“Please can I have some more?” 13th August 2014

Words that are being uttered by Eleanor as she devours her 3rd fried egg, cooked eggspertly by me in our kitchen…on a 2 ring gas hob, with burners that will singe your eyebrows given half the chance.  Food is proving difficult for Eleanor. Sauces are a no go just now, together with anything that smells remotely different. Here, my parents will be saying “just like Alison”. Yesterday Eleanor wanted some crioissants from the supermarket- they were never going to be the same as the ones we had freshly baked on our campsites in France a month ago, but they were … Continue reading “Please can I have some more?” 13th August 2014

Croziers arrival and hunting down an apartment. 9th August 2014

Today, Saturday 9th August is the eve of our move into our own apartment. (Rapturous applause please) This is a long blog…so grab yourself a cup of tea, gin and tonic or glass of something and see you at the end.  We survived the flights on Lufthansa on Monday/Tuesday. Martin blagged his viola as handluggage on the Frankfurt/Shanghai route. Eleanor slept most of the way and had to be woken up for landing. It has always been my wish to either enter a plane and turn left r go upstairs. Well my wish wasn’t granted this time, and now Martin … Continue reading Croziers arrival and hunting down an apartment. 9th August 2014

Hello Mr Blue Sky 9th August 2014

Said me not yet. We haven’t yet succumbed to wearing face masks that my lovely colleagues at Battens gave me, but the pollution is noticeable by the lack of blue sky. Grey is the colour of the sky during the day, but the moon is visible at night. There is no definition in the sky, no shape of clouds – someone once described it as a Tupperware lid.  On Friday afternoon we did our first touristy thing of going round on a fairly large Ferris wheel situated by the lake. The lake is green/brown in colour, the sky grey. What … Continue reading Hello Mr Blue Sky 9th August 2014

Taking tea to China 3 August 2014

The first post of my blog was in May 2014, when everything was exciting and just a little surreal. We were months away from moving. This post now sees us 24 hours from our flight from London Heathrow to Shanghai via Frankfurt.  Shipping left Coles Close, Wincanton on Tuesday 29th July. Have we packed too much? Definitely too many cuddly toys! Do I really need those Le Creuset saucepans? Will Eleanor remember those teddies so loved?… See above comment. Will I remember those teddies (yes) The bikes were taken (and they survived 4 years – having been stolen from outside … Continue reading Taking tea to China 3 August 2014

Shown the Door 11th August 2014

London taxi drivers have “the knowledge”, others rely on sat at, and when all else fails Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) taxi drivers make eye contact with you and point to the door – effectively asking you to get out because he has no idea where you want to go. Thankfully we found one and were able to get to Martin’s school to get the school car to go to IKEA.  Our problem was that we wanted to go into downtown, only about 15 kms from the flat, but for Suzhou this is a large area and of course if your … Continue reading Shown the Door 11th August 2014

A slow boat to China 15 May 2014

I have probably gone a bit mad, but the blog site I started on, no longer exists. And while I have two sets of faithful followers (Nancy and Gordon and my Mum and Dad) who have printed every blog I have done, I can no longer access my old blogs from my first year. So Mum and Dad have kindly lent me theirs (although I actually stole it from them – and Eleanor did my confession for me) and my aim is to put on WordPress the very start of my blogs. So if you have been reading my log … Continue reading A slow boat to China 15 May 2014

For sale. New Job. See you next time.

The apartment that we have lived in for 3 and a bit years is up for sale. For 7 million RMB.  We knew we would have to move at the end of this academic year, and the question on people’s lips was where? And would we find anywhere that matches the commanding view of Baitang Park and the Hilton (was a Doubletree by Hilton, but it has gone up in the world to become a Hilton!) We didn’t even try to look. In February I applied for a new post at school. I wasn’t successful first time around, which to … Continue reading For sale. New Job. See you next time.


Warning! This blog was started in April but events have as usual taken over my life and the blog was put to one side… I am now finishing this blog sitting on the TGV from Nimes to Charles du Gaulles Airport… But that is another story entirely… The end of March/beginning of April is really the best time to visit us. Last year we had our friend Kat, the year before the Scotts, and the year before that, my parents. This year we are welcomed Claire and her daughter Connie. Claire and I have been friends for 9 years since … Continue reading Visitors