Tuesday, May 22, 2018

It's My Blogger and I'll Write When I Want To

I have been pretty nervous about the first day of class. I took my placement exam a few weeks ago, the response was the Parisian version of "Oh Honey, bless your heart." I knew enough to skip the beginners' week, maybe enough to even skip week two, but there was really no telling so they just put me in week three and we hoped for the best.

Thankfully being in Paris for the last week and cramming my butt off while practicing out and about tuned my ear to the sounds and my brain to the language. It was like muscle memory. It started coming back and while I'm not the smartest in the class, I'm easily the second or third of highest proficiency.

TL/DR Version: I kicked some pretty decent ass today, and class was fun and challenging. I learned. I learned. I learned.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Funky tackles the Laverie

I know, I know ... how is this a thing?
Well, it is. Let me explain.

Last summer I came to Paris for three weeks, and I brought enough undergarments and clothes to get me through until Michael arrived and we went off on our vacation which involved hotels and laundry service ... now necessary because I had decided to stay an extra three weeks after our vacation ended.

Then I decided to stay another extra three weeks after those weeks ended.

That's a total of 12 weeks on three weeks worth of unmentionables.

So out of necessity, I simply hand-washed everything and hung it to dry in the bathroom. Great idea if you don't have guests, bad idea when you start to make friends and invite friends to visit you in your apartment.

This time I'm here for over two months without a break. No concierge in the middle. And sure as hell not that much underwear. So today I decided that if I'm going to pretend I live in Paris, I'm going to have to figure out the laundromats.

You guessed it; all instructions were in French. Lots of household words ... and we all know this princess has trouble figuring out the difference between floor cleaners in ENGLISH.

But she does not sink ...

I pull up the nearest laverie on Google and head forward with trepidation and resolve. I will do this. I will. I arrive and see I can buy detergent and softner on site. I insert the coins and the machine spits them back out. I do it again. It spits them back out. I step back and let others go ahead. I pull up Google Translate and set to figuring this shit out.

Step one: Place clothing in washing machine. Do not compact it.
Step two: Close door.
So far so good.
Step three: Select cycle.
So there are four ... 90, 65, 40, and 30. That's it. It's a dial. I decide it has to be degrees and select the lowest one. Okay. Problem solved.
Step four: Place detergent on top of clothes and close door. Wait. I thought I just closed the door. Fuck. Right. I couldn't figure out how to buy detergent. Okay. Okay ... I have to BTFU and go get my own stuff.

I trek down the street a bit until I find a small grocery store. I cannot for the life of me figure out what is what, but I know laundry pods when I see them, so I grab them and something that looks like fabric sheets. Back down the road to try again.

If this is the most boring story you've ever read, you can stop now. It doesn't get any better.

I valiantly walk back into the laverie and place my clothes in the machine, place the laundry pod on top of them, and close the door. I'm a rebel.

Step five: Proceed to central paying machine. Enter number of washing machine. Well hell, that's where I screwed up. If you want to buy laundry detergent and fabric softner, they're numbers 22 and 23. Okay, learned. I enter 13 and it prompts me to chuck 4 euro in the pay machine. I do, and the gods of laundry start my washing machine. Like a fucking boss over here!

I walk across the street and have a glass of wine in the French Quarter. I tell the waiter,"J'ai la lessive" because google said that's French for "I have laundry." For good measure I point across the street. He nods his head and I run over to flip to the dryer. Same process, easy peasy. I open my fabric sheets and they're not. They are some strange thing that keeps your colors from bleeding. Okay, that may be helpful next time. No foul. I pop it all in the dryer, select the temperature on the dial, put the number in the pay station, and it lets me buy 10 minutes for every euro. I figure 20 is good, and it gives me time for another glass of wine.

In the meantime a woman is standing on the opposite corner under an awning singing opera. She does not suck. It's incredible and I'm feeling the peace wash over me. All is right, all is well, and if I just do, I'll learn from my fails until I stop failing.

It turns out 20 minutes was not enough on the temperature I selected, so I put another euro in the machine and kick back, since I've closed my tab. A mother and daughter enter shortly after, and they're definitely from America. They begin the same damn struggle of trying to make sense of the place. I step in and assist them with buying detergent and fabric softner, and selecting machines and temperatures and cycles. I assure them the dryer is the same process. They are relieved and I am an American in Paris.

To recap for the Google Gods ...

How to do laundry in Paris

1. Select a machine and place your clothing in it, but do not cram it in because the machine will break.
2. Either place your laundry pod in there, or close the door and pull the little latch on the side out, and dump in your soap and softner. If you need to buy it, move to step three.
3. Find the central paying machine. There will be a number for soap and softner, which will dispense at a dispensing machine nearby. Enter the number, insert the money, collect your stuff. If you have your own stuff, move to step 4.
4. Note the number on your machine. Proceed to the central paying machine and enter that number. You may have to enter it and the #. # is the same in French. I have faith you'll figure this out on your own. You will be prompted to enter your coins or dollars. When you do, the machine will begin.

Of note: Older machines will give you temperatures as your only selection. Newer machines have cycles. On the old machines, you select your temperature before you pay. On the new ones, you pay first, select your cycle, then hit the start (usually green) button on the machine.

If I have saved any of you from sweating your asses off from stress in the only clean clothes you had left, you're welcome.

This is Funky, and that is all.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hi Blake

Welcome to the domain that still archives all my thoughts coursing over several years. I knew you couldn't resist the urge once I gave you the secret password.

Suggestion: Start from the beginning. It's a lot like cruising through my flickr stream ... the transition is visible.

And if I say anything you are offended by, check the date. I've grown up a lot since before you know me.

Ti voglio bene,

This is Funky, and that is all.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Confessions of a Procrastinator

Today ... I feel like it got dark too soon. I spent the entire day focused, or so I thought, on the right things. But here it is almost 11 p.m. and I haven't accomplished a fraction of what I needed to in order to stay on top of my class.

Oh, right. I've been away. You didn't know.

I'm taking Anatomy and Physiology II this semester. It's hard. Really hard. And it takes a lot of time. A.Lot.Of.Time.

Anyhow, I'm never ahead, always scrapping at the last minute (yes, scrapping ... as in fighting) to prepare for this or that. I'm not one of those "study at the last minute" kind of students ... but it always seems like the tests come up so fast that I've barely had time to prepare in advance. So I fumble and struggle and probably lay the foundation for some mighty fine ulcers ...

And it's kinda dumb of me to complain about not having enough time to do it all when I'm sitting here blogging AGAIN...

But I type so much faster than I can comprehend these chapters ... and everyone needs a break now and again.

So I'll raise my glass to a better and more productive day tomorrow...

... and pray we don't have a pop quiz in the meantime.

This is Funky, and that is all.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Is this thing on?

I stopped. I start.

Stay tuned is a cliche. So I'll just fill you all in now.

I quit my job and started school. I'm going to be a fan-fucking-tabulous nurse. You just wait and see.

I am utterly in love with myself. My life is that good. Yes, the economy has me eating a lot of pb&js, but I don't give a shit. I like peanut butter. A lot.

I finally have friends again after all these years of moving away from all of them. I have real friends that I can text and giggle with, that I can act stupid in public with, that I can cry to or complain to ... and I love them. I have managed to surround myself with the coolest people, and I'm grateful every day that they think I'm cool enough to be seen with.

I'm still married to the LoveBug ~ why wouldn't I be? He is truly amazing and absolutely refuses to let me fuck this up. He recovered from his broken leg and now runs marathons and and enters triathlons.

LighteningBug is graduating high school this year. She has been accepted to a few of her choice schools. We are praying she chooses the one around the corner as opposed to the one up north.

CadiBug is in her junior year and has transfered to an charter high school that has classes on the community college campus. She is dual enrolled, so technically she's both a high school junior AND a college freshman. She is still amazingly creative, and she has picked up a camera. For that, please stay tuned.

CuddleBug is in tenth grade, and we all hope he moves on to 11th. He has given us quite the year. He is still cuddly and loveable, but he is also a little boy in a big boy world. He's trying to solve that dilemma by looking in all the wrong places. I will personally rid the world of every last one of them before I'll see that bright child go down.

I never took that cross country trip with the Brit. But you knew that.

And I have found my fire, my words, my passion for life. I'm pretty sure I didn't find it in my pre-nursing school text books, but regardless ...

I have to clean up that sidebar. And those posts that have lost their linky lovin'. I'll get around to it. Right now, just let me enjoy writing again :)

This is Funky, and that is all.