10 June 2009

A Testing Weekend

Last weekend started badly but I’m glad to say improved somewhat. It started on Friday when a rather large, no, a humungous, bill arrived from the UK tax authorities when I was confidently expecting a rebate. I just know that I’ll have hours of useless dialogue on the phone as I try to convince them that they should be paying me instead of the other way round. This will be a real test.

Then J started dropping hints that it was French Mother’s Day on Sunday. I mean we’ve just had UK Mother’s Day and now we’ve got another one – what a rip off! There’s only one Father’s Day. All these Fetes would test anyone’s patience

Saturday saw me taking Guy into to town for his scooter test. We went in early and I made him go through the busy Vence traffic just to get him used to French driving techniques which generally consist of nutters trying to touch your mudflaps and seeing how close they can get to your handlebars without actually knocking you off. After about an hour of absolute chaos we stopped for lunch and then Guy went off to his testing centre.

As he completed the formalities in the office, I had a look in the classroom where the ‘students’ get shown videos on road signs and driving tips and I couldn’t believe my eyes. Under the large video screen there was a painting about 4 feet long and 2 feet deep. It was a painting of a body but it was somewhat abstract. It didn’t have arms as such but fingerless limbs but that wasn’t the disturbing thing. There in the picture was a huge, well, willy! If my French had been better I’d have asked what was going on but as I left Guy with a ‘bon chance’, I thought that the boys sitting in that room probably all felt somewhat inadequate whilst the girls – well, I wouldn’t know what they would think – probably apprehension I guess.

Anyway, I’m pleased to say that the picture did not seem to affect Guy and he passed his scooter test. This will give him some semblance of independence as whenever he wants to see a pal, he’s reliant on either J or me driving him there. Now he can take his scooter.

Saturday evening saw the Scotland cricket team thrashed by South Africa – not an unexpected result but given that Scotland were doing unusually well with only 12 balls to go and then lost it big time, it was quite disappointing. Still, Tan, my neighbor, did his best to raise my spirits by repeatedly pouring glasses of wine for me when I went over to his place looking for some empathy.

All in all then, a varied and somewhat testing weekend.

Picture, is of course, a triumphant Guy on his scooter heading off to school for the first time on two wheels. The girls will be flocking round him!

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