The true question isn’t why I came to Canada but why I stayed in Canada. The answer is simple—because I could.
Like millions of people all over the globe, I have multiple identities and I (probably) don’t need to seek professional help.
The first sure sign a new school year was going to start was the noticeable increase of pointless, irrelevant and often grammatically questionable emails we were receiving from Mark’s school.
“Are you bringing any food into Canada?”
Seriously, I’m not.
The border officer eyes me suspiciously, waiting for me to admit I have five kilos of blue cheese and foie gras in my backpack.
It’s a typical trip back to Canada. We got up at 9:30 a.m., got dressed and left 15 minutes later because I believe in the “ripping the bandage off fast” technique.
I had plans for the summer. I was going to solve all the issues my family is facing, then relax, write a manuscript or two, work as usual, be the perfect mother and spend some quality time with Feng.
It felt like the end of the summer last week but it should have been its peak. And now, summer holidays are actually ending for most French, including us, and it’s suddenly hot again.
“One parent, one language,” she started lecturing me. “My husband only speaks English to our son and I only speak my mother tongue to him. And now, he’s bilingual!”
I’m often bemused by the common, everyday problems my French family face and apparently can’t solve. But now I’m one of them, a French with a stupid, impossible-to-fix issue.
August 15 (Assumption of Mary into Heaven) is a statutory holiday in France and in Nantes, over the long weekend, there were a lot of people wandering aimlessly, looking for entertainment.
I always forget how common it is to see French people engage in verbal and physical fights.
As I’m typing this, it’s 3:15 a.m. on a rainy Sunday night and I can hear three or four voices shouting outside—“J’vais t’tuer!” “Fils de pute!” “Lâche-le!”
Half of France is complaining about the weather—the one who worked in July and decided to take August off—but it’s still business as usual when it rains in France.
Feng left today. At 10 a.m., I walked him to the bus station. He was in travel mode, focused on the upcoming journey back to Canada, and I was half-asleep—we didn’t speak much.
This year, the first mission was to buy two French SIM cards and prepaid plans to use our smartphone during the trip.
Researchers from Warwick University have come to question the effectiveness of When the fun stops,…
I knew I was supposed to marvel at paintings and sculptures—and I did for the first twenty minutes of the visit—but I was too tired to focus on anything in particular.
I was a bit wary of Paris in the summer. The months of July and August are prime tourist season in one of the most popular destinations in Europe and one of the most famous in the world.
Checkout was at noon and we had tickets for the 4:43 p.m. Paris-Nantes TGV, so we were free until 4 p.m.—the Montparnasse railway station was just two subway stops or a fifteen-minute walk from the hotel.
Formula for a perfect day? No plans, just hope for the best.
Getting lost on purpose and finding your way around a big city is a fun exercise, especially in a very walkable and absolutely fascinating place like Paris.
There’s no disputing it – XE.com is the granddaddy of online currency conversion. Founded way…
I wonder if five or ten years from now, we will refer to summer 2019 as “you know, this fucked up summer when we visited Paris twice just because.”
The city hasn’t changed but everything else did. Like my mom puts it, “it was a shitty year.” There’s so much family drama going on I don’t even know where to start both when I try to explain it to Feng and when I attempt to “fix” issues.