24 February 2006

Winter Break 2006 Week One

We spent most of this first week of break really getting to know our neighbors - Joseph and Maddy - and their grand-daughters...Alexandra and Laura. Celia and Laura got to be fast and furious friends much to my delight as Laura speaks very little English. Celia spoke more French this week than I have heard in the whole time we have been here. She needed very little help from me to communicate...only a bit of translation for the trampoline game rules like Crack the Egg. She is definitely incredibly able to speak very well in her second language! I was very proud of her.

Joseph and Maddy joined us for apperos (cocktails) one evening. We made Mary Z's wonderful homemade tortillas for them and had grilled Tri-tip with Stan B's incredible seasoning and salsa imported by Mike from Nob Hill along with screwdrivers made with fresh squeezed Spanish clementines. Joseph and Maddy gobbled it all up inspiring Mike and I to start a soft taco or burrito stand here...They love Mexican food, but there is nothing like it here!

We had a long lunch with them all one day this week and went on bike rides and long walks in the vineyards. We had interesting and amusing discussions with Joseph on a wide range of subjects...he is very funny and a great story teller. He is never short on a firm opinion about politics and the French way of life. He loves to try out his English imitation of his computer language tutor. The phrase ofthe day yesterday was "I am a man" which he said so fast in imitating the computer that it sounded like "Imaman" We are so fortunate to have such warm and wonderful neighbors.

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