This installment contains two journal entries because one is really short. Soooooo…
To continue L’s adventures in France…
26 août, 2006
10h43 à Maisons-Alfort
Emailed Césaire* this morning. I’m going to see if I can call him…
Went to the Musée Asiatique that Edouard recommended yesterday. It has some very nice things, but it’s SO BIG. Too big, really.
This morning I went with Margaux, Karima and Malaïka to the market. It was so cool! So much noise! I can’t describe it… I’ll have to go again. Then maybe I’ll be able to.
Righto. I really want to start speaking more French. I always do my best to initiate conversation in French, but somehow it usually drifts back to English. Maybe with the Perrots**…
Césaire said I probably won’t gain 50 lbs. “Maybe 20 – no more! You will diet when you get home.”
27 août, 2006
23h41 à Maisons-Alfort
Such an eventful day today. Best day yet.
Not at first, though. It wasn’t horrible by any means, but… whatever.
Margaux asked me to go to the bakery and buy 2 baguettes traditions, but I didn’t know where it was so she sent Karima with me. GOD, how awkward! There’s this awful language barrier between us, so we went the whole way in silence. Then at the… boulangerie… I didn’t know what to do (there were two lines or something) and it took a while to figure it out. On the way home Karima did say “T’en veux ?” Do you want some? But that’s… it.
The whole family had lunch together. At that point, I’d say the day improved largely. I really like Ophélie’s husband, Kamar. For lunch we had… oh! It was this dish with beef and olives and potatoes cooked in curry and coconut milk… yum. I tried this odd drink that was… minty, eucalyptus sort of thing. Not too good. There wasn’t any wine. Kamar is Muslim, so I presume he doesn’t drink. Ophélie doesn’t, as far as I can tell.
Margaux tells me that Marielle Masson*** called to ask if I could spend the afternoon and have dinner with them. So, between lunch and them coming, Margaux had me read Sleeping Beauty (in French, obviously) out loud for practice. It was nice of her to care, but it was embarrassing when Karima and Malaïka would listen – ESPECIALLY when I’d stumble over a word or mispronounce something.
They weren’t laughing or anything, but still…
When I’d finished, I ran upstairs to get ready – apply makeup and the like. Just as I was starting, Marielle and Lucas arrived so I had to hurry. It was okay, though, because they were showing Margaux Vincent’s blog.
Once they had detached themselves from the computer, we did the whole French-kiss-near-the-cheek introduction thingy. Lucas does it oddly. Usually, the French just press their cheeks to each other and make a kissing noise, but he turns his had and actually kisses my cheeks. Weird.
Anyhow, we drove into Paris and picked up Paul who had been on a sailboat race, then we all hung out together as a “family.”
Oh my gosh – SO nice! I like them so much! We went for Chinese and I had THE most disgusting eggroll I had ever tasted in my life! I am serious, it tasted like vomit. But everything else was good. We went to their house – I saw my future bedroom – and we started watching a half-French, half-English movie called “Wanted.”
I’m really looking forward to my time with them. They’re my third host family, so it won’t be for a while. But I can’t wait!
*Césaire was an exchange student from France who was at my high school the year prior to me going on exchange. We became really good friends. We’re still in contact on facebook, but we haven’t talked in a while.
**The Perrots were my first official host family. Much more on them to come. They were on vacation when I first arrived. In India, as I recall.
***The Masson family was my third and final host family. Marielle was the mom, Paul was the dad. They had two sons: Vincent, who was in Texas on exchange at the time, and Lucas, the younger of the two.