Posts Tagged ‘lake’

Happy Friday!

This past week, we’ve been experiencing record heat here in France, and it doesn’t appear to be getting any cooler any time sooner. As someone who has been raised on having air-conditioning readily available in every house and establishment, I’m experiencing a bit of difficulty adjusting to a life where having air-conditioning is a rarity. Apartments don’t have it, and every few homes do. Here in the Haute-Savoie region, only about two months of the year are very hot. The rest are rainy, dry, and cooler. I bought a fan to circulate air in our apartment, and it’s a life-saver. My skin is naturally oily, which is annoying. I put on foundation every day in an effort to reduce having a constantly shiny face, but I also find myself constantly wiping my face with a paper towel. Hopefully I’ll get used to this soon. On the bright side of all of this unbearable heat, it’s not as humid as back in Saint Louis. A dry heat is much preferable.

A few days ago, we went to Amphion to see where mon ange grew up. It’s a lovely little suburb that’s nice, quiet, and peaceful. We visited his father’s old house and left his scooter there to go walking around the neighborhood and beyond. As we walked, he told me little stories about all the trouble he would get into with the neighborhood boys. It appears my fiancé had a bit of a bad boy reputation. Don’t worry, though. He shaped up to be quite a fine citizen.

From his old house, you can actually walk to several beaches at the edge of Lac Léman. It’s absolutely beautiful there! The water is so blue and clear! There were a lot of people sunbathing, reading, swimming, playing, and having fun. It made me want to jump into the water too. Walking along the path and observing everyone was fun. It’s interesting to hear all the French being spoken. Once I even picked up what sounded like British English being spoken by a visiting tourist. It’s strange hearing English here. I’m getting so accustomed to French being the primary language. Sometimes I actually struggle to find English words! Fortunately, C has a few friends that do speak English that I can keep up my mother tongue. I have a strong suspicion that when I return to the U.S. after these three months I will have a bit of an accent. When I spend a lot of time surrounded by a foreign language or dialect, I’m like a chameleon, mimicking the accent. We’ll have to wait and see.

We spent yesterday re-designing the layout of our apartment. Now it’s looking much better. There’s a bit more open space to move around. Our cats felt a bit disoriented having all of their old places to hang out taken away, but they appear to be adjusting well. They’ve found some new places to hide and lay around.

Tomorrow is the 4th of July, also known as U.S.A.’s Independence Day. To celebrate, we’re organizing a little party and BBQ at a park by the lake where we can cook burgers, play music, swim, and have fun. It’s also a good way for me to meet new friends. I’m looking forward to it!

And now it’s time for me to get on with my day and do something productive. It’s already almost 4pm here, so I’m not sure how productive we’ll actually be today. I think it’ll be a lazy day in an effort to stay cool.

Have a good weekend!


La vie est belle

La vie est belle

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This is my 300th post on my blog! Yay!

Wow, I can’t believe I’ve written that many over the past few years! Looking back over the years, it’s quite amazing how much I’ve gone through and accomplished. When I first started this blog, I was in university. I’ve gone through a lot of break-ups and dating disasters. Scary things have happened. Traumatic things have happened. Wonderful things have happened. Beautiful things have happened. And life goes on. Where would we all be without these ups and downs in life? Probably in a coma or dead. But anyways! Let’s return to my current adventure!

A few days ago, we went grocery shopping to a picnic lunch at the edge of Lake Léman with a few friends. We made sandwiches with ham, cheese, and butter. But they tasted nothing like a ham and cheese sandwich back in the United States. The cheese was so much more delicious! I love cheese, and I love trying all different types. It’s interesting how different countries have such different concepts on what constitutes good food. Here, there are much less preservatives, hormones, and GMOs. They still have some, but not as much as what they put into American foods. We also packed some pigeon-heart tomatoes, an apple for me for dessert, a bottle of sparkling lemonade, and one of his favorite drinks, Tropical Oasis.

It was a sunny day but not too terribly hot. Not many people were at the beaches in the area we set up for our picnic. The beach is made up of little pebbles, not sand, unfortunately. After eating, C, F, and I took off our clothes and headed towards the edge of the lake in our bathing suits. I am very pale, almost blindingly so. Living here and spending more time outside will definitely help me catch some more sun. I need proper skincare products, though. Right now, I’m not being very wise and letting myself tan without sunscreen or bronzer… That will soon have to be rectified. Ever so carefully, we started wading into the water. It was very cold, and the algae on the stones made it quite slippery. We all looked a bit like marionettes, trying our hardest not to slip and fall into the water. My fiancé stayed behind on the beach with my camera, taking pictures and waiting for the precise possible moment that we would end up falling flat on our bums so he could immortalize it in picture form. I am proud to report that we didn’t fall. I kept wading deeper and deeper into the water, refusing to just dive in, although that would have been the easier way to get used to the cold temperature of the lake. Eventually, I reached the point where the water was lapping at my shoulders, and that’s when I finally relented and fully submerged. We ladies had a lot of fun swimming around and finding larger rocks that we could stand on. Swimming is a great form of exercise for the entire body, and I hadn’t gone for years and years. I’m very glad that I went, and I look forward to doing it more often.

After the lake, we went back to our apartment to give me a chance to freshen up a little before going to F’s apartment. There, we poured some drinks and talked and amused ourselves watching the cats chase flies around. I owe F a bottle of vodka because I amused myself with several mixed drinks of orange juice and grenadine… We had made plans to go out that evening for some kind of city-wide celebration that was going on. No one really knew what was being celebrated, but that’s what people in France do: celebrate just because. I helped F pick out a killer outfit, and she looked great! After several drinks (me already quite tipsy), we finally set out. When we finally managed to find a parking space on the edge of the lake around the centre-ville, we noticed that this celebration wasn’t really that much of a celebration at all. There were just a lot of people eating at outdoor restaurants. That’s it. We quickly got bored and decided to go to a popular little local outdoor bar called Bodega. I had a little Sangria, and we amused ourselves with chatting. Later on, C met back up with us to spend more time.

I’ve noticed how time loses significance here in France. People visit for hours, talking about everything and nothing. There’s no rush to be anywhere, just to live in the calm and happy moment. Of course, that might also be because it’s so hot out, but I genuinely feel a difference between the attitudes of the French versus American. I do see people on their smart phones doing who knows what, but it’s much less than when I would go out in the States. The French don’t always have their faces glued to a screen, and I like that. My iPhone is only usable in a place with wifi access, so I’ve been getting in the habit of leaving it at the apartment. I used to feel naked and helpless without having my phone with me, but now I feel less of a need to constantly be checking it. Slowly but suredly, I’m decreasing my amount of time spent on the Internet. That’s a very good thing, considering how much I used to depend on it. And yes, I need it to keep in touch with friends and family back home, but I take more pleasure in real, physical moments now. Having distance between me and the one that I love most has been difficult, especially during our past 7 months apart. It’s strange that a computer screen no longer separates us anymore. I much prefer it this way. Too often, couples don’t realize how much an embrace and kiss are worth in long-distance relationships. We definitely don’t waste time making sure the other person knows how much we appreciate their presence.

There’s so much more to write about, but I think I’ll stop here for now. I need to eat some breakfast and maybe try to sleep some more. It was a rough night’s sleep. I didn’t get much…

Until next time!



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