Monday, 28 January 2019

Backwards and forwards

Outside the Estonian University of Life Sciences.
Not bad heh!
Well I applied for residency in Estonia and got it. It was all done in one day for the sum of €25. If I had waited until Brexit goes through, that would not be the same situation. I wouldn't say it was a totally pain free process as it was a good job that my Estonian friend was there to ferry me around and sign some papers. I went to the police station first, where they process the applications and the very nice policewoman gave me back the form I had filled in and said it wasn't necessary. She sent me off to the council offices to register there and told me to come back when that was sorted. We managed to get there about half an hour before their three hour lunch break or maybe it was the half hour lunch break and two and half hours where they get on with other work. Who knows! The lady at the council office gave me a form to fill in and sign, which my friend translated. He also had to sign that it was fine for me to stay at his place - which I do sometimes and off we went back with my piece of paper and a personal code back to the police station.
Meanwhile back at home

The frosted trees lend a magical touch even in the city
In the police station they have photo booths, it takes a digital photo that is sent direct to the system for the ID card they give you. I thought I felt a bit dizzy when the machine was preparing to take the photo, until I realised it was the machine that was moving downwards and it wasn't me having a turn. Of course the machine needed to move a long way down, since I'm so small. My friend had found the lady who had sent me off to the council offices and she took my paper and my passport. I signed another paper, paid by card and that was it. I just have to wait for the ID card now and that can take up to 30 days but usually less.
Chanel trying to disguise herself as a snowman

Outside the cafe of the uni
I got to my office (I even now officially have a desk, well officially for my use anyway) and then went for lunch. It was a long day of work ahead of me after that. I had already done a little in the morning in preparation for an afternoon meeting, but there was more to read in the evening when I got back to my friend's apartment. She was a star, she cooked me some good food that kept my blood sugar under control, which was a bonus. We had snatched conversations, but not much more on that day.
The gym building glowing in the winter evening. 

Anyone for an outside al fresco meal?
The ski track is just beyond the first
The next day I walked to work on a very crisp morning, it was glorious, but in common with many people it would be dark by the time I set back off to my friend's place in the evening. My day was made up with meetings, online with the international team and locally with my other supervisor after lunch. Then back to work in the office. At least lunch was in a nicer spot than the previous day. I found there was another room to the cafeteria and I could look out on the frost encrusted trees and watch the cross country skiers on the university ski track. At least that evening I got to chat with my friend instead of working.
Come on mam, let me in! Josefs in his frosted coat

Our old oak tree in the distance as gorgeous as ever
Thursday I headed off back home to Ian. The last time I was up in Tartu, Ian and I had got our wires crossed and he was expecting me back on the Wednesday, not the Thursday. A bit awkward, but this time we made sure we knew when I was due back. I worked in the morning in my friend's apartment and then met her in town to hand over the key, as she was teaching that morning. We had time for a coffee before my bus and then off I went. First by bus, cup of cocoa in the train station cafe, on the train with internet access, hang around for just over an hour in the next train/bus station, cup of tea from the little shop there, on the bus and home. Door to door it is about 8 hours. At least I get to set off at a civilised hour and I can work okay on buses and trains.
Ian has been giving Vanessa's crew a bit of room

Trying to keep the channel next the greenhouse clear 
On Friday I was able to do a little flexi-working as Ian came home with the trailer and we shifted two loads of wood from the wood store to the store down in our basement. Sounds easy, apart from the fact we had to first dig our way past a snow bank where a tractor had obviously cleared a path down to the garages but not the wood stores. We then had to push the trailer through the snow to the wood store before Ian reversed the car down. At least the second time around it was easier. Hopefully that should now see us through most of the heating season.
Glowing trees

The oak tree again sporting a more subdued colour
Saturday I did a bit of catching up for work since I had had Monday and Friday afternoon off . It took me all day but I caught up with what needed doing. Sunday I took the day off. I lay in bed until 8:30am reading, and then spent the day pottering around doing things like putting the Christmas decorations away, polishing our wood furniture, cleaning up the pine needles. I actually took the Christmas tree down on Friday morning. I threw the tree out of the door and over the balcony (we are on the ground floor) so Ian could take it away in the trailer. I also made my bread, some cheesy biscuits for Ian to snack on and some pizzas. I had planned on going out with Ian so I could do some skiing but couldn't be bothered being up and ready for when he leaves the house. He has always been a bit of an early bird.
We have a magical place

Lots of paths to make Ian's job easier
Today was back to academia but working on a paper for my PhD. I'm still plodding on with that but at least I feel I am making progress, so all's good. Inside was the best place to be today anyway, since it snowed all day and there has been some drifting too. Apparently the alpacas stayed in too, only occasionally venturing out. It's a good job we sorted out the wood supply on Friday.
Turbjørn lapping up the sun

The snow is a bit deeper in Vanessa's crew's paddock

I am always so amazed by the frosted trees in winter

The contrast is stunning

Mr. P soaking up some sun too

Our neighbour's greenhouses are beginning to disappear in
the snow and our wood store is to the right of that lot

Looking the other way out of the back of our apartment

Out the front of our apartment. The ridge is getting
quite high

Hmmm! I think I might have to do a bit of snow clearing here

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