Yetis and Music, Walks and Other Smiles

Last week school was out for “All Saints Holidays” (strange name for school holidays in a country where showing religious signs in public spaces, especially in schools, isn’t allowed), and I had the occasion, to spend a whole day with just my daughter. When you are a big sister it isn’t all that easy to have some quality time with your mom, no your little brother will always be jealous, or there will be your dad or your mom’s work. 

I decided more or less out of the blue to take her to the cinema. She is 5 closing in on 6 and has never been to the cinema, and that when we live so close to 5/6 cinemas. 5 is the right age to start. I checked my phone to see what midday screening we could go to, and decided that Abominable looked quite good (okay I read a few reviews the days before, but sometimes the reviews of a film are nothing like what it is like). 

For the first time to go the pictures, Abominable was definitely a great choice. There was so much music and magic in that movie that I am sure at home on the small screen the film won’t have the same effect, you cannot sense the vibrations of music the way you do in the cinema or in a concert hall when in your living room. My daughter left the theatre with sparkles in her eyes, telling me that she wanted to go back to the cinema, to see the same film again. 

Since then a week has passed. A week in which my sister’s white “Build a Bear” teddy was turned into a yeti named “Everest”. In which the film was reenacted for my son, and both kids started humming, accompanied by the mistreated glockenspiel or some “music” coming from the guitar as if there was no tomorrow.

On Saturday we went on a nice end of break walk through the Marais to Rue Saint Anne, not that you need to know where that street is located. We stopped at a total of 3 playgrounds to make the napless afternoon more child-friendly. For some reason, one of the parks we went to was invisible to our eyes before we were parents and searching for a spot to eat our falafels. The whole time we were joined by Everest, he had to go on slides, check out the Lego store and even made it home. Because apparently in the very middle of Paris, in the Parc Nelson Mandela at Chatelet there is the home of Everest, the Himilayas.

The playground next to the giant frog with the crown has morphed into my daughter’s favourite playground, as it is the home of her yeti. 

This post is part of Nanopoblano (I promise, I’ll do my best to link to some amazing posts in the days to come) in which I am trying to participate in this year and it is also part of the weekly linkup #WeeklySmile hosted by Trent P. McDonald.

Michelle Obama – M – A to Z Challenge

When Barack Obama was President of the USA, I didn’t pay much attention to American politics. Okay, I was studying politics, but I danced around US politics and electoral matters in general. I thrived on topics such as political thought, international relations, the EU, but I wasn’t interested in how people voted. Because back then I took these things for granted.

People mostly voted for the right people. Everyone was in shock when Bush won a second term, but what was there to be shocked about? He hadn’t been a lucky president. Today, with Donald Trump being the 45th president of the USA, Brexit in limbo, the yellow vests in France and the shocking rise of populism, I realise how lucky the world was to have the Obama family in the Whitehouse for 8 years.

On Tuesday, I went to see Michelle Obama in Paris. She was here for her Becoming book tour. It was the first book that I read this year, and it was so inspiring. If you are stuck, pick up that book, read it, be inspired, move. Who are you becoming?

So I was lucky that my dad feels like spoiling me at the moment, he not only gave me an amazing book for Christmas, he also bought me a ticket for Michelle Obama’s Parisian tour-stop. My book in my mom’s handbag (just in case I could get an autograph, one never knows), I could observe other women on the metro holding on to theirs, we were going to see the woman that will inspire generations of girls, women, boys, men, humans in the years to come.

The venue was almost full, there were a few empty seats, that should have been filled. I was excited, it felt just like going to a concert when you are 20.

When the lights went out and Michelle Obama’s guest got onto the stage, to present themselves and to tell us who they were, I almost fell off my chair.

On stage, was a friend of my dad’s. A person he wants me to meet, a person he is continuously praising. We were meant to meet briefly, but the Yellow Vests made that impossible on Thanksgiving. It was Apollonia Poilane, a baker, a very inspiring one that is.

And what can I say about the interview? It was amazing! I had read the book, so many of the anecdotes were known to me. So many important topics were touched upon, family, parenting, nurturing a girl’s flame, infertility. Of course, they started with a mention of Notre-Dame, who had burnt the night before. Michelle Obama was also questioned about Paris, the first place she ever travelled to outside of the USA. She still has her rituals from back then, having cheese-crêpe.

The arena was left with a message. Be proud of who you are, tell your own story and be proud of it, speak the truth, and become a better version of yourself.

So who am I becoming?

3 years ago, I tried answering the question “who am I?” Now, I will try to answer the question “who am I becoming? “

#iambecoming …