samedi 24 mai 2008

School's out forever.

It's really crappy that it has come to this. My computer crashed about 5 weeks before I parted ways with Paris, thus rendering my blog a hopeless and neglected mess-- a mere ghost of documentation, for archival purposes only. Which hurts because I really wanted this blog and for it to serve its purpose as a portal for my reflections, tales, and sentiments as they pertained to living in France. I recently left Paris behind, but the saga continues to unfold given that much of it remains untold while the rest is still happening even as I write in New Jersey and contemplate what exactly France and French have to do with my life, my life as it pertains to simply being.

Thursday, April 17 was my last day of school. I took almost the entirety of my first class and asked them to come up with worthwhile things I could see and do in order to savor these last 3 weeks in Paris. This I passed off as a lesson plan, a pretty damn good one at that thanks to Jessi. I thought it to be decent since the students could volunteer information on the places that they know and like. They can both teach me and challenge themselves by relating the information in English. The ideal was for the students to exercise some level of ingenuity with thoughtful and sincere suggestions that reflect their individual personalities and avoid the stereotypical tourist locales that I've already visited 100+ times. I wanted to know about parks and streets and lakes.

Perhaps the assignment was not adequately explained. Or maybe a lot of kids are just stuck inside of kistchy images of the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower. They're still young. I'm still young. Up to my ears in tourist information(the good and the bad), I still somehow managed to spend my last weeks drinking the same vodka tonics and beer at the same bars and lounging around some of the stunning parks that Paris has to offer. I'm a bum.

Jessi and I had lovingly prepared choco krispie treats for our classes the night before. The peanut butter batch was avoided like the plague by the first class. The French don't really do peanut butter. The second teacher that I work with is a total sweetheart. In addition to being super sweet and helpful, she wears dark pencil around her eyes, which is then further intesified by vibrant dyed red hair complete with a different-shade-of-red hairpiece extension that dangles down her back in ponytail formation. What a kind soul!

Well, the last class embraced the peanut butter with no reservations. Evidently a more daring and adventurous bunch, their suggestions weren't bad either. Sure, go ahead, throw a ball around the room, it's my last day! Everything's ok.

That was the last time I saw Mennecy.

Empty classroom after my last class.

Little street in Mennecy.

The local medieval church, every small town's gotta have one.

Old man carrying a basket, they do this in Mennecy. There are also walls everywhere, and here we see the point that used to mark the entrace to the town.

Just a house.

More lil' stuff.

On my route from the station to the school.

Another Mennecy house.