We had been promised two days of fresh air and peacefulness at Emma's ex-boyfriend's family's house in The Countryside- it sounds a bit weird I know, but The Ex is now one of Emma's bestest pals and more importantly, he is a chef in an expensive restaurant and would be doing all the cooking- the only condition alongside such gracious hospitality being that we spoke French.
As if we would choose to live in Paris and not want to speak French to anyone...
The weekend started, like a lot of my favourite weekends, on the No.43 bus, but instead of going all the way to Gare du Nord and hopping on the Eurostar, we got off at Gare Saint-Lazare and from there it only takes forty minutes to Vernon, which is where Emma's Ex-Boyfriend's Family's house is- keep up. (If anyone is interested, buying a ticket at the station on the day of travel cost ten euros and sixty cent and twelve euros if you're older than twenty-five.)
I had been anticipating a beautiful train journey through wildflower meadows and pretty villages, but for most of the journey all I could see out of the window was hedges and barbed wire. Still, it was nice travelling along with my pals and chums, talking about what we would do when we got to The Countryside. It felt like we were going on a school trip.
Emma's Ex-Boyfriend's Family's house (for simplicity's sake I'll just call it The House from now on) was a twenty minute walk from the train station. We didn't see any of The Countryside on our walk, but we did see lots of gorgeous detached houses and the roads were lined with flowers. The House itself was lovely and because Emma's Ex-Boyfriend's mum is English, it had a very British feel to it- there were those little frilly things at the top of the curtains and the living room walls were covered in material instead of wall paper.
The House also had a huge, clipped lawn and it took us all of five minutes to lay our beach towels on it and strip down to our bikinis. At this point it was boiling hot, perfect sunbathing weather, and we lay in the sun for a couple of hours, basking in the freedom and the space. I understand why everyone in Paris (who can afford it) goes to The Countryside every weekend in the summer.
The best thing about The House is that it had five cats and one of them was a tabby cat, which is my favourite kind of cat, in fact it's my favourite kind of anything. Unfortunately they were quite shy so I didn't get to grab them and rub them all over my face like I wanted to, which I guess is a good thing considering I am quite (ok, very) allergic to cats. But I just love cats so much... I have never let my allergy get in the way of a good Cat Stroking and I never will, not even when I am eighty years old and inevitably dying from my allergies as a consequence of sharing my inner-city bedsit with fifteen long-haired tabbies... oh yes, I know exactly what my future holds.
Anyway, while us girls lay around half-naked drinking cold beer, the lone male amongst us went to the supermarket, then when he came back he started making lasagne and salad for lunch which was lovely, especially after a week of eating plain rice and carrots with the kids, although, seeing as I do all the cooking, I guess I don't really have anyone to blame...
After lunch we tried to sunbathe and snooze at the same time, but the rain started. It was ever so gentle at first, we hardly noticed it, but then more and more came drip-drip-dripping on our bare legs and shoulders, so we went inside to nap instead. As a result of a misjudged dibs (we called what we thought was the only bed, when in fact there was another available and it was a double) me and Kayt had to nap top and tail. I dozed off to the sound of gentle rain falling on the Velux window pane, with my feet in Kayt's face.
When I woke up two hours later I was alone and the rain was hammering against the glass. The sky outside the window was dark and there was a storm coming. Amy walked into the bedroom, still in her bikini.
"You should have woken me up." I said, "If you don't wake me up I'll sleep for days."
"You were better off asleep." There was a haunted look in her eyes. "The French People have arrived."
I'll leave it there for tonight, because I'm working for eleven hours tomorrow and then I'm going to see Deadmau5 at La Machine. (I think it's sold out now but you might be able to buy a ticket on the door.) He was supposed to be at Social Club and I'm ever so pleased that it's changed venues because I've decided I hate Social Club, with their shit dancers and nasty bouncers. I might start calling it the Anti-Social Club.
I have mixed feelings about tomorrow, I'm excited, but I can't really afford it, by which I mean not at all. Also I don't think I should be going to see Deadmau5 without Kat, I might break down on the dancefloor and I don't mean into The Robot.
We shall see what happens.