Sunday, August 17, 2008

Back to France

Well, I made it back safely to Lille. The flight was good, at least this time my tv wasn't broken like on the way over. It was also pretty smooth, but I couldn't sleep much and when I finally arrived home I was pretty tired. I ended up cheating on the whole jet lag thing and took a nap. I know everyone says "don't nap, make yourself stay up and then go to bed at the proper time so your body can adjust." Well, I also went to bed at 10pm and slept all night so I guess the nap didn't affect me much!

The trip was a little more fun this time because I was carrying my wedding dress in a HUGE white garment bag. Everyone kept saying "oh, are you getting married?!" and I got to tell them "Yes" and usually a little about my story. It was really fun and kind of exciting. I was a bit jealous though, my dress rode in first class while I was back in coach. Granted, it was in the closet, but I bet we both had about as much room! Actually Air France seems to do pretty well these days. I had a window seat for the first time, I typically ride in the aisle, and it was pretty comfy. I like being able to lean against the window and try to sleep. I used to fly almost every week for work and always had the window but with the international flight I typically take the aisle.

I called Cyr to let him know I was almost to the train station and he responded with "what car?" When I got onto the platform I looked up and saw a grinning bald man running toward me. I was in the last car, he said he saw the big white bag and knew it was me. We ran to each other and hugged and kissed. It is France after all, everyone kisses in public here. It was so sweet, I was so happy and relieved to see him, I immediately felt at home again.

Saturday we went and bought me a city bike. Cyr has one, but I just have my mountain and road bike. I can't really ride those around town. I guess I could ride my mountain bike, but it's a really nice one and too expensive to risk loosing. It's a custom Turner 5-spot, I used to live in Sedona, AZ and ride all the time. I'll post a picture next time, but I got the cutest little black and silver city bike with a basket and a bell!! We also bought a bike rack so we can take our other bikes places. I'm so excited about this, I really miss riding and can't wait to get some long ones in over the next few weeks. We installed the bike rack in the parking lot so we could take the bike home. Once we got the bike on the rack we realised that there was a strong possibility that it might hit the lights or the roof. The way the bike is shaped it sits really high in the rack and the ceilings are pretty low. No F-150's in this place for sure. So...Cyr drove the car and I followed him thought the garage. We finally found and exit and he paid and drove under the gate. I tried to follow and I feel something stop me and crash into my chest and arms. The gate got me! The wind was a little knocked out of me, but I ducked and was able to get under it. I then followed Cyr up the exit ramp still shocked that I was attacked by the gate. He pulled over so we could load the bike and asked if I was alright. I was, I think I mostly bruised my pride, but my body was fine. We loaded up and went home.

Then we did the most fun thing...we both road our bikes into town. We road to the movie theater to check times and saw a movie, I don't even know what it was because although it was a Hollywood film that was played in English, the subtitles and title of the movie were in French. Jason Statham was in it, they robbed a bank. I love a bald hero-villain!! When we came out we then road around and found a place to eat, locked up our bikes, ate and had fantastic beers with dinner then road home in the dark!! My bike has a light on the front of it but the paths are so well lit you don't really need one, but I think it helps. It was so fun! I didn't even feel bad about eating desert because the ride home is uphill, and I forgot to be self-conscious about the fact that I'm sure someone said "hey - isn't that the girl in the white shirt that was hit by the parking gate?" There was after all a line behind us... When we got home we both decided that we would have to do that more often. We are only about 10 minutes from downtown, just enough to have an enjoyable ride but too long to walk. We typically take the tram or car, but now I think we will take the bikes when we can. What a great first weekend back.


Leesa said...

Welcome back and have fun with your new bike!!! Let me know when you are coming to Paris (in advance) and I would be happy to meet up with you!!
Take care, Leesa

Susan said...

thanks Leesa - I will! Happy two-years-in-France!

Anonymous said...

Susan - loved seeing you in Houston. Jealous of your time in france and Cyr. When is the best time to come in for the wedding - before or after (dates please) and don't forget to send the hotel info! Ann

Anonymous said...

Susan, I just read your blog and wish such a thing had existed when I lived in Spain. There is so much that is different in Europe that you must experience it to believe it. I was sorting old photos and found the picture of the front door of the hostel where we lived in Asturias and the jewelry store on the primero piso. I bought the girls a set of Mallorcan pearls there for a shamefully decent price! Hope you find somethings that will give you warm memories of your youth! Melanie