Sunday, October 08, 2006

Now I sea.

The center of Narbonne.

It's been a good week. After again being shut down at the Prefecture's office on Wednesday, I decided I must ask Marie for more help in my quest to finish my paperwork. She took me to the local town offices and we spoke with the mayor (mairie), who assured me that it wasn't necessary for me to return to Beziers to the Prefecture to complete my pending paperwork. In fact, I needed only to fill out a couple of additional documents, attach photos, and my carte de sejour could be completed in my own town. It was maybe the best news I'd received all week. He also made a couple of phone calls and we found out that Colorado is one of the states that participate in a driver's license exchange agreement with France. Therefore, I am good to drive, but need to get a translation made for local officials in the event I'm pulled over.

Trees burn here, too. Took this while on a run.

This weekend was the last that I'll have to work for a while. We finished the harvest yesterday (Saturday) and we no longer work 7 days a week. Today I was able to sleep in, and after lunch, I borrowed Bin's car and drove to Narbonne, a town on the sea. I spent the afternoon alone and off the estate for the first time since I arrived in France. I also drove to the Mediterranean Sea, where I experienced my first clothing-optional beach. Sadly, all of the people who decided to option that clothing should not have. Sometimes, it's tough to catch a break.

Sunny afternoon on the sea. Note unintended naked child at lower right.

The weather was beautiful - low 80s - and the water was warm. My people were at the beach and on the sea, and I discovered my new favorite food, crepes with Nutella. It is a dish best served hot, and after one serving at the beach with a beer, I enjoyed another back in Narbonne before returning to the estate. The area near the sea is incredible as substantial stone cliffs rise immediately west of the small beachside town. It's an impressive backdrop with the Pyrenees in the distance.

Bocce, anyone? Too-tight swimwear required for the men.

I have no idea what the signs below are intended to convey to the viewer. Someone told me the one on the left is what a tanker truck looks like from behind, and the one on the right is what the front of your car looks like if you drive into the tanker truck. I didn't think anyone needed clarification of such things. Apparently I am wrong.



We had an interesting conversation at dinner the other night. Apparently, Manon, the daughter, has a communist teacher in school (I've been told French teachers are way, way leftist, like communist/marxist leftist). That teacher told the students that the reason behind Americans voting on Tuesdays is because only the rich people can afford to take off of work to complete their civic duty - obviously a ploy of the "right." I laughed a lot, then found this website, which I think provides a slightly more accurate description of why Tuesday was chosen as the day we vote, over 160 years ago ( http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa102500a.htm )

1 comment:

Adam said...

Fitz,
Looks like France is treating you well. Good work on keeping up the blog. I would cut down on the kiddie porn though. Us puritanical Americans sort of frown upon that.