Tuesday, May 20, 2008

le rentre - to miss and not to miss

So thrilled to be moving back to the US, I can't even tell you!!! Especially with two more on the way, it will be good to be in a land where people in general like children. I've compiled a list of things I will miss and things I won't. Here are a few:

What I will miss:
-outdoor cafes
-walking to my favorite organic store - 2 minute walk
-walking to my favorite Japanese restaurant - 2 minute walk
-having access to 4 different grocery stores within a 10 minute walking distance
- so many different types of glorious cheese, fois gras, escargot
- taking your time to eat (in restaurants)
-access to great travel opportunites
-not having to have a car
- walking EVERYWHERE!!!! (bank, pharmacy, grocery store, post office, restaurants, etc)
-the ease of the public transport - bus, metro, RER, tram, SNCF trains
-my work (teaching my string groups)
-playing in my orchestra - Ut5eme
-having tea/lunch at the Musee d'Orsay - one of my FAVORITE things to do!
-being around people all the time
-city life
-the parks
-bike riding in the bois de boulogne
-the politeness of people
-having priority on public transport and in grocery stores being pregnant and with an infant
-being able to cut in line at museums b/c I'm pregnant or with a small child
-the museums
-MESSAGE (support group for moms living in the Paris area who speak English)
-meeting people of all nationalities
-making (non-french) friends fast
-my guardien (he carried a box of groceries home for me! such a sweet man)
-my favorite libanese restaurant
-such easy access to fresh fruits and veggies (they have stands/markets here for fruit/veggies like they have fast food/convienence stores in the US)
-buying things (grocery) in small quantities
-the low cost medical care

What I will not miss:
-not being able to sit outside at the outdoor cafes b/c of all the cigarette smoke
-smelling everyone's cigarette smoke walking down the street
-such little options in the sushi department - they all offer the same thing and not much to select from.
-having to go to 2-3 different grocery stores b/c they are so small and carry different things
- having to make a special bus trip to get cheddar cheese
-can never get a quick (under an hour minimum) meal - very important when you have kids
- price of eating out!
-sitting at a restaurant with mon petit fee and them not giving him a freaking fork/place mat!
-lack of customer service!!!!! - there is no such thing here as "the customer is always right"
-dealing with the French bureaucracy
-having to renew my carte de sejour every year - going to the prefacture and them telling I am missing x, y, and z when they didn't tell me to begin with...
-the weather
-grumpy people
-living in a small apartment
-dog pee and poop on sidewalk!
-"ce n'est pas possible"
-not feeling like I belong
-knowing I don't belong
-people telling me what I should and shouldn't do
-always having to buy things (grocery) in small quantities
-having to wait until 7:00pm to eat out for dinner (most places don't open/serve before then)
-ordering wine and water in a restaurant and getting only one glass. Is it really that difficult to bring out another without having to always ask for one?