The juilletistes (neologism for people taking their holidays in July) are going back to work. Now it’s the aoûtiens’ turn to take time off.
It doesn’t rain in Nantes—or rather, few locals just say “il pleut” when they see water falling from the sky.
It’s been six years that every time I go to Nantes in July or August, the first thing I notice is the annual art festival with installations scattered throughout the city.
French eat croque-monsieur, Parisien sandwiches, mayonnaise and Prince cookies, for instance.
At 9:30 p.m., watching a Celtic circle dancing the An Dro in the public square in front of Saint-Michel’s lighthouse, I realized I had the most cliché French day ever.
“I don’t have my driver’s licence either. I didn’t take anything with me,” my dad admits. “Papa! Okay, let me speak.”
I freaked out when 24 hours before flying to France, Feng suggested—apparently, it was just a suggestion—we should travel without Mark’s Chicco stroller.
Not all fountains are clean and I don’t recommend taking a dip with your swimsuit on, especially if you’re older than ten (you will draw strange looks from locals).
On Monday morning, at 9 a.m., the infamous French CRS (“Compagnies Républicaines de Sécurité”), the French national police force specializing in crowd and riot control, swarmed into square Daviais.
I used to miss speaking French. I remember how exhausted I felt at the end of the day, my brain working hard to decipher English and to find an acceptable way to put words on my thoughts.
Last Sunday, just seven days ago, France was winning the 2018 FIFA World Cup after beating Croatia 4-2 in the final.
It didn’t take me long to see one major difference in Nantes compared to last year.
“Are we in France, already?”
We walk by a couple kissing passionately outside the departure hall, in front of gate 12.
I chose to live several thousands of kilometres from where I was born but I never meant to hurt anyone. I paid the price for my decisions.
If Mark’s wobbly baby tooth was going to fall out, I was fairly sure it was going to happen at camp.
Mark gives me a weird look, one that says, “I can’t take you seriously as a mother if you’ve never had a freaking marshmallow”.
Thanks to me French upbringing, I’ve been blessed with the ability to say “penis,” “vulva” and “vagina” without giggling or blushing. I can answer any question.
It’s summer in Canada. I have proof: 10 unmistakable signs.
“Mommy! Look what I’ve got! METAL!” “Metal?” “No, medal!” Mark shouts, barging in to my…
Here is the paradox with Chinese food—it’s not as weird as you think and it’s probably not what you imagine.
To me, Mark’s school is some kind of mismanaged charity with inconsistent guidelines where the presence of kids is an inconvenience and volunteers are always needed urgently because made-up reasons.
Sometimes, I say ONE thing ONCE and it will be remembered forever. Problem is, I never know what will stick with Mark. If I did, parenting would be easier, right?
What did you learn as a traveller or as an immigrant? What learning experience was the the most useful to you?