Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Crazy Weekend

     During my Saturday, I decided to do something out of the ordinary and actually do something. My friend Ana from Equador came to my house and baked Nutella cookies with my host sisters and I. The desert was so delectable that my host sisters, Ana, and I ate half the batch. Ana's neighbor, who is her third host grandma, was celebrating her birthday that night and Ana needed to be driven back home. Pierre, my host dad, went on a walk with my host brother François and was still gone while the time he told us he would drive Ana back was coming around. We were getting restless and I called Pierre. While on the phone, I asked Pierre questions like, "where are you, are you coming back soon, Ana needs to go home within a few minutes..." In response, Pierre told me he didn't understand and asked me why he needed to look for Ana. It came to my realization after a few minutes that I was speaking on the phone to the wrong Pierre! One of my good Belgian friends in my school has the same first name as my host dad and I had them both marked under the same name in my phonebook. The funny part is, is that I made the same mistake before. I cracked up and started laughing. Poor Pierre still didn't understand and when I finally calmed down I explained to him the mix up. The next time I dialed Pierre's number it was my real host dad. He came through the door within a few minutes after my phone call, but the cookies were still in the oven - unfinished. I left the house with my little host sisters in charge of the cookies (the next day, Règine told me that the last batch was burnt to a crisp).
     Resembling most birthday parties, Ana's family and neighbor; who is her third host grandparents, and I socialized while we ate dinner with desert. The first dish was just a piece of bread with cheese and mustard on top. I thought it was the main meal and sat there puzzling over the small quantity of food while Ana's host mom cleared the table. I was starting to believe that Ana's host family ate like squirrels when Ana's host mom brought out the main meal (the cheesy mustard bread was the entrée).
     Ana took me to a community camp fire event when we were stuffed full of Ana's host mom's cooking and the Nutella cookies that I ate beforehand with my host family and Ana. The occasion was a yearly tradition celebrating the burning of the witches. The fire must have been twenty times my size in height and I felt the waves of heat on my face a quarter of a mile away. Ana and I socialized and admired the bulky camp fire. Around 11:30 p.m. Ana's host parents showed up to join the party. We were supposed to be driven back to the house at midnight, however, Ana's host parents were not ready to quit the party. At 2 o'clock in the morning we entered the house and Ana's host sister was watching T.V., waiting for us. Ana and I danced a lot near the campfire to the music: we couldn't keep our eyes open much longer after we entered Ana's house.
     The next day I texted my host mom asking when I needed to come home: she was planning to take my host family and I to the movies. Règine told me to be at the movie theater at 10:10 a.m. Yesterday, Ana's host parents offered to drive me home and so I thought the situation was taken care of - so I thought. Ana's host parents were still sleeping and Ana told me she was not going to wake them up. Anxiety filled my stomach because one: it would be rude of me to tell Règine I am not coming to the movie theater after she planned our event together a week beforehand and two: I forgot to ask Règine and Pierre if I could sleep over at Ana's house that night and they were surprised when I didn't come home. Ana acted nonchalant to my stress which made me feel that she did was not concerned for me. Ana's host parents finally came down and I asked them for a ride to the movie theater, which was within a half an hour. Contrary to Ana's action, Ana's host parents arranged breakfast for the family as quick as a wind storm and got me to the theater only five minutes late (they were quick on their feet and handled the situation smoothly). Perhaps Ana did not want me to leave, henceforth, did not try to acknowledge my engagement.
     Even though Ana's parents rushed me to the movie theater, it was all for nothing because my host family showed up later than I. Règine told me to be at the theater at 10:10 a.m., but the "Cheval de Guerre" didn't start until 10:30 a.m. The movie was melodramatic and depressive and at the same time suspenseful. We came home to eat lunch after the movie finished and were back on the road again.
     Règine had a surprise for us and I waited patiently in the car with my host siblings as we drove around. When a half an hour slipped by I started to feel sick and stiff. My youngest host sister sat on my lap because the car was not big enough for everyone to have a separate seat. On top of that, I never enjoyed car rides and I was not one to be the road trip type. The car stopped within the hour and I leaped out of the car with joy. Règine wanted to take us to a castle tour and I felt animated. Due to the slow conduct in which Règine drove, we missed the tour and the area was closed. To my horror, we were herded in the direction of the car. I didn't know if I could handle another hour in the car mentally or physically. To creat a diversion, I grabbed a few rocks along the path leading to the car and handed them to my host family members. I threw one over the bridge, as an example, into the ice covered water. It became a competition to see who could break the ice and we passed the time merrily.
     We left when the clouds became dark and heavy with rain. For another hour I sat in the overheated car uncomfortably. My mind would have rested easily if Règine would have driven differently. When she drives she does not keep her eyes on the road, but gazes around her at the landscape or whatever attracts her attention. Cars were speeding past us as she drove ten miles under the speed limit. My other host family members must have felt the same impatience as I because they rushed out of the car before Règine pulled into the driveway. All I could think of was how happy I was to be home.
     During my weekend, I baked Nutella cookies with my friend and host family, celebrating Ana's third host grandmas birthday who happened to be her neighbor, visited a bonfire, watched "Cheval du Guerre," and almost visited a castle. It had been a few weeks since I last hung out with a friend and it was uplifting. The castle tour that we missed and the eternity of time I spent in the car ride made me feel downcast . It was good to be home and free. 

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