Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Swapping Part of the House Swap

I don't care that there are near-strangers in my home for six weeks, because we're in theirs. I know what it means, because we're also rummaging through drawers looking for things, stumbling upon the surprising and sudden ant infestation in our new jar of honey, downloading a washing machine manual in English so I can figure out how to keep it from banging too loudly. Oops, there's not a stove after all.

In our New York apartment there is "a" mouse, and most certainly a few baby cucarachas. It's summer, after all. There is also a desk piled (neatly) with personal papers that I couldn't bother to put up, up and away, just like they didn't put away theirs. We swapped our good for their good. Our good is a bathtub after long days of walking around New York; their good is a kitchen window overlooking the entire city of lights, from the Eiffel Tower to the archway at Champs Elysses to the crazy and outdated colored pipes that wrap themselves so brazenly around the Pompidou. Our good is a large-for-New-York children's room complete with cozy comforter and toys; theirs is a child's bedroom complete with cozy comforter and toys. It's just that her toys speak French. "A bientot! A bientot!"

This trip we're not traveling up and down the country, which essentially doubles our length of time in Paris since last year we spent three weeks moving our way from Normandy to Marseilles to Anzio to Rome and back again. This year, we're recovering from the end of the semester (Jamie's and mine) slowly with lots of walks and cooking and climbing the stairs in Monmartre. It stays light here until 11 p.m., so the days are long. We work. Jim continues to steer jobs from far away ("you can find that color of paint at the Janovic"), and I already have a new pile of copy writing to hit. Somehow the work makes the idea of living here more real. The structure of it seems to be good for everyone, and I love the quiet mornings when I can wake up before anyone else and work for a few hours. Jamie loves visiting different playgrounds not once but twice a day, his scooter or soccer ball close at hand. We found mini frogs in a playground yesterday! Stick around somewhere long enough, and you'll spot some too.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I totally want to houseswap now.
    Hm... where will I find someone who wants to stay in a 792-square-foot house in Portland?