16 November 2007
All I've heard since we got back home is, "On va chez Un Que Baille quand, mama?" (When are we going to Uncle Bill's house?). Monkey-1 didn't quite get the English part, where uncle is a word, preferring to hear French where un is one and the rest just followed with his half-French, all-child accent. Of course, when Un Que Baille takes you places like the fire department, where the chief not only has the trucks pulled out Just! For! You! but also lets you Ride! Up! Front! With! A! Fireman's! Hat! well, home is rather pale by comparison. **Funny story: after Mr. Chief had given us a his card so we'd know where to send a Huge Thank You, I mentioned that I'd have to send him our local firemen's calendar so he can see how different things are over here. Well, like any good, red-blooded Fireman, he presumed that the local boys do up a thing rather like Les Dieux de Stade. We did have a good natured laugh, though. **

Afterwards, it was on to the Pumpkin Patch where one can find Real Pumpkins, unlike the god-forsaken wasteland where we live where nary a pumpkin was to be had. Halloween without a Jack-o-lantern? You’ve got to be kidding! Here, every size imaginable was there for the taking, and take we did, one so big Monkey-1 couldn’t lift it. Ah, feels like home!

Of course, all the excitement, and being drug along while Mama does serious damage to the Mastercard, does wear out a monkey.

Un Que Baille even took us all to the church Halloween carnival! And took Monkey-1 through all the games, several times over, while Monkey-1’s mom braved the Haunted House. The HH was a killer, and I had the bruises to prove it. Note: Never tour the Haunted House with a group of pre-pubescent girls who scream high-pitched, high-decibel screams and take off with the flashlight unless you want to fall over and break something.

Ah, Chuck E. Cheese! What would life be without you. Alas, you’re a perfect place to let a monkey run wild while I chat with my ex-husband’s mother. Oh, yeah! We had a play date, along with two of the ex’s children—very nice, very cute children. I hadn’t seen the XMIL since The Split, but she’s always been like a mom to me, and it seems like our old friendship is still there. We hadn’t even made it out of the parking lot and we were both doubled over in hysterics. Monkey liked the place so much that any time we drove past a place with a red door he screamed bloody murder to go inside and play.

No trip to the coast would be complete with a visit to the sandy seashore. Stupid me only set aside an hour and a half for this fun activity, and I literally had to drag my son kicking and screaming out of the waves, through the dunes (or what's left of them at least) and back to the car. This is the one activity that truly made me question whether or not I should be where I am, whether raising my children in a foreign country miles and miles from the ocean, white sand and roaring waves is the Right Thing. This, more than anything, even more than Walmart, is what makes me homesick, and what makes me most sad that I cannot share it daily with my babies. Next time, I swear, I'll not only take more time out for a stroll in the waves, but I'll share that stroll with the three pieces of my heart absent in the above photograph.

And voila! The ‘real’ reason (besides my sanity, of course) for this trip home—Halloween! Please do notice my nephew’s traditional puking pumpkin in the background. Trick-or-treating, as an activity, was rather anti-climatic. We only visited a dozen or so houses, but it was after another long day of shopping, visiting, and taking in everything under the sun. Monkey-1 can now say Spider Man correctly, not Speedah Mahn like the French or Peter Mal, as he called him before. In fact, his Maîtresse was telling me just this afternoon that he’s correcting the little Frenchies at school now as well. “Spider Man”, “Non, Speedah Mahn! Speedah, comme pipi.”, “Non! C’est Spider Man, t’es con!” Oops, looks like we’ll need to work on proper vocabulary a bit…

After getting quite a bit of American Consumerism out of my system, we did take time to just enjoy the good weather (and great company of AntiKissy) with a picnic in one of the lovely local parks. And what parks they have! Monkey-1 LOVED this place! And yes, another terrible time getting him back in the car, where promises of eating at The Great Mickey Dee’s and even of ice-cream did nothing to soothe him. I’m so terrible…

…but that’s not why we visited with the nice Sheriff. This, along with the fire trucks, was part of Monkey-1’s school vacation project, which we’ll be sharing with all the other little monkeys in the near future.

posted by Doc at 14:01 | Permalink |


  • At 16:44, Anonymous nartina

    Whew, what a relief! I saw the last photo and thought you were under arrest and would be on an episode of Cops.

  • At 18:01, Blogger Kimmie

    Oh, that makes me want to go home again! I know exactly what you mean about having your Monkeys growing up by the ocean. I feel the same way with A & K. It certainly adds credence to the phrase of don't know what you got till its gone. Remember the Independence Day parades in Southport? I really miss them!!

    Kim T.

  • At 08:20, Blogger Poppy Fields

    The firemen in my little town did do the naked calendar last year and our maire censored it. Haha! I hope they do another one this year.
    It looks like you had a good visit back :)

  • At 08:49, Blogger Linda

    I'm glad you son got to experience an American Halloween. A puking pumpking--hmmm. What a good idea. I'll have to do one for my grandsons one of these years.

  • At 19:09, Blogger Gigi

    Those pumpkins are HUGE!!

    I love the idea of pumpkins: pumpkin pie, pumpkin soup, mashed pumpkin...I just hate the taste...

    Looked like you had fun anyway!

  • At 00:45, Blogger Deb

    Looks like your little one had a blast! Man, Chuck E. Cheese! I haven't been there in years.

    This is the time of year I miss the good ol' US the most.

  • At 13:38, Anonymous ptitete

    Très mignon le ptit Spiderman !!!