Monday, April 30, 2018

First European Mermaid Convention

Or, put in other words: you can't go any crazier! Some people need their fantasty come alive. That's why mermaids and mermen exist. They had the chance to meet in Genk (a town in the east of Flanders, province of Limburg) where the first European convention for mermaids took place.

Those who took part had the chance to swim (tail decorated in all kinds of material) in a large aquarium between tropic fish - and before a public. Interested viewers could watch the movements of the various mermaids before the large windows. Some did it really well, others could barely swim with the heavy tail (can easily weigh 25 kg).

Apparently, nowadays you can also take a course of how to become a mermaid (excercise makes perfect) and some girls/women/men are already professionals and can make their living from being underwater....

Nothing for me!

Friday, April 27, 2018

Back to winter

April is known to be a capricious month - just like March. This proves true once more.

Last week we got such high temperatures that we believed to be in summer already. Lots of sunshine as well. Right now the temperature took a plunge and it feels like we're once more in winter...

No wonder lots of people get ill! I've got a head cold too, and don't seem to get rid of it. Only prolonged sunshine would help.

The older I get, the more I long for a warm climate. If I had enough money, I'd surely think about having a place in one or other country where you'd be sure of sunshine all year through and spend my winters there. Could get used to that!

When I was younger, I couldn't bear to think I'd live anywhere else but in Flanders. But now? The only thing I'd need would be good health care, all the rest doesn't matter.

Would you like to live in another country???

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Black & blue

One and a half week after my fall with the bike, I'm still sore (bruised rib) and half of my body has got all colors, varying from first black, then blue, now turning a bit yellow already. Half of my face is covered in it, as it my thigh and knee. Looking pretty!

Now, I really don't mind. Most people are concerned about their looks but I don't seem to have that problem. I go out as I am. When people don't want to look at my bruised face, they can turn their head. I won't apply make-up to cover the bruises. I never use it, so why now? (The only thing I ever do is use some lipstick.)

What do you think? Are you busy with what people think about you? Does it influence what you do?

I know who I am and I like myself. I'm good as I am. I wouldn't want to alter anything. I accept I get older and my body isn't young anymore. I have some wrinkles and my breasts are not so firm anymore as they used to be when I was younger. But I still have my figure - thanks to the cancer treatment it's even better than before! So why should I complain???

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Come Back To Me

Today we have as guest author Trilina Pucci. Trilina is doing a virtual book blast tour for her romance Come Back To Me. The novel will be available as of April 27th.

Trilina will be awarding an author selected package which includes a signed copy of the book, mug, water bottle, and other essentials for the avid reader to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Please use the following link to place your comment:


Mia West is drawn to Cole Parker and she doesn't know why but each time he is around, she can't stop the pull, drawing her into dark secrets and closer to her past. Will she put the pieces of her life back together or just end up in his bed?

When she meets Jack, it's clear he wants Mia as his own but knows that to keep her means he has to keep her away from Cole. She wants to feel the spark with Jack but something keeps holding her back. Is it Cole or is there more to Jack than meets the eye?

When her past and present intersect, both men will give her reasons to run, the question is...whose arms will she run into.

Come Back to Me is the first book in the Forever series duet. The finale, Forever with Me, releases in June.


Step three, take care of Carter Williams, once and for all. Enough is enough. If I believe what my therapist says, I am not his victim. I am my own heroine and the time has come to rid myself of Carter the demon. It isn’t up to Jack to hold my hand, or Richard to keep me protected in some princess tower. I need to somehow free myself from Carter Williams so he can’t hurt or scare me again. This part of the plan is the least thought out… spontaneity is essential. Premeditation is always key when sentencing happens in a murder trial. 

Author bio and links

Trilina is an author, wife, and mama to three rowdy kiddos. When she isn't making grilled cheese sandwiches, she can be found writing saucy novels that titillate and excite her readers.

Buy Links
Social Media Links

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Serial Wives

We welcome another author today. Please meet Yvonne Walus! Yvonne is doing a virtual blurb blitz tour for her book Serial Wives, a crime story available as of March 20th from Stairway Press. This tour will run from April 2 - April 27.

Yvonne will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Please use the following link to place this comment:


Why would a rich girl become a prostitute? Three years ago Joy refused to sleep with an ex boyfriend. When he committed suicide, her guilt was enormous. To punish herself she opted to serve as a prostitute for three years. How far would you go to protect your child? Cora loves her convict husband despite - or because of - his bad boy ways. But now that he's back in her life, she has their daughter to consider. Is a faulty father better than no father at all?  A serial killer… A serial killer who murders women and displays their bodies dressed in a white sheet with a fencing mask covering the face. Who will be next?


The crayon moved down the page. Red, livid, ready. Spread on the table, splayed like a sacrifice, was the Classifieds section of the New Zealand Herald. He could’ve found the information faster online, but the risk of leaving an electronic trail made him turn to the old fashioned, the tactile, the untraceable.

The scent of fake wax from the crayon mingled with the fresh ink of the newspaper. He paged to the adverts in the Adult Entertainment column.

Bored? Lonely? Looking for a good time?

No, that wasn’t it.

Fat? So what?

He raised his eyebrows, continued his search. Suddenly, the red crayon halted.

A gentle massage using modern or ancient Eastern techniques.
Leaves you invigorated and stress-free. For appointments, phone...

Unconventional. Not into rules. Yes, this one had potential. The crayon swooped, trailed a jagged red oval around the ad.

“Honey? Are you coming to bed?”

The voice wafted down the stairwell. He closed the newspaper, careful to line up its edges and smooth out its spine. 

“In a minute.” 

He read the advert again. His blood raced. The addiction simmered inside him. Excited. Expectant.


Definite potential. 

Author bio and links

You won't believe this, but when I'm not a novelist I'm actually a Doctor of Mathematics. A business and data analyst. A wife and a mother. Most of all though - I am a writer (in several languages) hoping to change the world one book at a time.
My heritage is inter-continental. I was born and raised in Poland. When I was twelve, my family and I emigrated to South Africa. Your teenage years are usually your formative years, so it’s no surprise I consider South Africa my second homeland. For the past twenty years, I’ve lived in New Zealand, and people ‘back home’ tell me I’ve become a real Kiwi.
Crime fiction is my passion. My childhood hero was, predictably, Hercule Poirot. I've changed my mind several times since, and for a time I was totally into Harlan Coben's super-rich super-able Win (Windsor Horne Lockwood), but my current favourite is Benedict Timothy Carlton Cumberbatch… I mean, Sherlock Holmes.

My co-ordinates:, , ,

Here’s a link to the promo video for my latest book:
Print version:

Summer in spring

The weather is totally crazy! As of yesterday, we've landed right into summer. (Well, for us that makes the difference between the Middle Eastern and cold European climates less.) This is quite exceptional.

Yesterday, the temperature reached 24° Celsius. A very beautiful day, with blue sky and lots of sunshine. Warm enough to have dinner outside for the first time this year. Come to think of it, we didn't eat outside last year because it was either too cold or too hot and I'm not sure about the year before.

The best thing is, the weather here is better than in Spain or Portugal! Not normal, but you can better enjoy it while it lasts! We'll be eating outside once more this evening, as the temperature will go up to 28°. Supermarkets and butcher's shops are selling barbecue meat by the dozen these days. It's nice to have a barbecue, and I'm sure that tonight more than one set will be lighted.

Let's hope we can have some more nice weather in the months to come. The last ten or more summers have not been great. Luckily we have a trip to Seville planned. So if the weather isn't that good in Belgium, at least there we'll get some sunshine. The older I become, the more I long for warm weather and sunshine.

What about you?

Monday, April 16, 2018

Moonlight City Drive

Please welcome author Brian Paone today. Brian is doing a virtual book tour for Moonlight City Drive, a supernatural, crime-noir, semi-romance available now from Scout Media.

The tour will run February 13, 2018 to May 24, 2018. During this tour, you can enter your comments and stand a chance of winning. The prize for the tour is as follows: One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/ gift card.
Link to place your comment:


11:18 p.m. Subject is checking into the Desert Palms Motel, accompanied by an unknown female.

Snapshot in the parking lot. Man and woman embrace. Betrayal, I see it every day, like my own reflection in the mirror staring back at me. Another case, another bottle of booze, life is no longer a mystery to me …

… Because I’m the private eye, hot on your trail; the top gun for hire. You’ll find me lurking in the shadows, always searching for a clue. I’m the bulletproof detective. I got my eye on you …

What’s a little sin under the covers, what’s a little blood between lovers? What’s a little death to be discovered, cold stiff body under the covers?

I’m digging you a desert grave, underneath the burning sun. You won’t be found by anyone. Vultures circle in the sky, and you, my dear, are the reason why.

… I was always easily influenced.


Smith twisted the key as hard as he could and heard a popping noise as the locking mechanism finally gave way. He pushed open his office door and entered the dark room. He tossed his keys onto his desk; they slid a short distance before a stack of time-faded papers and case-file folders abruptly stopped them.

Flicking the light switch, the room illuminated with an anemic-brown glow from the single dusty bulb. He took a step toward the coffee percolator on the windowsill, and his toe caught the corner of a tied-up pile of newspapers dating back at least ten years.

Smith exhaled loudly with a frustrated grunt and kneeled beside the newspaper bundle; the air escaping from his lungs carried the stench of day-old consumed alcohol, topped off with more last night that led to closing time this morning. He really hadn’t slept. He napped for a couple hours, then came here. He removed the Swiss Army knife from his pants and cut the twine, freeing the newspapers, watching as they avalanched to the floor.

He used his palm to shuffle and smear the newspapers around his office floor. His gaze quickly scanned his name plastered on all the headlines, praising the ex-deputy-now-turned-private-eye for all the scum he had gotten off the street, as well as locating abducted kids, reuniting long-lost biological parents of orphans, and exposing spouses who may have forgotten their vows. Smith had seen more than he cared to remember while he had been a sheriff’s deputy and could now safely check the box marked Seen It All since becoming a private eye.

Author bio and links

Brian Paone was born and raised in the Salem, Massachusetts area. Brian has, thus far, published four novels: a memoir about being friends with a drug-addicted rock star, Dreams are Unfinished Thoughts; a macabre cerebral-horror novel, Welcome to Parkview; a time-travel romance novel, Yours Truly, 2095, (which was nominated for a Hugo Award, though it did not make the finalists); and a supernatural, crime-noir detective novel, Moonlight City Drive. Along with his four novels, Brian has published three short stories: “Outside of Heaven,” which is featured in the anthology, A Matter of Words; “The Whaler’s Dues,” which is featured in the anthology, A Journey of Words; and “Anesthetize (or A Dream Played in Reverse on Piano Keys),” which is featured in the anthology, A Haunting of Words. Brian is also a vocalist and has released seven albums with his four bands: Yellow #1, Drop Kick Jesus, The Grave Machine, and Transpose. He is married to a US Naval Officer, and they have four children. Brian is also a police officer and has been working in law enforcement since 2002. He is a self-proclaimed roller coaster junkie, a New England Patriots fanatic, and his favorite color is burnt orange. For more information on all his books and music, visit


As a personal touch, I asked Brian where he gets his ideas for his books. This is his answer:

As a rock-fiction author, the majority of my ideas come from song lyrics or album’s concepts. Two of my four novels (my time-travel romance novel, Yours Truly, 2095 is an adaptation of Electric Light Orchestra’s album Time, and my supernatural crime-noir novel, Moonlight City Drive, is an adaptation of Dog Fashion Disco’s Adultery album) are rock-fiction novels, and all four of four published short stories are rock-fiction based, covering Moby, Jethro Tull, Porcupine Tree, and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. So while I might be driving around in my car or listening to music in my office, a song or album might come on and I’ll think, “That would make a great storyline for a short or a full novel.” Then, as soon as that thought crosses through my head, characters and plotlines and story arcs just start emerging and usually I can’t help the floodgates after they’ve opened.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Nasty fall

Yesterday, I took my bike to run some errands for the day to come. How it happened, I don't know, but halfway to my destination I fell with my bike. Sure, I'm still alive and nothing's broken, but I'm sore from head to toe.

My left eye is blue and also that half of my face. My side hurts (most likely bruised one or two ribs) and my knee is equally blue (as is my left thumb).

Sometimes I can be right clumsy! Oh well, it will cure given time. The only thing is I have to wear sunglasses (and they predict clouded weather for tomorrow) when I go out, and put some concealer on my face.

Do you ever feel clumsy like that?

Thursday, April 12, 2018

One for the Price of Two

Please welcome author Howard Weiner this time. Howard is doing a virtual blurb blitz tour for his novel One for the Price of Two, a crime thriller. The tour runs from March 19th to April 13th, so this is your last chance to win a prize.

Howard Weiner will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Please use the following link to place your comment:


Fraternal twins are raised by an ambivalent aunt who provides an unusual childhood experience. One twin leaves home to join the armed forces and is ultimately assigned to a Special Forces unit conducting clandestine operations in North Korea. The death of one his unit members produces an introduction to an organized crime family specializing in murder for hire. The funeral for the family's son and an interest in their daughter brings new blood and methods to the family business.


Later, she found she couldn’t explain what it was about the passenger who boarded in the midst of the newbies. He was taller than most, but that wasn’t it. His facial features were smooth, rounded with none of the angular bone structures most men had. He wore one of those rugby shirts with the parallel horizontal lines much like the old TV test patterns. His skin was light, very light. Perhaps that was it. Who lived in Las Vegas with milky white skin?

His long sandy hair was tied in the back—a man bun.

The horror that was the boarding process mercifully came to an end. The late hour guaranteed a quick trip to their runway and takeoff. Planes waiting to depart were not stacked up. A long, but quick taxi ride to the take-off area was the only thing between the plane and flight. Quickly, they were airborne, and shortly thereafter, they reached cruising altitude. Drink and snack service began.

The senior flight attendant encouraged economy passengers scattered throughout the plane to move forward. Seating was plentiful, and they wanted to bring this part of the flight service program to an end.

She completed the business class service and turned her attention to staging the extra beverages and ice needed to begin service in the economy section, when one of the other attendants started to complain.

“Didn’t she hear us ask everyone in economy to please move forward?”

“I’m sorry,” she started, “who are you talking about?”

“The tall woman sitting in front of the rear bulkhead.”

“Describe her,” she prompted.

“Tall, milky complexion, soft features, pony-tail, wearing a rugby dress.” She paused, “Can you imagine? Skin like that in the hot desert sun. She must hide under a ton of sun screen and big hats. Poor thing.”

“Did you say a woman?” she asked.

“Yes, a woman.”

The only person who fit that description was a man she saw during boarding.

Wow, she thought. It’s been a long day. Did I mistake a woman for a man?

Author bio and links

Howard Weiner is a recent addition to the literary genre of fiction. Writing mysteries, thrillers, crimes—with a touch of romance—an approach described by one reader as “one bubble off.”

Many authors sharing the genre have characters whose fortune is determined by others. They literally have dodged the bullet that otherwise would have killed them. Weiner’s characters make their own fortune—good or bad—and they live with the results.

Weiner’s own experiences are blessed with no small number of noteworthy characters and events. He brings these slightly off-kilter individuals to life, complete with their own stories and dramas. Like the child prodigy in his first novel, "It Is Las Vegas After All", who comes to the starting edge of adulthood and then loses the approval of his doting parents, the sponsorship of one of America’s great institutions of higher education, and gains the enmity of his girlfriend’s father—an international arms dealer—to become a home-grown terrorist operating on U.S. Soil.

A survivor of rich, nuanced bureaucracies in the public and private sector, Weiner writes about characters whose career choices and decisions are morally questionable. A student of personal behavior in complex circumstances, Weiner brings these often cringe-worthy characters to life. Some are amoral, others immoral in a narrow slice of their lives, yet they otherwise look and act like people we all know from work or even childhood. Like one of the female leads in his novel, "Serendipity Opportunity", an out-of-the-box thinker who flunks most of life’s basic relationship tests, yet she is someone you never want pursuing you in the cause of justice. There’s a former foreign security official who uses his protected status as a witness for federal prosecutors to provide cover for his own mayhem and murder in Weiner’s third novel, "Bad Money".

Many of Weiner’s stories are born out of real life events: The mix-up in luggage claim at the airport in, "Bad Money", the chronic high school slacker in "Serendipity Opportunity" whose one stroke of good fortune creates his opportunity to perpetrate a complex series of frauds, or the brilliant student in "It Is Las Vegas After All" who uses his prodigious talents toward an evil end.

As a former federal official, Weiner can neither confirm nor deny having the highest security clearances in classified security programs. Yet, his knowledge of the dark web, criminal organizations, and security organizations takes stories from the popular press to the next level.

Amazon Author Central Web Site:
The book will be $0.99 during the tour.
Author Page

Author Web Site:

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Lufthansa strike

Yeah, half asleep and sitting here waiting at Frankfurt airport...

Yesterday evening, just before leaving for the airport in Dubai, I received a mail telling me the flight from Frankfurt to Brussels had been canceled. Reason? Not one word about it.

So we inquired at Dubai airport where we heard  a strike was going on in Germany. They also told us we were rebooked - to a flight leaving at 1.25 pm... if it goes through because there still are a lot of cancellations.

We landed at 5.30 am after a very short night's sleep. So you can understand how we feel now...

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Slowly heading back home

Our trip to the United Arab Emirates has almost come to an end. We spent some time in Dubai (average temperature 32°C), then went to Ras al-Khaimah (around 37° there) and even headed over to Oman for a day.

We saw a lot of different landscapes, did a lot of excursions and did not get bored a single second. Unfortunately, all beautiful songs come to an end and so tomorrow will be our last day here. Plan to pack the suitcases in the morning and do our last excursion in the afternoon. Then grab a bite to eat and wait for our transport to Dubai airport, where our plane should take off at 1 am (so in fact on Tuesday morning).

I'll tell more about all our experiences when the holidays are over, more precisely in my travel blog.

Will be a climate shock, though, when we set foot in cold Belgium!!!

Friday, April 6, 2018

Late at night, and still 30°Celsius!

At the moment we're staying in the most southern of the UAE, Ras al-Khaimah. We arrived here around noon and found it quite a bit warmer than Dubai.

We spent today (Sunday for the Muslims) in and around the various pools of the hotel Hilton RAK Resort and Spa). At noon the temperature rose easily up to 37°, so you could best stay in the shade of a large umbrella... Nevertheless we assembled quite a bit of color. 

What was nice though, is the fact the have a pool bar here, where you can order your drinks sitting on a stool in the water. Could get used to that!

Tomorrow we are making a trip into Oman. The region of Musandam is not so far from here, and according to some acquaintances of ours, it resembled the fjords in Norway somewhat (only the weather is different). We'll be sailing the Arab Sea on a dhow (traditional fishing boat). Looking forward to that!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

First impressions

Just a few words while we're vacationing in Dubai.
We arrived here without major problems (slow delay in arrival due to heavy air traffic). Our hotel is more than terrific. Especially thumbs up for the superb service at Hilton Dubai Creek!
And when you think there's nothing to see or do in Dubai, You're more than wrong. We have seen and done some interesting things here, but I'll tell more about that in my travel blog.
We have one more full day here, and then we'll travel on to Ras-al-Khaimah.
More later!€$