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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Les freaking Enfants

For those who have little to no contact with children on a daily basis, I would like to share a fact---Children exist to make you feel bad about yourself. Period. They spend the whole day thinking of the most random observations that are designed to make you question your self esteem and sanity.

I will admit that this whole can of worms that I've gotten myself into could have been avoided. My first mistake, letting A (81 lbs) see my weight. He reacted as follows "(insert weight here) Oh my God! Thats a lot! You need a regime" (I thought regime was exercise, its not, its a diet). Then, I've been very possesive about my JIF peanut butter, because it was imported by my maman for my birthday. Today, when I confessed the jar was close to gone (ONE MONTH LATER) , A informed me thats why I've "gotten fatter." Then we were playing with the scale, and I was, less than that first time, but more than I'd like. I wanted to explain that, actually, its the end of the day, and its that time of month, but I just commented on the time of day, and he admitted that I was wearing a lot of clothes...

Anyway these comments have inspired me to start running, as I wrote in a previous post. Yesterday, I went twice (after pasta for dinner). Thirty minutes in the morning and forty at night. G advised me to take it easy at first, and I'm sure he had a valid point. I wish I had some sort of cardio machine that would allow me to work out without the stress on my knees and hips everyday, but I guess I'll settle for walking. Speaking of injuries, it is really necessary for me to buy new running shoes, its been way too long, but theyre so expensive here! I may have to save up and bite the bullet, for the sake of my shins.

Next blog: Reasons why I'm amazed that Thas completed six years of life.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Ah, yes, I had a realization, that I wrote about in my real journal. I will transcribe it here. Its melodramatic, but it was what I was feeling, kind of, I took some liberties.

"Everything felt slow in London. Which was silly, really, it was a huge cosmopolitan city, modern and ancient with a reputation that was hard to put in words. Still she found plenty to criticize. The underground took too long, too spread out, weird restaurants, too expensive (the metro was 8 dollars!) They drove on the wrong side of the road, the guys at the store couldnt understand her accent.

But these were stupid reasons. All of them. Because for every Greek, or Pakistani, couldnt understand her American accent first time around, there were 100s more in France who would never understand her butchered French.

She realized that she resented London. She felt let down. It should be Heaven, after all. Signs in English? British accents? Peanut butter? But that fact was, she was still a tourist, just like everyone else cluttering Picadilly Circus, Parliament, and the London Eye.

Home for now, she realized, was France"

London, recounted

Alright well, I successfuly voyaged to and from London. We left last Tuesday after picking up the enfants from school. We arrived in Callais, just in the nick of time to face down UK customs. After talking our way into illegally smuggling the two youngest children into the United Kingdom (Thanks European Union!) we took an hour plus ferry ride to Dover, and drove another few hours to London (Ealing, more specifically.)

D has a huge row house, and two adorable (disgustingly well behaved) children. I dont think C age four, wets his pants, or has tried to start fires like T (kidding about the fires, for now). A2 is around L's age, and roughly half her weight...

Anyway, I had a pull out bed in the den, and tried to go to sleep while the four Frenchmen chatted, drank, and ate cheese. Actually, there were more than a few comments about my alcohol consumption...

I left the next morning, bag in hand, for Camden. TWO HOURS LATER, I successfuly was able to navigate the (unreasonably expensive, complicated, and slow) London Underground. My hostel was fine, but it was definitely weird to be on my own, but at least I speak freaking English.

I met some guy, right off the bat, who was pretty off balance. So, I'm a tourist, a broke one at that, and the only thing I wanted to do was walk around and take pictures of stuff, because I cant even afford to buy stuff. But he invites himself along with me on my expedition and we end up at this shopping area. Worse, he didn't laugh at my joke, "I live in Paris for christs' sake, if I want to see a bunch of shit I cant afford, I'll go to Champs d'Elysses," hilarious, right?

Anyway, came back towards Camden and rather than wait for him to fix his cell phone I wanderered around the markets in Camden that were charming, but not really that fascinating. After a while I got back to the hostel and met some other (more normal?) people, including a German girl named Isabelle, and a French guy named Julien.

We went out that night with Julien, Yves (French, obviously), Isabelle, and Alejandro (Argentine, but lives in France)

(I'm going to take a minute here to talk about Alejandro, because something funny happened with him. He had to leave at 3:30 am to catch a flight back to France. Everyone got pretty drunk, but he was reeeally drunk. We may have taken more shots of vodka when we got back to the hostel. You better believe I was egging him on telling him leaving was no excuse for him to stop drinking, and saying I knew Argentines because I lived there, blah blah. Anyway, he was hammered when he left, and apparently left his phone in one of Juliens bags, which we found the next day. I currently have the cell phone, since Julien is living in England. Now I need to call his house and send it back, but I just cant get up the motivation to do it. And its been several days...)

Yeah, so hung out at the park in front of Parliament (that I saw with my family last time.) And wandered around London for a long time with Julien, meeting a few French kids on the bus on the way back to the Camden.

(Oh yeah, Julien is from Renn, moving to London for kicks, and speaks very little English. I speak very little French. We had a great time together. I spoke French, he spoke English, it worked.)

Friday night, I haaad plans with Pat and Katharina, but they both bailed on me, so Isabelle and I ended up going to a few bars in Camden. I was really trying to abuse the fact that I was American, and it finally worked. Met a few guys that were pretty cool, and Craig bought me a few drinks (losing his credit card in the process, I actually cut him off), and I guess I have some contacts in Camden now.

Alright almost time to get the enfants. I'll think about adding to this later.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

London Bound

Theorthetically going to London today.

I also think I booked a ticket to Germany for next weekend.

I have a ticket to Manchester the following weekend. Small problem, I'm expected to babysit. I need to tell them at some point that I will be going out of town. I will say again, I'm 23 years old. I am not a nanny. I am not here to fuck around all the time with kids. I will not miss 36 hours with EVERY single friend I have here (plus a soccer team), for 4 hours of babysitting, that doesn't even pay me, oh God, I'm nervous about this conversation. That seems reasonable, right?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

How do you say Huckleberry in French?

1) I "started" running again. After realizing that Ive gained weight (not sure how, exactly) I ran Wednesday, Thursday and aujordhui. About thirty or so minutes the first two times and about forty today. I probably need another two weeks before I can say Im officially back into it, but it feels pretty good. I found a path back, well, I dont know where, but it reminds me of the Huckleberry in Blacksburg. Its goes back by a softball field, and back behind some legit farm fields. Its absoultely beautiful back there, there are all these fields of yellow flowers (Im not sure what they are, I asked Anotine and he said it was something to make oil out of?) Anyway its amazing, and one of these days I will go back there with my camera, on said day, (I will also actually upload pictures onto facebook...)

2) I was downstairs on Friday ironing, listening to Weezer, and I started dancing, and so did L! It was so cute! She started spinning in circles and moving around. I loved it.

3) Peters moving to Norway, on Monday, booo.

4) I was leaving Denis' this morning to try and meet up with the ladies in Monceau. I got a baguette, and headed towards the 12. In five minutes, I started sweating profusely and feeling extremely nauseated. I literally didnt think I was going to make it to the train. After throwing up in my mouth, I decided it would be better to get the train back to O-town. So I did, and called the family for a ride. I came back, ate lunch and took a two and a half hour nap. I think my body is just tired, I havent really caught up on sleep in a while.

5) Theorhetically, we are going to London on Tuesday. The problem with this situation, is that T and L are currently missing their identity cards. I dont know how they plan on getting the kids into England, but we'll see. I'll be kind of pissed if we dont make it, because I've already booked myself a hostel for three nights (I promised to babysit the last night).

Monday, May 3, 2010

Will it break even?

Bad things
1) Friday night, period.
2) Naturally, G's bike was stolen on my 'watch'. (Left it at the train station Saturday, came back for it on Monday, it was gone)
3) Its freaking cold here, again! I think it was under 10 degrees (celsius) today!
4) Its really hard to find a ticket to Freiburg, Germany, Im trying to see Kelly!!
5) I still havent booked my hostel stuff in London (Im going the weekend after next, the cheapest I can find are not so cheap and involve FIFTEEN PERSON DORM ROOMS)
6) I have to work Saturday
7) Im in the hole, deep

Not so bad things
1) Saturday's dance party
2) Ailie finally came back from Scotland
3) S and G were really nice about the bike incident
4) Im going to London!
5) Tatiana has the weekend off, and is making an attempt to come with me