Never in my entire life have I felt Christmas was this long, lonely and boring as this year. My God! It was never-ending! If you have difficulties relating and you’ve just come from your umpteenth family reunion with yet another indigestion, know that we haven’t. It had a lot to do with the fact that it covid is still lurking around (not that I care, but others do), that we don’t drive, that most of my friends go back to wherever they come for the holidays and that we have a toddler on top of that. So when I say the days were never-ending, I really mean it. For 5 days in a row we woke up and watched cartoons, ate American pancakes, played, went outside so Madeleine would sleep or play some more and came inside to continue playing. Of course, there was some napping and some eating involved, but playing pretty much sums it all up. With the exception of 24th, when we met F’s family for dinner and exchanged gifts, there was nothing to do and no one to do it with.
And when the cafés did open on the 27th, Madeleine got a fever spell and we had to stay inside. We played with the train set- I was envisioning Madeleine playing by herself, but instead she would demand “shitte, shitte”, meaning sit down, sit down, played with the bears, played with lego and played with her newly inherited kitchen from her sweet cousin Nora. Yesterday I had a couple of hours of driving and I was so happy to be getting out of the cosy prison, I could have jumped for joy.
This being said, I’ve always had trouble dealing with the holidays. Back when I was a kid it was because there was too much eating and too little freedom to do whatever one felt like doing, now because it’s too much family (when we’re not dealing with a pandemic) and the people you’d rather spend the holidays with are away. And I generally find myself sulking for the shops and the coffee shops to be open, not that I necessarily would go shopping, but I guess I just like to know everything is in place, the way it always is.
Today is kindergarten day and I’m trying to make good use of this “free time” by vacuuming, washing some clothes, baking bread and meeting a friend for coffee. Outside there’s lots of snow and I should really take up skiing, had I just known where to start. 😉
It’s late in the evening, I’ve packed my bags, stuffed them with gifts and goodies for big and small and can’t wait to head home tomorrow. I say home, although we’ll be staying in an airbnb in Bucharest and not at my parents’ house in Craiova, because home is where your heart is and mine is in Bucharest.
Phew, done with everything (that counts)! From today on I’m officially off duty and I’m enjoying it to the fullest. Outside it’s snowing, I’ve walked Sam and made myself a ham and cheese sandwich, the apartment is warm and the gifts are all wrapped up, the tiny tree is decorated and I’ve even remembered to buy pantyhose for the Christmas dinner. 😉 Haha! (I always forget!) Continue reading →
Our entrance door is pinched between an Armenian sandwich restaurant and Brasserie Faubourg, a lively place in the afternoon, a spot where we’ve wondered if we should have a beer, but decided it’s a notch too sunny. When you tread inside our two storied block, there’s a light switch we couldn’t make out on the first day, so we carried our bags on the spiral steps in complete darkness and almost fell over. Entering the apartment, you’re struck by its unconventional layout, the bedroom is huge and the kitchen and living room are crammed together as if you were expected to spend all your time in bed. If you wonder what I fell for, the answer is simple- the wooden beams, the stone floor and the high ceiling, as well as the veranda, that’s sheltered from view, but unfortunately dirty. I had to laugh a little at myself for yet another time having traded facilities for charm. That’s me in a nutshell, all right!
So we left home on Saturday, flew to Paris, took the train further to Lyon, walked all the way to our airbnb in an unspeakable heat and were finally able to drag our feet to the nearest café for mussels and beer.
Today I woke up early to finish a couple of written translations that are due today, but I seem to do anything to postpone it. In fact, procrastinating is my middle name. These days have been wonderfully lazy, so sliding back into routine is no easy task. We´ve had movie marathons and binge eating (not food, but chips and sweets), napping from 8pm to 9pm and things unheard of outside Christmas break. Yesterday however I managed to read a couple of pages, after working for a bit and then giving the house a quick shine. A friend visited with her sweet baby and we had the greatest time bonding. Unfortunately I´m quite ambivalent about children since I´ve been longing for one for so long, so I never know how I will react, I either like them too much or I just couldn´t be bothered. But Isabella was the cutest little thing and so easy to get along with, I was sold!
I´m so worked up by my own problems, schedule, moods and goals that I managed to get myself into a really old-fashioned fatigue. No matter what´s happening, I only dream of a holiday. I tried to think of other stuff, get a haircut, buy some new clothes, but the thing is I´m bored with the scenery. So I bought tickets for Tallin, Estonia in december. Figured that 3 days in a spa hotel with lots of pampering haven´t hurt anyone. Besides, we´ll be shopping at their famous Christmas markets and stroll in the pretty old town. I got my hopes up on´vin chaud´or ´gluhwein´or whatever they call it out there, I´m going to have a mug every other hour, I reckon.
Meanwhile, I´m all buried in papers and accountancy, drinking too much coffee and walking around with sky high shoulders. I feel that my days are so unpredictable that no matter how much I try to make it through the day without getting an ulcer, something will destroy the balance- either somebody´s late, which makes me late for my next appointment, or the traffic and the Gods are against me.
That being said, I´m looking forward to Berlin in two weeks. Conference and pleasure, what do you know?! If you feel the urge to recommend some places, please do! Otherwise, I hope it´s warmer there than here and that the Thai food is just as amazing and the drafts just as big.
To wrap things up I just want to tell you that I´m a very proud auntie, I have the cutest niece and I´m looking forward to seeing her soon. She has the cutest smile and already 6 teeth! Take a look for yourselves! Isn´t she adorable?!