I was rummaging through my room a few minutes ago and I came across something that made me stop. Firstly, let me set the mood: I’ve been watching random films and sorting through photos, and listening at this present moment to Estonia’s Eurovision entry for 1997, Maarja-Liie Ilus singing Keelatud maa. With this music playing in the background, I found something that was mailed to me last year, during the always depressing time of my life: my birthday.

I turned 22, and a few days before I found something in the mail from a most-un-expected source. It was a simple envelope, with a single piece of paper on the inside and a page taken from the infamous Rick Steeve’s Survival Guide for Europe. For those of who know me well, or at least enough about me to connect the dots, this was the book that we used in the Cinque Terre. The page that was taken out was the map of the region with a bunch of little comments written in, all of which made me smile and laugh a little to myself.

And so now you know what I found whilst looking through my things. With the harmonic structures of the music, the nostalgic picture sorting, and these documents I find myself on my bed in tears reminissing about what my life is like and what I’m doing with it. I guess the only silver lining with that whole situation is that I’m someone’s backup plan should they be desperate at age 30. Words that I will never forget: “If you’re still alone when you’re 30, give me a call and we’ll work it out.”

For those of who do not know, age thirty for people like me is basically death and/or old age.

 

The restaurant that we found was entitled “Le Tajine” and can be found in the 11è arrondissement. As the name suggests, it’s a Moroccan restaurant that serves, as a specialty, Tajines. I decided to try it and it was delicious, even though the waiter was old and refused to bring us water after three times ordering. Apparently it’s against the law to not serve water, so I was getting ready to quote some outlandish sentence to claim that we have a constitutional right to having water, blah blah blah.

The food came all steamy and in this amazing ceramic plate which was taken off and my chicken, which was sautéed in green olives and lemon, was still bubbling and far too hot to to eat. We enjoyed each other’s company. The couple in the corner were speaking English since she was French and he was German. She was trashed by desert time, after their third bottle of wine, and we made a bet that she’d get laid by her German boyfriend 10 minutes from getting home. The other couple next to us kept going outside to smoke, like every 5 minutes, and then they go into some philosophical debate with the owner’s family about the treatment of men. This was incited because the girl jokingly hit the guy on the head cause he said something rude. Justified yes, but then the old waiter freaked out and said that one must respect men and blah blah blah. Quite the over-masculine culture, clearly. Go feminism! 

We shared a desert, which incited suspicious looks from the infamous waiter. I basically gave him the evil eye and continued to share the sorbet, as we were much too full to have our own. I paid and we exited after being attacked with some sort of cleaner on our hands made of oil. Thank God the couple in the corner left first or we would never have known to hold our hands out of the lady that came out with the “tea” trolly. We went out, and so our next adventure began. We wanted alcohol, and to put it into really simple terms, we wanted to get drunk, fast.

We found a little corner store around the corner, slaved over our wine choice, then discovered that neither of us have a bottle opener and decided to thus go with champagne. Good choice, and some chocolate waffle thingies. We paid up and went out, turned the corner and then the drama happened. We were just minding our own business, and these two guys on the corner with a dog asked me the following, the entirety of the conversation can be found below, Translated.

Man: Do you have 0.30€ please?
Osky: No sorry, I haven’t any change.
[200m advance]
Man: Wow, what a fuckin’ tight ass, yeah!
Markus: What’d he say?
Osky: You don’t wanna know!
[300m advance]
Man: So are you the girl?
Osky: Fuck off.
Markus: What’s he saying?
[500m advance, we hear something, turn and see the man running after us with the dog coming also]
[man grabs onto my hips and grinds himself into me]

Man: Oh yeah baby, you like that don’t you?
Osky: Get off me, fuck off.
[man comes in front of me, with the dog jumping on me, grabs my hips again and starts to feel me up]
Man: Oh shit, look at your eyes, they are so beautiful, you know I love guys, and I know you want me to just turn you around and let me fuck you up your tight hole!
Osky: Get the fuck off me.
[Osky pushes guy away and he goes to Markus who quickly pushes him]
[Man comes back to me, grabs my hips, takes one hand and gropes me, and the other on my ass]
[Osky decides to grab the guy’s shoulders, kick him in the nuts, hard, and push him into the middle of the street]

Osky: Dégage!!
[Exit Osky & Markus, left alleyway to the hotel]

Upon returning to the safety of the hotel, Markus asked me what the hell happened. I recounted what was going on, and he told me “Wow I never believed you when you said you were afraid of getting raped and get hit on by creeps, but now I know you’re being serious.” This is the second time that someone has said that they didn’t believe me, witnessed me being treated like shit, and then apologised for doubting me. Listen to me people, I’m dead serious!

In order to celebrate my victory, and possibly the death by oncoming traffic of the guy and his dog, we got drunk fast looking at scandalous pictures from Markus’ trip. We went to sleep in a daze, woke up and got our shit together to get to the train station and seem me off. It was a lovely day, I got some photos for my administrative stuff, and then we had our goodbyes. As always the train station was packed and travelers were in a panic from the strikes. Homeless people, beggars, and musicians in the metro are in full force Monday’s, for all those who didn’t know! 

I got back home and fell asleep as I was tired, cold, and wanted to curl up and die. So what is the message from this trip? The recap is as follows:

  1. Osky hates Paris
  2. Osky, however, likes the shopping in Paris
  3. Osky finally saw the Louvre
  4. Osky spent the weekend with Markus
  5. Osky hates the negative attention he gets
  6. Osky is still afraid of being raped
  7. Osky needs to stop getting hit on for no reason by creeps
  8. Osky can do no better than homeless people, drunkards, or dodgy characters
  9. Osky needs a taser

I’m glad that we all agree…

 

A few weekends ago I embarked on a huge journey and exciting activities that I will describe below. It was a fun, busy, and crazy filled week and weekend and I can’t help but recount my adventures to the general public, that is to say, those of who actually read and comment on my blog.

And so it began with meeting my fellow younger colleagues at our medical appointment a few weeks ago. We were molested, violated, and pretty much put into numerous awkward positions during our medical visit, and in bitching and complaining about it we came to the realisation that we should party together. And thus we decided that since some of them lived in a school that was large, and had plenty of space to play hide-and-seek, we would go to Vire in order to have said fun. If thou don’t know, Vire is a small town in the south-west corner of Calvados, on the border of La Manche and L’Orne.

And so, between all this planning for the story and such I learned that Markus, yes the infamous and ever-loveable Markus, would be visiting Paris, and of course wanted me to join him on his scandalous adventures. And so since the dates seemed to coincide I decided to go to Vire, and the following day continue on to Paris in order to meet up with Markus and have ourselves lovely-a-time.

And so the day came to go to Vire, I had class until 17:30 and the last train leaving for Argentan connecting to Vire was at 18.30 or so. This meant that I needed to boot my ass from my school and get to the train station with all of my blankets and shit (including mass amounts of alcohol). I made it in time, but the train was like sardines. I was wedged between the window and some Québecois people who were trying to sound intellectual, but their conversations weren’t going anywhere but in circles and consisted of phrases such as the following (translation of course): “I think that it’s a great philosophy, I think I should live by a philosophy, what was your philosophy again, I want to follow it and feel better as a person, by the way, who do you believe in, because your philosophy seems to be atheist, and I’m catholic. Does this mean that I can believe in this philosophy? Blah blah blah” and it carried on like this for the full 30 minutes that I was on the train. During all this I was standing next to a guy that was trying to break up with his girlfriend with his mobile, and she clearly didn’t want such drama to happen. Meanwhile, there was a really tall guy that kept staring at me, and I kept pretending I was on the phone and marking my papers to keep him at bay. He descended at Argentan also, and I feared that he would stalk Sophie and I, to no avail thankfully!

And so we arrived and transfered to our train heading from Paris to Vire. There was hardly anyone on the train which was lovely as it gave me some correcting time, and then Sophie some make-up putting on time. I joined her to make myself pretty for the big occasion. We arrived and walked, met up with our colleagues and went to a crêperie for dinner. It was so cute but I have to say that there were certain Americans that were being so loud and obnoxious that we were getting really bad glares from the only other people in the restaurant, a couple who were clearly trying to have a romantic dinner. I kept hushing people and getting them to be quiet but people started yelling at me, and I nearly walked out. Lucky for me, Kevin, my lovely German friend arrived and brought with him his sense of humor and cuteness that is paramount to everything.

After such we returned home and drank lots, fell asleep in respective rooms, and the next day I woke up, having to wake up Kevin to let me out. He seemed less inclined to get out of bed, and told me to jump the fence. I laughed but he was serious. So I tried, and the little prissy bitch I am struggled but I made it. Looking at the clock I thought I’d miss my train so I booted it to the station with a map in hand to avoid getting lost, and finally when I got there I had barely enough time to compost my ticket and get on the train without missing it. Missing the train to Markus would be catastrophic, to say the least.

And so I arrived, after we were delayed (as always) because of leaves on the track. What the hell Normandy, nobody else has this problem?! Got there, found Markus with all the Parisian kafuffel and we were off in search of metro tickets, and our hotel which proved to be quite difficult to find. We got there, and then went to a kebab place where we spent just about four hours eating our plate which was much to filled with miscellaneous items of Turkish food. It was cold, so we didn’t want to go out, especially since I’m a total tart and completely neglected to realise that it was going to get cold and left my jacket in Caen. Lesson learned, in a simple word.

So we pranced around Paris for awhile seeing some stuff and getting some great food. We slept, and slept, and then the next day which was a Sunday we decided to finally haul our asses out of bed (which smelled like chanel and made it difficult to sleep), and headed into the main part of the city. Guess what, like Normandy it was raining and I had no coat, nor umbrella, so we ran to the Louvre, a place I have never been and we decided that a day inside would be well worth it. We walked around the museum, people watching, and spending three hours looking at statues. At one point, going from times before Christ, and arriving at French Renaissance sculptures, Markus made a note that we need something new, and headed to find the paintings sections. Just follow the damn tourists, none of whom speaks French, which is hilarious because all the signs and explanations to everything are in French. We giggled as I translated for him.

We saw lots and digressed to saying that our minds were spongy since we took in so much, especially had fun with the “Spot the American” game. We were right 100% of the time, take note reading-Americans; try to be less obvious and you might not be so hated? 🙂

We left, in search of food, which on a Sunday night is quite difficult to find. We took a “detour” in the metro in order to kill time, and found, after countless attempts a restaurant which seemed appropriate.

To say that it’s truely the beginning is quite an exageration; but it is true in the context of the year, it’s the beginning. With plans up in the air, and flying back to New Brunswick on December 30th in hope for good things, nothing was concrete until the very last minute, and even then I wasn’t sure.

I came back to Sackville under the pretext of a party at my girl-friends’ house, as they are all from Amherst and were getting together with some of their friends. The storm that preceeded the day’s events hampered their plans slightly, since the Atlantic Canada had been hit by storm, after storm, after storm, after storm. In fact, to this day, the storms continue and snow continues to mount higher and higher, to a point that we are slightly trapped in our house.

So I was puttering around on the Eve of New Years with only a slight idea of what I was going to do. Markus was arriving into Sackville via bus, and I had sent him an e-mail days and days in advance to notify him of my plans. I wanted to see him before he went back to Victoria, I needed to talk to him, and I wanted to spend my New Years with him and his awesome friends. So at the time of about 22.30 I received notification that they had booked the Pub out for the evening, and that a small close-knit group of friends would be there.

I mustered all my strength and depreciated alcohol out for the evening and ran over to the pub, with an hour to spare until midnight, we chatted and had a riot of a time dancing with an empty pup. Tuned out to be scandelous as usual, but nobody was there to notice so it’s a-okay! After our count-down, and some time playing trivia and being dunkards, we went to Ducky’s.

This was preceeded with dancing in the streets, falling into snow-piles, laying in the middle of the roads, and general froliking between young people. I got to hang out with Lachlan for the time too, something I haven’t done in years. All in all, I was thankful that I got to spend my time with whom I wanted, and I even got to meet the famous Kyle Hill, our most recent Rhodes Scholar.

After literally laying around at Ducky’s, we came home as Markus was extrodinary tired, and had been falling alseep all night. The evening came to a close with the nippy wind blowing on our faces, and the huddling under blankets for warmth. When we woke up, it was far in the afternoon and we had more or less wasted a day; but it didn’t matter!

All in all it was a successful accomplishment of what I set out to do. I didn’t think I’d manage, but it all came together at the last moment. Go team!  

Happy 2008; all the best to everyone!

When Markus’ family and company left Bridge Street Café, we were going back to Amherst to drop off his sister, Sarah to her cute house out on the marsh. It smelt like Christmas, which was amazing, and then we were off to Halifax. During the drive, Markus and I clearly were tired and hung-over, to the point that we didn’t last five minutes in the car without falling asleep.

When I woke up we were in Dartmouth, having passed the entire province without me noticing (awesome), and we had to get some food for the engagement I was going to in the evening with Markus, and for the dinner. I found that my dear friend is in fact a celebrity in the East coast, as just about everyone knows who he is and thus we must stop to talk to everyone. Slightly awkward, but I just pretended to not speak English and keep quiet in the background; I didn’t expect to be introduced anyways! I can’t imagine how much more awkward that would have been.

We arrived into Lake Echo, where he lives, and we shoveled the walkway since a storm had arrived when we were coming through. Greg and Joanne were shocked that I wasn’t cold in shoveling the driveway without a scarf or mittens, I guess we become immune at some point. We went in for some hot cocoa and then the tour de maison as Markus stated. Their beautifully decorated house has an amazing view of Lake Echo (how ironic), and just so much character. We made dinner and floated over to Markus’ friend’s house.

The original engagement was cancelled since Stacey got sick at the last minute, but it was okay. We were there, and we heard stories of wild Australia, and random East-Coast adventures. I probably drank too much, and thus my tounge was a little loose, but it was all in good fun as apparently I’m a riot!

Halifax.07.01Halifax.07.07

We headed back and “hung” around for some long hours talking, before I fell asleep on the most comfortable pull-out bed ever. It was just perfect, minus one thing. I got a little upset during the evening, but it was all fine when I woke up and we were headed into Halifax. We did some errands on the way in Dartmouth, and then we got dropped off at the harbour of Halifax.

We walked around through the mall, got some mango shakes, checked out the people (aka people watching) and continued on our travels up to the Citadel and Historic district. The tour was amazing, and quick! The usage of complicated phrase structures and obscure words were making me hot, so we thought that it was better to go back to the meeting spot to avoid anything else more scandelous!

We made it back to meet Joanne and then proceeded to Halifax International Airport where we had a coffee and I got onto my flight, in the most unrushed flight process ever. I could have gone through security at five minutes before departure and it still would have been good. Tears were shed, and Christmas Joy was spread all around, and I was off to Montréal to make my connecting flight to Toronto…

Christmas is in a few days and I’ve yet to think of it, since I didn’t plan on coming home this year!