Thursday, March 29, 2012

No Olympic flame, no Olympic games!

Monday was my second to last day at one of my schools. The CM1 (4th grade) class has been working on a set of English lessons for weeks revolving around a 'quest' and the upcoming Olympics in London. In short, one of six suspects stole the Olympic flame and during this week's lesson, they finally eliminated the last suspect and discovered who stole the flame. Surprise, surprise, it was Jessy, the character with the most suspicious-looking mugshot.

"Jessy" wrote the class a letter that the teacher asked me to read to the class... in French. Turns out that Jessy isn't a Brit at all... she's French! She was upset that the Olympic games were going to take place in London instead of Paris and so she stole the flame so that the Olympics couldn't happen at all. However, after the wonderful five weeks of learning about London and its tourist attractions, Jessy had a change of heart and decided to return the Olympic flame. Aww...

"On te pardonne, Katrin--euh, Jessy!"
"Mais non, elle avait raison! Il faut la voler!" 

("We forgive you, Katrin--er, Jessy!"
"No, she was right! We should steal the Olympic flame!")

Then the teacher proceeded to tell the kids that not only was Jessy a French girl disguised as a Brit, but that I was a French girl disguised as an American. They believed him for about five seconds. Greatest five seconds ever.

Wenlock, Olympic Games Mascot

Monday, March 26, 2012

M. Ward "I Get Ideas"

M. Ward has a cover of "I Get Ideas" on his next album! If we end up going to Sasquatch this summer and he plays this song, I may die of excitement.

The week in photos

Pastry tasting

Being lazy on the terrace with the cat

Winning at French scrabble with only 154 points

A drawing of Tyler and me courtesy of P.
The other day P. wanted to have a mini art contest with me so we each drew two pictures and the family had to vote for their favorite. Of course P. was the winner. What sort of monster would vote against the 7-year-old? This is the winning illustration -- her depiction of me and Tyler dreaming of our wedding day (Nous rêvons de mariage.). And Tyler, don't worry about her misspelling of your name -- I promise I'm not marrying some new guy named Taylor. Also, contrary to the drawing, I'm not suddenly so ample-bosomed. 

I have just three more weeks to go and I feel like there is still so much that I haven't seen even just in France! Travel buddies?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Montelimar: Ice cream and castles

I will be home in just one more month! I still love living in France with my host family of course, but I've been getting more and more anxious to get back to 'real life' again. I'll be spending my next month taking advantage of the rest of my time here with the food, places, and people I'll be missing very soon. Here are some pictures from this past weekend in Montelimar with Kayley and Evan. We had ice creams, played on the parapet and checked out the contemporary art exhibit at the Chateau Adhemar, and went to see The Iron Lady.

First ice cream of 2012 -- Dark chocolate and hazelnut chocolate
Kayley taking a picture of Evan
Chateau Adhemar

Taking more pictures

A view of Montelimar

French Music Friday -- Vol. 8: Camelia Jordana

Although P. usually chooses to listen to Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez (yeah...), occasionally she'll turn on a French artist. Today I bring you one of P.'s favorite singers, Camelia Jordana. She competed on the French version of American Idol and has had a fair amount of success since then. "Non, non, non" is the one song of hers that I've heard more than once on the radio. 

(Yes, I know it's Sunday but I left for Pierrelatte too early Friday morning to make my self-imposed deadline.)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows (minus the lollipops and rainbows)

Ever since I returned from vacation, the weather has become more and more bearable. This is of course unfortunate news for the coat and boots I bought just two months ago, but oh well. I'm thrilled to get outside without it being a necessity. For the first time since October, I took my time walking home from work on Tuesday. 

To give you an idea of just how nice the weather is right now, here are a few pictures from my first weekend back in town at the park in Pierrelatte with Kayley and Evan. 

Please note the absence of my coat, hat, and gloves.

Kayley soaking up the rays... I loaned her my sunglasses afterward.

Evan -- short sleeves!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Thank you for your consumption! Love, Budapest

I found this gem while going through one of my purses the other day. 

How did the Hungarian restaurant owners find out that I had tuberculosis in the 8th grade?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Gastronomy - Czech and Hungarian Food and Drink

Prague. The best beef goulash I've ever had. I think it was the bread bowl.

Budapest. Turkey covered in cheese. Surprisingly good.

Prague. Beer. Apparently lots of foam is a good thing because it proves that the beer is "fresh."

Prague. Super colorful food. This is Hungarian sausage... not sure why I got Hungarian sausage in the Czech Republic. Oops.

Prague. Bagels! It was delicious.

Budapest. Apple cinnamon strudel at the market.

Budapest. Hungarian food at the indoor market. I ate potato for 2 out of 3 meals this day. 

French Music Friday -- Vol. 7: Brigitte

Last weekend I was watching the French version of the Grammys with my host family when a group called Brigitte got on stage to perform. Apparently they had also performed in Aubenas one of the few times where I didn't go along for a concert and stayed in Pierrelatte for the weekend to hang out with these cool people instead. Anyway, the point is that I totally wish I'd seen their concert because now I'm obsessed with them.

This video isn't the official music video for "Battez-Vous" but I almost like it better. And now, I leave you with Tyler's final comment because it's so true.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

London Calling or That Time I Saw the Peter Pan Statue

A few photos of our short stay in London.

The view from the apartment we were fortunate enough to stay at with a friend of Anna's mom

In front of the National Gallery

Anna in the National Gallery

A quick shot in the National Gallery before I got yelled at for taking pictures. Oops.

St. Paul's Cathedral

Protests outside of St. Paul's

Italian Gardens in Hyde Park

The one place that I had to see in all of London was the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens. It may sound a little silly, but my main attraction to London is that, in my opinion, all the best children's authors are British and many of their stories take place in London to some extent. Peter Pan, Harry Potter, Narnia, every Roald Dahl book, etc. Thus why I needed to see this statue.

First photo attempt, but someone's adorable child did not want to leave that bunny on the bottom of the statue alone

Tower of London

Tower Bridge