Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Des enfants gâtés

Might as well write a little update while I have Internet! My modem has been pushing me closer and closer to insanity for the last four or five days. It works, it doesn't work, it works, it pretends to work, you bring up your home page, it stops working, then starts again, only for a minute, though, but enough for you to think that it's going to work after all..and then it stops working. Again. I almost threw it at one point last night, but then thought that probably would make the whole problem much worse. Calling Freebox would mean at least a few weeks of waiting for an overpriced technician to come to my apartment only to tell me he doesn't have the part needed. I've got you figured out, France! So I gently set the modem down and tried again and again. Since my TV, Internet and phone are all connected, not having any form of communication had me (could be has at any moment..) going crazy. I can only read so many books, listen to so many Advanced Spanish CDs (I did an entire course this weekend out of boredom) and clean so much before I want to just chill out and browse my favorite time-wasting sites. Don't judge, it's been cold outside..

So, now I'm on "vacation" again, but the only good thing about this week is that I don't have to wake up at 6am. I'm still watching the two boys during the day, and good God my patience is disappearing quickly. Yesterday, the older boy decided it would be fun to hide under the couch cushions for 45 minutes while his brother and I desperately searched for him. We looked everywhere. Upstairs, downstairs, in closets, under blankets--everywhere. I called his friends looking for him, offered candy if he came out, threatened death, etc. Nothing. (I should mention that we weren't even playing hide-and-seek--he just decided to hide for kicks. FUN!) I gotta give him props for his silent dedication, but I was literally dialing his mother's cellphone number to tell her I had lost her son when I saw the cat sniffing the couch and realized that his "super bonne cachette" was right in front of my eyes. He was squeezed in the little space between the back of the couch and the cushions. And he thought it was funny. Hilarious. I was not amused, not at all. I told his dad, and he was quick to brush it off and say "No, he must've just thought it was a game. He didn't know you weren't joking." Riiiiight. That's what it was. A 45-minute game. Because my yelling, running up and down the stairs, looking down from the terrace to the ground (part of me half hoping he'd be laying on the ground below with a broken leg) and frantic behavior was a GAME! That's it!

I seriously considered quitting today. These kids are spoiled and impolite and NEVER NEVER NEVER OBEY. I went off on them today, yelling out all kinds of mean things in English, telling them how they were the worst children I'd ever met, and so spoiled, etc. They get whatever they want, and just do not know how to cope when something doesn't go their way! Especially the older boy, who will be 11 in a few months. I'm surprised he's not still in diapers and doesn't suck his thumb at night. He cries all the time, as in real sobbing tears; stops in the middle of the street to sulk, throws a fit when he doesn't get what he wants--apparently I signed up to watch a toddler! I almost want to suggest to his parents that he go and get a hearing test because it seems like everything I say falls on deaf ears. When someone asks you a question, to your face, and uses your first name, in an interrogative tone, don't you usually respond? Guess this doesn't apply to him. Yet he's smart. He loves to play chess, is very creative, and when he's not being a big brat, can be sincere and somewhat nice. ("Nice" being a very loose term.) If he put half the time he spends making my life hell towards learning English, he'd be able to have a real conversation with me. But, as it stands, the younger boy--who just turned 7--can say more in English than his older brother. He at least tries, whereas the older one flat out refuses to say anything in English unless I bribe him with being able to play the Wii longer than he's generally allowed. Candy does nothing for these boys as bribes because hello! Spoiled kids always have candy and cake in the house!

And to top it all off, the father is a total creeper. Ugh. I'm in Paris, I'm in Paris, I'm in Paris..I remind myself of this often. I have a lot to be grateful for, I know. But unless I'm offered a ridiculous amount of money, I do not ever want to watch kids again after this year until I have my own years from now. I'm done. (I'm pretty sure I said this a few years ago, too..)

Moving on..can't wait 'til this weekend. Week two of my vacation, completely child free. I'm headed to Germany, as I mentioned before. No big plans, probably just hanging out with my friends, taking some scenic walks, soaking up some German, spending a significant amount of time in bookstores and cafés.

A few pictures from this weekend. I had a lot of time on my hands! I found this little gem of a park on a random street. That's what I love about Paris: Just when I think I know a neighborhood fairly well, I come across little tucked-away treasures.
Makes me think of Notting Hill
Afternoon stroll
"The time to read" ...if only I had more of it!
Birth control.

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