petite anglaise

November 19, 2006


Filed under: Tadpole sings — petiteanglaiseparis @ 9:44 pm

I caught Tadpole singing this rather disturbing little song this evening in the bath, which mamie apparently taught her. It’s rather a coincidence that she should sing it now, as St Catherine’s day is on November 25th.

A Catherinette, according to French tradition, is a woman who has reached the ripe old age of twenty five and remains unmarried and “pure”, as St Catherine herself is the patron saint of unmarried girls. At thirty-four, I am not only long past my sell by date, but an unmarried mother to boot, so I regret that I won’t be donning green and yellow headgear on the day of my fête.

Dodo Dinette,
Saint Catherinette,
Endormez-moi cet enfant,
jusqu’à l’âge de vingt ans.
Quand elle aura vingt ans sonné,
on pourra la marier!

November 17, 2006


Filed under: misc — petiteanglaiseparis @ 2:00 pm

I was poised to write a comment in response to this post, fully expecting to unearth the usual “suppository porn stories” and “secretary spanked boss” or “stapler of death” queries which are pretty much a constant. But as I scrolled through the search terms for other amusing examples, the findings were often puzzling, sometimes poignant and, well, I decided they merited a mini-post of their own.

Now I know that google is for many of us the first port of call in a crisis, a place where one can find the answer to many of the questions we would have asked our mother or doctor. When Tadpole took it upon herself to swallow a pebble a few months ago, I typed in all manner of queries about “swallowed foreign objects” before reaching for the telephone to call Mr Frog (who has a couple of friends who are GP’s), then my mum.

So it is not too surprising to see people asking the all-knowing google algorithm for answers to questions like:

  • can the musty spider pushchair be used from birth?
  • my boyfriend wears my knickers is he gay?

But, having said that, it never occured to me to use google for relationship counselling.

  • How to heal your broken heart after a divorce?
  • Can you break soul ties and remain friends?
  • Why won’t he marry me after 13 years?
  • How to imitate my husband’s voice to fool his girlfriend?

There I was trawling through the stats looking for funnies, and instead, rather unexpectedly, I found myself empathising; feeling other people’s pain.

There was only one question I did feel equipped to answer, and it may be the subject of a forthcoming post, one day.

how to talk dirty in French?

However, being the sort of person who is more likely to say “is it in yet?” or “ouch, that’s starting to chafe” than “come here big boy”, I suspect “petite’s guide to bedroom French” may not be quite what the googlers had in mind.

November 15, 2006


Filed under: Tadpole rearing — petiteanglaiseparis @ 10:30 am

The alarm goes off at 7.15 am. I groan, and press snooze. Today is admittedly less painful than yesterday, when I got a OuiFM wake-up call at 6.55 am and then had to speak to some chirpy, wacky and thoroughly annoying radio talk show presenter for five minutes while lying semi-comatose in bed in my undies.

I am not a morning person, you see. All those proper writers who say they do their best work at dawn, well, what are they on? Personally I function best in the afternoons, or occasionally in the evenings, once Tadpole is in bed, a glass of wine within easy reach of the computer.

At 7.35 am, I finally stop hitting snooze and muster up the enthusiasm to go and wake Tadpole. Creeping into her bedroom I watch her for a moment. She is deeply asleep, on her tummy with her head wedged up against the wall, as usual. She has been busy in the night: the dolls she took to bed with her yesterday evening are now stark naked, their clothes scattered on the floor. I pick a pair of knitted pants out of the (empty) potty by the side of her bed.

Whispering her name, I muss her curls and feel the warmth of her neck against my fingertips. She grimaces in her sleep, eyes firmly closed, then stirs, before shifting her position slightly and going back to sleep. So, pulling the covers back, I slip into bed beside her (a manoeuvre which involves bending my legs as the bed is a special lilliputian version) and cuddle up. This is my favourite part of the day: the snuggling, the warmth, the sleepy smell of her body and pyjamas, the fact that she is too comatose to actually protest and wriggle out of my arms. It’s perfect, except for one little detail.

I’m lying slap bang in the middle of an enormous wet patch.

“Darling,” I say when she finally opens her eyes, determined not to sound cross, or accusing. “You’ve had a wee wee in the bed. Were you sleeping? You know I put the potty next to your bed for when you feel like you need to go…”

“I had a dream about a monster,” Tadpole replies. I’m not sure if this is an explanation, or just her way of avoiding the subject at hand.

“I’ll have to wash the sheets now, and get those trousers off you sweetie, can you sit up for a minute?”

“But mummy?”


“It doesn’t matter because you put the special cover on the mattress yesterday.”

I did indeed. I bought a quilt (for Mr Frog’s house) and a waterproof sheet (for mine) so that we could prepare for nocturnal potty training, round two. Tadpole had watched me fit the waterproof undersheet, and seemed to be paying attention when I patiently explained what it was for. Clearly I was mistaken.

“But darling, that’s for if you have an accident, but you still need to do your wee wee’s on the potty when you can, now that you have no nappy on.”

I see realisation dawn in her face, as clearly as if a cartoon lightbulb had suddenly appeared above her head.

“Oh. I thought it was alright to do a wee wee because the bed is wearing a nappy,” she explains.

I giggle. She giggles. I hug her to me.

I decide to lie in the wet patch for a little bit longer.

November 13, 2006

teenage kicks

Filed under: good time girl — petiteanglaiseparis @ 3:56 pm

Saturday evening saw me going to the Festival Music Allemand at La Bellevilloise with partner in crime and girl about town, Meg. Thankfully it was all about electronica and beautiful people with artfully distressed hair, rather than lederhosen and sausages.

“Is it just me,” I asked Meg, eyes like saucers,”or is there an uncommonly large quantity of good looking menfolk in this room?”

“There is indeed,” she replied “I wonder where they all hide during the day?”

“Well, glad to hear it’s not just me. Because occasionally I get a hormone attack and find everyone attractive, even when they clearly can’t be,” I explained. “I think it’s the human equivalent to a dog being on heat.”

I surveyed the room. All the girls had über cool fringes. If I’d had a pair of scissors to hand, I would have dragged Meg to the toilets and begged her to cut my hair there and then.

As the night wore on and the expensive beer flowed freely, things predictably degenerated, and we found ourselves regressing to behaviour I can only describe as “teenaged”. What else could possibly explain:

  • Meg popping out to buy cheap cans of beer which she tried (and failed) to smuggle back into the venue in her tights. I didn’t witness it, but I’m told a can dropped from between her legs in front of a bouncer as though she were laying an egg. I don’t think her puzzled “what on earth was that doing in my pantyhose?” look fooled anyone.
  • a bottle of vodka finding its way off the bar and into our possession, which seemed like a strange sort of justice given that there had been supposed to be a free vodka open bar earlier in the evening, which never materialised.
  • me groping people’s bottoms. Two male, one female. Apologies to all concerned. (All I can say in my defence is that I watched Shortbus the previous night and it had a profound effect on me).
  • me getting into the spirit of the festival by snogging a rather attractive German boy in the middle of the dancefloor (yes, snogging is the only appropriate word which can be used to describe that kind of drunken, swaying liplock).

I came down to earth with a bump the following day with a distinctly thirtysomething hangover, the likes of which I have rarely experienced. But it was fun, and oh so refreshing while it lasted.

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