Sunday, February 21, 2010

10 pas manque

 Top Ten good things about being here:
  • Paper.  I do not miss all of the paper that the kids bring home from school, that comes in the form of junk mail, that randomly gets handed to me.  I never know what to do with it.  Some of it seems mildly important enough to have to file somewhere until later and it is a constant battle.  Some of it is from church so I feel bad about not wanting it.  "Oh, you colored a picture of Jesus.  It is lovely.  Now put it in the recycle pile."   It is a very nice respite -- no mail, no notes!
  • Driving.  Everyone here is so polite it is amazing.  No one is getting irritated with other drivers, everyone lets people in when merging in traffic, every time I am at a crosswalk someone immediately stops and lets me cross.  Of course I haven't driven in Paris yet...
  • School.  It is so nice not having the crazy getting ready for school mornings and the hectic doing homework evenings.  It is wonderful being with my kids all day and not just when they are tired and cranky and none of us like each other.
  • No obsessions.  Does the house need repainting?  Should I get a new bedspread?  Why don't my clothes fit?  Would that hairstyle look good on me?  What am I doing with my life???  We are just here and it is so pleasant.  Maybe I can ditch that nasty habit.
  • My phone.  I don't have one and it is amazing.
  • Weather.  Don't hate me, but I am so glad that I am not in Illinois right now!  I know I chose to live there (or was it fate?), but I am getting too old for the horrible winters.  I may have exaggerated when I said our car was parked a mile away, but it is about 1/4 mile and not a big deal even in the rain.  At home I have post-traumatic stress from parking 10 feet away from the store entrance that stays with me well into the dead of July (run, run, run, do you remember the ghastly wind?)  Matthew is trying to come up with some sort of eventual plan to move somewhere warmer.
  • Landscape.  Illinois has pretty parts, but McLean county has corn, corn, and more corn.  Bloomington is also nice and verdant, and we do love our neighborhood, but here we have landed in one of God's most exquisite climes with sunny days, little wind, the mountains on one side, and the sea on the other.  I can see why people have lived here for thousands of years.  I can tell I have northern European ancestry because my skin and hair are behaving so well.  I belong here obviously.  
  • Food.  There are so many amazing things to try all the time and I am quite sure that there is so much that we don't even know about.  We are trying to catch all of the pastries, but haven't even begun to put a dent in the chocolate and cheese.  What is a girl to do?  I am putting on weight but deciding not to worry too much about it.  I can detox in April, right?  I will need everyone's help and support, s'il vous plait.
  • Les choses.  I know "things" sounds very vague, because, well, it is, but I don't know how else to describe how fun it is for me to just look at everything everyday.  I love to watch all of the different people.  I love to see what everyone is wearing.  I love the care that is put into everything from shop window displays to a simple meal.  I love the colors on the houses and buildings.  I had a WONDERFUL time going to a flea market yesterday (finally!) and seeing French garbage laid out on the muddly, puddly ground and wishing that the case of antique petanque boules wouldn't be such a burden to drag home.  Sigh.
  • And the number one good thing is that I when I get home I will at least be able to say, "In France, we..." all the time!  Won't you all love that?
    There are, of course, absolutely things that I do miss.  My friends, our house, a shower, being coherent, my life ~~ we will be reunited all too soon and in the meantime I will be not missing them.


      amylouwho said...

      don't hate you? I'm sorry. You are living my dream.

      Okay, I still love you! But I don't want to hear, "when I was in France...."

      Although, one of my favorite way to start a sentence is, "when I was in this bookshop in paris...."

      normal mom said...

      When need some of the smiley face stoplights in the US.
      Hopefully your time in France will teach you the things that you need in your life here, or anywhere that you end up.
      We are semi celebrating my birthday on Saturday and it just won't be the same without you.
      Eat some chocolate for me, s'il vous plait?

      HARA said...

      I saw something on tv where a lovely couple was on holiday in the 'South of France' and I thought to myself, I must find a time to say, "Well you know my friends in the South of France...blah blah blah." Life is Grand. Glad you enjoying it.

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