petite anglaise

February 20, 2006

domain pain

Filed under: misc — petiteanglaiseparis @ 8:36 pm

I was off work feeling under the weather today, and it seems that my newly migrated – to a bigger server as my host was threatening to pull the plug if I didn’t upgrade – site was having sympathy pains. Much installation stress and several expensive phone calls later and, fingers crossed, we seem to have lift off again, albeit with the loss of a few comments I hadn’t had chance to back up in the database.

And I needn’t have bothered having my hair dyed. It turned white overnight with worry.

If you have any shopping to do on Amazon, please consider clicking on one of my “reading” links in the sidebar to do so (you don’t have to buy my recommended book, anything you buy on the site will in fact earn me a very small commission). I love writing petiteanglaise, but it does cost me money to maintain this site, with its growing bandwidth needs, and sometimes it is money I can ill afford.

Right, off to bed, and hopefully back tomorrow.

February 16, 2006

la parisienne

Filed under: city of light — petiteanglaiseparis @ 12:23 pm

Oh my! Only yours truly could manage to co-star with a high-tech portapotty and a wheelie bin for my fifteen nanoseconds of fame.

I staggered into Starbucks on a rainy Wednesday morning en route for work, regretting not a little the liberal quantities of wine and champagne consumed the previous night. Nothing to do with VD, incidentally, as Lover was safely in Rennes, watching the football at the pub, hopeless romantic that he is. Instead, as it was my Tadpole-free night, I had kindly offered to help a couple of girlfriends celebrate their ill-timed birthdays.

Eight hours of sustained (proper English-style) binge drinking later, and we narrowly avoided being locked in a (closed) Etienne Marcel métro station.

But that’s another story.

So: 9.50 am, Wednesday morning, tired, emotional and rather nervous. Barely had I pushed open the door of the café when the journalist who had contacted me a couple of days earlier via my comments box (and who can’t have been more than twelve years old) accosted me (she had apparently already asked every other person in the building if they weren’t petite – I was late). Returning to her table while I ordered a restorative scone and coffee, she waited patiently for me to arrive. I cringed as my Christian name was shouted out when my drink was ready, not even noticing that it was also scrawled across my takeaway cup in marker pen.

Call me paranoid, but I’ve always been brought up to believe that journalists cannot be trusted.

*Flash* went her expensive looking camera, over and over again. I had been instructed to pretend to type something on the (borrowed) laptop, and the journalist actually wanted me to smile, but I could manage no more than a terrified, rabbit-in-the-headlights rictus. The other customers watched the sorry spectacle with interest.

As I made my exit, blushing furiously, I thought I heard a couple of people sniggering.

It was only when I arrived at the office, and a good friend pointed out that my skirt was unzipped at the back, revealing more of my tights and bottom than anyone but Lover should be allowed to see, that the reason for their mirth became clear.

Move over Bridget.

February 13, 2006

satin jimjams #2

Filed under: misc — petiteanglaiseparis @ 8:44 pm

Those of you who were paying attention last January will remember a rash promise made by yours truly involving posing for the interweb in nothing but a pair of satin pyjamas. Luckily, I came second in the “best blog” category of the European Weblog Awards, and didn’t have to put my money where my (big) mouth was.

This year, I will refrain from trying to influence the voting in such an underhand way, but may I suggest that you spare a few seconds to take a look at this site and cast your votes as you see fit. There are some very good blogs represented there, and hopefully you may stumble across some others which tickle your fancy.

I am rather thinly spread across several categories once again, but I think petite anglaise is more a personal blog than an expat blog these days, don’t you think? I think the term “best” sounds very nice, but I’m not sure how one is supposed to quantify how much “better” one blog is than another.

February 9, 2006

remembrance of things past

Filed under: Tadpole rearing — petiteanglaiseparis @ 12:32 pm

The progress Tadpole is making with the English language never ceases to astonish me.

Lately I have witnessed the sudden addition of the past tense to her delightful little sentences, which opens up a whole new world of possibilities. Sadly, while her grammar may be correct, the information she volunteers is at times a little sketchy, or, in some cases, just plain untrue.

For example, Tadpole arrives home from her weekend away with Mamie and Papy on Monday evening, and the first thing to cross the threshold of my apartment is a proudly brandished hand bearing a rather ragged, grubby-looking pink plaster. Just in case I have failed to notice, she exclaims “Look mummy! Look at my hand! I’ve got a plaster on!”

“Have you got a bobo? How did you get that?” I enquire. Not in an ohmygodyou’vehurt yourselfhowcoulddaddyletthathappenonhiswatch sort of way, you understand. I am simply curious to see whether she is able to explain how it happened.

“Yes. It was red and wet,” she elaborates, helpfully.

“Oh, I see, it was bleeding, was it?”

“Yes, my finger was bleeding.”

“How did you hurt it?”

“I did it on the floor,” she replies, vaguely.

Clearly I’m not going to get the specifics without putting words into her mouth, so I resign myself to just not knowing. As it happens, Mr Frog is none the wiser, as no-one actually saw how this mysterious (and so tiny it is barely visible to the human eye) bobo was inflicted.

For an illustration of how good my daughter is at lying in the past tense, I only have to ask her what she had for lunch at the childminder’s house on any given day of the week.

“I ate some Chocolate!”

“Chocolate? For lunch.”


“Nothing else?”

“No, I had just chocolate.”

I doubt it, somehow.

So comfortable with the past tense is my Tadpole, that she is now using it masterfully as ammunition to get her own way. Again, with somewhat sparing use of truth.

“Right, I’m making pasta for dinner,” I say firmly, making sure that it sounds like a statement, and not at all like a question that could possibly be answered with the dreaded “no” word.

“I can’t have pasta. I had that yesterday,” comes the (total factually incorrect) reply.

This tactic can be used in a variety of situations, and I have now seen most of the possible permutations: “I wore/ate/did that/read that book/went there/saw daddy/went to see tata yesterday.


But the thing that strikes fear into my heart this morning, as I leave the childminder’s house, is hearing Tadpole’s voice piping up behind her closed front door.

Maman, elle a dit que…” At which point her voice fades away altogether as they move from the hallway into another room, and try as I might, ear shamelessly pressed to door, I can hear no more.

Given her apparent ability to fabricate monstrous lies with alarming ease, I dare not imagine what followed.

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