29 August 2008

How to make me melt into a tiny little puddle

The other night we got word that a deacon who happens to be a cousin of a friend agreed to marry us in France, pending an in-person meeting beforehand. This was good news; besides the fact that we've found an officiant, we also only have to go through one day of pre-wedding counseling rather than the six months that American priests make you do. Welcome to France, where they're desperate for Catholics.

Nevertheless, Frenchy looked alarmed. "Pre-wedding counseling? What are they going to ask?"

I explained that usually the priest asks you if you've given consideration to many of the issues that may potentially cause friction: children, finances, difference in beliefs, and in our case, what country we're going to live in. He looked somewhat relieved.

"I thought that he was going to ask what I did to deserve a girl like you. Because really, somebody's got to notice, sooner or later."

27 August 2008


The first crisps of autumn are in the air.

I wake up in the morning, shivering from the open window.

I wonder if my eight-year-old out-at-the-elbows French suede jacket will last another season.

I ditch my pinks and purples for oranges and browns. I polish my knee-high boots to be presentable for one more season.

I start to reconsider if fall is really my favorite season in New York, because it really represents the long decline towards winter.

I think of summer camp in Michigan while I walk to work (3 miles a day, I counted!) The air had a similar tang to it when the morning bell woke us up in our open cabins, a crunch that burned off after an hour and a bowl of oatmeal.

I crave oatmeal.

I count the weeks until my CSA will be over. I think about signing up for the winter share. I don't have to think very hard. Sign me up!

I remind myself that colder weather means fewer visitors to our small apartment.

I gear myself up for the parents' visit in November.

I search for recipes to preserve and store the fruits of the summer sunshine. Peach preserves this week--no eating them out of hand.

I savor the warmth as I pull sticky sweaty hairs off my neck. Why did I pledge not to cut my hair until the weddings? It's getting the chop in August.

Autumn is coming, folks.

12 August 2008

The Global Workforce

I went to a Mexican restaurant today for lunch, that was staffed and cheffed entirely by Asians of indeterminate variety.

That just seems wrong.

07 August 2008


I need a break.

I've only been working for three weeks and I need a break. There, I admitted it.

It's harder than I had thought to transition from over three months of unemployedness to working full time, waking up at quarter to silly o'clock, and making sure there are enough lefotvers to eat the next day for lunch.

Keeping yourself on task, not checking your hotmail. Trying not to clock-watch. Putting makeup on every day. Remembering to bring a wrap in case the office is too cold. The list goes on.

Did I mention the 6:45 am wakeup?

But really, it's not the work that is burning me out. Work is the escape. It's the home. Specifically, it's the people at home. We have recently doubled the population of our one-bedroom apartment to four people. The Frenchy's sister and her boyfriend are here for a vist.

A two-week visit.

Did I mention the small apartment? And the two weeks?

While they are both delightful and lovely, it's a bit of an adjustment to skitter out of bed at the first clang of the alarm in order not to disturb their peaceful morning lie-in, to tiptoe to the bathroom and shower as quietly as possible, to go about my normal working life while they merrily vacation. And it's not just the morning that reveals the disjunction. For the past two weeks, we have eaten out or gone to a bar every single night. Every night. That's a lot of money, and a lot of calories. And a lot of very late-night returns.

I want to enjoy spending time with them, to learn how to shift from girlfriend to in-law, to practice my French without feeling burned out. I looked forward to their arrival, I begged her to visit because I want to get to know her better, and now that they're here I'm furtively checking how many days until they leave. I want them here with me, just not quite so close to me. I want to be a good hostess, but I also with they would hang up their towels. I like talking to them, but speaking constant French tires me out.

The irony of it all is that I have brought leftover sweet-sour chicken for lunch today.