Sunday, August 19, 2007

Picnic in France

Last Saturday, August 11th, we went for a drive in the countryside in Germany. Pretty soon we were lost and when we stopped to ask for directions, we found out we were in Luxembourg. Heading south, we decided we'd have dinner in France.

This was the first store sign we came upon as we pulled into a parking lot in France in our search for a grocery store. Many of you know that I live, breathe, eat, sleep a passion for Culture! So when we pulled up in front of this store, I just laughed... another hug from God (and I'm sure I heard a chuckle from the heavenlies). I think this was actually a craft store -- similar to Michael's; But I'm not sure.

We walked completely around this strip mall area and finally asked an adorable couple whose children were playing in the McDonald's playland, directions to the nearest grocery store. Her thick black mascara and eyeliner creased upward as she smiled at us. She spoke something in French to her husband who also smiled and looked at us slightly confused.

"Food?" I offered.

"Oh! Super Market!" Ah, yes... super market... that's what I meant. She said she didn't speak English too well so her husband, who spoke fluent English (although he was from Luxembourg), explained how to get to the Super Market. We introduced ourselves and ended up sitting and visiting with them for about 20 minutes. She is originally from Russia and our family is still debating about what color her hair was -- so we've decided it was orangeish-reddish-pinkish-purpleish. Anyway, very fun, very sweet couple!

I about cried tears of joy (I've been dreaming of this way too long! I think LeRoy thought I was going to break into song and dance any moment.) when I walked into the grocery store/super market and everything was in French. It was simply what appeared yummy, we bought. After choosing out our pears, apples, baguettes, cheese, and dessert -- Paris Brests (they don't call the French sensual for nothing!), we headed off to find a park where we could eat our picnic.

Okay, this was the first time I got scared on these European roads! In France, the traffic circles have 2 and some have 3 lanes! Hello. Exactly, how are you supposed to exit the circle if somehow you end up on the inside and cars are entering every few meters? All I can say is that it's a good thing LeRoy was driving because I would have just circled for... well, maybe the traffic would have died down in a couple of hours. He only circled twice and then said, "Well, here's our exit!" And then I just closed my eyes and braced myself for the broadside impact as he headed across the circles -- right in front of the oncoming cars entering the circle. I watched how everyone else did it. Yep. That's how it's done... apparently.

We found a quasi-park, (we think it was actually the playground of a schoolyard), where we sat and had our first picnic in Europe. Since we ended up on this grand adventure quite by accident, we were ill-prepared. So, we didn't have a picnic blanket and such... nevertheless, we were so enamored by the fact that we were actually having dinner in France, that the details didn't matter. The picture above is of Eli playing basketball with a boy who was shooting hoops by himself when we arrived. Eli said the boy didn't speak any English but they figured it out... Eli said he also learned during the course of their game that the French say the mother of all swear words the same in French as in English! hm.
Isaiah, Israel, Ezekiel, and LeRoy...
Since we had started out so late in the afternoon, we finished up our picnic and decided to head home at the first signs of twilight and pulled up in front of our apartment on base just as the sun was setting. I know I keep saying this, but This place is Amazing!! How blessed and spoiled we are!
By the way, the Paris Brests... tasted like Nutella-flavored air.


  1. I'm so excited for you to have your cultural experience :>) I'm also glad that the whole family is enjoying this adventure so much!

  2. Wow! that is so cool. I was wondering if the French say "pardon my English" when they swear. How long did it take you to get to France from where you live?
    Aunt Grandma Katherine

  3. Sharon,
    how amazing, you are such a great writer it's wonderful reading about your many adventurs.
    miss you tons. ~Lori