Sunday, April 6, 2008

Parce que je parle francais tres bien!!

Since high school, I have believed that I was a total idiot for taking French. Not that I don't love the language, I do. And I've been to France twice, and it has been most useful. However, most people who don't speak English around here speak Spanish, and Spanish would've been extremely useful, especially when I did my student teaching in a town with lots and lots of ESL (that's English as a Second Language) students.

But now my stupidity is finally going to pay off! Our friend Tim (aka Timothee, with an impossible-to-type-in-Blogger accent over one of the e's) is from France, and his Goddaughter, Justine (on the left), wants to come to the U.S. this summer to improve her English. Since he and Fran (hi Fran, she reads the blog. Tim, however, does not, so we can talk about him and he'll never know, which is exactly what he gets for not reading the blog) work full time, they thought it would make a lot of sense for Justine (you have to say ZHOOS-tine, because she's French) to stay at our house, help me with the kids, and be able to do stuff during the day, rather than sitting home with Fran's extremely cranky cat (the cat doesn't read the blog, either).

I've always wanted to be and/or host an exchange student. I even went to the prom with an exchange student from Brazil. When we got home (and Mom and Jim were at the post-prom chaperoning and cleaning up, because I was a junior and that's what the juniors' parents did) he said, "You know what I want to do..." and I demurred, "No, I don't," and he said, "Yes, you do!" and I said, "No, I don't," and he said, huskily, "Oh yes, you do..." and I held up my hand and said, "Eden, I have this policy. I don't do anything I can't say," and he backed off. Hahaha... We were going to move to Brazil and live in a tree house and raise guinea pigs. He told the waiter at Pizzeria Uno that he wanted guinea pig on his pizza. He was hilarious. I wonder whatever happened to him... Eden Albuquerque de Silva of the Brazilian guinea pig eating de Silvas, if you're ego surfing and you find this, drop me an email!

Anyway, the fact that I was nearly ravished by a hot Brazilian 17 year old has absolutely nothing to do with my interest in hosting an exchange student, of course, now that I'm old and married and not at all subject to ravishing by anyone other than BJ. I belonged to the Foreign Exchange Club at my high school long before the attempted ravishing occurred. I just find people so incredibly interesting - especially people from different places and cultures. I love the things that make us all different from each other - maybe it's because the place where I grew up (Grammaland) was extremely homogeneous. Everyone looked and thought, for the most part, like me (or like a Gramma, anyway). But people from the Wide World are so interesting. That's one of the things I love about living here. We once had sushi with a big group of friends - there were people from Japan, China, Pakistan, India, France, Germany, and Canada. How cool is that? I love it. I love that my girls get to meet people from all over the world, and know that there's a lot that makes us similar, and the stuff that makes us different (like our preference for Velveeta over stinky cheese) is what makes us, well, interesting. (I have had two glasses of wine, which is why I can't come up with a synonym for interesting, and why I'm overusing parentheses. But I can still spell parentheses, so obviously it wasn't good wine).

And how much Mom-cred am I going to have at playgroup when I talk about my au pair!? I won't need to serve playdate lobster to impress, anymore, because I have an au pair!! I'll have to start drinking more wine, and holding my glass with my pinky sticking up.

It's especially nice because Allison, who is our awesome babysitter, is a student at the Big University, and in spite of my attempts at bribery, she refuses to move in with us (I can't imagine why a sophomore college student wouldn't want to live with a couple of thirty-somethings and their kids, can you?). She goes all the way to Grammaland for the summer, so I am often left with no one to leave the little heathens with so that I can get a break for God's sake wonderful kids with when I go to work.

So, do you think Justine will mind sharing a room with Grandpa Bob?


Jen said...

Buvez de plus de vin. Or maybe BJ could just get a job in China or something... just b/c she moves in does not make her a trustworthy babysitter...

Barbara said...

Little did I realize in high school the two classes I needed the most were German and Spanish; I only took a year of each....XOXO...B