17 August 2014 : Tonight

imageI’m posting for a second time today because, well, these photos and these stories just need to be shared. First, as I mentioned, we took Théo to a hamburger restaurant called Uneeda Burger in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. Théo carefully contemplated the menu, considering some of the signature burgers before settling on the “classic.” imageBut he doctored that one up, adding bacon, cheddar, and a fried egg (see photos). He also managed to slosh down a salted caramel milkshake, in the process telling us the only other time in his life he’s had a milkshake is when he had his wisdom teeth removed.image

After the meal, Melinda, Ella (who is finally feeling better after having been sick in bed the last 3 days) and I took Théo to Gas Works Park. I think Melinda was reminiscing about our last night in Seattle last summer with Théo’s parents, Christine and Bernard.

14 August 2014 : Théo’s Tacos

imageHey, we had a French chef make dinner for us in our Seattle house tonight! How about that?! But what does our French chef make?

Tacos!

imageI find that kind of funny. But funny in a delicious sort of way, down to the fact that our French chef made the tortillas from scratch. Delicious!

He got some under chef help from Chloe (no asterisk) and her boyfriend, Alex. My job was to be awakened from my evening bout with jet lag to come to the table to eat. It was tough going there for a minute, but I managed to get up. And I managed to eat. And to eat. And to eat.

Now it’s time to rest up from eating and in preparation for going to bed.

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11 August 2014 : Travel Day / Back Home

24 hours ago, it was 5:30am in Nantes and Christine was driving us to the airport. imageSince then, Melinda, Ella, Chloe* & I have flown to Amsterdam from Nantes, and experienced the thrill of a nearly 10 hour flight from Amsterdam to Seattle. Chloe (no asterisk) picked up Melinda, Ella and me, and Amy, Chloe’s* mom, picked up Chloe*.

After unpacking our bags, Melinda, Chloe, Ella and I drove to a nearby rehabilitation center where Dwight, Melinda’s dad, is recuperating from knee replacement surgery. Michele, Melinda’s mom, took this picture of us gathered around his bed. I said I wanted to post a photo here for the Boudeaus to see.

For those of you interested, I intend to keep posting on a daily basis for at least the rest of August. You see, as much as OUR trip to France this summer is over, Théophile Bertail arrives tomorrow and will be spending a couple of weeks with us. This is how we extend the vacation, getting a Bertail or Boudeau to stay with us.

10 August 2014 : Our Last Night

imageIt’s our last night in Nantes (and France) for the summer. In fact, we leave for the airport in about 7 hours, then face a day of travel. It’s different, you know, leaving at the end of a vacation than traveling at the beginning. I’m a little bit excited to be back home in all my familiar places and things. But I’m a lot more sad to be leaving the place and the friends that have come to mean so much to me.

So let’s not talk about that, okay?

Instead, let me mention the incredible French lunch that Frédérique and Laurent prepared for us. And the dinner of favorite foods (including crack brownies) that Christine and Bernard made for us. Then the topper was when a group of us walked to the Hippodrome nearing sunset to throw a Frisbee and say a proper goodbye to Nantes.

Next posting – from Seattle…

09 August 2014 : Trifecta!

imageThis photo represents just a small number of people who attended the FC Nantes match tonight, most of whom left happy following the home team’s 1-0 victory over visiting Lens (among those not shown are Frédérique and Laurent).

What a fun time we had! Part of the thrill is the stadium being within walking distance of the Boudeau’s. As we wandered over, I explained to Manon and Frédérique the concept of a trifecta*. You see, we had confit de canard for dinner (1), we were in the company of the Boudeaus (2), and we went to a football (soccer) game (3).

A winning trifecta! Get it?

imageAmong the entertaining things at tonight’s match was this little boy who spent the entire game sitting on his dad’s lap in the row in front of us. When Nantes scored in the 65th minute and the stadium erupted in cheers, I think the boy was frightened (or was secretly rooting for Lens despite wearing an FC Nantes jersey). He burst into tears and it took his father several minutes to calm him.

I do see a long future for him as a football fan.

*trifecta (traɪˈfɛktə)
1. a form of betting in which the punter selects the first three place-winners in a horse race in the correct order
2. any achievement involving three successful outcomes