The pile I'm most proud of is my pile of batteries. I call it the "WTF am I gonna do with all these goddamn batteries" pile. My second favorite pile is the "miscellaneous pieces of paper" pile. My organizational skills know no limits!
We have received the bad news that Alex's employer will not ship alcohol in our official air and sea shipment containers. Devastation -- the wine can't come with us. We now must drink several cases of wine purchased in the Loire Valley in the next several weeks. If you're in town, come on over. Arrive thirsty.
In other news, Lucien's teacher called us in for a meeting recently. Allow me to illustrate --
La Maîtresse first requested a meeting with us at the beginning of October. She made it very clear both Alex and I were to attend this meeting, that she needed to address us both. She wouldn't give us a clue as to what the meeting was about. This made us feel very nervous --
When we left for Croatia, "the meeting" was still hanging over our heads. The more we pondered the reason, the more frazzled we got --
After vacation, we finally agreed on a time. Alex and I hugged a lot the day of the meeting. We reassured each other they weren't allowed to physically hurt us, and no matter what Lucien had done to necessitate this meeting, we would be gone soon and wouldn't have to face the anger too much longer --
...and suddenly Alex had Javier Bardem hair...
La Maîtresse is a stern, serious woman. Remember her? --
She sat us down and started her talk. She began by telling us she'd heard about Lucien from other teachers before he was assigned to her class. She'd heard he had a hard time sitting still, that he was loud, that he played too rough, that he delighted in breaking the rules. She'd heard all these things and more before he even stepped into her classroom.
Alex and I steeled ourselves for the worst. We saw where the conversation was going and it was nowhere good.
But then La Maîtresse said this --
"I've had Lucien in my class for several months now and I honestly have no idea what those other people are talking about."
CAN I GET A "HELL YEAH!" UP IN HERE??? IT'S TIME TO CELEBRATE PEOPLE COME ON OVER!! (Seriously, we have a ton of wine.)
La Maîtresse continued. She said Lucien is well-behaved in class. He listens to her. He does all his work and does it well. He's gotten into trouble here and there, sure, but nothing major. She wanted to meet with us because she wanted us to know that while we may have gotten some bad reports about Lucien in the past, she has nothing but good things to say about him. She thinks he's a great kid, a funny kid, a sweet kid, and she will miss him when we leave.
It was about that time Alex blurted out incredulously, "Are we still talking about Lucien???"
You done good, kid
It's not that we don't know Lucien is a good, sweet, funny kid -- we know it better than anybody. We just haven't gotten many French education officials to agree with us. But then suddenly there she was -- the teacher we thought was the meanest and the most horrible, cheering for our boy all along. (We suspect Lucien behaves in her class because she scares the sh*t out of him, but no matter -- at least we know he can do it.)
We gave Lucien big hugs and told him how proud we were of him. His smile took up his entire face. We headed out of the school with our arms all wrapped around each other because we were all so proud and happy.
But then, suddenly, "Buzzkill Man" stepped out of the shadows, stood directly in front of us and started gesturing wildly --
Buzzkill Man monitors the kids in the lunchroom and on the playground. He wanted us to know Lucien is horrible, always doing de betise and never listening to him or following the rules. Buzzkill Man glared and waved his arms and really seemed to feel quite strongly about the whole thing.
For a minute, we felt like this --
Then Alex and I looked at each other, nodded, thanked Buzzkill Man for letting us know, and walked past him. He was not going to ruin the moment for us; he was especially not going to ruin the moment for Lucien. Then we went to get ice cream even though it's November.
One step at a time, family, one step at a time....
OK, I'm outta here. I have to go figure out what to do with my goddamn batteries, plus those five cases of wine aren't going to drink themselves.