Merry Christmas from Schlafmütz!

Merry Christmas 2014! If the cap fits, wear it. If not, lie next to it.

Merry Christmas!

I thought she might wear the cap, but she refused to. Maybe I should put her little cute butt in the cap instead. If it was a cardboard box, she’d “wear” it.

Thank you Easy for reminding me of Schlafmütz’ present.

Schlafmütz brought me a wren yesterday. I've let him fly afterwards, he was unharmed. She said a wren in the hand is better than a dead mouse under the bed. Good point.

Schlafmütz brought me a wren yesterday. I’ve let him fly afterwards, he was unharmed. She said a wren in the hand is better than a dead mouse under the bed. Good point.


Most of November was looking like this:

The Fog

or like this:

misty landscape

We had some minutes of sun in between two banks of grey clouds though. I liked this a lot:

Spider silk in the sun

Spider silk glistening in the sun. never seen that much spider silk before. Busy spiders. Saw this on a walk with the dogs up the hill in front of the property.

Rudi (terrier) got a new grey sweater for Christmas. He’s already wearing it and scares the sheep. Sheep are confused by and afraid of new colours. They don’t change their colour and expect everybody else to be like them.

The sheep wonder about Rudi's new sweater

Feeding season has begun

Winter has arrived in Normandy. We already had two nights with only 2 chilly °C (35.6 °F). The sheep are complaining about the lack of fruits.

-“Where have all the chestnuts gone? Long time passing.” -“Fat sheep ate them every one. When will they ever be full?”

And then they walk into the sunset.

Pinke Schafe

I filled the tube feeder for the birds with sunflower seeds and hung up fat balls. The weather is rather bad, grey and gloomy, sometimes even raining and thus I can’t take good photographs at the moment.

Feeding season has started

Poecile palustris or Poecile montana (marsh tit or willow tit) and Parus major (great tit).

At the bird restaurant on a dark day

Three Chloris chloris (greenfinch).

I bought 5 steres of wood and feed the wood stove. The house has no insulation and no other means of heating.

Dann liegen sie unter den Sternen

Erste Strichspuren

Wenn hier Tiere sterben, lasse ich sie entweder von einem Tierverwertungsservice abholen, oder ich begrabe sie auf dem Grundstück. Das ist bis zu einem Gewicht von 40 Kilogramm erlaubt. Der nächste Tierfriedhof ist wohl in Évreux. Das wäre auch zu weit weg. Dann liegen sie unter den Sternen.

Mein erstes Strichspurfoto.

Careful, Bach

This sheep warns Bach, the Bernese Mountain Dog. Sheep stomp their feet to tell the rest of the world to leave them alone. If a sheep looks at you and stomps its feet, it will jump with its head into your belly.

Bach knows the sheep well and he didn’t come near this one.

Sheep in the shadows

These sheep pretend to be harmless. They look as if they couldn’t hurt a fly.

Photographs are my own, stored on Flickr.

The church of Appeville-Annebault and its pigeons

The church Saint-André in Appeville-Annebault was mentioned in the 11th century for the first time. I bet the whole village was mentioned in the 11th century for the first time. But it sure wasn’t the same church Appeville-Annebault has today. The choir of the “modern” church was built in 14th century but the nave and the bell tower were rebuilt in 1518 and the following years for the still famous Claude d’Annebault (imagine you’d be dead since over 400 years and still get a Wikipedia article, not that it would make any difference concerning being dead though). He must have been quite wealthy. Strange enough the right of patronage belonged to a monastery, the priory of Saint-Philbert-sur-Risle and later to Bec Abbey, and not to the local seigneur.

I went there on the last warm days 2014. Everybody in Normandy knew it were the last warm days. And everybody was out there on the streets in their car. I had my terrier Rudi with me. He likes to go by car, mainly because he gets a treat if he has to wait. We reached the church and found no parking. There was a one way road and one parking place for the parson. None for the visitors. Maybe they don’t want visitors. On one side of the church runs a route départementale, a big road with lots of traffic. At the side of the church was a lot of space. really a lot of space. With a “No waiting”-sign. I had no choice if I wanted to take photographs of the church, I had to leave my car somewhere. I hoped Rudi would explain to any police officer, that we’re not waiting and I hoped he would drive away if necessary. Would have been a good idea to take the Bernese mountain dog with me as well, he looks so much like a driver.

In front of the gate to the cemetery, that surrounds the church, lay a dead pigeon in a decomposed state. They really don’t want any visitors. After fiddling around with the gate mechanism for 10 minutes I finally opened it and entered the cemetery.

l'église Saint-André
All the photographs in this article are my own. They are on Flickr and somehow I can’t get Chromium to tag or rather describe them here correctly. This is the church Saint-André (Saint Andrew).

Front of the church Saint-André
The picturesque façade of the church.

Musical angels over the entrance
Musical anges over the left front door.

Musical angels over the entrance
Musical anges over the right front door.

Kleiner Fuchs auf verzierter Säule
There’s a small tortoiseshell butterfly sitting on the decorated pillar next to the entrance of the church.

I like gargoyles, there were several gargoyles in good condition and some other sculptures.

Gargoyle on Saint-André

Gargoyle on Saint-André

Saint Andrew holding a cross
This gargoyle had a Saint Andrew above him.

Pigeon playground
This one was a pigeon playground.

Ape and pigeon

This apelike figure is holding a coat of arms with a St. Andrew’s cross. It’s not an ape though. It’s a lion. Go figure. The coat of arms of Admiral Annebault wasn’t like this. It showed two silver branches of rowan berries draped like a double necklace under a blue and white chequered chief.

Appeville Südtür
The southern door, that led the defunct’s soul directly into heaven. Very practical custom, if one believes in it of course.

Kopf ist ab, Schwanz noch dran
A dragon. His head is missing.

Türmchen auf der Kirche Saint-André
On the roof were lots of pigeons and some finials. I liked those finials. They look like thistles.

épi de faitage sur l'église Saint-André

And last but not least a weathercock with “balls”.

Coq avec boules

The “balls” have holes and I guess they are rather loops. Maybe they were used to pull he weathercock up with a rope. No idea. Only some older weathercocks in the area have those loops.

I took those photographs in no time. Was relieved that nobody asked Rudi to drive the car away. It wasn’t the only car standing in the “No waiting”-area though. There were two other cars and a trailer of a truck. But you’ll never know. Rudi appreciated the treat and we drove happily home.

Sources and further reading

The church Saint-André in the Base Mérimée

French Wikipedia, where a user by name of ‘Redbeauty’ has written some completely unsourced content They wrote about the lion.

Housing problems

Today a cheeky garden snail moved into the house and more specific.. in the famous sleeping room and there into the sheep feeding bowl. “Here I’ll stay during winter.” The sheep were very irritated and refused to eat “escargot”. Therefore I got an eviction notice for the snail and put it outside on the wall.

Cheeky garden snail

Cute, isn’t it.

and it has cute little eyes

and it has cute little eyes

Since one of those snails died this year, because it tried to make a home right behind the entrance door. I brought this snail further away after I took the photograph.

I’m the author of the photographs.