Well my friends, we are nearly at the end of our holidays. If you are reading this from Canada you may now be asking your self “what holidays?” Precisely. But no, in France we all feel that after a good 6 weeks of back-to-school and work, we are unashamedly in need of a well deserved rest. The first week I shall not recall for you, but shall let it rest, molding and dampened with dust in a portal of my past, allowing it to be covered with layers of time as the body covers with layers of membrane a disease or injury, therefor hoping to minimize the impact on the rest of the organism. Of the second week, let me show for you the dewy bits only, making my life appear as a beloved rom-com. Life, being the element of romance, and myself being the element of comedy. The family I’m with booked a cabin in a place named SunParks in Belgium. It’s sort of like a giant trailer park, only with little cabins instead of trailers and a big family center with pools and indoor playrooms.
The first night we had the family next door (friends whom we planned the vacation with) over to our cabin for a Thanksgiving dinner that the Canadian au pair (me) prepared in the ‘fully equipped kitchen'(not!) for 5 adults and 6 children. Let me sum up the success of my dinner by simply stating that my gravy wooed hearts.
Day Most Exciting (for me) was the day we went into Brugge for a full on touristy looksy-loo. There were people in average paying jobs who could speak 3 languages fluently; Belgium waffles covered in icing sugar; spicy salmon saffron soup accompanied by Belgium beer, which was huge, (there’s nothing quite like knowing you’re supposed to be caring for children while you sit, basking in the happy, sun-dappled after glow of soup and too much beer, listening absently to the melodic sounds of french conversation). I also got my first tattoo. It says ‘From Belgium, with Love’. I kid, and also, I jest. I did not get a tattoo.
While we were wandering about one of the towns searching out something to eat, we came upon a bakery with Canadian flags flooding their windows and display cases. Naturally I made someone go ask on my behalf what it all meant (that’s a lie. I waited awkwardly until someone offered to go ask on my behalf). The proprietors explained, with what seemed to be incredulity at our ignorance and pity for the embarrassment they obviously assumed we must be feeling at our ignorance, that it was the annual celebration of Canadian troops landing in Belgium during WWII. Which totally clarified the huge monument I saw of a WWII soldier set against 1 Belgium flag and 6 Canadian flags.
I Also learned that…
– Dutch doesn’t sound like German with a potato in your mouth, but more like falling bells, simultaneously musical and like a clattering.
– That no matter what language you’re speaking, “OMG, its youuuuuuuuu!!!!!!!” is pretty much universal..
– That ‘earthworm’ in French is ‘ver de terre’. (I’m trying to remember is, as, when you’re caring for children, it is one of the more useful nouns)
– That chips/fries should really only ever be consumed with mayonnaise.
Toodlepips for now Folks