beckles, i promise, i am going to get a new camera card soon, and then i will stop stealing your pictures.
photo courtesy: beckles
if only i had a device that recorded every fleeting thought, every interaction wordeyeflutterutterance. i would have put it to good use this week.
i had what i would i would consider a rather profound realization wednesday morning at five thirty a.m. i do not want to stop speaking french.
and i can do it, you know. i really can. la plupart de la conversation était en français, as we sat there par terre dans la cuisine pendant six heures, jusqu’à seven o’clock quarant-cinq du matin. to be quite honest, if brice and yo-yo are the only two french friends i make all semester (which, thus far, is proving to be a strong likelihood), i would not even mind a bit.
i remember vividly hailey telling me how months had passed in bolivia without feeling as if her language skills had progressed. but one day, one moment, one speck of time, she realized, “oh my goodness, i can really speak spanish.” et en fait, those words have been running through my head for the past several days. la nuit blanche at adelle’s prank calling and throwing banana peels and piano playing and translating funny words made that all more evident.
i remember clearly field trips in elementary and middle school, and even high school for that matter: no matter our destination, it was the bus ride that proved to be the most exciting part of the trip. here i am in my near twenty-one years, and nothing has really changed. yesterday, we all went to carnac and vannes, two small towns on the coast of north-western france. yes, the rocks were pretty, as was the medieval architecture and the boats on the port. even more amusing were the men dressed up as saint patrick’s leprechauns and the wig-wearing man who kissed each woman that passed as his bachelor party ritual. mais ce qui était le mieux, c’était le voyage en bus. that day, that trip, we celebrated brice’s twenty-third birthday. bien sûr, becca brought her guitar, and, bien sûr, we sang sufjan steven’s happy birthday. gifts included a home-made card by natalie and her ten-year-old host sister, signed and loved by all of us. becca and i knitted a little scarf and a little hat and baked oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. il ne pouvait pas parler, c’était vraiment trop mignon. vraiment vraiment. for the rest of the way, becca and i sang songs with brice, who printed out lyrics (yes, beforehand) so that he could sing along. the back of the bus (segregated, literally, from the front) ended the first part of the ride gloriously, reminiscing in our eight-year old 1998 years by singing savage garden’s “truly, madly, deeply” at the top of our lungs for all of france to hear. perfect. though more low key, the ride home was quite nice indeed, including massages and broken english-to-french translations of sufjan stevens and joanna newsom lyrics, which, honestly, are often difficult for even native english speakers to comprehend. we concluded the birthday celebrations that evening at a pizzaria (“yo-yo! nous avons gagné des carambars!”), and later at a bar. despite the drizzly gray rain, it was a vraiment lovely saturday.
also, incidentally, i am sitting dans le salon avec brune et sixtine, and they are watching a rather uncomfortable television show. on the screen, i see colored blobs with eyelashes and brows, speaking french and shape-shifting into bathtubs and changing-tables for the singular human [baby] on the show. trop bizarre.
additionally, i am doing an internship at a montessori preschool (coincidence) teaching english. they are certainly adorable, but, as all three-year-olds, they have a shorter attention span than a flea, one that grows weaker and smaller with every incomprehensible english word i speak. but dang, they are cute.
but not as cute as my host sisters.
and i close with this: two-year-old brune is currently prancing around the living room wearing nothing, and i mean nothing, but her pink pajama shirt and her older sister’s plastic diamond-encrusted pink high-heeled shoes. my goodness, i love my host family.