Click here for the week of 04/24/16.

Sun, 04/17/16. Color run.

Today we went on the 5k Sephora Color Run, from l'Hotel de Ville to la Tour Eiffel. There were like 10,000 people doing it, and it was a lot of fun. You go through these strips where they have people spraying clouds of colors on you, and we all got covered in them, especially Gemma. These sprayers would ignore us and the other adults and go right up to Gemma and just cover her in colors. And at the end they gave us more of the color powders which we then used to cover ourselves even more. Afterwards it started raining so we hurried to an RER station and went straight to Diner for a nice lunch and then showered off at home.

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Sat, 04/16/16. Another school holiday, another Disneyland.

While Jean spent her last day with her SMC colleagues Kim and Elisa, I took Max and Gemma and went to Disneyland. We left early and got there at 820am, which allowed us to do lots of rides in the extra morning hours before the weekend holiday rush came. We first did Pinnocchio, and the line was so short they let us stay in the boat and ride it again. We then did 2 Buzz Lightyears, Lancelot's Carousel, and Dumbo, getting 6 rides in by 10am. Then things slowed down a lot. We went to the studios and intended to do Ratatouille but the sign said the line was 95 min long, so we went to the Tower of Terror and did it. It was super scary and fun. It has a Twilight Zone theme and they play a little Twilight Zone video in the beginning, showing a clock, door, and window twirling into the stars, and later on the train back from Disneyland Gemma asked me, totally out of the blue, "Why are there house objects floating in space?" It took me a little while to figure out what she was talking about. After the Tower of Terror, it was time to rush back to Disneyland to meet up with American Mom in Paris Amy and her husband Min and their kids Alex and Hugo at Small World at noon. We did it and Casey Jr. with them, and then discussed differences between Paris and LA with them. Amy said she felt Paris was much more racist than either LA or her native town of Ann Arbor, and she also thought raising kids in Paris is easier here. We made an early exit, leaving Disneyland around 140pm and getting home by 315pm. I really didn't want to stay late because we have our 5k tomorrow morning, and also sitting in line for over an hour to go on basically any ride did not seem too appealling. We did 9 rides, 6 in the first 2 hours and then 1 an hour afterwards, and it was enough. We're all really tired out. By the way, I asked Alex what his favorite ride is at Disneyland and he said "The ice cream cone". At night we skyped with Melz, Michael, Alex and Nicky, which was really fun. Both Nicky and Alex were much bigger and more social. Nicky was talking a little and Alex was so interactive, asking lots of questions about France and telling us all about the movie The Walk. By the way, at Disneyland I packed a backpack completely full of food, and in the 5.5 hours we were there, they ate almost all of it. They ate, in this order:
cucumber and carrots,
broccoli and yellow bell pepper,
turkey and swiss cheese sandwich on a baguette,
blueberrries, strawberries, and a kiwi,
ghost chips,
peanut butter and jelly sandwich,
small bite size pieces of chocolate,
tangerines,
pretzels,
chocorice bar,
seaweed crackers,
and Tuc crackers.


Fri, 04/15/16. Scared for humanity.
A few people have asked me what French people think of Trump. Obviously they don't like him, but do they laugh at him? Does he make them angry? Do they care? Today at the market I ran into Aurelie, Zadig's Mom, and asked her. She said he scares her. I asked what she meant. Is she scared he would start a war? She said "No, I'm scared for humanity." She felt it was scary that a guy like Trump, Berlusconi, or Sarcozsy could be elected. I was surprised she would lump Sarcozsy in with the others, and she said "Many French would not, but I do." Today after school, while Jean was out at the Pompidou with her colleagues, I took the kids to the Hotel de Ville where we were supposed to get our equipment for our 5k run we're all doing on Sunday. There was a line about an hour long though, so I brought the rollerblades, pads and helmets for Max and Gemma, and while I was in line they got ready and then rollerbladed around. It was great and very safe actually, and they hardly had any spills.

Thu, 04/14/16. Roller tennis.
Today Max invented roller tennis, where he plays with the tennis tetherball while on his rollerblades in our apartment. He loved it so much he just plays and plays for a long time, and was almost crying at school today because Gemma wouldn't play with him. He says he's gonna be a professional tennis player and made me construct a card to give to the mailman to send to the newspaper announcing his professional tennis player status. He also likes rollerblading in the apartment and then passing around a plastic cup for us to donate change into. Gemma loves the rollerblading also and their balance is really good.

Wed, 04/13/16. Les rollers.

The blogosphere has been very quiet the past couple weeks. No one even tried to guess which was Max and which was Miro last week. Is anyone reading this? Kala, are you there? Today after school, and after lunch and an ice cream at Amorino, we went to Decathlon and got roller skates for the kids, who are enjoying skating around our apartment. At Decathlon, the part of the store devoted to rollerblades, trotinettes and skateboard was entitled "Rollers".

Tue, 04/12/16. Tiger Hospital.

Today Gemma had her field trip to the hospital where doctors and nurses helped them heal their stuffed animals and give them much needed medications. They also got xrays , full checkups, and stomach surgery. At the end they gave Gemma a nice stamped certificate. It was great. In other news, today the water was off in our building because of construction, so I went to the McDonald's down the street for the first time all year and used it for the one thing it's useful for. Actually at the fieldtrip I had a big realization, when talking to Samir, as I noted that French people never seem to take their kids out to dinner with them and he said when he and his wife take their twins out, they usually go to MacDonald's. That's why we never see any French kids in restaurants. They're all in MacDonald's! While I was out with Gems at the field trip, Jean was at a cheese and wine tasting with her SMC colleagues and then picked up Max from school and took him to dance class. In the evening she then went out to La Cigale for a last meal and kind of retirement dinner for Ellen, with Kim, Elisa and Judith too.

Mon, 04/11/16. Bruge looks a lot like Paris.

Today Jean left early to meet up with Kim and Elisa for what was supposed to be a day trip to Bruge, Belgium. Kim was excited to go there as she'd never been to Belgium before. However, when they got to the train station, they decided the trains were too expensive and decided to explore Paris instead, going to Chateau de Vincennes and the Louis Vitton Foundation, photos of which are above. They had works by Jean's favorite artist, Ai WeiWei, at the Louis Vitton Foundation, to Jean's pleasant surprise. I just stayed home and did work while the kids were in school, trying to get ready for my talk next week in Hamsterdam as the kids call it. I wonder if we're gonna have culture shock when we come back to L.A. and what it will feel like. We've just never been away for anything close to this amount of time before.
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Click here for the week of 04/10/16.

Click here for the Paris journal from 2015.