What a mess! Man, I haven’t stopped for days now, or at least it seems that way. And it isn’t going to get better this week.
Last Thursday, Scottish English Assistant Girl was kind enough to come spend the day with me. I warned her that I had A LOT of housework to do and bless her poor brainless self, she offered to help. SEA Girl used to think my kids were “lovely” until her brainless self offered to watch them for an hour or three. Afterwards they weren’t so lovely anymore. And I think it’s a pretty safe bet that she’ll never volunteer to help me do housework again. She’s learned her lesson. (She’s also going back to Scotland at the end of the week. We’ll pretend helping do my housework has absolutely nothing to do with that.)
Thursday’s activities included getting my floors clean and (gasp) doing my (ground floor only) windows. Why? Well Pooplette’s God-mama and adoptive granny were coming the next day. So Friday, after a bit of rescheduling with Vi to make a happy-happy surprise on the platform at the train station, we picked up The Anti-Kissy and OGO at the train station in Chaumont.
I just want to add as an aside here what an awesomely sneaky person Vi is and can be. She was originally planning on joining us Saturday morning with her Man/Bear-thing but conflicts arose and she offered to come spend Friday afternoon with us. I thought, “Wouldn’t it be brilliant to surprise Anti-Kissy at the station?” And Vi, sacrificing an hour and a half of precious visiting time, was all like, ‘Yeah!”. Then I saw the size of the train as it pulled into the station and I knew there was no way she’d have been able to pull it off. It was a TER train, with all of two passenger cars. It was tiny! There was no way in hell Vi could have got on without being seen. Just no way. But she did, and happiness and almost-tears gripped us all as we had our first reunion in way too long together right in front of the double doors leading into the train station.
Friday and Saturday were spent visiting things near and not-so near, nibbling on nibblies, munching on munchies and laughing A LOT. Laughter is good for the soul, almost as good as sleeping is, so I managed to make it though without falling over dead. Sunday, being Easter, meant a huge family meal which went down fairly easily this year, with the exception of my obnoxious children. Matthieu was seated at the kids’ table where he ate all of nothing but did manage to run wild all afternoon. Christine, wanting to share in her brother’s follies, spoke up rather loudly about her displeasure in being stuck at the table although she ate enough to make up for all her brother left. Marc took the girls on a walk around the village and gave them the tour of the nightmare on the hill while I tried to get a nap. Tried and failed, but the attempt was nice. After that, we were off to The Aunt and Uncle’s (yes, those two) house for a light apéro which left us just as comatose as Easter Dinner.
Monday morning brought us back to the train station after a quick run through the grocery store, the only one open in all of Chaumont even through LeClerc’s web-site said they were open. Grr. Good thing Marc made me call first. Anti-Kissy was able to grab things from the stationary aisle (she’s got strange fetishes) while OGO got a couple of bananas and then, all too quickly, it was time to say good-bye.
And I honestly did good. Good-byes are getting harder and harder to do, but I managed not to cry until I got home and my darling Monkey-boy ran out to the car to greet me and asked, “Elle est ou, Anti-Kissy?”
Living in France isn’t really that cool, you know. Everyone is so far away and visits are expensive, so few and far between. And short. Way too short.
So it’s Tuesday and life carries on. Muppet had to go see the podiatrist again today to help his ingrown toenails. Apparently all’s well on that front and this was our last visit. Of course, it was a nightmare trip to get there as we had to drop Pooplette off at the crèche first and, oh dear lord, never make a Monkey-boy leave the crèche behind when there are all those toys and kids to play with and his sister got to stay while he was forced to leave. I am very proud of myself for not being institutionalized at the moment because between his cries, screams and general bitchiness, the slow drivers on the highway who have no idea what the accelerator looks like in their respective cars, the non-existent road work which slows down these dumb-ass drivers even more and my inability to manage time in the morning, I really wanted to loose it, to be carted off in the nice white coat and all. But I have held it together, even chatted up the cute podiatrist guy who swears working on my son’s feet is a pleasure because he’s so cool about having things ripped from his flesh.
Tonight we’re having a bit of a goodbye party for the SEA Girl. I doubt I’ll cry tonight. I’m better about that in public with large groups, but I’m sure the next time Muppet asks for her by name I’ll loose it again. You would too if you’d seen my floors after she got done with them. Or my windows. It looks to be another late night—anything after 10 seems extremely late to me at the moment. And another late night is just not something I really need tonight.
See, I have to catch the 4:19 train in Chaumont. Yep, that 4:19 AM, as in before the ass-crack of dawn. Marc and I have hired an au pair for the summer and her flight arrives at CDG at 7:15 in the morning. And before you go thinking I’m a snob now because we have an au pair, let me explain. It’s my niece. And it’s one of those two-way mutual use agreements. She needs to learn French and have a serious change in her life. We need a slave. So it works out well for everyone. Feel free to think me a snob for other reasons, though. Like my beauty.
And because she’s arriving tomorrow, and because we have NO WHERE AT ALL to put her, I’m going to have to go to IKEA!!!! Thursday to buy a bed for her. And a dresser. And maybe a tent to put her in. And perhaps some sanity for me. (They sell that at IKEA!!!! , right?) And Friday means rearranging the entire house to find enough square footage to put a bed and a dresser.
But hopefully this will have the end result of making life a bit easier on everyone. We can hope, right?