As sad as it was to leave Provence, we were so excited to head back to Paree! Eeeeeeeeee! Our sweet and fabulous Michael rose at the crack of dawn and went back into Forcalquier to exchange our host’s gift before we headed to the train station. Michael overheard the night before how our host was desperate for platters in the house, so back went the bowl and the apron in their place, 4 beautiful white ceramic platters hand made by small elves in the middle of the forest…or something. Our host LOVED them. I mean he really loved them. I have to hand it to Michael he really scored there, and that was why I had to forgive him for delaying our departure time and getting lost and well…I won’t go into all the details, but we missed our train back to Paris. Our journey looked a little something like this:
NEVERMIND! We just bought two new train tickets and we were on our way once again.
They switched our apartment in Paris from the one we had the video of…so we were heading into the unknown. But the place is cute as pie, a little bigger than the other one, but still pretty tiny. I like to call it a pre-war apartment as in pre-every war that ever happened. It was built in a time when people were still very, very tiny, or when no one was allowed to be taller than Napolean. But as teeny as it is, it has a washer/dryer and a dishwasher, 2 things they simply cannot figure out how to get into pre-WWII apartments in New York. They CAN.NOT figure it out…they just can’t.
Meanwhile, we spent the day moving in, then popped out to explore our neighborhood and realized we live off this adorable, pedestrian only street named Montorguiel. It’s full of fruit stands and brasseries, fromageries and boulangeries, chocolate shops and poisonneries, pharmacies and a StarBucks (sigh-they just can’t seem to leave well enough alone can they?).
But best of all…at the very end of this rainbow lies a fantastic French playground (in the shadow of a large Cathedral), full of darling little French children that I can actually converse with in French because my French is at the level of a 4 year old. This is my first French conversation with a 4 year old:
Boy: ‘Je suis le capitaine de le bateau! Non filles!! Garcons!’ (I am the captain of this boat. No girls! Only boys!)
Me: ‘Mais oui? Je pense que vous etes un clown!’ (oh yes? I think you’re a clown!)
Boy: ‘NON! Je suis le capitaine!!’ (NO! I am the captain!)
Me: ‘Vous etes le capitaine de les clowns!’ (You are the captain of the clowns!)
At which point the boy burst out in laughter and ran off to meet Madeline and buy himself a new Hermes scarf.
After we played in cool, seventy something, partly cloudy weather (in August (!)) and then ate in a Brasserie, our little family was drunk with bubbly, French happiness.
And the next day was the Capitaine of our bateau’s first day of work. Yippppeee!