Posted by: britgirl82 | October 14, 2010

October – Cakes and Strikes

So Autumn has arrived, what will this hold for BritGirl and Bordeaux?

On the weather report front, it would seem, cooler days, still sunny but a little chilly to be broken up every so often with lots of rain!

BritGirl was working, she had 4 students a week which was good, but she still had more time than she knew what to do with…..teaching took up 10 hours plus preparation time. Back in the UK BritGirl’s working day had been about 10 hours…now that time was being shared across the week. BritGirl doesnt want to be down about this, after all she has moaned for 8 months about not having a job, but for just this month it didnt seem enough and she was struggling a little!

Even with only a few lessons a week, problems still arose!! Student’s changed their lessons and as BritGirl writes this it is Thursday and she has taught 1.5 hours so far – yes, in 4 days!!!! This was then complicated by the good old French strike! Yep, the French citizens were still up in arms about pension reforms and President Sarkozy….after millions turned out at a rally in the weekend and in weeks before, rolling 24 hour strikes on the rail system appeared to have commenced. But as BritGirl headed to the station to catch a train to her business lesson she was completely unaware of this!! Greeted at the station by strikers eating lunch (is this really what its all about she wondered) BritGirl soon realised that there no trains and strikes were still very much active in Bordeaux!!

Lesson cancelled. With no transport of her own and no certainty about which trains would be running, there was not much she could do. Grrrr! Ports in Marseille are still blocked with strike action, shutting refineries across the country, students are now giving up collect to go out on strike too, all this with more protests planned at the weekend! BritGirl wonders what it will take to stop all this action? Will it really mean that the Government back down? Do people here have that much power? Wow! Cultural introduction here for BritGirl, something she would never have seen, experienced or even imagined back home in the UK!

So a week with little work and lesson preparation done (as much as possible)…BritGirl knew she should really use this time to clean the flat, give it a top to bottom clean and tidy but the motivation was just not there…it was on strike too! So BritGirl decided to bake cakes!! She had spent 8 months struggling to work her gas oven…always too hot….after a very old electric oven for years in the UK BritGirl still couldn’t get her head around real flames in the oven!

Batch 1 of chocolate puddings worked a dream…soft, scrummy chocolate cake, with a gooey middle, topped with melted chocolate and crunchy sprinkles……….hmmm! No question, these worked! Delicious! BritGirl’s boyfriend and colleagues were pleased too – they all got a pudding at lunchtime. The problem with baking when there was only two of you was how do you eat everything you have made? Eat them yourself and get fat or bake them for everyone else?

Batch number 2, not so good! Just little cupcakes, with a plan to coat them in scrummy melted chocolate…but, oh no, burnt bottoms! (OUCH!) BritGirl’s funny french plastic cake mould clearly gets too hot with the gas flame and burns the little cakes bums! So the cakes are OK, as long as you leave the bottom on the cake case….more work and attention needed here BritGirl!

BritGirl wanted to make jazzy icing to make her cakes look pretty and girly, but this is wasted on cakes with burnt bottoms!! Hmmm, maybe this means a new cake tin is needed or more practice?! Hmmm, as BritGirl sits here munching on cupcakes, she has to decide which option is best, but based upon time and mood this month, comfort eating trial cupcakes sounds like the best idea there is!

So, BritGirl will write more later this month, a few pounds heavier and hopefully having mastered the art of cake baking without black bums!

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