Monday, June 25, 2012

The South, Spain, and The Fish Crisis

One week down in Perpignan, and though I've spent a good deal of time on the couch, in bed, and in the reading chair while TMI works in the vineyard, the time here has also been embellished lightly with some perfect Southern France and Spain exploration

Last Tuesday I went with TMI's mom to work and had a day to myself wondering the walled medieval city of Carcassonne. It felt a bit like Disney Land with the streets all stuffed and colored with flamboyant summer shirts and hairstyles of plump aging tourists, but the novelty of the scene was worth it.

Thursday TMI's mom took me yet again on an adventure and we crossed the border into Spain and spent the late afternoon in Gerona. Loved it. We sat under flowery trellises and sipped melty melon flavored shave ice-like drinks.I think we were supposed to be female bonding, which I tried sooo hard to do, but the language barrier is still fighting our having a comfortable relationship like a feral cat on a leash. 

The weekend the whole family went back down to Spain, this time to a town called Figueres, where TMI and I explored the Dali museum. We kept very close to one another and I adored exploring the inside of all those slides I'd seen while studying art history in college.

In other words I've been managing alright in the occasionally awkward 2 weeks in Perpignan with TMI's parents situation. But, just to complain about something, we have been eating A LOT OF MEAT. As in, every day, every meal. Before moving to France I'd been vegetarian for several years, namely because I couldn't handle the violence of eating something that once walked and talked- picking bones and avoiding fat has always made me squeamish, but also because I'm a strong animal rights advocate. I'd been handling the meat eating well enough, but last night,(and I know you guys are gonna barf at my wimp out factor here) we had fish, the kind where it's the whole fish, gaping mouth, steamed eyes and all, on the plate.

I picked around the bones and tried my best not to look at the face.. the little teeth, the white eyes, etc, and I was trying to work my way around the vein covered spine, when I pulled at it and a slimy red fish brain slipped out of the head. That was it. Trying not to attract any attention, I tried to pile the fish in a way that looked like I'd eaten it and left the table the first chance I got. It was a big reminder that for a year I'd been doing something I didn't feel good about; but also that I'm ashamed of not wanting to eat meat and afraid that TMI won't be able to understand.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Couch Surfing

OK so... I don't wanna go on about this since I promised everyone I was actually ok with it, but I can't resist. Yesterday I caught a train to Perpignan to spend some time with TMI, he's down here doing an internship. The train ride was at first a disatser, but then ending with me drinking too much wine with the train staff; so that will be the next post. 

Today, my first day with TMI in a week, an old friend of his tagged along and spent the day with us. It was nice, but I was looking forward to having my boyfriend to myself and getting cozy with him at night, since I havent been able to so in a long while... well, the friend drank too much this evening, so he had to stay with us. -And I'm on the couch, and he is at this very moment in bed with my boyfriend.




sigh, like I said I won't go on about it. But there it is. 

bonne nuit :/

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Pliancy and Weakness

Today as I dried dishes in the cafe, gritting my teeth and grumbling because I am neither employee nor slave but treated as both, a plain looking girl, my age, received a wedding gift across the table. She had been married in Paris a week before.

My heart shrunk and sank to the back of my chest. The same thing had happened several weeks ago when watching the film The White Ribbon. The subtitles read: "That I would soon call this beloved creature my wife filled me with such elation.." the rest escapes me, but not the tightening in my chest. I kept repeating the words to myself the week through.

I know, I know. Every independent, self proclaimed woman of modernity and a true sense of self should be too wise to whimper and whine for marriage. But there is no secret to this anymore: I'm a young soul. In fact I'm firmly convinced that this is my first go at being a human, (if one is to believe such things) and was more likely drifting space dust in my last incarnation than anything dealing with human relationships and the task of loving one's self. I cry at music, laugh and clap at a bird taking a bath, blow every dandelion, am wildly superstitious and believe everything the first time I hear it.  The result is I'm a slave to my biology. Jealously lays me on the floor boards and insecurity walks all over me like a throw rug while my mind hasn't the vaguest idea how to conquer either.

Pliancy and weakness are expressions of the freshness of being, which leads me to believe my soul is squirming in a state of infancy. Long story short, I want desperately to be loved deeply, and, perhaps more over, with constant affirmation. I want someone to want to spend the rest of their life with me, and to prove it with paperwork. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Micro Gardening

No job, car, friends or lover on a Sunday in France is a boss level in keeping occupied. Everything is closed, TMI is gone to the South for a three week internship, the cafe is closed, and my tiny pool of friends is dispersed, hungover, or distracted with a new girlfriend.

So! What can a girl in a tiny studio apartment do?

1) I'm fish sitting a blue fighting fish named Johnny. I spent an alarming portion of my day putting different cups and bowls in his tank to watch him pick fights with / explore.

2) Cleaning. Vacuuming, taking out the recycling, beating the rug, etc.

3) And finally, the most fulfilling: micro gardening. Little succulents are a great choice for a city apartment life as they don't need a great deal of.. well, anything. You can lock em up in your bathroom, leave them in the sun, forget to water them ,ect, and they hold up pretty well. Plus, they're awfully cute little guys and very space efficient.

A few days ago I bought some and, inspired by the jars I was discovering while taking out the recycling, repotted them and decorated the more dreary corners of my apartment.

Just remember to stick a piece of burlap or a layer of stones in the bottom to help with filtration so they don't get to saturated. 

Friday, June 8, 2012

How to B the Worst Kind of Guy

Today I was terrified to step out of the credit union and into the direct path of B. Considering that we live on the same street, it's a wonder that it doesn't happen more often, but, being that he's a hermit with psychological problems, I can usually come and go as I please from my rustic street without fearing horrible encounters such as these. 

I wasn't sure if he was soar that I'd at last deleted him from Facebook.. or if he'd even noticed. I didn't know what to expect. He was as slimy and as infused with cigarette smoke as ever and had been walking home with another, creepy looking guy. To my horror he introduced me as his ex, then insisted he go along with me to the bakery, where I was going on a daily baguette mission.

I was friendly and upbeat. He was a total slime ball. "You are looking good!" He tells me, "not fat or ugly." He asks me if I am still with the same man. I say yes and he is very surprised. "Have you been fidel?" I shoot him a shocked look. "No, you havent!" He says with a greasy smile. "I'm sure!"

I'm boiling inside but I shrug it off. Later he actually has the gaul to advice me to "take the pill" and to suggest that TMI is probably a chauvinist who wants me only for baby making. (dear god.) When I finally ditch him to duck into the bakery, he ices the cake by saying "call me if you want sex," and winking. How dare he? First off, what business is my private life of his and how could he possibly think it would be appropriate to talk to me in such a way when he knows I'm in a committed relationship? How could I resist but give him a horrified and disgusted expression before turning away. Quelle connard! 

Honestly how rude and crass. Ugh. Just ugh.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Stepping Out: Flower Shorts!

The heat has once again settled in to Dijon, and, though a year in France has rendered me way too fat to do so, I'm desperate to don shorts. And what luck, flower prints are in. I picked up these flowery little guys from HnM and am loving them. Now it's just time to do some.. I dunno, squats or something. 

Today I wore them with an embroidered tank top, a crochet fedora, and some white lace flats. 

Its been like, a year since I've done Steppin' Out Saturday. When I Fight for the Phoque went anonymous it made posting outfit photos difficult. But Polyvore more or less solves the problem :)

Friday, June 1, 2012

This Marks This, That Marks That

Today is a milestone in one or two ways. Importantly, today is the one year anniversary since I met TMI on a drunken rowdy night in the bar below my apartment. Now, one year later, he sits reclined in christmasy red boxers on the bed beside me studying for oenology exams. In one year his presence in my heart has spread like a drop of ink in a pool of water. I'm glad to love him and to be loved- but it hasn't been easy, and our obstacles aren't over yet. 

The two of us are going to Hawaii in July, (Hurray!) to meet my family and spend 5 weeks in my island paradise enjoying warm sand, soft kitties, and green mountains. yyyeeeeessssss. Then, I face two months away from my cozy as he returns to France and I stay in the pacific for my brother's wedding in October. Then I am plagued by a great internal debate.

To be blunt, I've thrown in the towel on this wrestling match with France. No work visa, no close friends, and no mobility has crippled my optimistic outlook and left me a depressed hermit. Two month aways from TMI will be really, really hard on me; (the last five weeks apart were like squirming on a bed of nails) and then I'm faced with the decision to stay in n the US, get a life,  and wash France and TMI out of my hair, or, return to the dreary existence here in Dijon for the sake of love. TMI has one more year of study, after which he will be free. But can I handle one more year of this? Seriously? Lets face it guys, I'm a wimp.

All this aside, tonight we're going out for wine and charcuterie and this morning I gifted him a watch. I thought it was the best thing ever, I spent months trying to pick the thing, but after all he doesn't like it and I have to return it.. Bearing the scarlet mark of a failed gift giver. 

Today was the day I also broke the ice into the first preliminary forays into my novel, a biographical work of my grandmother's life. It was strangely terrifying. My collection of her journals, tapes, and photographs have been perched on my bookshelf for months- and even though I've known it was time, a part of me has been curled up and cowering in my inner corners. I'm just a lost girl- and she's a giant. Confronting her is intimidating. But, I finally came to terms that I'd be damned if her story doesn't get told, and I'll wager she'd be right damned too. So that settled it.  

Now I need a shower. It's warm out there!

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