Thursday, May 7, 2015

Panic Stage

It is panic time!!!!!  We are 5 weeks away from leaving Charlotte and there is a lot to be done before we depart.  We need to finalize the lease of the house, pack up the house (who knew that you could spend an entire weekend packing up a small utility/storage room), make all of the necessary financial arrangements, sell all of our vehicles, pack our suitcases for France, finalize travel arrangements, figure out the best health insurance, visit our doctors and do a million little personal tasks that should have been done months ago. Walking around the house has become a navigational challenge due to the maze of boxes everywhere.

The good news is that we know what needs to be done and we have lots of "to do" lists.  Bronwyn asked me how I am doing on the task list that I put together back in December and I explained that I was still working on the portion of the list that was supposed to be completed in January.  This did not instill her with confidence.  Fortunately, Bronwyn is doing much better at checking things off her lists.

Oh yeh ... I am also supposed to be learning how to speak French.  Those of you who know me will not be surprised to learn that I am tackling this learning opportunity the same way that I approached my studies in school and preparation for the bar exam.  My first strategy is procrastination.  When procrastination fails and guilt forces me to study, I am making the task manageable by strategically deciding which portions of the French language are really necessary to learn.  So far, I have spent virtually all of my time learning how to order food.   My French skills may be abysmal, but I will not starve.
The one part of the preparations that I am truly enjoying is learning about French culture and history. We've been watching a lot of French movies, and I've read several fiction and non-fiction books.  It is amazing how much I did not learn in school about the culture and history of France.  The movies also make me realize how little I understand of conversational French language spoken at a normal (rapid) speed.

So as not to end this entry on a negative note, I am happy to report that I am doing very well on my research about the route of the Tour de France and potential bicycles that I might purchase to ride the route of the Tour de France. Hopefully, my family will rest better knowing  how I have used my limited preparation time judiciously.

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