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The Hors d’Oeuvres without recipes

The hors d’oeuvres without recipes.

Okay. I have a new oven and I don’t know how it works because it’s FRENCH.
Not only that but I had NO stuffing for my usual standby appetizer of stuffed mushrooms so I found QUINOA and thought that might do.  It did, but I added some lentils to beef it up a bit……then I added cheese (goat cheese and brie in teeny little peices on top with some finely minced parsley. Then I set it in the oven for about 10 minutes  – I have no idea what temperature  -I just winged it – temps in French are not temps where I’m from.   I just timed it with my iPod and watched it.

Also, I had sauted the mushrooms beforehand in some butter and a bit of olive oilso that they would have better flavor.   They did.

Then I set out duck pate, noix cheese with Kirsch, Brie, and some thinly sliced sausages along with some kind of crispy bread from the market, small toasts, and some freshly cut french baguette that David just brought home.  PERFECT!

Then I had some carefully  cut sized carrots sliced just so (from my culinary class instruction) and celery and radishes in  small bowls out as well.   There was a beautiful  baguette out for a nice effeect.  Did I say I had sausage/ yes.

And did I say this was for our first guest in the new digs and to share the CHAMPAGNE with him which was left by the owners of the apartment??  Wasn’t that just so incredibly nice?  They did not have to do this – nor leave the BRAND NEW KNIFE in the drawer because they know I love to CHOP (veggies)!!  And because we are so grateful to this wonderful French man in the apartment next door for helping us with the last 2 apartments?!? He is a saint!!!  We love you Maurice!

This is short because I need to go to bed!!  It’s December 1st.  We have been here 2 months!

The Tangerines that became Plump from the Heat of the Radiator

There is a chapter in one of Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher’s book , “The Art of Eating” where she talks about Tangerines.  She was the all consummate food writer of the 50’s before there were serious food writers.  The tangerine she refers to is sitting on top of a radiator in her apartment in Montpelier and slowly becomes full and plump from the heat and she describes it in such terms that it makes one want to run to the nearest food market and buy a sack of these jewels and try to do exactly what she did.

Tonight is the night for bragging.  I try not to do this too often because bragging gets really old and people start to yawn and say  “Yeah, WHATEVER, it must be nice to travel like you do, or it must be nice to be living in Paris or it must be just so great to have the world as your oyster,…. Smell you!   So, because I cringe when someone says “I’M SO JEALOUS” because it is honestly not my intention, at the same time, I am just feeling  so incredibly blessed that I want to share tonight’s very simple story.   First,  this is a place we have wanted to live for just long enough to have  memorized some major metro stops, not just one week in and out on an airline pass where we’ve seen and experienced so very little.  So, guess what?   Lo and behold, it has actually happened. It has come to fruition.  I don’t need to tell you that I prayed a very long time for this to happen to us.  They say be careful what you wish for, and in this case, “Be careful what you pray for”.   🙂

We have no idea how long we have here, so we are enjoying each and every day as though it were a gift from God.  Honestly.  Truly.

Now the cool things that happened with food tonight.  I love M.F.K. Fisher  and have devoured her books for several years.  I’m not a true “Foodie” because if push comes to shove and I need to get a meal at a “chain” – yes, even in France, that is where I will go.  But I do appreciate, as does David really really good, well prepared & lovingly prepared cuisine.   There is nothing quite like it.
In my “Black Friday Blog” where I show that a Haute Cuisine meal can go from $100 a plate to $500  + and say “Don’t do it”.  Yeah, don’t do the high end.  Unless ofcourse, money is absolutely no object whatsoever.  But a once in a lifetime Haute Cuisine meal – yes – on the lower end – maybe $100 each with wine – do try it – if you can at all afford it.  It is really like nothing you have ever experienced.   The one meal I had like that (since we have been here) was to thank the wonderful gentleman who helped us find the most incredible furnished apartment for 6 months.  We are extremely grateful to him and all that he did, so we took him out to “one of those” Auberge places with incredible cuisine. When the first course arrived  I could not believe each bite that I put in my mouth, it was just THAT good.  The second course, it was the same , ‘I cannot believe how good this tastes!” I would say over and over again.  I don’t think the gentleman understood a word I was saying, but he saw the delight in my face.   And it continued on until the last morsel of dessert was consumed.

Now, that being said, and because you know my history of eating at way too many pizza places since we’ve arrived, or at the Lamb Kebob place off the street, so that we didn’t go entirely broke the first month we were here, I have news of extreme importance.

If you know how to cook, even a  little, and you don’t have to rely on recipes because you have no books with you, and it doesn’t do much good to go on the internet because everything is in different measurements not to mention an oven that you have to just “wing your way through”…..if you can ignore all that –  you can have one of the most incredible meals, in your own place, even with only a hotplate, if you are so inclined.

Tonight, I had prepared two plates for me and my husband and it was so delicious that I had to share it with you, because, from my calculations, the entire meal was not over 6 Euros for the BOTH  of us. ($7.50)   And you do not go out for an even mediocre meal in France without spending atleast $17 per person.

Here is what I scrambled up after a 2 hour and 45 minute excursion to a local market by bus – that is from out the door of the apartment with grocery cart on wheels in hand, and the waiting for the bus, and the standing on overcrowded bus and the shopping at the big Auchon and the carting it back to the bus  stop and waiting for the bus again and schlepping all that heavy stuff plus cart onto the bus, finding your navigo pass, and sitting down (finally) for the bus ride back home. All in very cold and windy weather.

I’m not complaining, I’m just telling you like it is.

Tonight’s dinner consisted of:  left over spanish rice with added fresh mushrooms, small roasted eggplant pieces and a shallot, (from outdoor market) first sauted then added to rice.  A very small piece of turkey.  Salad with Mache and curly leaf lettuce from the outdoor market ( yesterday. )  It also contained,  fresh sliced radishes, fresh tomatoes from market, slivers of fresh carrots, and slivers of Blue Cheese from the cheese case at Auchun tonight. It was tossed with olive oil and on mine a bit of red vinagrette.  It was a “to die for “ salad.  Maybe it was all the fresh wind in our faces to and fro the market, but I think not.

A bowl of potato soup, and no, not from scratch, just KNORR and oh so reasonable and oh so good.

Then we had (with all of the above )  a fresh baguette of French Bread from the Bolangerie with my all time favorite butter but which I can never buy from Whole Foods Market in the US because it’s tres cher, but not here, and that is Beurre D’ Isigny Extra Fin Beurre.  D’ Isigny is where Walt Disney and family came from.  I don’t know what it is about that butter, but I could eat it all by itself, without a thing, it is just that good.  “Rapturedly” so.

Red wine from a “box” washed it all down and it was  okay! Do not fear box wine. We had that wine at the school  last month and it “coats” the glass, it is that good.  Plus, my ex-husband & his wife turned us on to box wine and we are now sold.   It was a dry red Bordeaux.   SO so perfect.

Topped off by PLUMP tangerines sitting next to the heating element that my soup pot was on and with a teeny bit of dark chocolate.   OH OH YUM!!!!!!!!

That my dear friends is my “bragg-a-mony” tonight because I’m so happy to have not only saved a fortune (by not eating out at a mediocre restaurant,) but because everything we tasted in that little kitchen of ours,  became blessings on our tongue and I am truly grateful for my kitchen and for the chance of being able to do what I just did.

🙂

Late night thoughts: I don’t care what time it is – there are always 20 people on the street…….

Yep.  Walking down Quai d’Orsay towards the knitting class at church  – 20 people.  Usually though it’s more like 120,  say around  7-ish – but tonight after a late supper (after work) around 11PM,  there were another 20 people on the sidewalk walking to the train, walking to their cars, or walking down the little village – cashmere coats on, nice shoes, sometimes hats, some with canes, some with packages;  doesn’t matter…..they were walkin.”  You think everyone is in their own little world and not a care for anyone else until you here a story like this (by Jeanne Feldman). She tells  about a  handicap man who got on the bus grabbing the center handpole for dear life and looking a little sad, and much of a blank stare in his face.  Because he was so much in the MIDDLE of the bus, holding onto that pole,   people had to go around him when getting on the bus – it was a bit inconvenient  especially so as the bus became more and more crowded. Then one African guy,   young and full of it,  starting yelling (in French) how rude it was that this guy was standing in the middle and everyone had to go around him and how he was going to kick his ass.”  Well, the little man standing at  the pole, hugged it even tighter , got even a little more wide eyed as though he were scared out of his wits and all of a sudden the entire bus load of people started moving this maniac guy who was  yelling towards the exit door,  one passenger talking to him softly and before you knew it,  this group of bus riders  had “escorted”  this guy OFF the bus at the next stop!!!”  Someone else put the little wide eyed man in a seat towards the back of the bus and someone else talked to him to calm him down.  Unbelievable.    And this is not the  first time to see and hear of things like this happening in France when a group of  people, out of nowhere, get together to either protect someone that needs protecting, or just helping out a couple of clueless tourists.  It’s a beautiful thing.    I feel so incredibly safe here, walking alone, walking at night, walking with 2 people or walking with 20, or walking with no one.   I said to my husband, “If someone doesn’t like PEOPLE all that much,  and wants wide open spaces where they never see a soul for maybe – ALL DAY – they need to go to the middle of America.  There are not a lot of people walking in mid-america, except, maybe CHICAGO.  Yes, there are people at MALLS, but I suppose it’s because we have no real transportation system, so of course you won’t see people walking this much in America.    That being said – David and I are  in the outskirts  –  8  miles north of Paris,  but still,  there are people  constantly out, walking, even in this little village away from the city.  It’s one of those things that just hits you in the funniest/weirdest way, because you are so NOT used to seeing  so  many people  at any given time,  OUT, on a sidewalk, late at night – ever.   That being said,  I suppose not being in a car constantly  has an awful lot to do with this.     It’s really rather nice.

That’s what I was thinking, late at night.

Also,  yesterday,  I was winked at, as I strolled back to my apartment with a baguette in my hand.  He said something French like  “Ca VA??”   and I  thought, well how cool is that…I’m a GRANDMOTHER and still I turn heads…….and then he opened his mouth and smiled a huge toothless smile, and I looked down and just shook my head.  “Back in the day, in Paris, when I made my mother walk ahead of me – it was so different.  They were ALL so good looking.  “   Hmmmmmmmm.    Oh well.     🙂

SHOPPING IN PARIS IS LIKE A WALMART SHOPPER ( ME) GOING TO NEIMAN MARCUS + NORDSTROM EVERY SINGLE DAY!

and I’m not talking luxury items, but rather plain ordinary tights to keep my legs warm, or a simple top, or some shoes, good shoes, but nevertheless, what I encouter blows me away.

Today I bought new shoes, it’s a brand I get in the States, but they’re French so they were only a few euros more than what I’d pay in St Louis.  Still – it shocked me, but my feet thank me as they are very good walking shoes. ( Mephisto). I felt guilty even looking in the windows for anything else.  I finally saw a top I could afford because I have the same clothes I came with 8 weeks ago in a CARRYON and they are few and far between and looking a bit shabby.  This top would be about $7.00 at Kohls, but I’m not going to even think about this for any longer.  It  was on sale, and that in itself is a huge deal.

I could go on…..but why?   The TITLE of this post says it all and more.  Still, still all that being said, I am very grateful to be here and make the best of what we’ve have, because we have SO MUCH.  God is good. All of the time.

 

This little piggy went to market – We are now becoming VEGETARIANS in FRANCE!

The price of chicken is exhorbantant, not to mention the price of Salmon!

I could give up chicken, but not fish.  So we’ll have to figure out something there.

Today the roasted chickens were 11 euros – or $15.00  ($3.85 at Costco)

and 2 small pieces of North Atlantic Salmon came to 11.83 Euros which meant

$15.85.  Non!  No way.

ALL my veggies (see pics only missing bananas) came to $12.42.  Not bad as they will last me a long time sauted up with some rice on one dish and sides to another pasta dish on another……$12.42.  I can handle that.   But not the price of huge hens, chickens with the heads still on – yes I know they’re super fresh, but am not acclamated to seeing those heads and beaks – just not – not right now.  Give me time.

Since you’re all talkin’ ’bout BLACK FRIDAY, I have some prices for ya………(Updated 12/10/11)

We went to France with ONLY a Carry-on, and now look what’s happened

FIRST, may I say  HAPPY THANKSGIVING  and THANK YOU to my friends, who write on FB, “like” stuff,  and make me smile a LOT and who I can call “FRIENDS” whether we see each other a lot or a little or not much at all, but only via cyberspace.  It’s okay  – it’s the way of this world, like it or not.  This Thanksgiving will be so different, because it’s an extremely THANKFUL day with all my heart for the love that’s been shown to us by strangers in a foreign land, who don’t even speak my language and I don’t speak theirs.  What they have done for us I can’t even begin to describe, but suffice it to say, what we have had in the last 8 weeks and what we have today we wouldn’t have in any – way- shape- or form had it not been for the goodness and generosity of these new friends.

I am a teeny  bit sad as I take the last of the items from the old apartment.  On the balcony over looking a hilly northern landscape just beyond Paris I glance at twinkling lights in a misty fog, not too cold, and very beautiful.  The last of the cigarette butts stashed in the planter and  left behind by my good friend who was the first to visit me is scooped up and it makes me laugh.  She knows how I feel about smoking, and she knows that I want her to live a long time, but sometimes you just have to let people do what they want to do because all you can do is say it once, and let it drop.  I turn around after sweeping the top terrace where we spent too little time and pass the tall wine cellar with extremely ancient bottles of wine and champagne filling the unlocked cabinet.  I am thinking  how trusting these people were to let us stay here with that treasure!!  🙂   We never opened one!  It wasn’t ours to open, but I’m bemused by their trusting spirit.

I walk by the TV on the floor that my friend tried to get to work because when you’re jet lagged and just can’t sleep there is nothing like the drone of background noise of a television.  It never did work, but it was okay.  We never had a couch, so we sat in lawn chairs for 3 weeks and that wasn’t so bad either.  But sometimes when you come home from whatever work or excursion you’ve just done, there is NOTHING like a COUCH, and sometimes NOTHING like mindless TV to just veg out on, simple as it may sound. Simple simple pleasures. How we take them for granted sometimes.

We are moving as I am writing this to the new semi-permanent apartment across the way from the old temporary apartment. I will miss that roof top terrance, but not the stairs that I had to climb to get up there.  They were circular and lovely to look at and the light streaming down from the rooftop was so pleasant and the terrace itself was spacious and lovely, but I needed FRIENDS, PEOPLE , preferably some that spoke ENGLISH, to entertain and to make full use of it. 🙂

The last of the items from our old apartment is finally in the new one.  But I have made about 7 trips already and I don’t understand how this happens when we only came to France 8 weeks ago with 2 carry-on’s and a backpack!!!  Amazing what you accumulate in such a short time when you have an apartment to put it in….and I haven’t even been shopping!!

Well, off to clean it now and leave it as good or better than when we took possession of it.  I want Madame to be happy, because she certainly made us quite happy.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL – whoever might read this, because I only know of 3 souls that are, ha ha – but just incase the rest of my  cyber friends out there might  be reading – This is a Warm and “Huggy” HAPPY THANKSGIVING to YOU!!!!     🙂

LEAVING THE GHOST OF THE MEILLEUR OUVIER DE FRANCE’S KITCHEN …….

……….FOR OUR REAL AND PERMANENT (SEMI-PERM) APARTMENT.

How I ‘m going to miss those great knives!!!!!!!!!!!

In 32 hours we will be taking possession of our fully furnished one bedroom apartment with a kitchen that is heaven sent.  I cannot wait.  But all that being said – it is going to be difficult to leave the lovely knives from the previous owner behind.  I still do not know his name.  There is a French barrier here and we haven’t seen the woman again that gave us the temporary apartment, so I cannot ask her.  But, hopefully soon I will find out which of the 10 fabulous chefs it was that won that coveted prize  whose award winning tile hangs brightly from this temporary kitchen apartment.  It’s such a connundrum.

Who was this mystery chef?

Ah well, to the new apartment we travel………..

 

 

I HATE FRANCE – I LOVE FRENCH PEOPLE (OR) SOCIAL SECURITY DELIMA CONTINUED

 

I don’t really hate France, but this doo doo on the street has got to stop.  Has anyone TOLD THESE PEOPLE THEY NEED TO PICK UP POO POO from their darling Chien around here?!?  Apparantly not.

I’m in the land’s of Hotel Dieu – GOD’s HOTEL, I am serious and the town is actually Pontoise.  We had to go here this morning to complete another ordeal in the process of procuring a FRENCH SOCIAL SECURITY number, most coveted, and most difficult, but alas, this is what you do when you want free health care in France, and you already have it because you’re part of the EU.  (David)

SO, that being said, it is worth 1) the 500 steps up and down, down and up, after the 30 minute train ride into the country 2) more steps up and down, wrong instructions for the bus, another 50 down, another 60 up, several different bus drivers all shaking their heads  “NON! It is not THEEES BUS!   David looking at the wife (moi) with a scowl that he really does not want to see.  I also do not want to know that he has not totally planned out this trip on the internet fully and completely as I DO FOR ALL MY BUS- METRO TRAVELS, only to find out later that this FRENCH SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE doesn’t have a map of public transportation because it’s in GOD’s HOTEL – or rather a sleepy bedroom community way way  out in the country. Now, just so you know, this is not the first time he’s tried.  You never try just once,  in France,   for ANYTHING; you try multiple times, and then add another 5 or 6 or 20 times and then you’ve just about got it!

The SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE is determined by your ADDRESS.

You see, you MUST have an address (that coveted address in France, here me out) to even GET a JOB, get a BANK ACCOUNT,to get ANYWHERE.  We had such an address, and that address belonged to someone we knew well, a friend,  who so kindly gave us her PARIS address.  This Paris address we thought we’d use to obtain our French Social Security, until we found out that someone from the UK had used the address of their employment (a Company in a very posh arrondisemont) and that because of that decision, the Social Security office taxed to high heaven this fellow AND the COMPANY because he had listed not a modest apartment somewhere, but an address in some of the pricest, tres cher real estate that one could possibly acquire.  THIS – we did not want to happen. So, we thought about it, and realized that the person who had “loaned” us her address for purposes of a bank account and a job, was in a splendidly Haute Couiture area, one of which would most likely have taxed US out the ying yang   NOT a good idea.

So, when we finally got into our little modest apartment on the outskirts of Paris, this is where we would now search for a social security office that was in or near our LIVING area.

The beautiful thing about the French (for me) is that when I have reached my breaking point, having stepped in the third doo doo of the day, or climbed way too many steps with my bad knees, the French, somehow come through.  This was the 5th bus we had tried, and now we heard the busdriver saying to David that she wasn’t sure and then evoked response from the entire bus “Does anyone know where this SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE is?” and the entire bus load of people are talking to David, in FRENCH, ofcourse and I’m kicking him and saying -”She is telling you this” – “NO, he is saying something to you…. no wait – she has it here”…..Honestly, it just melted my heart to see these lovely lovely people trying so hard to help these poor English speaking people find their way to this very important office.  Just as we get it all together and profusely thank them, the bus glides past the HOTE DIEU – GOD’S HOTEL, and I’m thinking, this is just so cool……I’m in a town with GOD’S HOTEL and we are really REALLY going to find this FRENCH SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE.

We got off the bus, took the path that the entire bus TOLD us to take, and we indeed, found the office.

Did he get a number? Did he get THE social security validation that he needed for all medical care and all the rest that you need now to be “IN” in France??

Sadly, no.  Why?  Because the BRITISH BIRTH CERTIFICATE WAS TOO LONG and didn’t fit in size with all the other papers he brought with him i.e. the SS form, the validation of our apartment and address, the 6 page contract (in French) document from his employer stating he was employed and payroll slip copy, the European Health Card, the Bank “RIB” number, so they know you actually have a bank account. So, only one last thing,- reducing that really old British Birth Certificate (sorry darling,) to the exact size of the OTHER documents and then, VOILA !!!  He’s in like flint!  It was not a bad day.

PS. On the train back to our little village, we saw , magically a number on the top of his French Social Security Form!!  It is real and it is THE number.  But, we still have to reduce the size of the British Birth Certificate!!  🙂

The Yarn Shop which resides in Heaven……..

La Droguerie

Today was an exceptionally good day.  I did the metro, several stops and changes all by my little self.  I needed to buy yarn for my first knitting class (at the American Church in Paris) and it was at 5PM.  I arrived at Les Halles Metro and became mezmorized by the amount of shops.  I needed to buy YARN, not boots, but I couldn’t take my eyes off all the shops with shoes, especially boots, and then purses, and then scarves, and so on . I kept telling myself, forget the scarves, you are going to KNIT ONE, and forget the boots, you know where your boots are (in the Marais) and you must get a JOB before you can buy those boots!!!!!   Continuing on, I looked for signs for SORTIE.(EXIT)

I saw those signs, I just couldn’t get OUT of LesHalles……there was a Piscine (better than the JCCA, I kid you not) and there were cinemas, and every kind of shop and restaurant imaginable   But, I finally found the right sortie, and exited.

When I exited, I looked up and saw THE tallest escaltor that I have ever seen in my entire life. Les Halles, and it’s vast shops and markets must have been in the true bowels of the underground.  As I glanced up,  I thought  – “WOW – the stairway to heaven”…….only when I looked again, the escalor going up, was going no where – it was kapute…..so I looked to the left, took a deep breath, said a little prayer to God to help me up those incredible high stairs with my knees that suck, and I was on my way………..to heaven………because, when I got to the top huffing and puffing – – what did I see?!?!?  E. DEHILLERIN!!!  The COOKING store that is the mother of ALL COOKING STORES!!!!…..the place where Julia Child frequented constantly when she lived in Paris.  Ahhhhh, Dehillerin. I pressed my nose to the glass and saw other people doing the same and looking at copper and kitchenaids and clafluti rimmed pans and marie bains and bowls, and measuring contraptions and on and on and on and I had to snap out of it because I had a KNITTING class awaiting me!   So, pulling myself away from Dehillerin, I walked around the corner and there it was – La Droguerie- THE KNITTING SHOP of Paris – the “MAXIMS of YARN” if you will…………

And once again, I  couldnt’ take my eyes off all the GEORGEOUS COLOR everywhere.  I asked some people if they were “in line – in Queue” and they said in broken English that they were…….and that they had to wait there to be WAITED ON…….I was confused and said, “Oh, Okay, well, I know what I want, so I’ll go here”……..NON! They said – “we are in line and you go behind us.”  “OH.  I see.” I pouted.  So I did – and I waited and I waited and I waited…….to be “waited ON”…….Finally, the lovely tall salesclerk came to me  and said “Yes?” And I explained that this was my FIRST knitting course and I simple wanted the cheapest yarn that I could find and the cheapest needles possible and then I’m out of here.  Okay, well, I didn’t exactly say those words, but I did say the word “ACRYLIC” and you would have thought that I just asked for Walmart jeans in a Versace boutique!  Okay, then, I’ll take wool, I say, knowing full well that I am going to ITCH myself to DEATH if I wear it anywhere near my face.  But this is Paris, and this is La Droguerie and I must do what any self respecting KNITTER or “knitter to be” would do.  GO WITH WHAT THEY TELL YOU.   About 10 minutes later, my beautiful salmon pink with specs of mauve colored yarn is brought up to me, (they go in the basement and wind your color in a lovely shape, so lovely, infact,  that you don’t even need to MAKE anything out of it you’re thinking) that I exclaimed, ‘oh wow, for me?? It’s so PRETTY!! ”  and she ‘s looking at me like – this lady is really very strange……..and I pay for it and the beautiful wooden needles that were also a fortune. I say my few nice french words to thank them and have a good evening and I’m on my way out the door passing up about 10 people who have just come in line behind me. (They are “Dyed in the Wool TRUE KNITTERS!!!” –  I just had to say that!!) 🙂 This is an amazing, very colorful, very tactile-ish  experience that I would NOT have passed up for anything.  It also means that because I have paid a tiny fortune for simple wool yarn that is spun somewhere in France, and where they paid no high shipping rates for it to come from far away – whereever – New Zealand or Scotland – who knows – that my question is: why in the world is it so pricey?? I’ll never know, but It was worth the trip to this colorful threaded, yarn, baubles, buttons, ribbons and bead shop and I’m sure it’s not in vain??? And that this scarf will be one that I will never ever ever forget making. ? I’ve already taken the stitches out atleast 5 times now. Once in the knitting class at the church, and 4 more from the train to David to I don’t remember where else.    Oh! And while waiting for David to finish teaching, I was still knitting and doing what Antionette (from Church) said to do with my beginning stitches  when, out of the blue,  I got to a place that I was simply stuck.  I tried, this way, and that way, and nothing was working with the stitch that I had just done a hundred times.  So, I looked to the left and to the right and then straight ahead and made eye contact with this really nice attractive lady.  I said, “Do you speak English”?  And she said – “Non! “ and then I said – and pointed to my skein of yarn – do you know how to do this? I have forgotten something and can’t continue on……..” She gets up and says, in French, – something something something and raises her intonation at the end, so she is ASKING me a QUESTION, to which I have not the SLIGHTEST idea what she is ASKING!!!  So I say, “I don’t know -J’ai ne comprand pas –  this is the way the INSTRUCTOR said for me to do this” and this lady is now evoking everyone in that little waiting room to help her out here with French vs. English,  and one girl comes to help and it’s not helping…….and this nice lady is just NOT understanding why I am doing these stiches on TWO needles and I say, “Because the TEACHER said to do it this way!!” and the lady is shaking her head, saying something something something and before I know it, she’s REMOVED the beautiful work that I’ve just been doing for the last 2 hours and whips it off the needles!!! I ‘m like  ‘W H A T?????” and then I realized – she had a “better way” – it’s called the FRENCH WAY, actually, because she probably secretly knew that my TEACHER was AMERICAN and that it was NO GOOD to be doing my stitches this “wierd way” _ (I never heard that actually) but when you listen carefully to this language that you do not understand, the word WIERD, does come out, I swear it does…..)  So, I had to laugh kind of – inside, that she just dropped all my stitches; No, not DROPPED, – REMOVED everything I had done, and was now proceeding to have me totally start over and do it HER way, or not at all.

So next week, when I go to pick up David, and I show her my progression of my knitting project I better be sure that I am doing it HER way, because I can explain all this stuff to my AMERICAN teacher and she’ll be sure to understand, but the FRENCH one????  NOT-  A –  CHANCE!!!!!!!!

That’s my story, and I’m knitting into oblivian……….

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