Thursday, February 7, 2013
To name a few:
Labor on a lobsterboat
Live in Paris
Wade through cranberry fields, and sunflower fields
Experience the wild west
Work on a dude ranch
Hear Native American drummers
Photograph Italy... and well the whole darn world
Ride the Trans-Siberian Railroad
Be a part of the Iditarod
Hike the Appalachian Trail
Be boundless, aimless, and footloose and fancy-free
See every one of our National parks
Write about and hob-nob with greats: artists, musicians, poets
And that is a meager few, a toe dip in the ocean of experience I long to have. I also want to dabble in death-defying acts: white-water raft, skydive, get lost in the wilderness and have to fend off a bear with my hand-whittled shiv. Okay, fine, I am just kidding on that last one. I am all talk and would surely be mutilated in one-on-one combat with any animal, including a raccoon. I am a serious pansy and yeah a lot of the time still have to wear water-shoes in less than clear lake water as I am convinced either a leach will get me or a Freshwater Pike (yeah I know what Freshwater Pike are, I grew up on the Great Lakes) will shred me from the ankle down, or God forbid a strand of seaweed should graze my inner thigh, it's all over, man.
So the other day when I decided I wanted to live more like a French-woman, (in the cultivated way not the armpit hair neglect way just to be clear) this was not even in the least bit alarming to my ever-changing sensibilities. I was drawing myself a bubble bath (I know drawing a bubble bath sounds so 18th century erotic, but it paints a picture okay) mid-day as a nice reward for re-introducing myself to the running world, when I fancied I wanted a glass of wine. I somehow felt that I needed justification for having a glass of wine around three in the afternoon though. Bubble baths with several lit candles, yeah that's totally commonplace for my afternoon ritual now, so that was A-okay, just the wine needed a lil background check. I quickly racked my brain for sophisticated mid-day drinkers and immidiately came up with the French. Duh. Of course the French drink during the day! And they are the epitome of class and culture.
I literally googled, How to be like a French woman, hoping this would surely say they soaked in bubble baths and drank a nice red, (not the $10.00 variety I'm sure, but I do have a budget here) while contemplating life. I read a lot of interesting facts about mimicking the ever-refined French lady and after a couple of varied searches, including, so the French drink during the day right? right?! I did find that yes, the French have a glass of wine, no problem, in the afternoon. I happily poured myself a small glass feeling extra decadent and rule-breaky. Americans. Ha! The French know how to live!
But upon settling into my bath, gazing upon the flickering candle light and taking my first sip of vino, I realized I actually wasn't in the mood to drink wine. At 3 p.m. it just didn't taste as good. How weird. Okay, fine. So I'll pour it back in the bottle, I thought, it was worth a shot. But I can still take on some of the other French tips, of course, now that I did all that research. So after my bath, I decided to put on a black lacey slip and a fancy dress and then do my hair and make-up and just waltz around the house appreciating art more and taking in the breath of life, French women are like that, it said so on various reputable searches. I really felt I needed a bowl of cherries to eat lazily, but I didn't have any, so I made a mental note to get those next time I was out as they were instrumental in my being more like a French woman.
But after trying on several dresses and making pouts with my lips that were supposed to look like I wasn't trying to pout, I grew a bit tired of the effort and went to unwind in front of the TV, a little un-French but I was just taking a break. But after a few minutes I began to squirm in my dress. Gosh, were dresses always this uncomfortable, or was it just the slip? I hadn't even gotten to my hair or make-up yet so I was a bit concerned that I wasn't going to be able to live like Coco Chanel at all! I went back into my bedroom just to glance at different dress options. Then maybe, I sort of ended up in leggings, a sports bra, and a t-shirt and abandoned all hopes of a twenties-style hair-do and thick black eyelashes.
Being French is so overrated, I concluded. Except I really still want that bowl of cherries and I think I could totally pull off living in Paris as I have a lot of fetching hats that most certainly say Frenchie! Okay, so maybe I will start smaller next time and practice holding cigarettes delicately whilst sitting at outdoor cafes and scoffing at people who don't know all the fancy cheese brands. Yes, yes I will start there.