First, I had a hell of a time getting to sleep last night. Then, I had set an alarm for ten last night. I set it, but I never set it to go off. I woke up to a little shriek from Sheila in the kitchen… at 10:10. Was the little shriek intended to wake me up? No. Was it really a big deal that I got up 10 minutes after my alarm would have gone off had I actually remembered to set it? No. However, this is my life, and my life is one giant farcical theatre piece, and we have to remember that. So because I forgot to set my alarm to actually go off this morning, and I got up 10 minutes late, today was automatically going to be a crap shoot. Oh… was it ever a crap shoot… Madame had left a little note on the breakfast table that said I could take the leftover gluten free pasta and ham from last night for lunch today, so while I was eating breakfast, I shredded the ham and a couple slices of the cheese that I buy myself to have with my toast for breakfast into the pasta with the intention of heating it up later on to eat for lunch before I left the house to go to Sweet Briar. If nothing else, I could always heat it up, grab a fork, take it with me, and eat it there. I don’t know why it took me so long to get ready… or why I got so sidetracked when it came time to leave the house, but I (firstly) forgot to eat that pasta, (secondly) forgot to take it with me, (thirdly) and I left my Atelier notebook on my desk so I couldn’t use it to study for the final that I was about to take in… three hours.
I was quite the wreck by the time I got to Sweet Briar, and it really only got worse as time went on. I was already freaking out a bit by the time I got there, and Joan said she was pretty sure this was how I was going to be on an exam day. She didn’t believe me when I said I was usually calm, cool, and collected. This is unlike me. This only happens when my alarm doesn’t go off. Rouge had some chocolate cherry things that she said I should have since chocolate always makes things better. I skimmed the ingredients list for gluten, and I didn’t see any, so I ate one. (fourthly) Rouge had me eat one because they had vodka in them. Because of how much of a lightweight I am, the small amount of alcohol that the chocolates had would have affected me a small bit, but it definitely would wear off in the three hours I had between that moment and my test, but it was enough to freak me out a bit more. I had brought my computer because I needed to print out my paper for my theatre final, and the inspirational photo file was too large to email to myself. I tried printing out the photo file… and (fifthly) the printer decided it didn’t like me. About half of the photos on the file came out of the printer as large grey boxes with question marks in the middle of them. Laura tried to get the file off of my computer and onto hers a few different ways with a USB drive, but because the original file was saved onto my external my hard drive and I didn’t think to bring it with me (we think this was the problem), I couldn’t get the file to save correctly to that flash drive. My paper printed out just fine, of course. Because of the photos, I’ll definitely have to come back to Sweet Briar tomorrow and try to reprint these photos. Remember how I wanted to have Laura or Mme. Grée correct my paper since I’d just run it through Google Translate and fixed a few things myself? (sixthly) They can’t proofread papers for the Sweet Briar professors, we’re on our own for those… I suppose I had that one coming… We managed to copy all of my set designs, and my costume designs. Laura, Mme. Grée, and Mme. Parnet all looked at them, and they all loved them. They said Mme. Hersant would love them too. Laura asked if they took me a long time, since they looked like they sure took a lot of effort. She liked some of the little details that I had added to Argan (the Imaginary Invalid himself) as well, so that cheered me up a bit. At least SOMETHING worked… I turned in my course evaluations and got my tri-color sash for graduation, and a cute blue t-shirt that has a Sweet Briar JYF (Junior Year in France) logo on the left breast, with La vie est belle à Paris! (Life is beautiful in Paris!) on the back. It’s super cute! It turned out that bringing my computer was a good thing. I was able to pull up all of my “French Lessons” blog posts all the way back to the first lesson of Atelier d’Écriture and use them to study instead of my notebook. This was probably a better way to study since I hadn’t written down any of the little anecdotes from those lessons in my notebook, but I’d remembered all of them long enough to put them on my blog lessons. There were some lessons that I didn’t quite understand when I was studying them last night, but I was able to clarify them as I read over my blog lessons. I guess forgetting my notebook was a good thing. I read over my final lesson right before we needed to go into the classroom to take the test…
I was thoroughly exhausted when I sat down to take my final, partially because of all of the running around I’d just done to try to get those pictures to print, partially because of the trouble sleeping I had last night… Mme. Mellado was around when I was trying to get the pictures to print, so she asked me if I’d managed to figure it out. I told her it didn’t work, and that I’d have to come back tomorrow. She smiled warmly and patted me on the back. Maybe this isn’t worth much, but along with everything else that happened today… (sevently) I was not sitting in my usual seat when I had to take the test. I wasn’t even in my normal row. Today really was not my day. There was nothing on the test that I actually drew a blank on, there were actually a couple things that were pièges (traps) that Mme. Mellado hid that I managed to catch (one I had actually mentioned falling for in one of my blog entries, and I wouldn’t have read about that in my notebook) because of a subject-verb agreement. When I talked to Sheila about the test later on, she mentioned that she had talked to Mme. Mellado, and apparently most of the people that took the test blew right through the specific trap that I mentioned. I was one of a small handful of people that caught it! In retrospect, I think I did okay on the test, but because of how my day was going, I walked in and out of the test saying “there’s no way I passed.” I think I’ll probably get somewhere around a 15/20, and that’s me being realistic as opposed to optimistic. If she puts any weight on that piège, maybe I’ll get a boost.
I went straight home, intending to eat my pasta so Madame wouldn’t know I forgot to eat it. (eigthly) I forgot to eat it again. I have no idea how I’d gone all that time without eating anything and I didn’t feel hungry, but I didn’t… Madame mentioned that she saw the box of pasta in the fridge, and I told her about how I was all out of sorts today. She smiled, laughed, and said that I could have it tomorrow. Sheila came home after hanging out with Joan and Martin (one of the kids Joan babysits) for a while, and she offered to proofread my paper for me since she’d written four since we’d been here (and had all four corrected). There wasn’t too much wrong with it, but I’m definitely glad I got that second opinion. I caught a few errors myself as I looked over it again. Sheila and I were in a bit of a panic when we heard sizzling coming from the kitchen. We’ve had steak so many times recently, we’re going nuts. Sheila’s sick of steak, but I’m sick of steak and galettes du sarrasin too! Thankfully, both of us were greeting with pan-fried chicken breasts for dinner. We had grated carrots with lemon-dressing and avocado for entrée and it took me forever to eat it, so Madame asked me if I wasn’t hungry. “No, I am, I’m just eating slow, as usual.” Now that I think about it, I kind of wasn’t hungry… which was odd, since I’d hardly had a thing all day. We had the chicken with a crème fraîche sauce and some gluten-free pasta for plat principal. Madame said she’d never had it before, so she’d try it. I asked if she liked it, and she said she thought it was a little lighter. I gently mentioned that it was a little better for people’s health in general. She laughed. Sheila agreed that she doesn’t mind eating it. This is a relief to me. I never mind having gluten around the house, but it’s much easier for me to just make gluten-free pasta for a meal instead of two types.
I managed to find a way to email the photo files to myself in a new manner, but I’ll take my computer to Sweet Briar tomorrow in case that doesn’t work. I’m going to try escargot with Joan at a restaurant that she got to try it at (she said it was pretty good, and not too expensive) a while ago after my last Paris III class, then I’ve been asked to meet up with Sharon and her friend Alissa (a blogger that I know from Students Gone Global) at Centre Pompidou tomorrow. It looks like two things on my France bucket list that I thought I’d have to save for another trip might get check off after all!
Le mal se fait sans effort, naturellement, par fatalité; le bien est toujours le produit d’un art. -Baudelaire. “Éloge du maquillage.”