Tag Archives: France

Summer heat and a baby

18 Jul

Those of you in Paris have probably noticed that it is really hot at the moment. More or less 30 degrees C… And if you’re here next week, we’ll gain some extra 10… Add cars and tourist groups and you’ve got yourself an oven !!! French people don’t like air conditioning. They rather suffer and have something to moan about… That’s the only rational explanation I’ve come up with so far.

A baby can’t talk and tell you he’s slightly unhappy with the weather and so he cries, fights sleep, moves a lot… And so you move more then you should and end up wishing you could give him away, move to Iceland and get him back for winter.

Have you already taken your baby for an X-ray during a heat wave ? They lock you up in a tiny room and make you undress, strap, hold down your baby until the picture is taken. Obviously there is a bug or 2 on the way, the baby keeps moving, twisting… Also, obviously, again, there is no air conditioning in that tiny room either and you come out of there looking as if someone dressed you up in wool cloths and just for fun, dropped a bucket of water on you to see what happens…

Our life as mothers (and probably fathers too in Sweden) during a very (very !!!!!!) warm day with a baby can look something like this ; your house is probably as warm inside as it is outside and if like me, you don’t own a fan (a small USB MUJI fan doesn’t help I’m afraid) you’re pretty much screwed !! You shut your blinds and open your windows in hope for some air. Your baby wants to be carried around, played with, fed, changed, bathed all through the day… In between you wash a bit, clean a bit, prepare some lunch, clear the lunch, fold, clean up… When you decide to go out for a walk because staying in will just turn you into a depressed alcoholic, pushing around 10kg feels like a punishment !! By the time you make it out the door with your baby, the stroller, your bag and his bag you feel you need to go back up for a shower or go for a spiritual retreat somewhere far far away. In reality you simply go anywhere where the air conditioning is turned on… Mainly shops, shopping malls, supermarkets…
What we want is just to cool our brain down and love life again while you probably think we are creatures of leisure and shopaholic. Obviously, in shops, shopping malls and supermarkets, we do shop. It’s our compensation !!

Not heat related but – the frustrating thing about spending your days with a baby is that you don’t have much to say about your day. You’ve taken care of your baby, played with your baby, cared for your baby, gone out for a walk with your baby, bought a top for yourself, some carrots, milk or a shirt for your baby…
When I read myself, I’d love to have a baby every year !!! It sounds like its all fun and games.. But the reality is not as sexy and on the contrary, quite exhausting !!!

The good thing is that I get to see this baby grow… Starting with that shy smile during his sleep when he was born, his big smile nowadays whenever he sees me and obviously recognizes me, his hysterical laugh whenever I tickle his foot, his victory smile as he manages to flip over on his stomach all by himself…

Once upon a time Thursday night used to be all about drinking champagne and discovering new cocktails… Now, I’m just hoping I still have a few diapers for tomorrow !!

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A city girl in the French Southern country

2 Apr
Baudinard-sur-Verdon

Baudinard-sur-Verdon

It’s been a week now that I have been back from Baudinard-sur-Verdon. A lovely, really really lovely, gorgeous and stage-decor like village. Small, very very 180-inhabitants-small town, not far from the immense and sublime Gorges-du-Verdon canyon that straddles the departments of Var and Alpes de Provence not far from Aix en Provence in the South of France. I reckon I have drawn a pretty clear map here… If you still have questions, please do Google it up and if you ever happen to visit, make sure to say hi to Susie Q & Marcus, Jerôme, uncle Charlie, a quick hello to the village maire and have a fantastic home-made lasagna at Le Chardon overlooking the amazing landscape (Tip of the day : If you ever you make it there and stop by Le Chardon, I am sure you will be amazed at the sight you will get from the restroom… This is usually not a tip that guides mention but frankly… The view from that restroom is simply breathtaking !!)

While most of us run around like headless chickens in the city trying to catch the future before its time and missing out on the present, others run in the country side trying to catch those chickens in the back yard breathing fresh air and enjoying their time in a slower and pleasent pace. Beware : If you decide to leave the foggy city for the country side, make sure to breath slowly once you exit the train / plane / car or hot-air balloon. The fresh air may be overwhelming if you’re not used to it ; flushed cheeks, clear throat, bright skin… To handle with care.

Now, many bona fide city chicks like myself may wonder… What can one do in the country ? There’s the common wood chopping activities, cut grass, build pizza ovens, build stables or back-yard sauna’s, paint wood, rebuild a house, plant herbs, pick herbs, cook herbs, pick flowers, tan, enjoy a cup of hot tea on the grass by the pool, fill the pool, clean the pool, play in the pool, walk a dog, play with dog, kill a bug, go for run, pass by the village bar for an afternoon drink, watch the sun set sitting by an amazing chapel overlooking the Sainte Croix lake drinking champagne, have dinner by a fire place listening to jazz or watch a Sex & the City episode remincing the city life… The more I write this the more I want to pack a bag and go back…

Susie Q… Will my room be ready in time ?

Fashion Week at the Alcazar, Paris France

24 Feb

Grey over Paris

22 Feb

It’s cold. It’s Grey. I keep saying the same thing day in day out… Although, we did have a sunny day a couple of days ago. Two whole hours of a little shy sun that kept playing hide and seek with our minds.

Today is Sunday. Rest day. Brunch day… But what can you do when it continuously rains outside and you can only see the lower half of the Eiffel tower, plus the new hair-do will get all fizzy the second I set foot outside. Boring ! So instead we tidy. We reorganize. We clean. We pamper and we watch brainless Sunday TV.

Paris has been this way since I got back from over-heated Africa… While one side gets too much of it all, the other is seriously underachieving…

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It’s cold. It’s Grey. I keep saying the same thing day in day out… Although, we did have a few hours of sunshine today. A whole afternoon of a little sun that kept playing hide and seek with our minds.

Today is Tuesday. Work day. Busy day… We shouldn’t even have time to pay attention to the state of the skies… But we do. I do. May you be born, like I am, in an overheated part of the world where sun and warmth are delivered to you in a baby bottle, an adoptive place such as this in a continuous Grey atmosphere, can sometimes be tough to handle.

Some of you who may know my past may ask me “But how did you make it through your years in Sweden if this seems so unbearable ?!”… To that question I have a simple answer : I was too young to remember and probably too young to care !

In any case, I may write again tomorrow and start by saying ; It’s cold. It’s Grey. I keep saying the same thing day in day out… But I won’t, as tomorrow, it will be cold. It will be Grey. And I will keep saying the same thing day in day out for the next, probably, few weeks… So sun, if you hear my prayers, please come back… I miss you !!

Warming up to, or, in Paris

25 Jan

Paris in winter is cold. Paris this winter is particularly cold. Too cold to my taste but as everyone else around here, I have to dress up as a penguin every morning and deal with it until Spring does us part.

Once upon a time less than a month ago I knew white sand beaches and 35°C sun. I have missed out on the white European snow storms of the time and am now getting blistering winds and spit-rain. The trees are naked and everything seems Grey and gloomy. You wake up it is still night-time, you get home it is night-time all over again. The day goes by too quickly to realize the sun has been up, and as lately, timidly hiding behind every cloud it can find up there in the atmosphere as if snubbing every human down on earth.

Lately, for the past few weeks I have been engaging in a brand new activity and light years from my normal projects, and for the first time since a very long time, I feel I am actually contributing to making the world a lighter place to live in. Maybe not for you, today, in this rather dark and dreary Parisian season, dear reader, but for some others in a small, yet significant way… You have no idea what I’m talking about do you ?… That’s OK, it will come…

The days are getting longer. A baby minute at a time each day. Step by step till spring comes… I’m patiently waiting while admiring the Spring collection in every shop and trying to figure out a reason to go out and buy it all, now, as we approach a harsh -7°C end of week with a closet so full of heavy clothing that an open-toe summer shoe would not fit in.

Now is the time for guts and guile…

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