Saturday, 6 January 2007

Blog Tag - Five Things Nobody Knows About Me

I was tagged by Rosario to write about 5 things nobody knows about me. I've seen this tagging business on other blogs, but for me it's the first time, kind of a deflowering *lol*.
Ok, let's start...

1) What I simply need to mention is my first romance novel. It was Honor's Splendor by Julie Garwood, still one of my guilty pleasure novels. As you can see, the cover is totally mortifying. It was late afternoon, and I had a horrible day at university, a paper to write and no end in sight. So I went to a local book chain and started browsing in order to have a little relaxation time. Up to this day, I was 21 back then, I've never ever read a romance novel or considered doing so. But somehow this cover was so ugly that I simply needed to buy it, I didn't even read the blurb - AND devoured it, of course. I was instantly hooked, but simultaneously hid the book because I couldn't admit that I read a book with such a horrible cover (BTW, translated the German title of this book means melody of passion *arggg*)

2) The most horrible moment of my life was in 1998. Back then I was in Nice/France with a family whom I worked as an au pair for. One of my "duties" was to have a driving licence in order to pick up their 14-year old daughter from school - it was also dearly necessary because the last bus stop was 2 km away. Anyway, I had my driving licence for three weeks, my au pair parents were in Djerba, it was night and I urgently needed two more eggs to make a cake. I took my car (I had one for myself) and drove down the mountain to the next grocery store. I knew where it was, because my au pair mother showed it to me. On the way back I took the wrong road. It isn't very difficult to take the wrong road in Nice, because you always have the sea to orientate yourself and everything is signposted to death. But back then I got so nervous and somehow didn't pay attention, and before I realised it I was on the highway to Marseille!!!!!!

In France you have to pay for using the highway, and I was so distressed that any resemblance of rational brainpower went down the drain. Then I saw a sign on the highway "HIGHWAY POLICE". My saviors, my darlings. They escorted!!!! me back to the right drive up and made sure I came home securely :-) In hindsight it's something to laugh about, and I do so, but back then I was a wrack.

But I have to confess, it was the best way to learn to look out for signposting. Since then I drove to many locations in France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Lichtenstein (I love motoring) and thanks to this "shock cure" I never had the same problem again :-))))

3) I am a list maniac. Not so much in daily life, even though I still make a list of to-do things, but really bad does it get where my books are concerned. Half a year ago I discovered Rosario's spreadsheet. And this lovely woman modified it for me so that I have tons of options as to how to categorize my books. I was so pleased with my new spreadsheet that I filled in my WHOLE back list, and looked the necessary information up in the internet. Number of pages, genre, imprint, etc... That was a real labor of love.

4) I love, love, love old films, especially the classic Hollywood film era. Everything from the early 50s up to 67 makes my heart beat faster. Not Westerns or criminal films, but love stories/dramas or musical adaptions with actors such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Katherine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, David Niven ... AND AND AND - I could go on forever.

5) Well, and to finalize, something macabre. My hair burned three times. I have tons of hair on my head, about three times what the normal human being has to deal with. Because it doesn't grow like "normal" hair when it's short (it grows about 10cm upwards before it chooses the right direction downwards) I wear it long. The last time happened about ten years ago, thanks to a lovely candle that was on the window sill behind the couch I was sitting on. The first time happened in a restaurant, I was seven. I suddenly moved forward and my hair brushed the candle on the table. Thanks to the fast reaction of my father I only lost a strand. The second time was somewhere in between, I visited my aunt, and of course, it was another bad-behaving candle *g*.

OK, that's it.

Who am I going to tag now? My problem is that I don't know many blogs, but I think I will tag Elisa, she has a lovely blog kept in Italian and English.




Anonymous Joasia said...

I can't imagine anyone's hair burning! And three times!? WOW...

I love old movies myself. On Polish TV for years they showed one on noon every Sunday. Those were good times...

8 January 2007 at 12:13  
Blogger Rosario said...

Thank you for doing it, that was great!

The car story sounds really, really, REALLY scary to me, especially since I HATE driving in places I don't know. An unknown highway? Nightmare!

And OMG, you put your WHOLE backlist in the spreadsheet? Labour of love, indeed!

8 January 2007 at 23:06  
Blogger Chez Moi said...


Joasia: In hindsight I can't believe it either, especially despite of the three repeatings not once something "serious" happened. The worst thing was the smell, you couldn't even identify which strand was burned.

Rosario: The car story WAS horrible but I learned a lot from it. However, I don't don't don't recommend it :-) Today I don't mind driving in unknown places. Here in Europe everything is so well signposted that you can navigate very easily. The one place so far I wouldn't drive a car (even if Pierce Brosnan invited me personally) is Naples. I always thought the French drive crazy, and I am well used to Italians, albeit only in the north. In Naples they drive as if signposts don't exist, police don't stand on the street. You are the first, last and most important person on the street - just ignore who else too is on the street.

I am a passionate car driver - so I enjoy every opportunity (which isn't so often because here in Vienna I don't have a car, the public transport system is excellent 24/7).

My whole backlist, which amounted to about 3000 titles. It's full of gaps because I couldn't find all the necessary information or simply didn't remember. Was I crazy or what?

8 January 2007 at 23:40  
Blogger Avid Reader said...

Off topic - I came here via Rosario. this is a very nicely designed blog. I like it.


11 January 2007 at 12:38  
Blogger Saskia Walker said...

Thanks for entering the contest on my blog. You're a winner! Shoot me your postal address and I'll get the book off to you. Thanks so much for your interest. :)

30 March 2007 at 21:12  

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