There are many changes we go through as individuals where sometimes it is hard to see how far we have come until we take a look back into our past. As I perused old photographs and deleted miscellaneous pictures off my phone and computer, it forced me to think about the past. What has changed and how I have grown, if I have grown at all..and hopefully not exponentially.

I have a list of things I would like to do in life but over the past few years it has been to be settled and happy and still thirsting for life and adventure. It started really at university and then after I graduated university in December of 2007. It is hard to realize that it has indeed been years since that time. I remember orientation or FROSH as it popularly called. We were sorted according to discipline. I was in humanities so the people I met in my assigned group and who were also studying humanities were still people I knew years later.

This comes to mind as I am attending the wedding of one of these dear friends in a few weeks time. I remember her well as one of the first people I met at that orientation at age 17. Time goes by so quickly. Its as if it is on a constant escape to the next grand adventure wherever that might be. I finished my studies quickly. I enjoyed Political Science, English and Womens Studies, subjects that could help me understand how our society is shaped and could arm me with advice to improve it or at least write about it.

When I graduated at 20, I was lost as to what to do. My French was not wonderful at the time but I thought, ”Why not?” And with my parents’ blessing, I went away to Quebec and met all these wonderful people from Paris, Lyon, Montpellier, Belgium, Switzerland, L´ile de la Reunion, places I would have never imagined to meet people from. We would have get togethers and go out. Sometimes we would stay in and eat wonderful food. It was such an international, friendly, fun crowd. A few short months after my arrival, I was speaking an acceptable French and planning with my new friends, navigating Quebecois and French culture; it was a wonderful time in my life. I spent 2 years there more than I thought I would and was able to visit France with locals because of my new French bilingualism and my new friends. I had never lived alone for university, it was different being away and responsible for myself. Sometimes I enjoyed the people I met, sometimes I didnt and I wondered how it could be better. Anyway, I would go into stores and ask questions about items while practicing my French. I would perfect different subjects which helped when people would vary their sentences and ask something in a slightly different way than I had heard it before. I would become very confused and provided a much-needed puzzled look. When I had lived there for about a year, I met a girl who had come over from the South of France to live with her then-boyfriend. We were introduced through a mutual friend and we resulted in becoming quite good friends. I had never met anyone who spoke quite as quickly as she did. She would also write to me in a very colloquial French, not often written to me because I was not so gifted in colloquial French. I found when my mind was becoming less and less stimulated by my environment, this new girl was there ready to brighten me up even though she too was having issues. I remember her never really complaining about her situation. I remember however her as a bright light, loud and smart, always ready to take on the world and unafraid of giving her opinion. Many people underestimated her as being smart but I learned quite a bit from her.

I had not envisioned it would be difficult in Quebec because I was there to figure out what I wanted to do with life but I knew I wanted more out of my time and I wasn´t asking myself enough. I steadily began to get bored after a year and a half. Yet, this was part of my journey, the journey of figuring out where I fit in. I think back and think I could have done more but then I did accomplish quite a bit. I become fluent in French, made wonderful long-lasting friendships and had enough French credits to help me with my next venture.

There was a whole world out there to learn about and experience. Many of my new French friends decided to settle in Canada and not return to France but I, for some reason, had a burning desire to know more, to ask, ”Well, who else is out there?” The truth is Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail. I hate that phrase because I feel it takes the adventure out of things. Sometimes it is a wonderful rule to live by, sometimes not. I think if you are serious about making permanent changes, it comes from preparing for them. I speak from experience when I say that in certain situations, I wish I had prepared for them. I learned to think on my feet but sometimes there were wasted moments where I thought, ”Ok I need a backup plan. I really should have made it before but let’s see what sticks now’

A good example of this is when I went to Paris for the summer in 2012, to fall in love with the city on my own. I suppose it was and still is magical to me because I have this beautiful version of it in my head. I also went there so many times and love the romantic aspects I envision. It doesnt matter what misadventures I had there. I was drawn to it by its architecture. And I know, France and Britain are countries built on the riches of poorer nations but just a beautiful city. I never felt alone there. But there were situations where I could have prepared better there. The purpose though at that time was to enjoy, which I did. I´ll tell the lost in the suburbs of Paris next time

To be continued….





Edward Maya & Vika Jigulina – Stereo Love

Never heard it before actually, but we like it! It is also Number 1 in France right now.

Sarkozy To Open ‘Spy School’

It seems that not a lot of work is getting done as rival intelligence chiefs can’t seem to stop spying on or fighting with each other, something they are accused of doing as much as fighting the enemies of France. President Nicolas Sarkozy in reponse has opted to create a spy school to hopefully stop French intelligence chiefs from behaving like children fighting.

President Sarkozy deeply desires to unify the French “intelligence community” and thinks the US National Security Council is a fine example. The French Security Council will be called Conseil de défense et de sécurité nationale (CDSN) with President Sarkozy as the head.

The school o’ espionage or “staff academy” will be exclusive to senior spy chiefs from 6 different intelligence and security agencies and is rumoured to be headed by a woman with no previous espionage experience. To ensure that all persons involved cooperate with one another, the school has also enlisted a 60-year-old national intelligence coordinator as the school is intended to meld and encourage “a single culture and esprit de corps” and bring forth a spirit of community. How will the 60-year-old esprit de corps anyone!

Unfortunately, James Bond tricks and toxic baguettes will not be taught.

In any case, we had heard about the French disliking other French natives depending on which region they were born in but this sounds comical and dangerous. Say the one intelligence coordinator who is 60 we might add, can’t control the hate between the rival organizations, what then? Sarkozy said that some political problems in his campaigns were rooted from companies fighting.

We guess it’s good that the new espionage academy is set to open in six months.

Wonder if there’s a spy school in the Great White North!

French filmmaker Eric Rohmer Dies At 89

Eric Rohmer died Monday at the age of 89.

He was part of the ”French New Wave that included filmmakers such as Jean-Luc Godard and François Truffaut and, Rohmer”. He was also known for such films as My Night at Maud’s and Pauline at the Beach and Chez Maud, which earned him two Oscar nominations. He always prided himself on showing the hidden life in his characters.

Rest in peace

Musée De L’Éroticisme

Only in France, only in France.

Antonio Fischetti and Charb have created an exhibition that has been described as a funny lexical tour of sex. It forms one of three parts of the triple exhibition dedicated to Charlie Hebdo.

The decline of births, Mother’s Day, pills for men or terrorism act as excellent subjects for politically incorrect covers. For example,

A big man with a moustache on all fours is nude, under the title ” Naked girl that makes it sell “. An old woman sits with naked buttocks reading the headlines of a weekly magazine, titled ” Finally a newspaper without an ass! ” which were all made in the spirit of Charlie, especially this last one dedicated to Tarzan who was created by Edgar Burroughs in 1912.

The society that manages the exploitative rights of his image have signed a contract guaranteeing a good perception to be made of their heros. “He can’t be disrespectful to God neither to his powerful attributes, nor be insensitive to the sanctity of marriage, religion or encourage illicit sexual activities”.

Charlie censured this responding with a savoury and irreverent image of a crucified, ridiculed and crushed on Tarzan whether he be in the supermarket or in the sexual act.

We translated from the original site so it seems as if Charlie was a satirist famed for his depictions of controversial politically incorrect images.

40 years of Covers: the triple exposition Charlie Hebdo, Musée de l’érotisme will be presented in Paris until May 31, 2010.

What do you think?

Paris On The Body Scanner Train

Très bon la France!

France follows after Canada, the Netherlands and Britain in their support for the installment of the controversial body scanners. Controversial since not many are comfortable having their privacy invaded in being seen naked. You can all thank the moron who is currently pleading not guilty.

The scanners will be introduced later this month to scan passengers and will be used on all flights leaving Charles de Gaulle airport with the intended destination of the United States.

It may not be your fault for the introduction of the personal space-invading scanners but for the moment, it seems the best thing that anyone’s come up with.

Marilyn Manson To Marry Rachel Evan Whatever

The man must have some mouth on him or his standards are low. Who knows? The last we saw of Rachel was in True Blood in her role as the Vampire Queen. It was ok, she wasn’t as amazing or la-di-da as we assume she was meant to be.

Manson, on the other hand, talks intelligently in interviews and though certain videos of his seem to be hmmm, misogynistic towards women, perhaps it is art instead of implied terror against women?

He proposed to his lover on stage in gay old Par-ee and she agreed.

Of course she would!

It Grew On Us

We can’t help it. We tried to forget about it but it’s kinda fun even though it is about alcohol and partying and some random guy..big surprise.Oh and how can we forget lyrics like I’m gunna have you drunk and throwing up lol

Paradiso Girls, the artists above are also created by Robin Antin, creator of the Pussycat Dolls. The difference is they seem to have a good group dynamic, they all sing and there’s a higher representation of women with colour.

There is only one American in the group (Remember Chelsea from Search For the Next Doll?) while everyone else is British or French.

Diverse! You even get to hear a hint of a French accent when Aria sings.

Degas Painting Stolen From Museum

Just before the Cantini museum in Marseilles, France opened yesterday, the staff reported a painting done by 19th Century impressionist Degas missing! The painting called Les Choristes or Les Figurants was 32 by 27 cm, painted in 1877 and estimated to have a worth of 800.000 euros ($1,200,000)

Les Choristes was one among twenty works of Degas featured at the Cantini museum for an exposition “De la scène au tableau” and had been borrowed from Paris’ Musée d’Orsay.

The thief or thieves sneakily unscrewed the painting from its’ base having known where weaknesses were in the security. Though prosecutor Jacques Dallest says that this theft was not done by a professional due to the seeming lack of organization.

The museum is closed for the time being while security tapes are investigated. As the exhibition ends January 3, we fear that French citizens who have not seen it already will not have the opportunity before it goes to Italy and Canada.

New Years From Around The World

Sydney, Australia

London, England

Paris, France

Hong Kong, China

Rio de Janiero, Brazil



Yves Rocher Has Died

The beauty product industrialist Yves Rocher died in Paris this December 26th at age 79.

It was initially through small advertisements about a hemorroid ointment that the public caught wind of his now famed cosmetics brand. One of most defining aspects of his cosmetics products, founded in 1959, was the fact that he used “beauty from plants” avoiding the use synthetic products and preferring to sell to clients through correspondence.

“Green Book of Beauty” launched in 1965, translated today in more than 20 languages, opened its’ first store in 1969. After having left the reigns of his enterprise to his son Didier in 1992, he found himself having to take them back in January 1995 following Didier’s accidental death.

French president Nicolas Sarkozy paid tribute to Yves Rocher in a press release for “this large industrial Frenchman, inventor of a vegetable-based cosmetics line and pioneer of sales by mail order”.

Today, the Yves Rocher group is present in about thirty countries at a worth of 2 billion euros with more than 15 000 employees.

The cosmetics legend’s cause of death is unknown.

See Santa’s Travels With NORAD!

If you wanted to track the location of Father Christmas tonight, you have only to look on NORAD’s site, accessible in 7 languages.

The tradition started in 1955 when NORAD was called the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD) and a Sears advertisement printed Santa’s hotline into CONAD’s instead of Santa!

Colonel Harry Shoup, a commander, decided to have his staff find out where Santa was to so they could pass along the information to the kids.

Nowadays, volunteers help the center by taking phone calls and e-mails from kids. But if you really want to know what’s going on with Santa, all you need is a computer. Thanks to the Internet now, you can track him yourself online through NORAD’s site.

NORAD is made possible by Google Earth so have fun tracking and Merry Christmas!

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