Monday, February 13, 2006


A pretty day, a little snow. I went up to the Croix du Dan, to try out using my SLR camera with real film! While I understand, in theory, how to correctly work my camera, I always feel like I'm blindly spinning the dials for each picture. Not surprisingly, a good number are dim or incorrectly exposed. Until I get better, I'm also bringing along my digital camera.

The first sign says that this is a tourist site, and that nomads are prohibited. I can only assume that the nomads are gypsies, who really do stay around here. There's a gypsy camp just a kilometer outside of town -- it's just a small trailer park. Some gypsy groups are nomadic, travelling around France as seasonal workers. The one next to Poligny has been there the whole time I have. They even have one shared mailbox. I was told to "be careful when you walk by....They wouldn't do anything to you, of course. But you should be careful. Oh, not that they're dangerous!" That's some good, solid, French advice if I've ever heard it. Every time I do walk by, which is relatively regularly, it seems like a really normal little trailer park. There's kids outside playing, someone working on a car, people yelling at each other inside the homes.
The first time I walked by, I saw the cutest little dog. He ran out to me on the street, barking, "Arf! Arf! Arf!," like he was reading it off a page. A car came around the corner, and it seemed for a second that it was going to hit the tiny (entirely unafraid) dog in the middle of the street. I waved my arms and yelled at the dog to go home. The car stopped. It was safe. Then some girl ran out of the trailer, scooped up the puppy as it ran towards her, and yelled, "Shut up!" to me. Some stereotypes are universal, it seems.

Other things:
1. A new girl just moved in tonight. I haven't spoken to her much yet. My immediate reaction is grumpiness towards this development, because I like to be alone! Get off my porch, you kids!
She seems really nice, though, and has all sorts of crunchy, healthy food in the fridge. Yes, this does make me more apt to like her. I hope she'll be nice and help me practice my french. Maybe she'll even be a friend! I hope so, as this means I can no longer have breakfast and coffee while wearing a towel, fresh out of the shower. That's quite a sacrifice.
(added: she also apparently bought new antidisinfectant spray and has sprayed everything down. Apparently my shower isn't clean enough for her. Bitch.)

2. This morning, I got a call from a number I didn't recognize. When I listened to the message, the only thing I could understand was "flowers." Flowers! Whatever the message is, it's got to be good if the person keeps talking about flowers.

Except, maybe if the message was like this: "Hi, I was just calling to find out what sort of flowers you want on your grave. Because I'm coming over to kill out, but I thought you might like to choose your flowers before you go."

So, I guess this makes today EVEN BETTER, since that wasn't the message that I recieved. It was, in fact, the shop in town telling me that I had flowers waiting for me. I did! It was true! Jim sent them to me! Aren't they pretty?

3. I'm going to Spain! On Wednesday! We're on a two week holiday right now, so Catherine and I are going to spend a week in Barcelona. I don't think I mentioned that before, so... surprise!
Catherine found a cheap round-trip flight and I found an inexpensive hostel. The temperature today was in the 60's, so I've got my fingers and toes crossed that the weather stays nice.

Um, that means I've got to go. I actually spent most of today watching the Olymic snowboarding and finishing my green sweater....almost finishing. I'm working on the neckband right now.
Anyway, this means I've got to pack and put together all of my tourist details. Like, now.

So have a good week! Hopefully blogger will allow me to load pictures when I get back...


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