It's clementine season and I can't get enough of them. Perfectly portable, delicious, and cheap. Cheap being the important part. Still waiting on that paycheck, but at this point it's like a far-off dream. Going to the grocery store is a combination of arithmetic and exercise--adding up my expenses and walking back and forth to take back things I can live without. Bare minimums is the name of the game. I hate it. To make matters worse, a lot of other assistants in my region have now been paid. Why not me? Who knows. My guess is it's a lotto that the Ministry of Education plays and apparently I did not win the first round. Frustrating to say the least.
School's been going okay. Somedays, I feel like I've made hardly any progress at all with the kids. They can be rowdy, disrespectful, and annoying. But other days, I'll ask a question, and I'll get a genuine response--in English--and I feel like I'm doing my job, or that at least I've kept their attention long enough to tell me I like tennis. They're mostly good kids, excited to learn English. It's just always those few little troublemakers that make class hard for everyone else.
In my free time, I've been catching up on TV series online (The Office is my fave), watching (and desperately trying to understand) DW-TV (German news channel), and reading Julia Child's book, My Life in France. And of course, taking pictures on my strolls around the city.
Found this little gem while trekking through southern Paris. A giant hanging out of an elementary school. There was a sign next to it that said the school spent a year making it and eventually assembling it out the window.
I love that even though it's 2009, the city still has parts of it that haven't changed in a long, long time. It gives Paris that authentic charm that I love.
I ran into a brocante, a sort of rubbish sale in the street. There's everything--fabulous art deco furniture, light fixtures, old magazines, mannequins..
The French love to make up their own English words, like le fooding, roughly translated as cuisine. Also, just for fun, note the spread-eagle woman, upper left. In public. Welcome to France!
Gotta go make some lesson plans, ahh the life of an English assistant!
More pictures can be seen here.