! She probably said, yes, do so, but I couldn't see it well.
This morning when I looked again for help in Google Blogger help group, amongst hundreds of complaints and requests, I noticed one. It was a priest who blogged and even HE had a problem. That was a sign from heaven, I informed Pookie, still on my bed. I opened his blog and read :
"You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.12. All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities."
This was a sign!! It WAS help !!! But as a protestant I don't have any rosary. Where could I get one from ? but then ? I don't know how to use it. I asked Pookie, she didn't know either. My catholic husband send me to hell. So maybe during the day I will ask my neighbor for one, she surely has one she is catholic as all belgians. As a protestant I am rather considered as a "Jehova witness". Only I don't go from door to door in flat shoes, long skirts and ombrella looking grey. It happens to me to go from door to door looking for my cat Arthur, yes, that I do. But I surely don't look grey.
In my despair for any help I just looked at "next blog", and there it was .....!! another sign ! It was a black blog and the text all in little squares. I tried to read it, but it was chinese. So maybe I should write to Blogger in little squares ? Then the robot wouldn't catch the message and a human has to reply ! That is an idea. I asked Pookie, she agreed ! "
A lot of strange things happened in and around the house, but I didn't notice it at all, everything seemed normal to me. It's only long time later, when I knew a little more about the famous Mafia that I wondered if I hadn't been just in their middle without knowing it.
The house was flat and quite big with a huge patio. The view was just beautiful over Messina to the sea. It was surrounded by Olive trees which grew on large terraces up the hill. The whole property was very big and surrounded by a wall. I didn't like walls, and it was the only thing I wondered about. That every car which wanted to go through a big gate was controlled by a big guy, or that in the middle of the night men arrived making such a noise that I woke up, I didn't find strange. Anyway I was in love and love makes blind.
A completely black dressed old women scurried through the house and did everything. She was the only female person around. When I tried to ask her something other then what I needed, she looked at me with a shy glance and disappeared without any answer. I asked FL (first love) about this and other things I had noticed and found unusual, but for an answer I only got a laugh, a kiss and "don't bother". I didn't think more about it and enjoyed good food, sunshine and the sea. There was a private beach too.
One late evening men arrived and I heard agitated voices. FL got up and disappeared. Of course I got curious and wanted to know what happened. As an answer I was pushed back in the room and locked in ! That made me crazy, never ever in my whole life somebody had dared to lock me in ! I screamed, shouted and drummed with my hands against the door, without success. Nobody bothered about me, not even FL ! In my rage I took the first thing coming across my way, which was a heavy cupper thing, I don't remember what and smashed it against the window which was open but had thick stores. The stores went open and I could see moon and a lot of stars on the dark blue sky. These dark moonlight skies I remember for ever, they were so beautiful. Inspite of this noise, nobody came. I still boilt with rage and climbed out of the window, ran over in the dark night to sit down under olive trees. There I cried waterfalls of rage. Calming down a little, I started breeding my revenge. He had dared to lock me in !! and in my innocent mind, I decided to walk along the beach to the city and have a drink somewhere. I really was crazy.
After a while still only seeing closed and dark houses I wondered what to do now. Again without thinking I knocked on a door. The word danger or dangerous wasn't part of my vocabulary and fear neither. Finally a man opened the door and when he saw me he starred at me as if I were a ghost and called his wife. She took me in and was so kind an friendly and gave me wine (which I badly needed) and then their 3 children also came and looked at me, the stranger from another world.
What followed afterwards I can only guess. After maybe half an hour FL showed up with 3 other men, who looked quite unfriendly and of course he was angry with me. But not as much as I was with him ! so we screamed and shouted at each other, while the others were standing around. Finally I agreed to go back with them anyway I had no other choice and I think I remember seeing him giving some money to this family. Years later I understood that anyway this family or even single men wouldn't have dared to harm me. Professore the peaceful poet and writer was maybe not what he pretended to be.
Other Sicilian stories here
Friday Feast must be delayed !Kuanyin "tagged" me !! She dared ! Usually I don't like "tagging" I can see some on the wall of our train station, but I thought to just consider it as an interview and make an exception.
1. What do you hope to accomplish with your blog
A miracle ! A get together of the whole world ! (my second name is Modesty)
2. Are you a spiritual person?
Oh yes ! ! Deep sigh, closing eyes, 5 sec, opening eyes wide, illuminated look to the crumbly sealing...... smiling misteriously. (try to do the same)
my dearest wish is to become a blog myth ! With a 1 m long sidebar of AWARDS !
3. If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three things would you want to have with you?
my laptop, Internet and a dictionary and (Pookie of course) to kill the time until somebody finally shows up and comes to rescue me
4. What's your favorite childhood memory?
When I could get on the nerves of all people around me and drive them crazy !
5. Is this your first meme?
Oh yes ! I am a very shy person and don't want to divulge my interior thinkings.
Ah ! (waking up) is that all ?? Then I leave, I have memes to do ! 100 questions ! No time to blog anymore !
FRIDAY FEAST Catering service is repaired at now 4.30 pm ! Hope you are still hungry ! Here is the Menu
Appetizer Tell about a time when you had to be brave.
All the time ! since I am married for 38 years and it still continues !
Soup Which upcoming movie are you excited about seeing?
Salad Name an item you try to always have on hand.
My cigarettes ! and please be free to tell my that smoking is not healthy I know (my father already gave it up on me because I knew everything better) But don't write waterfalls in my comments !
Main Course Imagine the most relaxing room you can think of. Now describe it!
One with a nice big jazzy in pink (!) with flowers around me and a Magnum bottle of champagne !
Dessert On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being highest), how spiritual or religious are you?
Ouf ! 1 % perhaps ? see above my interview
Thirteen different meanings !
When an English-English speaking person comes to the States how should he know that :
1. he doesn't go to a toilet but has to rest in a restroom ? Even when it's urgent !
2. he doesn't eat a biscuit but a cookie and doesn't even get an indigestion because he thought it was something for the computer
3. he is not a chap anymore but a guy and is afraid of wrong prononciation "gay".
4. he has not a booth in his car but a trunk and thinks he now has a corpse in his booth.
5. he doesn't drive in a lorry but in truck
6. he doesn't have a bonnet at his car but a hood. Wasn't that a bonnet to wear ?
7. he doesn't sit in a garden but in a yard and askes himself if it is bigger then a meter ?
8. he hasn't a pushchair to push but a stroller and what does a stroller then walking around and looking at girls ?
9. He is not in a lift but in an elevator. Fortunately both went up and down and didn't get stuck
10. He has no wardrobe anymore but a closet and wonders why he should put his clothes in a toilet or restroom
11. he doesn't get post anymore but mail and wonders why the postman rings twice and not the mailman ?
12. he isn't wearing trousers but pants and askes himself what he should put under his pants ?
13. He doesn't watch a film but a movie and his chair is not moving
Poor poor Englishman in New York !
Pookie also had to laugh !
My son's best buddy was a little American boy who also was in his Kindergarten, they both were 3 or 4. The boy's grandpa was an american officer who worked at the NATO here in Brussels.
Little Patrick was the souvenir of Spanish holidays his mother had brought back, hidden in her belly. So his grandpa was his Dad. Patrick really looked like a mini Torreador, black curly hairs, burning black eyes and a temper like a volcano. I think it must have been hard for her to have this living souvenir running around in the house. I didn't have a lot of contact to her, she was a rather mousy person, completely overwhelmed by her very temperamental mother and the little son. Anne, my friend (the grandma) had married her American officer just after the liberation of France. She was french and came from Normandy.
Anne's house was open to everybody and very often looked like a dovecote. It was very big, and the main room where everybody popped in was the kitchen. It was huge ! At the big table at least 14 people could sit easily. Despite the bigness, the kitchen was a very cosy place.
One day we were invited to a little feast, because the eldest son who was also in the army but in Frankfurt (Germany) had brought a big ham from there. It was almost the whole pig leg ! As Mr. Gattino was working I went there with my little son.
I had a nice (very) short dress with the skirt full of flounces and high over the knees boots. That was very fashionable at the time. Grandpa stand in the kitchen and cut big slices of ham and everybody took its plate put a slice on and then sat in the very big living room with a nice open fire lit.
At one moment I had to go for little girls (which means the toilet). When I came back, keeping myself very straight and very proud of my new dress, people started to laugh behind me, so I turned around to see why they were laughing so hard. But when I had turned other people started to laugh too and again behind me. I really wondered what I had missed. And while I turned and turned to get at least one of these apparently so funny conversations, Anne still laughing came over to me and told me that my (short) skirt was jammed in my pants. The view they all had must have been quite special with my high boots ! I quickly pulled it out and had to laugh too what should I do else anyway.
Mr. Gattino who meanwhile had arrived looked just bored and informed the guests that things like that could only happen to his dear wife. Little son wondered why people laughed so much, he was used to worse.In the past it looked a little better !
One of my friends daughter was hospitalized for anorexia. The day where my friend was allowed to visit her, she asked me to come with her, because she hadn't the courage to go there alone and facing her skeleton like daughter. She was full of reproaches for herself and felt so guilty that she didn't know what to say to her daughter and she thought with me being there it would be less stressful.
When we arrived it was visitor day and the sick girls and boys were all in a big room to wait for their families or friends. There were all main deseases represented. Depressions, Anorexia, boulimia and very heavy drug addicts and all of them hoped to survive or not.
The first thing I noticed in this room was a young man of around 20 who had climbed on a table, singing the song "I will survive" with all his heart and danced. On the table was also a big birthday cake with candles and at least 8 people sat around. Of course I became curious about what happened there and asked. A woman told me the very sad story of this young man. His problem was to be too intelligent and he had an IQ far above the average. Nobody had noticed that and as school became so boring for him because he learned too fast, he had started with a few coke lines, which had been offered to him probably during parties. From there it got worse more and more until he reached the state of heroin and crack and everything what could get him out of his boring world. Until the day he almost died from an overdose. Hospitalized here, he suddenly realized that he wanted to survive and start a cure.
In some way he was very lucky that his parents never gave up on him and tried to get him out of this hell by all means. Later on another visit I had the occasion to discuss with him and I was really amazed about the general knowledge of everything he had in litterature, painting, science etc. But he wasn't healed yet. In the middle of a conversation he just would walk away, start singing or doing something else. He was such a friendly and loveable guy.
And when I think about him dancing and singing on this table, with his whole family around, I sincerely hope that he had survived.
Each time I hear this song I see him dancing with such joy and hope for a new life.
During my stay in FL's (first love) parental home I fortunately wasn't home very much. Of course he wanted to show me as much as possible of Sicily. But the days where he had something to do in the morning I was locked in. Literally. As soon as I put my nose outside the house there where curious eyes. At that time I didn't realize why. I just couldn't imagine that people had never seen such a species like me. I had nothing special at least up in the north, I only was blond and tall. But in 1964's Sicily I must have looked like an alien.
After 2 times staying a whole morning in the house, I had enough and revolted. I wanted to go out and right away ! I have to admit that I was quite a spoiled brat and when I didn't get what I wanted I could become very furious. Finally Zia (aunt) Petrina had enough of my show told me to shut up (she spoke Italian as the other members of the family) knotted her black scarf under her chin, armed herself with a black umbrella opened the door and pushed me out in the morning sun. I wondered why she took an umbrella in this dazzling sunshine and no rain clouds around but finally it wasn't my business, at least I now was out of the house.
After a few steps, some children followed us laughing, pointing at me and jumping around. That was normal I thought. But then suddenly teenaged boys and young men followed us too making ¨probably very salacious remarks, because Zia Petrina suddenly transformed into a fury. This little woman, looking like a grey (or rather black) mouse with her grey hair and the knot on top of her head, always covered by her black scarf when she went out, took her ombrella and started beating furiously on every human she could reach. And she beat very strong. She didn't care where or whom she hit she just blindly beat around with her ombrella.
As always in dangerous or strange moments, I have a sort of black out and only see the comic side of the situation and of course this one made me laugh. I didn't realize anything. Now the young men went back and all this scenery was accompagnied with loud screaming and gesticulating and house doors and windows opened to watch this riot. And I stand there in the middle, probably dressed half naked in their eyes and laughed. I couldn't help it.
Today when I think about this situation, I really had the innocence of youth (I was only 23 and not a bit mature) and didn't realize at all what could have happened. Anyway suddenly 2 police cars showed up and I don't remember how many policemen jumped out and shouted at the men and started to beat them with their batons. Now I too was afraid. But Zia Petrina, with a satisfied look at me, took my arm and lead me home, pushed me inside the house and said " See ! You can't go out here !"
Yes, apparently, even I with my pighead had to agree.This isn't Zia Petrina because I don't have any picture of her. Old woman for a young girl were not very interesting of course. But she must have looked like this one. A face carved by a hard life. In 1964 women were dressed like this. Today probably not anymore at least not in cities. But at that time widows were always dressed in black from top to bottom and others too from a certain age on of course. I wondered why they all were dressed in black especially in this heat. They told me that when one family member dies the woman wears black even if it's only a distant cousin, uncle or aunt. As there are always a family member who dies, they never get out of wearing black.
if you want to read another story it's here