When pictures become words

Today I want to share my musings: expressing my sensitive side through pictures and words.  Continue reading

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Frog legs tales [ 3 year anniversary living in France ]

Life in France is similar to a rollercoaster adventure. You’re you’re all excited to ride on, but when you get close to the top, you suddenly want to go back on land. Before you know it, you experience simultaneous agony & pure joy.

Over the past 3 years, I’ve been on many roller coaster rides. Some were like gleeful, others were chilling. All in all, the entire adventure allowed me to cultivate a deep appreciation for their beautiful culture and fascinating life philosophy. But it also brought me close to issues such as racism, terrorism, political and social insecurity, which I prefer not to discuss here.

[ I have documented some random impressions my first year here and my second year here. ]

As the saga continues, my personal story is unfolding and evolving. My language skills are progressing and my encounters are becoming more and more diverse.

Over the past year, I went to convivial weddings in beautiful vineyards, visited famous “châteaux”, drank wine on the beach, sang in French while holding my lover’s hand at a Gerald de Palmas concert, watched a whole lot of Peppa Pig in French, celebrated birthdays and indulged into fascinating lectures at the local library.

Regardless of the number of baguettes, macarons or crème brûlée I eat, I am still Romanian at heart. But “la vie en rose” is sweet and oh, so chic…

[ this is purely my personal story ]

People who count

I grew up with my grandparents in tiny apartment, in a small Romanian city. My parents lived 1-hour away, in the “big city”, where they were pursuing an education/working. There weren’t too many kids in my neighborhood. Most of my buddies were my grandma’s friends. These ladies came over regularly for coffee & gossip – no text messages or emails, just pure presence. I used to love listening to their conversations about food, work, fashion, husbands, etc.

Lula was my grandmother’s friend. She lived with her husband Stere, in a small apartment that smelt like stew & chocolate. She had green, teary plants and she taught me to eat slowly and enjoy food. She also held my hand and told me stories with her candid and gentle voice. She was delicately thin, dyed her hair red and loved reading. I never really knew why she didn’t have her own kids, but she was instinctively caring and loving towards others.

Her friendship with my grandmother had their ups and downs, but I loved being dropped off at Lula’s house during hot summer afternoons. She let me draw, took me to the park and let me skim through her 80’s fashion magazines.

I was 19 last time I saw her. She was weak and her ugliness was so beautiful to me. Everything about me had changed, but her home was the same: same furniture, decorations, same TV, same musky smell. We sat on her living room couch, surrounded by her plants and the quietness of her home. She opened a drawer full of the drawings and scribbles I have made as a child. Emotions ran through my body and felt flooding love for this lady who cared for me and kept my memories.

I don’t think of her as often as I should, but today I’m paying homage to Lula. Most of us are touched by special people in the most unexpected ways. Lula wasn’t family, but she was the pure expression of unconditional love. I miss her, miss my grandmother, miss my childhood… I am thankful for the memories.

Parenting in bird language

Spring-summery days are amazing. Magic happens when everything turns into color and life steps up to a faster pace. It’s the time of the year when I usually let my guards down and turn on my sensors: I pay special attention to the rebirth of nature, to the rays of sun embracing my pale skin and to the roaring sounds of agitation.

Just a couple of weeks ago, I experienced a totally unexpected surprise: 2 little birds decided to lay their nest and raise their new family right above my window sill. I know it might sound a little childish, even uninteresting, but observing this little family of birds, reminded me how beautiful and precious life as a parent is.  Continue reading