January 2003 archive

(89 entries)

January 31, 2003

¡Hasta luego!

I'm off to Spanish class with the THOTs again, as we're leaving from Valéry Larbaud at 4pm for our weekend of snow and NOT skiing. I shall not allow myself to be convinced to ski. I shall remain stubborn as a mule and keep my limbs intact, thankyouverymuch.

srah | 8:38 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, sports

Snow snow snow

I spent yesterday afternoon and evening running around like a chicken with my head cut off, as the snow began to fall. I had all kinds of errands to get out of the way before the weekend, and meanwhile, we were being dumped on. These were the kind of snowflakes large enough to land on my nose and obstruct my vision for a few seconds before they melted. When I was done running around Vichy, I ran up to Presles, as we were having a big Assistant Potluck. I brought salad with green peppers, carrots, and mushrooms. By the time we left, around 11pm, there was about a foot of snow and all of our efforts to roll up our jeans to keep them dry were completely useless.

srah | 8:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, weather

January 30, 2003

Ahem

Not only did I have class this afternoon, but they tried to get me to take the kids for four hours. I am not a substitute teacher, folks. What's more, they didn't tell me until I stopped by and asked at 12h55 that they wanted me to take the class at 13h. Funny, that.

srah | 10:02 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Communication problems

It snowed last night, so the roads were slippery. Usually when this happens, Veronique doesn't show up, so the first thing I did when I arrived at school was to go to the Vie Scolaire and ask if there were any profs d'anglais absent. They said yes, Veronique would be absent in the morning and maybe in the afternoon as well. I was pleased, as I'd been hurrying this morning to throw something together for the S1HOTs and now I could stop stressing.

So I wandered around for a while, then Victor, head of the Vie Scolaire, found me and told me that Veronique had sent a message that I was to take her class for the two hours. I could only take one, as I had another class the other hour, but as it was more a command than a question, I gave in and rushed off to type up what I'd planned.

I spent my break finishing it, then went to the class, where three élèves were waiting for me, out of a class of 17. We debated what was to be done for a while, then finally decided to have class. We did the lesson I'd planned, then chatted when it was over because you can't do jeux de rôles with three people for fifteen minutes.

Now I am sitting around waiting for someone to tell me if I have class this afternoon or not, as no one seems to know. I am hoping for not, but I'm betting on yes, because that's the way this day has been.

srah | 6:19 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, teaching

Dream

I dreamt that I was in the movie or the game of Clue, and my mom was about to send everyone home because we hadn't found the murderer. I had an idea of who it was, so I tried to keep everyone from leaving. I was afraid to wander through the house alone, so I grabbed my sister, who was Mrs Peacock, to accompany me and told her I knew who it was. She rolled her eyes and looked disparaging. "Of course you do," she said, "You've seen the movie about a million times."

srah | 1:19 AM | TrackBack
Tags: dream

January 29, 2003

Dream

I had a dream where I was trying to have class with the THOTs in a classroom I had built in my house, but they were completely out of control, so I hid in a little closed-off area at the back of the room and watched them on security camera feed as they ran all over the place, made a mess, and ate all the food we had.

What is with this déluge of remembered dreams, not that I'm complaining?

srah | 4:28 AM | TrackBack
Tags: dream

January 28, 2003

Excuses, excuses

I need a haircut, but I have an irrational fear of letting my hair be cut by strangers, especially strangers who don't speak English. Plus, I'm poor.

srah | 12:51 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, haircut

J'm'deprime

I am in a funk where I claim to be bored even though there are letters to write, dishes to do, fruit to eat, books to read, and a blog-post beginning to develop in my head. I am tempted to go to sleep and put it all off until tomorrow, but that's been my plan of action all week and the dishes aren't going to do themselves.

srah | 12:49 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

My sister is pretty cool sometimes

Becky found this t-shirt online, which I think would look pretty good on me.

srah | 9:21 AM | TrackBack
Tags: alfie, t-shirt

Plus, sometimes I don't have to work at all

There is a strike today, of teachers and surveillants. Some people are striking, others aren't. I love strike days. It's fun to come to work when hardly anyone is here, and find out if any of the students have come to school for me to teach. It's different and adventury. And thankfully it's my half day, so I'm not concerned about the fact that the cafeteria is en grève as well.

srah | 3:01 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, france, teaching

January 27, 2003

I have not yet decided who is the third member of this Axis of Evil

I have written before about the evil deceit of some citrus fruits, and I come before you today to warn you of another such menace: the clemenvilla.

Like the tangerine before it, the clemenvilla tries to pass itself off as a clementine and it is only the Pure of Heart and Clementine-Obsessed who can unmask this fiend!

For the clemenvilla, while not as dastardly as the dreaded tangerine with its thick skin, sour taste, and seeds, has greater weapons of disguise than its comrade in crime. It is only slightly larger than the average clementine and to my eyes, the only way to be sure is to remember to check the sign in the supermarket.

And this must be done, citizens. We must continue our vigilance and must not give in to this thick-membraned, chewy, flavorless impostor, even if Casino's clemenvillas are attractive and orange and the clementines are a bit spotty. This is all a part of their evil plan of dominance.

Support the downtrodden and oppressed clementine!

srah | 3:20 PM | TrackBack
Tags: food

Dream

I came home from work today, wrote the previous blog-post, and then fell into bed face-first. I dreamt that I was squatting a little pink house that no one wanted because it was pink, so I was pretty safe squatting there. I lived with a boyfriend who was not Alex, but I don't know who he was. Maybe he was no one I know in real life.

Renata and I had joined a literary discussion group, so we took a bus from a bus station located inside the Centre Jaude mall in Clermont-Ferrand, heading off into the wilds of Auvergne for our meeting. Most of the other buses, interestingly enough, were going to New Jersey. I don't know how that works.

It was a long ride to wherever we were going, so at one point we all got off the bus and learned all of the passengers were in the book club. We were sitting around a waiting room, and someone asked me how I liked the book. I got defensive and started yelling that I hadn't read it yet, but I was going to, so don't worry, and get off my back, and anyway, I prefer to hear the discussion and then read the book, plus I had already read Shall We Tell the President? and I wasn't a big fan of Jeffrey Archer anyway. Luckily Agnès called and woke me up before I started getting violent.

srah | 1:47 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, dream

We (heart) murmurs

I always seem to find myself, when people learn that I've studied French and lived in France, discussing whether the French accent is as sexy as it is reputed to be. The assistants have had the same discussion, and can't really come to a clear conclusion.

It is certainly true that there is nothing remotely sexy or attractive about being the English assistant and hearing a bored 15-year-old French accent say "At the Christmas, I go to buy the jeu vidéo for my bruzzère."

On the other hand, it is always amusing to hear a well-formed sentence, especially from someone you didn't expect to speak English. What's more, the French generally study English in the UK, so when you come across a well-learnèd French person speaking English, there is usually a bit of a British accent under a light French one.

It depends on the voice as well. I have plenty of loud, boisterous students, but I have two in particular who murmur smoothly when they speak English, which - as long as it's clearly spoken and they're murmuring rather than mumbling - is unnervingly attractive. I hope they are not reading this.

So in conclusion, the answer is both yes and no, and it depends on many factors. Fascinating. I'm going to sleep.

srah | 11:15 AM | TrackBack
Tags: accents, assistantship, french

Wasting away to nothing

Would you hate me if I told you that one of my big problems at the moment seems to be that I've lost weight? I don't remember this happening in Grenoble, but these days my pants seem to hang a bit lower, which means I have to cuff them, then I keep stepping on the cuffs and I have to yank them up so as not to expose my underpants. Whereas other people try diet after diet, I have never had any desire to lose weight, and here I am with what butt I had rapidly disappearing. Thus I bring you...

srah's diet tips

Be easily distracted and get easily bored while eating. Then at some point during dinner you will see something shiny across the room and when you remember what you were doing and come back, your food will be cold and unappetizing.

Live alone. If you're only cooking for yourself, you have no one to impress, so you can make the same really boring stuff night after night.

Be lazy. This ensures that you will probably only have two courses at the most - a main dish followed by a yogurt or fruit or cookies - something that doesn't require work or preparation.

Be poor. If you are trying to make those last 90€ last until you get paid at the end of this week when you will hopefully be paid, you will not be buying yourself exciting, fun new things you've never tried before. You will be eating pasta and salad.

Be forgetful. If you suddenly realize at 11pm that you forgot to eat dinner, it's simply too late and you'll have to wait until breakfast.

Don't eat anywhere comfortable. Although you want to eat in bed where it's nice and warm and comfy, you would spill stuff all over it. Instead, sit in a chair facing the bed, so that while you're eating, all you can think of is how much you would like to be finished with dinner and in your pyjamas.

srah | 6:39 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, food, health

Zzzzzzzzzzz

I still have not recovered from Nicolas' birthday and Moulins. I had to make an effort to stay awake in the dark while the S1OLs watched a video on Martin Luther King, and I still haven't settled on exactly what I'm doing with the THOTs. Perhaps I will teach them how to nap à l'américaine, whatever that means.

srah | 6:29 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

January 26, 2003

Painting Moulins rouge

On a fait la fête hier soir chez les Moulinoises. There are seven assistantes in Moulins, the prefecture of the Allier, about 45 minutes from Vichy. They were having a party, so we piled into Johanna's car (Stefan's orange bagnole is en panne in Poitiers at the moment) and drove off to their apartment, which is in the premier lycée de France, the lucky ducks.

Food, wine, beer and coca poured in abundance, then we played a game of Mafia full of suicide, German conspiracy, and Renata and Becky refusing to kill me no matter how much I begged. Everyone was asking themselves at this point exactly how much I'd had to drink and while it's true that I'd polished off quite a few glasses, they were all full of Coke and jus d'abricot. I'm just odd like that.

After everyone had had enough of Mafia, we played a drinking game and I drank two entire glasses of white wine during the course of the game, but afterwards felt less silly than when I'd been bourrée on Coke and juice.

Suddenly we realized it was already 3am - when we'd thought it was around midnight - so we got back into the car and came back to Vichy and into bed by 4.

srah | 6:03 AM | TrackBack
Tags: alcohol, assistantship

January 25, 2003

Do the doo-doo

There is a French-English bilingual song that plays on the radio here, which rather bothers me. I'm hoping that it was written by a French speaker and that no Anglophone would write the chorus:

"I love it when we do what we do 'cause we do what we do till it's done.
I love it when we do what we do 'cause we do what we do and it's fun."

Every time I hear it, I think it's going to be a Mountain Dew commercial.

srah | 5:10 AM | TrackBack
Tags: music

Siempre quieren hablar el idioma que no debe se hablar

In order to make it to the Scrabble tournament on time, I went to the Spanish class at 3pm instead of my usual 4-5 one. This meant I was with the famed THOTs, who were rather fascinated to see me there. They all started speaking English as they settled into their seats, and Sonia replied in kind. I think I heard more English in that Spanish class than I usually hear when I have the THOTs. Maybe if Sonia spoke English to them all hour and I spoke Spanish in English class, we would both accomplish more. Bueno. ¿Que vamos a hacer lunes en el clase de inglés?

srah | 4:57 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, spanish

January 24, 2003

'I didn't know you were called Dennis'

Mr Unnamed Cybercafé Employee kept bowing to me tonight and calling me "your highness". I really don't know what to do with him, so I smile and continue clicking away as he enters and exits the room genuflecting and trying to make me laugh or at least pay attention to him.

It bothers me that I don't know his name, but I don't want to ask him because I think he would take it as a sign of interest and thus increased intimacy, when all I really want to do is surf the net, drink tea, pay, and leave.

So I have decided to make up a name for him. I shall call him Dennis. Not Denis, à la française, but Dennis, because I have decided 'e looks like one.

srah | 5:45 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, cybercafe

Closer Proximity

The party last night was in Nicolas' apartment, which is in the same building as the other apartment I looked at, before choosing my current one. On a failli être voisins, but financially it's probably for the best that we aren't. In addition to the rent being higher, the building is right next-door to the cybercafé. The last thing I need is to be closer, because sometimes even when I give in to the 4€/hour mental protests, the thing that keeps me from spending my whole life there is walking in the cold.

srah | 5:39 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Más fotos

<-- Click on the various links to photos taken here for older photos.

Les Sables d'Olonne
Antoine and Lucie in front of the waves nice crashy waves waves in the other direction Sarah and Antoine, reunited.  And waves. big wave! small waves waves on rocks Lucie and Antoine searching for old German bullets

Más Valéry Larbaud
another look at the inside of the school a classroom the fountain up close one of the kitchens of the restaurant gastronomique

Party @ Presles
Renata's lovely pre-party outfit Stefan and Renaud singing

Clermont-Ferrand
the Puy-de-Dôme, seen from the Christmas Market

Trip to the Cantal
view from Super Lioran, where we stopped for lunch Stefan and the Orange Van lunch in the Orange Van - Nelson, Jennifer, Renata and me dancing lessons chez Claude the village of Tournemire Anjony Castle swirly mists, mountains, and Renata assistants in a cave church in a hill narrow old-fashioned streets in Salers

Fête des S2OL
[so embarassing to those photographed that they are available only upon request]

Christmas Break with the Boyfriend
can you find the baby under the stuffed animals? Alex in front of the Ceüze mountain, taken from Brigitte and Michel's yard Michel and Sophie dancing Alex and Srah in Grenoble the Eiffel Tower, half-missing in the fog an interesting view from the Seine Alex and the Rosetta Stone, at the British Museum a giant stone fist punching Alex why does he never look at *me* like that? Alexander the Great... and Alex the Not-So-Great

srah | 3:28 PM | TrackBack
Tags: antoine, assistantship, auvergne, clermont-ferrand, london, pato, photos, travel

Régis suggests skiing uphill

I have been invited to go skiing (or "skying", if you prefer) with the S2OLs next weekend. This sounds like a fun, exciting way to spend a weekend, except for the whole skiing part. I imagine roaring fires, hot tea or chocolate, and perhaps tramping about in the snow a bit, but none of that nasty downhill nonsense, considering I have problems walking downhill or even descending staircases. Up up up for srah, or perhaps over over over, but certainly not down down down. Even better, perhaps, would be staying still still still, considering that I am unathletic and maladroite and I would rather not have seven or eight broken limbs (I will grow new ones just to break them) for the vacances de février.

srah | 1:42 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, skiing, sports

My contribution: marcher

The Scrabble tournament didn't end up being quite as I'd imagined. Renata, Jennifer, Johanna (the new German assistant) and I were divided up and each put on different teams, thankfully. I say "thankfully" because it would have been very embarassing when we lost. Those kids were doués! They were regular little Scrabble champions, full of strategy and obscure two-letter words, and all around 10 to 12 years old. I think the assistants provided amusement rather than any actual help. My teammates were full of questions about England (it is a peculiarity of French elementary school children not to understand the vast difference between England and the US).

"How old are you?"
"You can't ask her that!"
"Do you speak German?"
"Where do you come from?"
"You can't ask that!"
"Do you know all the words in English?"
"In England, is the television all in English? That must be weird!"
"You know Buffy? You look like her friend."

I had a lovely time, and we will be written up in the newspaper and invited back later in the year.

srah | 1:32 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, scrabble

Scenes from the Thursday edition of Taboo

"It's in the toilet."

The hôtellerie students and their assistant are rather surprised, as up to that point, all of the words they've been trying to guess were related to food preparation and service.

"Paper? Toilet paper?" comes one guess. She is encouraged to guess something else, and luckily comes up with the answer, water, before anyone starts getting rude.

What a creative way of expressing the word, when forbidden to use "drink" or "glass". I appreciate a good dose of imagination and creativity in a student.

srah | 4:06 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

January 23, 2003

Perhaps perhaps perhaps

Mr Unnamed Cybercafé Employee sang to me as I paid him for my time online. He sang to me as he gave me my change. He sang goodbye to me. Next time, I have been informed, I shall be forced to sing Brassens' pornographer of phonographs song, so I must hurry up and learn the lyrics.

srah | 8:45 PM | TrackBack
Tags: music

À venir...

Pictures are coming... temporary lack of floppy disk space prevents me from putting them up tonight. Meanwhile, enjoy the wacky dreams...

srah | 5:29 PM | TrackBack
Tags:

Sing-a-long!

There are only two customers tonight, so the cybercafé employees are forcing me to sing along with the music. Brassens, I refuse. Cake, I will add my little "Perhaps perhaps perhaps" just to please them. Woo woo! Thursday night karaoke party at the cybercafé!

srah | 5:24 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, cybercafe, music

Why meatspace?

Where art thou? And who's blogging near you?

[via suebailey.net]

srah | 5:00 PM | TrackBack
Tags:

Klaxonner is a good word

Les assistants linguistiques de Vichy-Cusset have been invited to a Scrabble tournament. It is for a Scrabble club made up of young (not sure how young - but no older than middle school, I think) people, and apparently they were looking for competitors who don't have adult vocabularies. We are going to whup some nine-year-old heinie.

srah | 2:42 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, french

January 22, 2003

Dream

What a dreamful week I've been having! I'm sure you don't care, but I like to record them and perhaps in reading them, you will realize exactly how bizarre things are in my head.

First I was on a tour bus in England and Neil Dudgeon, John Hannah and Joanna Roth were there as well. Neil was right behind me, but the other two were way at the back of the bus.

The tour guide announced that we weren't going to be able to watch the video she'd planned to show in the bus because she'd left it at the tour office. I had a video in my bag that I thought about suggesting we watch instead, until I realized it was the "Laurels are Poison" episode of The Mrs Bradley Mysteries, and thus two of our fellow tour members would be easily identifiable as celebrities.

We finally got to our destination, then we had to cross fields to get there. At one point we had a choice of going through the poopy, horse-filled stables or across open ground, so I chose the latter, but it turned out that involved crossing a "bridge" that consisted of one log and that had an enormous, poisonous spider building a web just on the other side. Then I woke up.

When I fell asleep again, I dreamt that I was at this Lord of the Rings museum with my mom and sister. There was an interactive movie with some trolls and whatnot, so we sat down to watch it, but my mom and Becky kept leaping up and coming back later. At one point a shemale came along and sat in Becky's seat and when I told him/her that the seat was taken, he/she glared at me with hatred in his/her eyes.

The next time I saw Becky, she had acquired a wheelchair. "What happened?" I asked my mother, horrified. "Nothing," she answered, "She just wants attention." Becky got frustrated quickly, though, trying to navigate the chair through the crowds, where everyone was concerned with getting where they were going and didn't notice her.

Next thing I remember, I was in a big city. It may have been near Leicester Square in London or Times Square in New York. There was a big back-to-school barbecue dinner going on in the middle of the street and members of the Star Academy kept showing up in the windows of a building above and making the crowd cheer. Jillian (my friend from Albion) and I were looking for seats. I was upset because they'd "borrowed" my table and chairs and I still couldn't find a place. We decided we wanted to sit at the table that Mathieu (a BTS Optique student from Valéry Larbaud) was at, because he was kissing everyone and apparently we wanted some of that. So we sat down next to Antoine (former French assistant at Albion), but he was saving the seat for Fanny (his wife, former Spanish assistant at Albion). So I asked Annamaria (classmate from Grenoble) if there was any place near her, but she claimed there wasn't. It was an odd mix of people and I don't know what any of them were doing there.

srah | 3:56 AM | TrackBack
Tags: alfie, annamaria, antoine, dream, england, fanny, jillian, joanna roth, john hannah, lord of the rings, mathieu, mrs bradley mysteries, neil dudgeon

January 21, 2003

Secrecy and intrigue at Valéry Larbaud

I am having a super-secret torrid affair. It is so super-secret that I didn't even realize I was having it until Renata told me.

Apparently one of Andrés' classes today (the THOTs, I believe) told him that they knew about him and me. Renata and I assumed this meant romantic entanglement, but I suppose since I'm getting this third- or fourth-hand, I could be missing something. Maybe we're about to get fired instead.

srah | 1:44 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Srahsildur's Bane

One of the main problems in my job as an assistant is side conversations going on in French. I have to try to convince the students to stop what they're talking about and to join the rest of us, trying not to lose more students while I'm doing that.

What makes it even more difficult is when I want to join in...

srah | 6:10 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Poule furieuse

I am such an idiot. I didn't have class until 11:00, but at 10:00, I went looking for Agnès to show her an article I'd found, about schools implementing retinal eye scanning in school cafeterias to identify students and make sure no one was eating anything against their dietary regulations. I showed up and she got half of the class together to go off with me.

"No, I don't have them until 11," I explained, "I just came to show you this article."

She looked puzzled. "No, you have them now." Somehow I had convinced myself that I had class from 11 to 1 today instead of 10 to 12. I was, of course, completely unprepared. My students were happy not to start right away, while I ran away to get my bag and the key to the multimedia cabinet. Meanwhile, Andrés and the THOTs had a good giggle, seeing me running around like a chicken with its head cut off, as I kept going in the wrong direction and scrambling back and forth in front of the windows of their Spanish class.

srah | 4:35 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

I am bored

And I don't have class for another two hours. My students are here in the library with me, but they're being very studious and working, so I don't want to bother them and I wouldn't have anything to say to them even if I did, other than. I may have to start reading the dictionary or - even worse - surfing Encarta and digging up super-neato facts to share with you. Mwah ha! If you want the torture to end, you should write to my school and demand some answers on why there is no Internet. If I've understood correctly, the last I heard was that we're not a very high priority for the Académie de Clermont-Ferrand, and that it's them who have to fix us up, or at least pay to have us fixed up. Eejits.

srah | 3:41 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, internet connection

No - gollum gollum - I am not bitter

Why does Sarah come to school over three hours before she actually has to teach anything? And more importantly, why didn't she bring anything to read? And even more importantly, why can't she spend all of this free time surfing the Internet?

I have heard a nasty rumor that the administration (including the dastardly Señor Tails) still have Internet access, while the rest of us suffer without. We must try not to believe such rumors, for to do so might make flames shoot out of our ears and singe the nice students sitting nearby. Mustn't hurt nice studentses. But if that mean tricksy syssssstem adminisssstrator has our preciousssss, we wants it, and we just might have to start chewing fingers off to get it.

srah | 3:06 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, technology

Dream

At some point last night, I dreamt that Renata, Jennifer, Gandalf and I went to the Raelians' headquarters, which was a lot more like a Michigan Militia compound than an alien-worshipping cult. The cult members were all rather grizzled woodsmen with guns.

Later, I had a nightmare last night where I was being attacked by a dressmaker's dummy in a bathroom, but someone was controlling my mind and trying to make me insane, so he had somehow convinced me that it was me who was attacking myself. Then the mind-controller came into the bathroom, naked, and I thought he was going to finish me off, but I woke up, before I got to find out who he was.

srah | 2:17 AM | TrackBack
Tags: dream

January 20, 2003

Podriá 'nar gitar las vachas ame vosautres?

Traditional folk songs have stupid lyrics. Are we agreed? No one will argue that Camptown ladies singing this song (doo dah, doo dah) or hats with feathers in them called Macaroni (is the hat or the feather Macaroni?) are lyrical masterpieces, I hope, but I don't think we really think about that while we're singing them.

I've checked out from the library one of the volumes of Canteloube's Chants d'Auvergne, orchestral arrangements of Auvergnat folk songs, sung in the original Auvergnat language by Kiri Te Kanawa. You may know "Baïléro", the most famous of the songs, which is very beautiful and is about (like most of the songs) horny shepherds and shepherdesses calling to each other.

Much to my amusement, there is a lyrics booklet with the Auvergnat lyrics, but also their English, French and German translations. Listening to pretty music and operatic-style singing, you would never really realize that when you heard lines like "Quond onorèn o lo fièïro, ié!", what the lyrics actually meant were:

When we go to the fair, hey!
When we go to the fair, ho!
We shall both go, Anthony,
we shall both go!

We shall buy a cow, hey!
We shall buy a cow, ho!
We shall both buy it, Anthony,
we shall both buy it!

But the cow will be mine, hey!
But the cow will be mine, ho!
The horns will be yours, Anthony,
the horns will be yours!

srah | 5:19 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, music

At the end of the journey

I have finished The Return of the King, the third part of The Lord of the Rings. All I want to know is if they found the Entwives. Is that too much to ask? Treebeard starts talking about them the first time he meets Merry and Pippin, then never shuts up, sounding for all the world Middle-earth like a horny, lonely old man. One of my goals in finishing the books was to read about the glorious reunion of the Ents and the Entwives, and the birth (planting?) of cute little Entlings. BUT NO. I'm going to dig up JRR Tolkien and make him write it.

If these books weren't so full of Pippins and Legolases, I would be upset.

Now what am I going to read?

srah | 3:46 PM | TrackBack
Tags: books, lord of the rings, lord of the rings: the return of the king

In the course of a game of Taboo

"It's a bird..."
"Chicken!"
"Duck!"
"Pheasant!"
"Turkey!"
"Cream!"
"Non, mais oh! Cream, c'est pas un bird!"

Never mind, it was funny to me. Funny enough that I kept thinking about it for the rest of class and giggling to myself. It's funny how I will miss some of my students when the year is over.

And yet others, not at all, as the game got a bit too competitive at around this point. So srah stopped giving points and started giving bunnies and ducks and boats and teepees, in the hopes that they would stop berating their teammates and turn their attention instead to their insane English assistant.

Another good one came later, when the student holding the word "tuna" began "It lives in the forest...". Apparently he had not understood exactly what a tuna was. It's not nice to laugh, but sometimes it's unavoidable.

srah | 12:34 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

'I shall call you... Mini-me'

Is it excessively bad to have still not learned some of my students' names... and to have forgotten some of the ones I did know?

srah | 11:38 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

January 19, 2003

Then again, some songs are just written like that

As you may know, I am completely deaf when it comes to song lyrics. Which, I hope, explains why I am hearing, "Wish there was a way to give back homework" and "Mistaking together our underwear".

srah | 6:20 AM | TrackBack
Tags: misheard lyrics, music

It is hard to describe what I was like in high school

Sometimes I wish the French had a word that meant dork. In the subtitles for Ghost World, they translated it as naze, which is more like loser. The French have grosse tête, which is something sort of like egghead, but they don't have anything like nerd or dork, to say that someone is socially inferior due to their intelligence or interest in intellectual pursuits. I miss the word, but I kind of like that they don't have one. It makes me feel like being a dork isn't a bad thing here.

srah | 6:09 AM | TrackBack
Tags: french

Dream

I had a dream last night where I was an assistant for my own high school graduating class. Veronique was my teacher and we spent a lot of time watching videos. I think the school was on a boat, too. Alex kept giving my underwear away to my students, but I don't think he knew it was mine. I was much more popular with the students than I was when I was in high school or than I am here, so I hung out with all of the cool kids, who in this alternate reality were not junkie smackheads. At one point, we went to an "authentic 50s diner" (like in Ghost World) and someone remarked that "this is really authentic" (like in Ghost World).

srah | 5:42 AM | TrackBack
Tags: dream

January 18, 2003

Apologies to Four Weddings

I am listening to the radio broadcast of the NRJ Music Awards on the radio. Phil Collins is mangling the French language, but I am so proud of him for speaking French at all. What happens at concerts where the singer doesn't speak the language? Do they just drop the between-song banter, do they do it in their native language and ignore the fact that the crowd probably doesn't understand, or is there someone there to translate?

Mariah Carey is also at the awards. You may ask what I think of her. Unfortunately there I run out of words. Perhaps you will forgive me if I turn from my own feelings to those of another splendid bugger: S.T. Coleridge. This is actually what I want to say:

"Swans sing before they die. It would be no bad thing if certain persons died before they sang."

srah | 4:22 PM | TrackBack
Tags: mariah carey, quote, tv

Parlez-vous extra-terrestre?

I am excessively fascinated with the proximity of the Raelians (or the proximity of their origins, anyway). Now I find myself wondering if the people I see every day are secretly members of the cult.

According to their website, the cult gained popularity quickly in French-speaking countries, which makes complete sense to me. If aliens landed in the US and emerged from their spaceship speaking English, we would think nothing of it. It would be completely natural for them to start speaking English and if they didn't, we might tell them to pack up and get back into outer space where they belong. I can see the French, on the other hand, hearing that aliens landed and being rather uninterested until they learned that the aliens spoke perfect French. At this point, they might start listening, as these aliens were obviously the kind of civilized being that they would want to associate with.

srah | 2:52 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Three reasons to stay home

1) It's sales season in Vichy and the streets and stores are packed, which makes me claustrophobic.
2) The price of a demi-baguette has gone up from 30 to 32 cents, making things very uneven and ensuring that I get a handful of nasty little copper coins instead of an even 10 or 20 cent piece.
3) There is a clown playing the trumpet in the Rue de l'Hôtel des Postes. As I walked by, he was attacked by a dog, but unfortunately it was part of his act.

srah | 11:46 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, vichy

Frequent Visitor Discount?

Either I am the little chouchou of the cybercafé, or they have atrocious math skills. My time of arrival was marked on the board as 14h00. When I went up to the desk, the clock said 4:45. That should have been a total of 2h45, or 11€, but Mr Employee Whose Name I Don't Know only charged me 7€. I wasn't abotu to correct him, althought that would have been the honest thing to do. Maybe they gave me a discount for when Franck hijacked my computer for five minutes to scan something. Or maybe they love me.

srah | 11:06 AM | TrackBack
Tags:

I hate you all

Why did no one tell me about the Raelians?

"One December morning in 1973, journalist Claude Vorilhon was on his way to work in the French provincial town of Clermont-Ferrand. But - according to a book written by Mr Vorilhon, who is now known as Rael - instead of going to the office, on an impulse, he drove to a nearby volcano. There, he says, he was contacted by an extra-terrestrial being who emerged from a flying saucer and told him - in fluent French - that humans were created in laboratories by people from another planet."

These are important things that I should have known! I am so proud to learn that such an exciting even happened so near to me and that they are so closely tied to the famous ClonAid group. Where are they based now? I highly suspect it is my apartment building, because Jennifer and I have already identified it as the Center Of All Things Weird.

srah | 10:41 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

The Onion makes me laugh so hard I cry

I am not the most up-to-date on current events, but sometimes no one can say it quite like The Onion...

srah | 10:33 AM | TrackBack
Tags: george w bush, politics, the onion

With a Friend Like Harry, who needs other reading material?

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix comes out June 21, 2003. I know, I know, I'm the last person in the world to know this, but I heard on the radio that it was coming out in the fall. It didn't occur to me that they were talking about the French translation. Duh.

Amazon gives us a sneak peek at a few lines of the text, including the opening:

"The hottest day of the summer so far was drawing to a close and a drowsy silence lay over the large, square houses of Privet Drive.... The only person left outside was a teenage boy who was lying flat on his back in a flowerbed outside number four."

and some text from later in the book:

"Dumbledore lowered his hands and surveyed Harry through his half-moon glasses. 'It is time,' he said 'for me to tell you what I should have told you five years ago, Harry. Please sit down. I am going to tell you everything.'"

Promoguy adds that

"Much anticipated, and somewhat delayed, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" is 768 pages long, and by word count one-third longer than its predecessor, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire," published in 2000."

Yippee. Hopefully they're a good 768 pages.

Rather exciting. Let the countdown begin at five months and three days, donc.

srah | 9:42 AM | TrackBack
Tags: books, harry potter, harry potter and the order of the phoenix

Walk down Memory Lane

Every once in a while, I like to check out what I was up to a year ago. The answer: receiving murderous urges from a box of cereal.

srah | 9:32 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags:

Srah ventures into the cybercafé

There is no heat in this room. Fingers cold. At least it isn't the Den of Adolescents, though.

The latest barrage of posts is mixed in with already-published ones. They begin with these two in December, and the rest of them start here.

srah | 9:23 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, cybercafe

Report on Ghost World

I would have made the film differently, but it didn't seem to completely disgust the internes, so I guess I can breathe easier. We shall talk to them about it on Monday.

srah | 4:05 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, club cine, ghost world, movies

January 17, 2003

You say hello and I say hello

I don't pay a lot of attention to it, but I think I hardly ever say "hello" in the US. More likely "hi" or "what's up" or "hey there". Here, on the other hand, I walk down the hall, barraged with "hello"s and respond in kind. When the kids come into the classroom, they say "hello". When they leave, they say "goodbye". I parrot back ten or twenty times, which has started to annoy me, so I try to toss in a few "bye"s or "have a good afternoon"s to change things up. Earlier this week, I said, "Have a good afternoon" and received a "Have a good afternoon. See you soon!" from a student who had apparently been burning for something new herself.

srah | 11:56 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Club Ciné put to the test

Tonight is the first night of Ghost World, the January film for the Club Cinéma. As it is an American film shown VOSTF, Agnès and I managed to convince the Vie Scolaire that it would be mighty educational to bring the kiddies.

Thusly the 37 or so students who board on Friday nights will be going to the movies tonight, to see a movie that Agnès and I recommended despite having never seen it. I am terribly frightened that they will hate the movie and that it will turn them off of subtitled films for the rest of their lives. Ridiculous, I know, but that doesn't make me any more confident.

On the other hand, maybe they will fall in love with it and all go out and get their Club Cinéma membership cards and decide to picket in front of the cinémas of Vichy, demanding more subtitled films.

Um, yeah right.

srah | 8:43 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, club cine, ghost world, movies

srqh types on q French keyboqrd

How do the French manage to cram so many characters onto their keyboard, and why can't we do the same? In addition to the [Shift] key, they also have an [Alt Gr] key (I have no idea what that stands for), which lets them put three symbols on the same key. Look at all these things you can do without going into special character maps or anything:

²&é"'(-è_çà)=^$ù*<,;:!1234567890°+¨£%µ>?./§~#{[|`\^@]}¤€

We should be so blessed in the US.

srah | 8:15 AM | TrackBack
Tags:

January 16, 2003

Halloween, they know. Martin Luther King Day? Not so much.

An impressive number of my students know who Martin Luther King, Jr. was, and some recognized him enough to say "I have a dream" when they saw his name on the board. There were still quite a few classes, however, where I got blank stares or far-out guesses. My favorite was "Didn't he used to be Prime Minister of England?"

srah | 10:56 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Coolness on the decline, if there was any to start with

I am such a nerd that I can't tell people in real-life, so I will have to record it here.

Now that I've recorded all of the départements I've visited, I am trying to memorize all 96 of the French départements by number. I am up to 15: Ain, Aisne, Allier, Alpes de Haute-Provence, Haute-Alpes, Alpes-Maritime, Ardèche, Ardennes, Ariège, Aube, Aude, Aveyron, Bouches-du-Rhône, Calvados, Cantal.

Boo-yeah!

srah | 10:54 AM | TrackBack
Tags: france, geography

Open letter to my native tongue

Dear English,

Please get a word that translates ranger more effectively than to clean up by putting things in their place rather than by dusting and scrubbing. I think you are in desperate need of one and if you don't come up with one soon, I'm going to create one. I'm thinking "flooble", as in "I'm going to flooble the chairs in here." Whaddya think?

srah | 10:45 AM | TrackBack
Tags: english, flooble, french, open letters

January 15, 2003

Completely shameful and useless post

Remember in Sweet Valley High, how the twins were blond, tan, perfect-size-6s, wearing matching gold lavalieres? At some point at the beginning of every book, when it repeated all of that crap, it also told you that Elizabeth Wakefield drove a red Fiat. Presumably Jessica had a matching one at some point, but crashed it or sold it for smack or something.

I am extremely disappointed, being in Europe, to discover that a Fiat is not necessarily the Barbie Dream Car that I had envisioned, but that it was more likely something downright European (by which I mean small, boxy, gas-efficient, and always inspiring me to inspect it for Playskool-esque pedals). I am disillusioned.

srah | 10:59 AM | TrackBack
Tags: books

Boy howdy youbetcha!


Which LOTR Character are you?

He's our precioussssssssssss...

[via Bob]

srah | 6:13 AM | TrackBack
Tags: lord of the rings, quizzes

srah's fantabulous tower of babble

One of the things I love about Europe is that it's so polyglottal polyglottic polyglotty polyglottious. Anyway, there are a buttload of languages here. Because the countries have so much inter-European trade, packaging is usually in at least three languages.

Usually it's enough for me to read one of the languages, but sometimes I find myself perusing several for my own amusement, and I begin wondering if someone's out to get me. It's always interesting to find that the Spanish and French packaging includes a direction or safety warning that is missing from the English translation.

I found the same sort of thing on our boat ride on the Seine - the Bateaux Mouches' commentary for the Louvre says one thing in French, Italian, Spanish, and (I assume) Russian, and something quite different in English. It was correct English, but it was not a translation from the French - it was an entirely different story.

For this reason, I prefer important information and communication in French, and I take care to listen to all of the languages I understand in Eurostar announcements to see what they're telling the French passengers, but keeping from the English ones.

srah | 3:40 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: language, travel

January 14, 2003

Brush up your Shakespeare

Somehow, I think the correct "good luck" expression for a theatrical director (as opposed to actor) is probably not "Break someone else's leg." Pourtant, it sounded good at the time.

srah | 6:58 PM | TrackBack
Tags:

"Can I have a kitten?"

"But how am I supposed to teach English As A Foreign Language if I don't speak English as As A Foreign Language? Can't I just take Foreign As An English Language?"

- Smack the Pony

srah | 5:43 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, english as a second language, quote, teaching, tv

Them monkeys has fleas

In my package (received today, with no customs charges, because Extand is on crack), there was a goodly amount of mail that had come for me since I've been out of the country. Much of this mail was from various universities, as I have apparently become College Search Fodder again. One begins:

Dear GRE Search Service Participant,
We understand that you may be interested in pursuing graduate education in public health...

Why thank you, University of Minnesota, for informing me of this. I may be interested in pursuing graduate education in public health, just as I may decide to move to Burma and train monkeys as pickpockets, living off their loot for the rest of my life. Both are equally likely and tempting.

Keck Graduate Institute is interested in "preparing me for the business of bioscience", based on my "undergraduate degree in biology, engineering, computer science, math, chemistry, physics, premed, or another technical field." I am tempted to apply.

Another of the letters I got was from the University of Michigan's School of Information. Fancy them trying to get me to attend! Fat chance! Anyway, here is my thought: If the U-M has a School of Information, what do they teach in the other schools?

Hmmmmm.

srah | 12:27 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: school of information

January 13, 2003

... and raving

And while we're at it, how about you? (Once again, not you, dear reader). You used to be so nice and well-behaved and participatory and now I don't want to throw you out of class because I'd rather keep you within slapping range. I hope it's just a bad day.

srah | 1:13 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Ranting

And as long as I'm being mad, I will take some out on you. Yes, you. Not you, the reader, but you the person I'm thinking of, who I don't care to identify at this point. What are you doing there, anyway? What purpose do you serve, sitting there and doing nothing? Am I just there to make life twice as easy for you? If I get stuck with so many more of them than I'm supposed to have, the least you could do is step in and help out when obviously needed.

srah | 12:18 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

The last straw

This is it. This is forking it. My mother sent me two packages on the same day. One, I received the week before Christmas. The other still has not arrived.

Every time I call FORKING EXTAND, I have to pay 1.35€ for the call (even if I get the recorded message "All lines are busy - please call again later") plus 0.35€ per minute, with an average pre-operator-answering wait of two minutes. On my last bill, I was charged over 12€ for these calls.

They told me my package would come on the 24th. I was gone, so I called when I got back. They told me it would arrive last Friday. I was gone, so I called when I got back.

Today, I called and they told me it would be here tomorrow. I work tomorrow, so I will have to PAY TO CALL to have them redeliver. They can't schedule a redelivery until 24 hours after the first try, because they are forkheads. On top of this, I will have to pay a customs duty when it arrives (Jennifer's was 60+€).

On top of THAT, I don't know why I'm being forked around with this forkwit delivery service in the first place when I live about 100m from the post office. When I send a package through the French postal service, it doesn't get delivered to my house by UPS.

I wish I had a free number to call and give them a piece of my mind. JE VOUS EMMERDE!

srah | 12:15 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

January 12, 2003

srah doesn't speak British

I am inordinately proud of myself for picking up on one instance of rhyming slang in A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away. At one point, someone is mentioned as wearing a false moustache and Gregories. Gregories, as in Gregory Pecks, which rhymes with specs. I am such a nerd, to be so proud of myself as to need to record the feat here, but at least it only took me about five minutes to get it.

srah | 3:51 PM | TrackBack
Tags: books

Homegirl

I can't find anything enticing enough to lure me out into the cold, so here I am, rotting in my apartment, snacking, and reading. I have now finished The Fellowship of the Ring and A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away and have already done the dishes and written a letter to Christopher Brookmyre that I will never send. I am now debating between starting The Two Towers or going stir-crazy and losing my mind. Insanity imminent.

srah | 8:49 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, books

Two months and whining

Today is the 12th of January! Do you know what that means, children? Mouse over for the joyous, happy response!

srah | 7:10 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, technology

January 11, 2003

Geography freak

All of a sudden today, I became obsessed with finding out how many of the départements of France I have been to. I have written down all of the places I remember visiting during my five trips to the country and counted things up.

Not counting the départements I crossed on the way to somewhere else, I believe I have been to 29 of the 96 in France Metropolitaine (i.e. The Hexagon, not including Martinique, Guyana, and the other Départements d'Outre-Mer). Of the 22 regions, I calculate that I have been to 16. Not too bad! I bet there are a lot of French people who could not beat me.

srah | 10:13 AM | TrackBack
Tags: france, geography

In case you haven't noticed, I like quotes

Especially ones about diaries that I can apply to my blog. Before break, I read an English translation (yes, I am lazy) of A.O. Barnabooth: His Diary, one of the best-known works of Valéry Larbaud, namesake of my lycée, vichyssois author but perhaps best known as the translator-to-French of many a famous 20th-century anglophone writer - most notably James Joyce and William Faulkner.

The book is the diary of an invented character named Archibald Barnabooth, a South American millionaire who has inherited his money from his father and wanders around Europe trying to figure out what one should do with such a vast fortune. It's rather amusing, but anyway, the point was to share this quote Barnabooth writes about his diary, which reminds me in many ways of my own blog:

I re-read my Italian diary in the inn at Finja on a rainy day when the tarnished lake was suffering and restless between its mist-drenched banks. It was painful reading and it often made me blush. So many sentences that - already! - I would not write now... Exaggerations, naïvetés, little useless lies, little scraps of malice sewn together with a white thread! And yet I tried not to deceive myself: to see my life directly and not through books I had read: and to leave a matter unexplained rather than admit an explanation drawn from literary memories. Often I have been near to striking out a sentence which did not ring true, a ready-made expression which did not correspond with my real thought. I needed courage not to alter anything and to leave the document intact with all its puerilities, its too intimate confidences, its confessions of weakness: my only consolation has indeed come from it. I was beginning to disown my diary: I saw into it clearly: I criticized it; sham feelings, the last traces of the ungrateful age. I noted all these things and in that way measured the distance I have gone. I was no longer the young man who had written those pages: I had laid all that aside: "a sadder and a wiser man." But how far had I yet to go?

srah | 8:05 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, blogging, books, quote, valery larbaud

SNORT!

One of the things I love about Alex is that he's foreign, so he hasn't grown up hearing the same jokes we've heard over and over again. You can toss out the oldest pun in the world in the middle of a conversation and he will laugh for about five hours. It amuses me greatly because I like puns but it's hard to find people who will laugh at them.

I will also laugh at French puns for five hours - for your information - just in case anyone reading this is interested in having a conversation in French with me and wants to hear me squeak like a gerbil.

srah | 7:55 AM | TrackBack
Tags: boys, french

Crack!

I'm afraid to venture out into the cold and snow and ice. I think I'll just hole up here until spring comes. I have tea a-plenty, so I'll manage to survive.

Speaking of cold, snow and ice, whoever designed Vichy was clearly smoking crack. Here we are with a town full of precisely (I counted) one hillion jillion old people. Instead of having concrete sidewalks, which would give some traction, the whole town is covered in a slick, smooth tile. The ice is better to walk on than the salted parts, because it gives you traction, whereas the tile is flat and wet. Broken hip city!

Jennifer and I have noticed lately that there are an inordinate amount of funeral parlors and opticians in Vichy. We think they must be paying off the city planners and sidewalk shovelers, because even if slipping and falling doesn't kill them, it should at least break their glasses.

srah | 4:45 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, weather

Thus enter two new characters in srah's blog...

"I don't want money. It is only people who pay their bills who want that and I never pay mine."
- Oscar Wilde

I would pay my rent, if my landlady would ever show up! She told Jennifer to pay her rent to my new next-door neighbors and when she did, they came to the door in tighty-whities, so I am not paying them myself unless Mme Messana gives me explicit instructions to do so.

srah | 4:35 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

Papillotes are so clever

Another quote from a candy wrapper:

"Le touriste est un voyageur qui fait des centaines de kilomètres pour se faire photographier devant un car."
- Jean Delacour

srah | 4:27 AM | TrackBack
Tags: french, quote, travel

Mo' Better Trilogy

A way long time ago, I blogged about these three movies, which are now finally coming out in France. One critique I read gave them one, two, and three stars respectively, but I still want to see all of them because they were filmed in Grenoble.

srah | 4:25 AM | TrackBack
Tags: grenoble, movies

Gnlearghwhazzat?

I went to bed last night, then when my alarm went off, I was surprised to hear that the gay couple next door (oh yeah, I have new neighbors. Yay.) was still arguing.

Did they keep it up all night?, I wondered. I also wondered why my alarm was beeping because I'd thought I'd a) turned it off, and b) set it to play the radio when it was turned on. I wondered all this, then it stopped, so I rolled over.

Wait a minute, I thought, It's not supposed to just turn off like that. Have the batteries died?

At which point I woke up a little more and realized it was not my alarm, but the phone ringing. I had only been asleep for half an hour.

I called the Pato back and learned that he arrived safely and I had panicked for naught. Good.

srah | 4:21 AM | TrackBack
Tags:

Cold feet

I am at a point in my life (and perhaps a point in the year) where I have to start looking for a Real Job With Benefits. I am rather sad because there are a bunch of Summer Jobs that I will probably never do now. I won't be able to make fudge on Mackinac Island or be a tour guide for French tourists at Colonial Williamsburg or Disney World or something. Not that I would have done any of those this summer - because I don't want to have to pay for housing - but it's the principle of the thing: I am sad that now I have to settle down into something a bit more permanent and be Grown Up.

What would you like to do for one summer only?

srah | 4:15 AM | TrackBack
Tags: job search

January 10, 2003

Empty nest

Now that I am in the bus, I am starting to feel guilty for not waiting at the airport until Alex's flight took off. What if something goes wrong and he doesn't leave after all?!

But if I had stayed, I would have broke down and bought myself a cup of Airport Tea, even higher-priced than Train Station Tea, although perhaps not surpassing Tea Bought On a Train.

I feel guilty now. WHAT HAVE I DONE? My little Pato may be stranded all alone in a strange airport, all because I wanted to save 2€50. Pourvu que tout se passe bien.

srah | 9:09 AM | TrackBack
Tags: pato

Notes from the Air France bus from Charles de Gaulle

The airport, not the dead former president.

Alex is probably boarding his plane now, getting ready to leave for Frankfurt in 20 minutes. And here I am, in the bus, going away from him. He's managed to get away without me hanging on his pant leg and begging him not to leave me.

Did you know that there's a Gandalf Airlines? Alex and I picture bearded flight attendants in robes who strike their staff down on the floor and roar "You SHALL NOT PASS!" when you try to sneak into first class, breaking the plane in half while they're at it.

srah | 9:06 AM | TrackBack
Tags: boys

January 9, 2003

Loverlas

I am reading The Lord of the Rings (well, The Fellowship of the Ring at the moment). I don't know if it has anything to do with the fact that we saw The Two Towers in Grenoble (in English!) or that I am just happy to have something new to read, but I am enjoying it more than I have on previous attempts. Maybe it's the fact that I read the Prologue and discovered that the book began as a linguistic guide to Middle Earth - a way of explaining all of the languages in The Hobbit.

Speaking of the movie, if Alex learns to flip himself over onto a horse or slide down a ramp, shooting arrows, I will declare him my boyfriend. Until then, my heart belongs to Legolas.

srah | 1:18 AM | TrackBack
Tags: books, boys, legolas, lord of the rings, lord of the rings: the fellowship of the ring, pato

January 8, 2003

Internet tantrum

I want the Internet fixed so that I can spend all day long at school and do absolutely nothing productive but read a lot of blogs. I want my Pato to stay here with me and be my pet-slash-gigolo and I will support him on my enormous assistant's salary. I want warm weather and no more snow or ice, or I at least want Vichy to plow the streets and ice the sidewalks. I want my stupid package to be delivered - yes, the one that was supposed to come before Christmas. I want to be suddenly inspired with ideas of what I'm going to do in class tomorrow.

If these demands are not met... I will whine some more.

srah | 1:09 PM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

First snow!

Snow has finally arrived in Vichy!

... make it go away.

srah | 1:01 PM | TrackBack
Tags: weather

It's that time of year again...

The Bloggies are here again. I want to win, so that people will come and visit my weblog and love me. Unfortunately, I don't think it's very likely that I would win anything I'm eligible for, so I guess you'll have to nominate me for Best Canadian Weblog or Best Weblog About Politics. Ha!

srah | 12:57 PM | TrackBack
Tags:

January 7, 2003

Back to usual

As usual, I went to school today only to find that Agnès had left me a voice mail that I hadn't checked, telling me the 1ASMSs have a test and I didn't have to come to school at all.

srah | 8:23 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship

January 6, 2003

Demons are dancing in my head

KILL! KILL! KILL!, they scream.

No, Internet has still not been fixed at the lycée.

srah | 8:25 AM | TrackBack
Tags: assistantship, internet connection

January 5, 2003

Christmas vacation

We did manage to visit all of our destinations and a mostly good time was had by all. A few adventures and some sad news along the way, and now we're back to Vichy. I might go into more detail if I get around to it after Pato's departure.

srah | 4:37 PM | TrackBack
Tags: travel

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