Oh my friends, I’m such a terrible blogger. Forgive me for my lack of posts! I’m blaming it on the heat here—it seems to suck the life right out of me. Any motivation I once had to sit in front of my hot computer in my hot room goes right out the window and then I have to go buy une boule de la glace to keep steam from coming out of my ears. The heat, la chaleur, is killer here. I really underestimated it before I left, thinking, hey—I’m a native Texan, I can deal with any heat!
Hah. What I failed to realize was that in Texas I spend as little time as possible outside in the summer, drive everywhere with my A/C on to places that generally, are air-conditioned. Air conditioning, la climatisation, is a luxury here—one that I am without 80% of the time. So I sweat it out in the day and at night open my large window in hopes of a breeze now and then. Did I mention the mosquitos? They really love me. I’ve taken to talking to them at night, whispering threatening curses that don’t seem to do the trick.
Every morning when Madame and I have our breakfast (bread, butter, jam, yogurt, coffee) we ask each other “Vous-avez bien dormi?” (did you sleep well?) and we each respond “Non, pas du tout.” (No, not at all). La chaleur is a large part of life here, but Madame’s daughter doesn’t mind, because in the winter, the cold is brutal.
So to beat the heat today, my friends and I went to the local city pool and enjoyed a relaxing few hours in the sun and cool water. The French are very particular about hygiene at these sorts of pools. Men can’t wear regular swim trunks, as our fellow American boys found out the hard way. They were forced to spend 7 Euros on ill-fitting tiny swim shorts/speedo-like contraptions. It was hilarious. Then, one absolutely CANNOT wear shoes into the locker room. After we put our stuff into a locker, we walked over to the douches obligatoires (obligatory showers) and did as the sign told us. My friend Gloria said that last time the pool attendants checked to make sure their hair was wet as they left in case they tried to shirk their showering obligation. But once we jumped through these few hoops, we had a great time sunbathing and swimming. To top off the afternoon, a few of us went out for some gelato at a tiny little shop downtown. It was so delicious, and yes, I ordered three different kinds of chocolate. Well, two different types of chocolate and one caramel. One of us, not me, remarked how it was funny that we, three American girls sat in an Italian gelato shop in the south of France—Worlds Colliding!
Tonight I’m off to see a spectacle (theatrical piece, pronounced speck-TACK-l) called Papperlappapp at le Palais des Papes. It’s one of the major shows headlining the theater festival in Avignon so it’s time to get gussied up! Then tomorrow, I’m traveling to Marseille for the day with a few friends to go to the beach. Let’s hope this 20% chance-of-rain business doesn’t come to pass.
Next up: Lyon: A Retrospective