Thursday, November 10, 2011

Now you see them - Now you don't

Can it really be months since I last updated this blog, well yes is the answer - lots of reasons, not least my health has not been as good as it should be - but put it down to old age !

However it does allowme once again to praise the health services here in Latvia, where else could I get to see a neuro surgeon, get a two MRI scans, two x-rays, an ultrasound scan, all within the space of two weeks, and all for less than 300.00 ls. Suffice to say the treatment seems to be working and with a bit of luck I will be back to normal soon.

However since last I wrote, a number of our village people have left, some for good and some for the winter. In the former catagory young T... ( Swedish - plays with trucks) has left for sunnier climes, albeit in one of the more dangerous parts of the world, but good luck to him in building a new Scania empire. However before he left he took a little time off in Sweden, bought a rifle ( As you do) went out into the woods and shot an elk.

In the latter catagory J... ( Australian - king of SIP) has left (again) for Australia, to build an empire of SIP factories. He promises to return next summer, I suspect for the last time, and who knows we might we see weddings bells ??

So what has been going on over the last few months, well we had the rugby extravaganza in New Zealand, which culminated in New Zealand narrowly winning against France. Needless to say I watched the final in the Kiwi bar, alongwith 100+ others, and can you believe there were more French men than New Zealanders. No idea where they came from, as I have never seen them in the bar before.

Speaking of Antipodean sports, we also had the annual Australian football festival, like last year I did not make it down at the start to join Australian ex-pats watch this maniacal game, however as usual there was vegemite on toast, sausage rolls ( made by a real Australian/Latvian) - K....... ( Ruler of the best "Folk bar" in Riga) and of course to wash this down loads of beer, all at 7.00am in the morning

The latter part of summer was glorious, and it was sad to see the removal of the outdoor terraces at the end of October, but safe in the knowledge that they will return in May.

We also saw the opening of (another) Irish bar - "Maloneys" - once again with young S..... (Ukranian - with poor song tastes). He is making a career out of opening Irish bars - first De Lacy's, then Donnegans and now Maloneys. First impressions are excellent, and with its location just off Livi Square, it is in a prime location - so I wish it well.

So Riga can now boast three Irish themed bars, the original Paddy Whelans, Donnegans and now Maloneys.

This weekend will see me once again head out to Jelgava, for Remembrance Sunday - its hard to believe that this will be 8th Year - so I can but hope that the current mild weather continues at least until then.

In celebration of New Zealands victory, a picture of one happy Kiwi, R.. (New Zealand - B & B master of Riga)
Do not let the size of the cup deceive you, in reality it is quite small, but then again so is R..!

Sometimes the best of plans can go wrong - recently friends of the film actor Clint Eastwood decided to help celebrate his birthday by hiring a sky writer to put a message above the Hollywood sign, but as you can see below he did not quite get it write (sic) !!

Thanks to C... (English - still rolling printers) for this contribution

And finally just to prove that I am still alive and kicking a recent pic of me outside the Kiwibar, taken on the day of Aussie rules final

And yes that is the official smoking zone !

Finally on this blogs theme, many of you will remember the Hotel de Rome, and the Otto Schwartz restaurant which sat atop it it - well it is no more ! Not sure why but I suspect some scullduggery - however it has re-opened as the FG Royal Hotel (more scull duggery ?).

However the good news is that they have agreed to host the annual charity dinner in aid of the Zvannieki Childrens home on the 14th December, and have handed over the kitchen and restaurant for our sole use, if any of you can make it - or would like to make a donation - get in touch.