It was with a not-entirely-unexpected degree of heavy-heartedness that we shut the door last night; it was the final lesson with our tutor of the last few months. While he’ll be in Paris for a little while longer before departing to finish his PhD, our own imminent departure mandated a bit of an early goodbye.
It is an admittedly Quixotic trait, given the very nature of existence, but if I am honest, I have never been at ease with the way people float in and then out of life. This facet of the universe not being at all resistible or susceptible to negotiation, persuasion, or rage, I’ve made a tacit peace with it, or so I tell myself.
There is a certain degree of incongruity when it comes to people in Paris; I find it jarring that there are several-hundred-year-old churches and we live on a street that has been a street for 800 years, but less than half of the Purrito’s original crew of friends remain in the country after two years. People come and go, but buildings, I suppose, are longer-lasting (not being built out of pine matchsticks probably helps).
In any case, we wished our now-former tutor well with a glass of wine and an honest attempt at using the subjunctive case like civilized human beings as opposed to the savages that we are.
And once we return, we’ll contact the tutoring agency and welcome somebody else into our lives.
On a recent jaunt to the Louvre, we discovered a plush hippo that looks as indignantly unhappy as Fezzik does.
Not being people to miss an opportunity…
Fezzik, it’s your new friend.
Aww. They’re grumpy bros.
While last weekend was surprisingly productive from the standpoint of The List, we wound up chasing our tails this weekend, owing to a creeping sense of dread.
Last week’s four-day weekend (it’s quite easy to faire le pont when it’s the company telling you to take the Friday off) consisted of a fair amount of (unfortunately high-temperature) relaxation time, a jaunt to les Invalides, a trip to the Crazy Horse, and a visit to the grand palais where we managed to knock two exhibits off of The List.
As to the source of this week’s dread, what we had thought would be an annoying but otherwise unremarkable visa renewal will actually require a trip back to Houston for a stay of a few weeks as we have to submit the paperwork in person, and in our home country. As that flight will happen a week from Monday, this was our last weekend that won’t be spent shipping off the cats and packing.
The cleaning program has done wonders for the façade.
The line between dirty and clean.
Even the roof looks better.
A fire-and-iron-belching lion.
Yes, we still take pictures of pigeons.
A new maquette!
…and a part of the plans and reliefs that we had not yet wandered through.
The temporary exhibit told the story of the Franco-Prussian conflict of 1870, which set the stage for the bloodbath that would be the first world war (which itself lit the fuse on the second world war).
From the jardins exhibit at the grand palais.
If a pillow slides down a chair, and a cat is not there to sit on it, does anyone notice?
Fezzik witnessed such a furniture shift. and didn’t hesitate to take advantage; he now refuses to sit on the chair unless the pillow is horizontal.
Owing to the imperious faces that come along with planting his fat ass on the pillow, we have christened this configuration of cat-upon-pillow The Moosearajah.
In the run-up to the long weekend, whose end I am simultaneously experiencing and mildly mourning, I was busy preoccupied distracted lazy and neglected to post photographic evidence of our encounter with a set of autonomous lawnmowers, which had been set loose on la pelouse de l’avenue de Breteuil, which I found somewhat surprising given that the weekend in question was also the weekend on which les invalides played host to this year’s Paris leg of the Fia Formula-E series.
Sheep, however, apparently do not give a fuck.
Or don’t look at the camera, that’s fine.
The Purrito had walked by the area earlier that day, and had noticed the brown sheep “rolling around melodramatically.” Four hours later, the two of us walk by, at which point we realize that the little one in the right side of the frame was learning to walk as it had very recently been born…
It’s a baa-ing roomba.
The painters sent to repair the damage incurred during the Great Water Leak of August 2015 did not perform as expected; while they were supposed to have isolated the rooms being painted with plastic and tape, they did not. Nor did they move anything whatsoever back into place, clean up after themselves, or refrain from dripping paint on the (original) hardwood floors that we have expended so much effort in caring for.
Thus, having spent the weekend elbows-deep in cleaning the apartment, we moved back in yesterday night, to new hallway carpet (carpet squares laid down and stitched together with the efforts of both the Purrito and yours truly), a new litterbox, freshly waxed floors, and an apartment that felt almost completely clear of cat hair, dust, cat food on the kitchen floor, and litter grains that stick to the bottom of our feet. It was a glorious evening, having returned to our clean house, being able to sit on non-covered furniture, being able to access our bedroom without stepping over a baby gate (it’s a cat-free zone).
The entropic nature of the universe, however, works against us; the cats returned from their hipster haven this morning, and I’m already mourning the return of the litterbox cleaning ritual.
How nice it was while it lasted.
The water leak of nearly three years ago finally caught up with us, so we spent nearly the entirety of what should have been a lazy three day weekend for Victoire 1945 packing the cats up and shuffling the contents of our apartment around so as to make way for the repair work to be conducted on the paint and plaster.
Fezzik and crew, expensive thorns in our side that they are, could not accompany us to the Airbnb in which we’re waiting out the repairs. No, the fuzzy ones now find themselves in a luxurious hipster cat hotel. In a fit of guilt (no, the Purrito and I have not been telling each other how nice it is to have an apartment which stays clean, describing the joy of being able to leave one’s headphones out without finding the cord severed upon one’s return, or reveling in not having to clean the litter box, not at all), we visited them this past weekend; apparently this both assuaged our guilt and emboldened the furry bastards, who are now, as per the hotel’s email reports, acting like they own the place.
We would never have known it from the faces he was making, but even Fezzik missed us.
Sorry Moose, but you’re not going to like what comes next.
This is what it looks like after you’ve thrown the entirety of your apartment into one room of said apartment.
Sorry we came bearing gifts…