|Path next to the Pont du Diable|
Just over twenty-one years ago, I was toughing it out in a labour ward in Melbourne. My mind was firmly on things other than the traffic, visible through a flimsy curtain. Despite my lack of attention to what was happening outside and the agony of what was happening inside, I burst out laughing. Something had caught my eye.
"Don't take pain, take Panadol*" read the advertising on the side of a bus.
"Whatever you feel, really feel."
I have no idea what the ad was for. Here's hoping it wasn't for condoms, as that would be completely ironic in light of my previous story.
But, the words on the bus, whatever they were for, legitimised my state of mind.
Three years ago, my husband, son and I headed back to France to finalise the purchase of our first French home. First, not because we have many, but, because a first, just like the child about to be born above, is memorable. The melancholy came from missing them both - France and the family-life that began at that moment; both of which, in the natural way of things, keep changing, keep me guessing, but perhaps most importantly, keep me feeling.
* Paracetamol-based tablets.
If you would like to read more stories from our family's French adventure, please don't hesitate to contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org for a print copy of 'But you are in France, Madame' or click on the following link for a Kindle copy.