tger greenhaddock: December 2007

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Seasons Greetings

Wishing everyone a merry Christmas and a very happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Winter Break

Last Saturday the Haddock family ventured north to Bremen to watch Werder play Bayer Leverkusen in the last Bundesliga game before the winter break. It was a cold day and we wrapped up warm but we still got pretty cold by the end of the day. But it didn’t matter as we saw a great game of football. It didn’t start so well, as Leverkusen took the lead, but the Weser Stadium erupted when Ivan Klasnic equalised. Bremen then made two early substitutions and then their standard of play really picked up.

The second half saw Werder Bremen step it up a gear. Some exciting football was played and the hosts came out on top winning 5-2. The hero of the day was Klasnic who is back in the team after having a kidney transplant earlier this year and he got on the score sheet twice. This result means Werder are in 2nd place in the Bundesliga on equal points with Bayern Munchen going into the winter break.

After the game we walked into town to visit the Christmas market. It was without doubt the best one I have visited so far in Germany. We had a nice time having a look around and the Juniorette bought herself a couple of little items. Eventually, when we were too cold we headed back to the car and then south back to Marburg. It was a great day out.

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Monday, December 10, 2007

Girls wanted

On Saturday the Juniorette attended a football event in Offenbach, which is near Frankfurt. It was the Girls Wanted Nikolaus Cup for girls aged between 8 & 14 years old. The event was arranged by Louise Hanson (who also runs the 1.FFC Frankfurt football school) and was attended by 160 soccer mad girls. It was held in an indoor hall and was split into two sessions, divided by lunch. In the morning session the girls were divided up into groups which then rotated through the 14 training stations. Then in the afternoon the tournament session began, with each child player 4 games.

The whole event was very well organised and the kids had a lot of fun. Renate Lingor (member of this years Women’s world Cup winning team) was on microphone to commentate on events and provide instructions. Several other 1.FFC Frankfurt players were in attendance too as trainers and Conny Pohlers made an appearance dressed as Nikolaus.

The mix between training and tournament was about spot on, and the Juniorette was very happy that her group attained first place for her age group in the training stations. What made me happy was the quality of football. If this event was anything to go by then Germany has an up and coming talent pool that other countries would have a problem rivalling.

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Friday, December 07, 2007

The idyllic coin

I've lived in the Marburg area of Germany for over 10 years now and I really like it here. One of the things I like is that the area is very rural. Lots of countryside and lots of trees. Another aspect that I like is the attitude of Marburg to the environment. Many buses run on natural gas, and there are many private vehicles that run on bio-diesel or gas. One of my neighbours has an all electric scooter which he charges up from the PV solar on his roof. The powers that be in Marburg also want to make it the first city in Germany to require all new buildings to have solar included on the roof. This is I think is an excellent idea.

Of course there are always two sides to every idyllic coin, and this week the new virus lab opened up in Marburg. Here scientists will work on some of the most deadly virus known to man, including Ebola. Interestingly enough if you Google Marburg you will find out just as much about the Marburg virus (and it’s pretty damn dangerous) as you will about the University city. In fact the virus is named after the city after an outbreak of the virus here in 1967.

So if we have an ever have a bad earthquake here I just hope that the prevailing westerly wind are blowing, as I live north of the lab. But I guess it must be safer than living close to a nuclear plant. Over the years I have worked and lived in a few places around the world, all had their good and bad sides. Here I have settled and I'm glad to call Marburg my home.

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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The tram nutter

This current shift cycle of nights has been a bit of a bugger. Too much work and too much stress. So this morning when I left work my brain was on autopilot. I entered the tram which takes me to the train station and I smelt cigarette smoke. When I looked around it was obvious that everyone was trying very hard not to look at a big bloke in his late fifties with a very large beard, who was holding a lit fag.

Without even thinking about it I made eye contact, then looked at his ciggie, and then shook my head. He said something I didn't quite catch (as I had Mötorhead playing rather loudly on my mp3 player), so I told him its not allowed to smoke on the tram. It was about this point I realised he was a nutter, as he then kept on going on about losing his rucksack and other stuff I didn't understand. I told him not to worry about it, but at the next stop he got off and in doing so wished me a safe journey home (not sure how he knew I was going home and not to work). He then just stood in the road, and I had the terrible feeling that I had just thrown him off the tram. I really felt quite guilty about it, as, after all he was a harmless nutter who just seemed to have lost his rucksack and was probably having a smoke to calm himself down.

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Sunday, December 02, 2007


Recently swenglishexpat over at Fruits of my Mind awarded me a Roar. I would be the last person to describe myself as a writer, as I am not. But nether the less my humble little blog is honoured to receive the award. Greenhaddock really started out as a journal to document the changes occurring over the seasons in our garden, but rapidly changed more into entries about the Juniorette and football. I guess I should put a bit more green and garden stuff in some time, and I suppose I should use spell checkers more often, but hey life's too short for good grammar!

Here are the details of the award: Those people I've given this award to are encouraged to post it on their own blogs; list three things they believe are necessary for good, powerful writing; and then pass the award on to the five blogs they want to honour, who in turn pass it on to five others, etc., etc. Let's send a roar through the blogsphere! The image at the top left can be copied and pasted onto other blogs. Also, a small size of the award for sidebars can be found over at the writing circle site.

My tips to good and powerful blog writing are:

  1. Content is the most important thing. It should be interesting.
  2. Not too long an article as many people have short attention spans (me included)
  3. Pictures of naked women do help (not really, but I couldn’t really think of a good third one!)

So for my award nominees (I know it's only 3!)

Bob Gentry – Bob’s Journal was one of the first blogs I came across in the blogosphere and I have been reading ever since. He is also a very talented singer/songwriter and his music really rocks!

Red Baron – Der Roter Baron writes some very thought provoking posts. He tackles the more serious political issues in the world, and isn’t afraid to say what he thinks. I like his style.

Beaman’s World – A very powerful writer who has written some extremely good short stories and beautiful poetry.