vendredi, octobre 26

City of blondes

I'm off to the Nordic North this morning ( about 4.5 hours actually) so I wanted to say farewell, adieu! I shall return in two weeks' time refreshed and full of Scandinavian vigor, until then perhaps you should check out my latest creation.

On becoming a regular

There's this little bar we like to go to, we call it the music bar because they have live music on Thursday nights, it's different from the usual sports bars or smokey tabacs that seem to pollute St Brieuc. The music bar has a laid back bohemian feel to it & I like the people who come in, these people are a unique bunch, the type you'd want to meet and have as your friends. We've gone so often that the bartender has memorized my drink...she smiles at me and says,

"Un Kir Framboise?"
"Oui, s'il te plait."

(It's the little things like becoming a regular and being recognized that are becoming my saving grace here. They know what I order and they smile when I walk in.)

mardi, octobre 23

Me without you

How do you tell someone you miss them...someone who might not miss as much as you miss them (or worse, might not miss you at all)? Perhaps you'd send a postcard or make a phone call or, the lamest of all, write a blog. Here goes...

Dear Person Who I Find Very Special and Unique,

I really like you, the big kind of like...the love kind. I'm sorry it's too late to do anything about it now...but I just had to say it for me and you and anyone else in the world who would ever care to know. There's no sense in hiding it for myself anymore, no sense in pushing it away, I want you to know that when I say "I miss you" it's code for "I'm too chickenshit to say I love you". (I'm sorry I wasn't strong enough to tell you this in person.)

dimanche, octobre 21

To live the life that I have made in song

After my dismal Friday morning/afternoon experience I decided to try and turn the day around by picking myself up off the ground and, at the very least, moving. I left the house and decided to walk down the streets and parts of the city I hadn't seen yet. (The worst thing for me to do when I'm sad is nothing, the sadness manifests itself and I can just sit around and be upset for days.) As I walked I came upon a cafe that reminded me a lot of home: large, bright, warm and playing beautiful but unidentifiable music. Inside the cafe felt familiar and tranquil; there was lots of room to move and sit and the tables weren't terribly cramped together. The floors were dark wood and against one wall there were floor to ceiling shelves filled with lots of neat tea containers and old apothecary jars which held handmade candies. I sat down and thought about home and about not being home and drank a rose flavored soda and then I felt okay. For the moment I feel mostly okay. (And being okay feels like a safe place to be.)

vendredi, octobre 19

Low point

Waited for my class today and they didn't show up...met the teacher in the hallway and she said she forgot to tell me that they're in Morocco. I was assured that this was an exceptional case, just like last week was when they had a 4 hour economics exam. Walking home an old man shouted some gross 'compliment' at me. I hate to say it, but this whole not having class thing and being harassed/followed by creepy men is an all too regular occurrence here. I miss home.

mardi, octobre 16

I rather like teaching

Petite Fille: Sarah tu es belle tous les jours.
Moi: Merci beaucoup.
Petit Garçon: Tu ne peux pas dire ça parce qu'on ne la voit pas tous les jours.
Autre Petite Fille: Sarah tu es belle tous les mardis et les jeudis.

Little Girl: Sarah you are pretty every day.
Me: Thank you very much.
Little Boy: You can't say that because we don't see her every day.
Another Little Girl: Sarah you are pretty every Tuesday and Thursday.

Holy crap these kids are cute. Working at this elementary school makes me almost want to have a kid...almost.

lundi, octobre 15

I've got all the time in the do nothing

I said no to taking a nap at 3:30 this afternoon because it was a waste of a rare and cherished sunny day, I said yes to going to the beach. Alas, my tiny bed won and I took a disgraceful 3 hour nap...ack! Now it's too late to do much of anything because everything here closes at 7:00. Something about this town or working a few hours a week makes me incredibly tired and unmotivated. On the brightside I planned my toussaint vacation yesterday and will be going to Stockholm! and Oslo! with 2 wonderful new assistant friends I have met here. And, keep this on the hush hush, I'm planning a wildly exciting fête this weekend because my landlord will finally be going out of town! (I'm thinking cidre, kir, wine, cake/tarte type things with pretty frosting, any number of small hors d'oeuvres, old fashioned games, etc. etc. suggestions?) Hurrah for freedom and fun...I hope I don't sleep through it.

samedi, octobre 13

Love to love you

Something about the French that I find quite curious and different from myself (and my culture) is that they always seem to be in a relationship. If they're not in a relationship then they're looking for one...but in a somewhat generic sense of the word. It feels like, from what I've observed, the French are always going from one relationship to another or staying in one while waiting for the next best thing to come along. We Americans always swoon over how romantic France feels with all of the happy couples holding hands or kissing or strolling through gardens; I have to say that I've reached a bit of a breaking point. Sometimes it looks fake. I'm used to being single, in fact, most of my American compatriots here are as well. We're used to looking and waiting before we even think about entering a relationship, let alone saying the big L word. I don't mean to say that the French don't really love but it feels like something about this obsession with the concept of love, dating, and relationships doesn't jive with the rest of French culture. Isn't this a culture that values quality over quantity and that won't settle for a substitute because it wants the real thing?

Dear France,
Dating can be fun.
But seriously, sometimes it's best to wait.

lundi, octobre 8

How to paint bird's portait

Peindre d'abord une cage
avec une porte ouverte
peindre ensuite
quelque chose de joli
quelque chose de simple
quelque chose de beau
quelque chose d'utile...
Today, was supposed to be my first day of class. However, I've found that teaching and schooling in France is a bit more fluid than in America. Nevertheless I came home and sat down to lunch with René (the owner of the house). He'd seen me reading a book of poetry from his bookshelf and asked me which one it was; a book of poetry about the ocean. I told him that I loved poetry and was happy to find that he had a rather extensive collection. He beamed and said, "Là, on a un point un commun". (We've got something in common.) And then he was off and buzzing about poems and authors he liked, he got up from his lunch and hurried over to the shelf to show me several books he enjoyed and even recited a few poems and lines from heart..! He calmed himself a bit, returned to lunch and offered me a square of his dark chocolate. It's good for the memory, he said.

jeudi, octobre 4

Je suis ici

Hi, I'm still here. Promise. There have been so many new & wonderful things and experiences that I'm overwhelmed and don't know where to begin. Paris, for one, was fantastic. My last night of course involved champagne, dancing, and a new added element of apricot hookah (ooh!). Whilst dancing with a melange of brit punks and french mod-ets I was approached by a twiggy francaise who said,

Her: You look like that girl from Breathless.
Me: Jean Seberg?
Her: Yeah.
(Then I cried a little tear of happiness)

& now that I am in Bretagne and starting to settle in the momentum of newness and excitement has only increased, I really like it here! Everyone has been beyond nice and extremely helpful. The town is bigger then I imagined and has lots of cute shops (even a few natural food stores where I can buy almond milk and tofu and other kinds of yummies). I've taken many a fine photo but haven't been able to upload them since our wireless is not working for the moment. Much love from abroad...!