If I could buy you chocolates and an oversized teddybear then I would, because you are an absolute pleasure to be with.
I quite genuinely cannot believe that a whole month has passed already, although little french things have already started to rub off on me. Typing this is taking me ages for example because I have gotten too used to the layout of a french keyboard, and as soon as I meet someone I’m straight in for a kiss on either cheek, praying to avoid the situation in which we both go for a different number of kisses and one of us ends up in a longing and embarrassed hover.
I feel like my spoken french is getting a tad better, and each little successful task, like mastering the french post office or registering at the doctor, gives me hope that someday I might sound like a normal person when I speak french to a native.
I actually feel like I’ve got two languages to master though. French, and the petroleum industry lingo. This week I was translating a video from french into english, and I actually questioned my ability to use my own mother-tongue because of how many words I had never ever heard of. My friends often laugh at my facial expression when the conversation inevitably drifts to rocks or petrol, and have described it as ‘trying to be interested, puzzled, checking phone, phasing out, completely gone.’ The aim is to become so in with the engineers and geologists that I could freely change my degree to one of those fields when I leave.
I’ve had many exciting occurrences in my french life since I last wrote. I went to Parc Asterix which was incredible, even with the ride stopping torrential rain at mid day. I ticked an item off the bucket list by going to an outdoor cinema, where we were optimistic about the temperature of Parisian evenings and almost froze. I spent a full working day, literally start to finish, doing arts and crafts in an office by myself and could not have been happier. I ate a baguette by the Seine, who doesn’t want to say they’ve done that? I also got a blue toaster and a purple kettle because life is too short to not have pastel kitchen appliances. Ooh la la.
Now when I say ‘Napoleon Jubilee Weekend’ you are not excited are you? Wrong. You should be. We still aren’t 100% sure why, something to do with Napoleon’s wife living here, but last weekend Rueil-Malmaison just got knee-deep in Napoleon loving. There were horses everywhere, a whole cow being spit-roasted, real cannons being fired (worrying if you weren’t forewarned), stunning light shows projected onto buildings at night and a lot of people dressed up who were too old to be dressed up. During the evening concert and fireworks display there was a Scottish music section and I actually think I had a spiritual experience. Auld Lang Syne nearly tipped me over the edge.
In general life, the other day I was offered my first ever freelance writing job. AAAAAAAAAAHHHH. Crazy exciting. Someone actually wants to pay for my writing, let’s hope they are not the first and last.
Before I left Scotland, the thought of ten whole months was long enough to scare me shitless, but now that one is already gone I have gone into a bit of a mental planning mode, even more so than usual. There is so much that I want to do and see and eat and try and SO MUCH EXPLORING TO FIT IN.
Here’s to nine more exceptionally crackin’ months. It’s a decent amount of time I suppose, women grow full humans in that time.
Best wishes from Paris x