Helloes!

Jul. 24th, 2010 09:34 pm
radegund: (wine-pansy)
[personal profile] radegund
We are back from four weeks in California, where the weather is apparently always hot and sunny at this time of year. Which gets disconcertingly boring after a while. The drizzle at Dublin Airport this morning was an unexpected pleasure.

Some Random Things I Liked

Swimming!
The residents' pool and jacuzzi. OMG. I haven't been swimming regularly since our last French holiday in 2005. As a child I went on family holidays to the Continent most summers (my parents lecture in French and Italian), which entirely ruined me for indoor swimming pools. (Yes, this is incompatible with my new-found drizzle-love. Work with me.)

The one where we stayed is particularly beautiful - set among white-painted pergolas clothed in wisteria (just finishing, but it must have been incredible two months ago), with white roses and gardenia(?) all around, and birches and mystery flowering trees on the street outside.

The pool was generally deserted during the week, and we never saw it with more than about 30 people. The water didn't smell chlorinated - it seemed to be treated with some kind of salt. The boys and I went nearly every day, and it turns out that the Oyster shares my extreme delight at being in the water. I watched him at the end of each visit - dragging himself along to the steps, not wanting to get out until he absolutely had to - and I thought, I remember that.

The Oyster can basically doggy paddle now, and he can jump in over his head and push himself back to the surface if I'm there to catch him. The Feaster bobs around in his armbands and ring, and can get himself from place to place quite efficiently when he wants to. They both like clinging to my back while I swim. I like that too.

BIG Trees!
We went to Muir Woods. And even though the Oyster was in a mood so finely calculated to push his parents' buttons that it's a wonder we didn't explode, it was spectacular. Coastal redwoods! They are tall. The end.

Safety!
Car seats for people the Feaster's size come with a chest buckle, as well as the crotch buckle we're used to. This is just a plastic slidey thing, but it has the very desirable effect of preventing him from wriggling out of the shoulder straps (something he does regularly in Dublin for the purpose of putting the heart across me). I must see if they're available here.

Efficiency!
Caf├ęs and foodcourts have this brilliant gadget. You place your order at the counter and pay for it. They hand you a square plastic device like a very thick coaster, about the size of your palm, with their logo on it and some little LEDs around the rim. You find a table. After a few minutes, the device buzzes and the LEDs flash, and you go to the collection counter and pick up your food.

It is magic.

Actually, it reminds me of the first time I was in California, in 1997. I went To The Mall, tee em, with one of the Irish friends I was staying with, and she urged me to buy a newfangled drink I'd never seen before. It was a smoothie, and my mind was blown. Within a year, they had hit Dublin.

So I'll be very much looking out for these food buzzer things. (Or am I just fearfully out of touch and everyone else has been using them for months already?)

Right, the Feaster has awoken. I'll be off.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 08:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] thereyougothen.livejournal.com
4 weeks! we're just back from just over 3 weeks in england and scotland. the weather was what you would expect, but that's fine by me...
here in Santiago it seems to be alternating between days of brilliant blue sky and sunshine and miserable grey rain. but we had some *snow* this morning.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 02:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
Snow! What's the weather meant to be like in Santiago in late July? Here in Dublin it's overcast and mild today, which I'm loving.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 03:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] thereyougothen.livejournal.com
snow is unusual in ourt bit of the city, but it happened twice last year. it doens't lie. we are only an hour from ski resorts though, so we are used to seeing it in the distance.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 09:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mockduck.livejournal.com
I hate to say it, but we had one of those buzzer things in a pizza place in Hove three or four *years* ago... It didn't seem to catch on though, that is to say I only saw it in the one place, until last year when Jamie Oliver's opened. Maybe he'll restart a trend.

Wisteria pool sounds lovely though.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 02:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
They've definitely caught on in the SF/Bay Area. I hope they spread - I think they're great.

The wisteria pool was lovely!

(Also, aren't you fabulous, with your amazing fabric design plans? I have been vaguely following on the Twitters, and am dead impressed.)

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 10:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] buzzy-bee.livejournal.com
There is a soft play place in Cumbernauld, halfway between here and Glasgow, which has those buzzers. They are magic :D You should come and visit :D

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 10:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] buzzy-bee.livejournal.com
Oh and the chest clips. Not legal here. Something to do with having to have a single button release on carseats in Europe.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 03:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
They are magic! And I've been pondering a Scotland visit - watch this space :-)

The chest clips are illegal? Oh well. I can definitely see why you'd want to have a single button release. But the chest clip is such a simple solution to my recurring problem (i.e. being on a busy road where it's awkward to stop, and noticing that the Feaster's upper body is unsecured yet again).
Edited Date: 2010-07-25 03:24 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 10:11 pm (UTC)
ailbhe: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ailbhe
Chest straps aren't legal in the UK, dunno about Ireland, because carseat harnesses need to be openable by one adult using one hand.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 04:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
[livejournal.com profile] buzzy_bee's information implies that they're illegal here too - she says it's an EU thing. As I said to her, I can definitely see why you'd want to have a single button release. But the chest clip is such a simple solution to my recurring problem (i.e. being on a busy road where it's awkward to stop, and noticing that the Feaster's upper body is unsecured yet again).

Ah well. Looks like I'll just have to keep tightening and making the point.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-24 11:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ellipunk.livejournal.com
Welcome back. Sounds like you had a lovely time. You can get clip things in online shops like the natural baby resource that do the same thing as the one you're talking about. As above, not sure how legal they are and also not sure if they fit all carseat straps, but may be worth investigating.

I think the buzzers are fairly standard in the US, from all the Disney trip reports I can't seem to stop myself from reading... ack.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 04:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
Thank you! We're glad to be back, though the jet lag has us absolutely flattened today.

The buzzers are definitely standard in the Bay Area, but not in the food court at Philadelphia Airport. I don't think my sample size is large enough to draw any conclusions :-)

The clip things may not be legal here, if [livejournal.com profile] buzzy_bee is right: she says carseats have to have a single button release in Europe.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 11:03 am (UTC)
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] rmc28
I have seen those buzzy things used around 8-10 years ago, but not for that purpose. It was at a restaurant with a separate bar area - you ask for a table for 4 (or whatever), they give you a buzzy thing and you go get drinks and sit around gossiping in the bar, and the buzzy thing goes off when your table is ready.

The other use for them was in hospital 3 years ago when Charles was having his finger sewn up under general anaesthetic. We were shown the recovery room, given the buzzy thing and told to go away and get a coffee/walk around the site, and it would buzz when Charles was out of surgery - and would work anywhere on the hospital site. Much better than hanging around worriedly and getting in the nurses' way.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-07-25 04:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] radegund.livejournal.com
See? A veritable myriad of applications! I'd never seen them before, but they make so much sense.

(no subject)

Date: 2010-08-31 10:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] londonn7.livejournal.com
Ha ha!
We have those food buzzer things in London .
For wriggly children I recommend the kiddy infinity pro car seat. No restraints-seat belt slots into a chest cushion. Spacey. Has defeated O's wriggling.

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