Things that are too long for my blogs but that I don't want to forget:
1) I love the French language. I've decided to put learning a second language on my bucket list. Of course running a 5K by age 60 was on there too and it's not going to happen. But there are words in French I love...such as voila! In English we use it for a surprise or something big. But in French it is a part of normal conversation...it means..."Well there it is. Or,"It is what it is." It feels good on my tongue. I should learn Spanish in the world we live in, but I'm in love with French. Not sure I'd ever get the throat thing though...you know the one we do if we are trying to get crap out of our throat but the one they do that sounds beautifully awesome?
2) Jon and I have been together for more than two years, although it feels like much longer, in a good way of course. He has this little idiosyncrasy of always saving food. For instance if there are 2 bites left on his plate, he will put it in the fridge for "later" which usually turns into me dumping it after a few days when it is cold and hard. He still does it and now it makes me chuckle, knowing the outcome. So, in every restaurant in which we have eaten on this trip, he puts the left over bread in his pocket. I have rolled my eyes more than once, but actually we have snacked on that bread at off-times. So who is laughing now??
3) We talked to a couple from Brussels yesterday. He is a radiologist and has been to Chicago many times for conventions. A very serious man without much humor. But they did tell us that Brussels has never totally recovered from the attacks awhile back. It's sad. We all agreed however, that it cannot restrict us from traveling and living our lives, otherwise the terrorists have truly won. We agreed that a fatalistic approach is necessary right now in order to truly enjoy life. Apparently elections happen all the time in Belgium and they had much sympathy for the state of ours.
3) On the way back to the hotel yesterday, we noticed a couple taking a picture of the yacht anchored in the harbor. I jokingly said, " Oh you like my boat!", realizing that if they didn't speak English they would just ignore me. Instead, they said, "Oh wow! Where are you from?" When we replied that we were from Minnesota, they told us they were from Seattle. Pleasantries about both cities were
exchanged. We then found out that they had just retired from running a home-based daycare for 30 years. They bought one-way tickets to Europe ....will travel until they feel the need to go home. Can you imagine?? At first I thought that it would be cool, but as I thought of my own personality, I'm not sure I could handle it. I need a time frame I think. Plus, I couldn't imagine not being around my kids and grandkids for an indefinite time. They would be fine, but we would be lonely. Helping out with
their care is part of our identity these days.
4) People are so much the same everywhere. Gatherings of women, although I can't understand the conversation, seem to be just talking and laughing about the same things we do in the US.
5) This is truly a global world. We need to act as such. That the US is not on the metric system as we were promised when I was growing up, is just stupid. Our "American Pride" is ultimately holding us back. Our infrastructure of mass transit is way behind the rest of the world, and we don't seem to care. We have traveled way more than 2000 miles and have paid less than $200 a piece for 1st class travel, without a care. Yesterday, our long trip from Aix to Portovenere cost us each $45. The young couple we talked to from London while we were in Barcelona, remarked that they can't believe we
don't have a national health plan. I'm It truly amazes them. They also were amazed that our country
is still so racially divided. Yes it is, but we have seen some ugly graffiti about immigrants while here in Italy.
6) What world are we leaving to my grandchildren? Both environmentally, socially and politically? Why are we going backwards in all directions??? Time will tell.