The countdown to France is on. Ever since the fifteen minutes of frenzy when we bought our tickets, I've had the opposite of ADHD. I can focus only on France. Would you like France on your toast for breakfast? Toss me the France so I can change the channel. We're all out of France in the downstairs bathroom. When you go out, will you fill the car with France? Do you want a spoon or a France for that?
Ryan, the Travel Whisperer, has been reading the holy canon of Rick Steves, Frommers, and Fodors. He nudges me in bed while he's reading to share a tidbit, custom, or must-see. I find it mildly annoying, since I'm very busy, lying in bed, staring at the ceiling, thinking about the France.
At the bookstore, we picked up a french language learning program from the bargain bin. In retrospect, it was probably a bad idea, but I'm still under-employed and the Rosetta Stone CDs cost 400 billion dollars. Our CDs only cost our dignity. As it turns out, the program we bought is nothing more than a very sadly written off-Broadway musical, featuring John and Jaqueline, two lovers brought together by their love of the french language. It wasn't completely worthless. We learned how to say "beige" in french. It's beige, pronounced bayzsh.
I've taken it upon myself to educate my family on french culture. I filled our Netflix queue with important french films, including The Pink Panther, Chocolat, The Phantom of the Opera, and The Bourne Trilogy. I've encouraged everyone to temporarily stop shaving their legs and pits. At meal times, we serve french fries and Nutella. I've arranged french manicures for all of us the day before we leave.
The kids are excited, but not exactly suffering from my condition. They seem to be able to carry on with everyday tasks, such as completing a sentence that doesn't include France. I admit, I'm a little jealous. They seem to do it with such ease.
Lucy, a proud German, is disgusted. She ignores me when I greet her with a proper bonjour each morning, and rolls her eyes when I shake her paw with an enchanté. When she saw me reading My Life in France on the toilet, she promptly trotted out and took a crap on the living room carpet.
After this trip, I plan to return to my regular life and thoughts. I hope I will recognize them. My apologies if I've neglected any of your phone calls or Frances. Be patient with me, please. It's only a matter of France until this is over.