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Friday, August 19, 2011


I don't know why I think going to Paris on a Thursday night is ever a good idea, but Gui Gui and I have this adorable habit of blatantly lying to each other. We say things like "Oh yeah, we'll definitely come back before one," and "I'll only have one beer." I think deep down I know this, and in last night's case, it ended up being worth it.

His cousin has just received his five year visa (!!) for the US, so they were out celebrating. I've met Louis only one time before, so although I had no reason to celebrate, I was feeling very French and in a wave of solidarity, drank to his luck. Anyway, we ended up in Odeon at this crappy bar that I tend to frequent, mainly because it has 3 euro pints of St. Omer, which is a steal.

The whole family had come out, Gui Gui's brother Adrien, sister Mathilde, and his sister's friend Caro, this adorable French girl who lives up the street and lived in the US while she was a baby. I look over at Mathilde and see her stashing pint glasses in her bag. "What the hell are you guys doing?" "Taking glasses," they said bursting out laughing. "Why?" I said after I watched the third one slip in.

"Our dad really likes these pint glasses and his birthday is coming up soon, so we're going to give these to him."

Mathilde made it out with I dont know how many glasses, and Gui Gui made it out with another one wrapped in his jacket.


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Coming Home Again-Refinding my Inner-American

I'm writing this stateside, on an American keyboard. Over a year ago, in one of my first posts I wrote a disclaimer apologizing for my poor spelling, as I was adjusting to the French keyboard. Guess what? I'm back at square one. If I wasnt so sedated from the heat, I would most likely be cursing with every keystroke.

It's ironic to find myself so out of sorts in my own country. All the little things I've forgotten about are coming back like suddenly remembering that I had to tip at the bar, and after overhearing a conversation last night, I remembered that sales tax exists. I got into my parents pick up truck on Friday and almost threw out my left leg looking for the clutch (it's automatic).

I'm also falling right back into old habits. I've rediscovered that primoridal Virginian part of my brain that can actually handle the summertime heat and humidity, even when exercising. I have a couple runs that I've done since I was sixteen-- a two mile, three mile, five mile, and six mile. I did the three mile run today and just ran without thinking. In France (when I run) I spend more time looking around and getting lost, but here I just went through everything going on in my life and suddenly found myself back on Waterway. It was so instinctual, I barely remember it. I came back to my house and turned on the TV to do sit ups and push ups, things that I will admit happens too far and in between in France.

It's nice. But I have the little voice in the back of my brain warning me not to become too comfortable. Because it's only a week til I have to refind my American in France.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

More Myth Busting

So people often tell me that the Americans drink harder than the French. I can't really figure out who has this idea that in any Western country, there aren't people in their mid twenties getting tipsy. The last few weeks have featured copious amounts of beer, wine, and the occasional hard alcohol.

Last night for example, I passed up Paris, since I was tired from the night before. Gui Gui and I decided to make paella (which was more of a risotto with seafood) and hang out at home together. Around eight, Joris showed up, straight from the office. He proclaimed he would be staying for dinner, and a bottle of wine was opened. Somewhere in the next hour people started coming in. And before we knew it the table was littered with bottles, and people were coupled around a "microphone" (read: broom) singing French songs at top voice.

I feel like I'm living in a frat house.