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A parking tip



 
A Parking Tip

 

The real school holidays are about to begin: The summer school that the kids have been going to a few times a week finishes on Friday.

This means that there is only a few weeks left to get organised for rentree: DD6 has brought her list home for the stationery supplies required and we’ve started to think about what clubs and societies all three might like to start getting involved in to get us through the winter months. DD6 wants to dance, DD5 wants to have singing lessons and DS3 just wants to hunt for dinosaurs.

But before then, we have three weeks to fill. To be fair, the kids would probably, quite happily, go to the beach all day every day. We’ve managed to go four times since school finished, but each time we have forgotten something. The first time it was the buckets and spades; the second was the arm bands; the third was tissues, despite DS3 having a bit of a cold, so we had to use his socks; and the third time was the blankets to sit on.

Fortunately, I had a couple of yoga mats in the car and was pleased to discover that not only are they more comfortable, but they don’t start curling up with the slightest breeze and they are considerably easier to shake the sand off at the end of the trip.

The beach we go to is a man-made one, where a hole and its surroundings have been filled with sand. Subsequently, unless you are close to the water edge, as soon as the kids go in the water, they can’t be seen.

Also, I don’t like sitting in the full sun, so tend to sit up on the banks under the trees. From there, I can watch the kids play and even when they go in the water I can see the tops of their baseball caps.

But inevitably, like when you go to the cinema, within minutes of getting comfy someone plonks themself in front of me and then plants a big umbrella to make sure the view is completely obscured.

The times we’ve been, there have been more English people there than French and it has taught me a new trick. When choosing a parking space, don’t necessarily pick the space nearest to the beach, or one in the shade; park where French people have parked.

Many a time I have found a shaded spot and felt pretty pleased with myself that we won’t be going back to a suffocatingly hot car, only for the shade to move with the sun. Local knowledge, it seems, extends to knowing where best to put the car so it spends as much time as possible in the shade. You’re welcome!

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There are many good things about being a (sort of) bilingual family: like when I am trying to explain some of the wonderful anomalies of the English language. DD6 is starting to read in English too, which throws up many questions for her, especially when faced with words that can be pronounced in two ways: read; live, record etc.

We often take these words and find it easier to translate the sentence into French, so she can better understand the difference.

And then there are the laughs it gives us; like when DS3 was counting in French, while his sisters sat close by playing: “Un, deux, trios, cinq, six...”

Me: What happened to the ‘quatre’?

DD5: It got run over!

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I was thinking the other day, when I was younger we had a session at the careers office and were given some cards that asked a series of questions. At the end, it said what career path would best suit you: I got locksmith and long distance lorry driver. I haven’t done either, although jumping in a big lorry and driving into the distance has appealed to me on many occasions.

What were you told you should do... and did you?

 
A. Mommyness

(Mum's the word cover picture was drawn by one of my children)

If you have any tales of parenthood which you would like to share send them to - 

editor@englishinformerinfrance.com
 
 


 

 
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