Saturday, January 9, 2010

This Week In France

Field reporter Milam here. The first full week of the year has come and gone. At moments it seemed like I was just surviving it, despite a small number of hours actually spent working. Tuesday I had to get up at the ungodly hour of 5:30 a.m. since I needed to get baby to the sitter’s by seven and myself to work by 8. Remi’s car was acting up so he didn’t want to risk taking her and breaking down in the cold.

Oh, the cold. It has come back after our brief week of “mild” temperatures. And Thursday morning there was snow on the ground again. I drove to work in the dark (it’s still dark here till 8 a.m. or so) and fog. The snow is still a novelty to me and I’ve enjoyed pretending I’m from Massachusetts or one of those other areas of the world where they routinely deal with snow. Do the people from these parts feel superior to the others because they can navigate through snow? After a while you want to get out and there’s a sense of pride of overcoming the elements (as long as the roads are sanded, that is).

We had to get out Tuesday anyway for Juliette’s second dose of the famous vaccine. She cried again, of course, but at least now it’s over. The French government wishes they could say the same. They’re dealing with some major fall-out since they ordered over 90 million doses of the vaccine for their population of about 60 million people. Why? Because at the time they ordered, the recommendations were for a two-dose system, whereas now that’s only the case for children, not adults. Plus, they didn’t count on the French being so very anti-vaccine. Now the government is trying to sell some of the excess doses (apparently Egypt has bought some) and hopes to cancel the remaining orders they have with pharmaceutical companies. Ditto for all the face masks they ordered.

They must be glad there are other news stories this week, like the annual winter sales period. Along with July it’s one of the only two official times when stores can really mark down items considerably (or so they say). Feeling the contradictory need to buy in order to save money, we ventured out this morning in caps, scarves and gloves to check out the deals. We were a bit disappointed not to find super savings, but we did get a few things. Some ballerina style house slippers for me, some clothes for Juliette and a coat for Remi.


(The outfit's still a bit big on her now.)

And that’s all the news that’s fit to print.


Crystal said...

love the slippers! Juliette's hair looks really dark in the photo but I know it's super light in reality.

I havent ventured out to the sales yet because it's even worse for crowds here in Paris. I don't need anything in particular, so I think I'll just avoid the stress of over-crowded stores and long lines.

It's cold here too and I do admit that I smirk to myself when I see drivers freaking out on the snowy roads or French people complaining about walking on icy sidewalks. In Canada, it's just part of life and I don't even notice the cold or snow that much!

Lindle said...

Okay, you snow snobs! It all comes down to what a region is USED TO. Like the city of Atlanta only has one or two sanding trucks to protect the streets from ice! You can't hardly find chains for tires in the South! I do agree that those who regularly experience frigid, snowy winters may have stronger winter constitutions. Now try surviving 105 degrees with extreme humidity!
I love Juliette's new purple/lilac outfit and your lovely slippers. Hope everyone is keeping warm over there. She looks like she is playing "phone" with the blocks. Funny girl.
Love you,

Mil said...

No, I'm not a snow snob and never will be. I just had this thing growing up about wanting to live in the North and walk home from school in snow. Southerners definitely have something to brag about, too. We don't wilt when it's over a 100°F. Or at least we know how not to show it!

Lindle said...

I get it. I lived in Germany for a number of years as I was growing up. I remember vividly walking to the elementary school with the snow over my head where it had been plowed to the side. It is really, really fun to play in. And you DO get accustomed to it. Now, when you live Down Heah in the South--snow is a novelty and a nuisance! Hardly anyone knows how to drive in it. Or walk in it. We are snow wimps. But we love to watch it fall and crystallize our trees.