Again my chip has not been used or in other words we did not go to England or Sweden this year. Since Monika again was refused a real nice summer vacation we had to settle for little trips and even tiny ones.
As usual the first days off during the year were those in February that are hitherto known as the fifth season, when people get drunk, dress up, and make a real mess of public places. Since we are not amused when drunks try to kiss us in the streets, we fled to Berlin for the elongated weekend.
Berlin has changed a lot, Gene tells me. The new buildings for the German government were as new to him as to me and we both did not really like them. I prefered the lower parts of the Grunewald trees and Gene prefers the Houses of Parliament in Westminster, he says. (What a snob!) I made friends with a little boy (the son of a former colleague of Monika's) and they (that is the two legged bunch) visited the Austrian Embassy etc.
In April we spent a week in France with Jenny and Leonard who made themselves a home from home in St.Saturnin, bang in the middle of France.
During the following months I actually learned some new tricks like rolling over on command, playing dead dog when told to relax and I no longer jump up and down when someone gets up from his bed on weekends. (During the week they get up so bloody early that I try to hide and pretend to sleep as long as possible before they kick me out for a stroll.) Nowadays I follow quietly on tiptoe, wait until they settle on the carpet and then crawl up next to them to get a cuddle. I very much enjoy cuddling. Evenings are the best since Monika and Gene take turns during the time they sit in front of their fireplace to get down on the carpet and offer me some space very close to them where I can lie down and have my ten minutes of fame, i.e. cuddling.
With the summer being as hot as it was, I very often enjoyed the fact that either Gene was working on his computer and Monika went to her office or the two of them went out on a tour with their Beamer while I was left alone to enjoy the cool temperatures of the cellar.
With the summer being such a great motorbike season, Monika and Gene got themselves a new Beamer October. It's the silver one below, the red one was their old one.
In September we spent two days in Emmen, NL with a friend of Gene's from his earlier trip to Tampere, Finland. I was quiet surprised to find, that not all of the Netherlands was as sandy as I had hoped for; they, unfortunately too have towns! However, since Gene and Monika can now watch the BBC television programmes from home, going to Holland is no longer of such importance to them, so it seems.
With Gene now working much longer hours having been made head of the department at his college, I spend many more days with Monika at the embassy. We now regularly travel to work by car as Gene much more often uses his new bike to get around´. I'm very happy to hear Monika say that our many trips and hours together give her the impression that I respect her much more than I used to.
With that in mind, I sure hope I won't be made redundand yet.