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22 Months Later ……………………………….

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Letters from Marseille

Written July 12, 2013

Did someone very important say once, “It is necessary to have goals and work hard to get anything done in this life.”  Yes, I’m sure. I think many people over the course of centuries have said this profound sentence.  SO!  That being said ……..  Vacations are your reward, usually. So when you leave your country and visit another for a vacation, it’s meant to be relaxing, – hopefully.   When you leave your home country to stay and work in another country, on your own, without the benefit of a COMPANY* doing the paperwork FOR you, it is not a vacation, it is complicated and triple the work.

That being said, I wouldn’t have traded that “surprise of bureaucracy” for anything, because it is worth it to live in France.

Today, 12th Juillet 2013, 22 months after arriving in France, my coveted Titre de Sejour, arrived…

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The BEST Summer EVER…..but then – it’s time to say Au Revoir …….& Hello

22 Months Later ……………………………….

Written July 12, 2013

Did someone very important say once, “It is necessary to have goals and work hard to get anything done in this life.”  Yes, I’m sure. I think many people over the course of centuries have said this profound sentence.  SO!  That being said ……..  Vacations are your reward, usually. So when you leave your country and visit another for a vacation, it’s meant to be relaxing, – hopefully.   When you leave your home country to stay and work in another country, on your own, without the benefit of a COMPANY* doing the paperwork FOR you, it is not a vacation, it is complicated and triple the work.

That being said, I wouldn’t have traded that “surprise of bureaucracy” for anything, because it is worth it to live in France.

Today, 12th Juillet 2013, 22 months after arriving in France, my coveted Titre de Sejour, arrived in my hands. I wrote about round 1 of this process in __________. The Carte de Sejour  is like the “green card” for foreigners living and working in the United States.  It is the French equivalent.   It costs a fortune for the GREEN CARD.  It costs NOTHING but your time in bureaucracy in France.

*( my friend Eleanor, had carte blanche everything rolled out for her when she and husband did a 5 year stint with an oil company in Paris. Not only were they able to bring every stick of furniture, every dish,  from their Texas home, but also their antique piano, down to the quilts on their beds.    Her Titre de Sejour was handed to her, with no trekking, no filing, no paperwork.)

For me, NONE of this, – the paperwork, the translations, the legwork, would have been possible for me, without my husband.    He’s the one that used all the French in speaking and comprehension, untold trips back and forth from Paris to Pointoise for the Social  Security and Paris to Sarcelles GENDARMARIE for the monthly disappointment of bureaucrats flipping through our enormous file , slamming it shut, and saying emphatically, “you need more of this this and this…….so-  “NON” and Good day!

We started the process over when moving from Paris to Marseille, and within a few months, were able to actually see the forest for the trees – SO, lesson here? =  it depends on 1) How much French you comprehend and can speak 2) how much work you’re willing to do, 3) where you are living  4)  the particular Gendarmerie that is assigned to you dependent on your house address and 5)  who you get in front of you  when confronting the Bureaucrat with your file,  – for that coveted card.

The following are coming……photos of my day, and the little celebration that my husband and I enjoyed despite a week long  marathon  teaching schedule on his part for extra classes.     He’s a little “coup de barre” (hit over the head tired) from the holiday classes this week, but he shared so much in my happiness to get my coveted Carte de Sejour or in French, “Titre de Sejour”   enabling me to reside, live and work in France.

Enjoy

I am

 

Paris Workout

Paris Workout (Photo credit: Nimages DR)

Counting sheep over the Roman wall between the Cherry Trees with IRIS – CORRECTION

a correction on “Snacking”

Letters from Marseille

(Correction to the “snacking portion” of the dream below………..

But it WAS a dream, coming from my reality of my environment…..)**

Counting sheep over the Roman wall between the cherry trees with IRIS

Have you ever had a dream that was so delicious that you wanted it to go on forever?   That happened in the wee hours of this morning.  I got up as usual to sip a drink, check out the brilliant stars outside the huge bedroom window, use the toilet and go back to bed.  But I couldn’t sleep.  So, I started counting sheep with Iris.   We were sitting on my front step looking towards “Bubba’s house” . ( I’m sorry to say that Bubba’s house is not so attractive and I have planted 2 cherry trees to grow really big and hide his house from my view.)  Anyway, Iris is my 2 1/2 year old…

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Counting sheep over the Roman wall between the Cherry Trees with IRIS – CORRECTION

(Correction to the “snacking portion” of the dream below………..

But it WAS a dream, coming from my reality of my environment…..)**

Counting sheep over the Roman wall between the cherry trees with IRIS

English: Cherry trees field near Villars, Vauc...

English: Cherry trees field near Villars, Vaucluse, France (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have you ever had a dream that was so delicious that you wanted it to go on forever?   That happened in the wee hours of this morning.  I got up as usual to sip a drink, check out the brilliant stars outside the huge bedroom window, use the toilet and go back to bed.  But I couldn’t sleep.  So, I started counting sheep with Iris.   We were sitting on my front step looking towards “Bubba’s house” . ( I’m sorry to say that Bubba’s house is not so attractive and I have planted 2 cherry trees to grow really big and hide his house from my view.)  Anyway, Iris is my 2 1/2 year old petit enfant, (grandchild) .  We started counting sheep at 101.   But beyond the cherry trees there was a field going way across to Bubba’s house and his house was not anywhere,  only a low stone wall that was put in by the Romans.   The sheep were very big and had lots of wool and they were having a hard time running and jumping the wall, so we were counting ever so slow.  “One Hundred and two, one hundred and three………space space, sigh sigh, oh, here one comes……….up……..over……..one hundred and four…………and so on until, apparently, I fell asleep.    Then the most incredible thing happened.   Several babies, all Iris’ age were jumping on the big bed with tall posts, and invariably one of them hit the post and fell to the floor crying.  My son Ryan comes in and says, “This has got to be protected!  We can’t have the kids hurting themselves….it needs to be padded so they don’t get hurt”.   Well, I took one look at the big post bed and then him and said with  mother authority, “Look, if they’re gonna be jumping on the bed, they need to learn there are consequences, – one big crash into the post – and they’ll learn not to do it again.  Besides, they really need to go to the park and run off this energy.   I’m going to take them!  “  Ryan says, “Why don’t you let then run over the Miedievel Wall in the front and climb the cherry trees?”   Then, I gathered up Iris and all the other children (her cousins? –  I have no idea, there were just a LOT of kids) and I took them to a park to run, slide, climb – whatever.   My son and his wife appeared grateful that I had taken the kids to the park.  But I started worrying because I thought, “Oh dear God, I’ve said too much now to my son and he is going to kick me out of the house now!”     That’s funny just thinking about it, because I’m always worried I’m going to say the wrong thing, say too many things, be too emphatic, too high strung, too too much.   You know, it’s the “your mother has gone too far syndrome”.

A few minutes later, I’m sitting on the couch with same children (of which I don’t know who they are – but I imagine that they’re all the cousins, or maybe they’re the children of the future – God only knows) – but dreams are like that.

My sister-in-law is there with us.  A Crunching sound is heard.  It continues as we’re all watching a documentary on bugs and snakes. The crunching gets louder and I turn around and the children are snacking.  I say (very loudly) STOP SNACKING!!! Dinner will be ready in less than 2 hours!!  You won’t want your dinner!!!  ( I don’t know what this is, this snacking, because we don’t have it in France.   We eat three meals a day.  It’s very strange.   We don’t even have snacking materials.   I’m confused. )   The children look at me like I’m crazy and then we go to the next scene.

** Correction on above:  In reality, the French DO snack .  I’ve been at the beach a lot lately.  There is a LOT of snacking.  There is “Barbe a Papa” – cute name for “Cotton Candy”, there are candies, and many SMURF shaped chewie candies, there are sandwiches, chips, “biscuits” = “Cookies” – – – and a lot of water bottles.   That’s my correction for the “Snacking portion of the dream”.    My favorite is the “BARBE a PAPA”!!!!!!

 

 

It’s hot and sweaty and I’m in Marseille walking from where the bus driver has just announced “Terminus” – which means he “ain’t going any farther and we must get off”  –

English: A street in Marseille, France.

English: A street in Marseille, France. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So, I’m off with scores of other walkers and we wait at a long light to cross over to the metro entrance.   We are all sweating.  There is a tall girl in a long skirt and sandals with her very tall boyfriend and an older man next to her with very bad swollen feet.  Besides these 3 there are about 40 others.   The light changes and like a herd, we cross into the next street, walk down in the metro and I see the same couple and the same man with swollen feet.  Then they disappear.  Then the metro comes and I hop on and voilà, there is the man barely making the door before it slams shut on him and his bad swollen feet.   After 2 stops, a long walk up the stairs, across the underground and down more stairs I am on the final approach to VIEUX PORT where I’m checking out sales which are fabulous this time of year.

After a race to get done so I can use the very same metro ticket I came with (it’s only good for 1 hour), I head back down the same way I came and unbelievably, there is the tall girl with the long skirt and the sandals this time without the boyfriend and I’m like – how does this happen that I have traveled all this distance, over and underneath huge Marseille, and see the very same girl that was at the bus stop (Terminus) over 5 km away?   It’s bazaar.

Well, all of the above are dreams except for the Marseille one. That was true.

By this time, I was in need of a SNACK – badly!!! But we don’t snack here, so I went to a cafe and bought a “jus de tomate” (tomato juice) with lemon slice, tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce & celery salt & drank slowly and watched the world go ‘round.     No, there was no vodka in it.   That was my “snack” and that enabled me to do the long trek back to British Council, where David picked me up.    yeah.

Dreams and reality.   They are often fun and often mixed up.

Tour-de-France 100th Anniversary – Slipstreaming by our apartment!

They didn’t run me over after all – and it sure was FUN, FUN!!!!

Letters from Marseille

Here’s the video – a picture (or two or three ) is worth the verbiage…….we so enjoy talking with and making new friends!  One couple were UK parents of a little 2 1/2 year old girl, Emily…… very cute

The TV shot in the end is of the cyclists going down our “Le Col Gineste little mountain” and the last shot is of CAVENDISH – British rider –  (David’s fav to win).  Yeah.

Enjoy!

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Tour-de-France 100th Anniversary – Slipstreaming by our apartment!

Here’s the video – a picture (or two or three ) is worth the verbiage…….we so enjoy talking with and making new friends!  One couple were UK parents of a little 2 1/2 year old girl, Emily…… very cute

The TV shot in the end is of the cyclists going down our “Le Col Gineste little mountain” and the last shot is of CAVENDISH – British rider –  (David’s fav to win).  Yeah.

Enjoy!

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