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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Impossipuzzle

I have a three day weekend coming up - or, rather, I guess I am in it now, given then I am finished work for today, and tomorrow is the day off. During the three day weekend, Guillaume is going to Annecy, of all places, for Guilhem's bachelor party, and so I was planning on working the weekend away and finishing the previously mentioned impossipuzzle that I started with Alex and Janet when they were here.



But it looks like that will no longer be necessary. The thing is done. It looks like it should have been easier than it actually was. Even the white pieces in the hand looked black and grey like all the others when not in the hand.

Anyhow, it is done, and now Smallville awaits me.

Easter and MUSIQUE

So, I know it's after the fact, but I never got around to saying HAPPY EASTER, everyone! in my blog, so I am doing it now. My Easter was fantastic!!!!



Guillaume and I exchanged Easter baskets, and I got lots of yummy Easter chocolate (that I have been eating nonsto ever since. I am definitely a chocolate addict and should definitely do something about my complete inability to not consume a ton of chocolate everyday) and several delicious smelling fizzy bath balls from Lush. I love Lush, and I especially love how, if a product is vegan, and most of them are, it is marked as such. And how Lush is all vegetarian and doesn't support at all animal testing and all organic and all about recycling and saving the world. Go Lush! I also got two new CDs: the Foxboro Hot Tubs (basically Green Day in disguise) "Stop, Drop, and Roll!" and New Found Glory "Not Without A Fight."





Everyone who knows me knows that I used to be a CD buying maniac, but aside from An Cafe "Harajuku Dance Rock," I really haven't bought many CDs lately. But having the new An Cafe CD and receiving two such magnificent CDs really put me in the CD buying mood, so while I was home last week, I bought the new Propaghandi CD "Supporting Caste," which is amazing, the new Strung Out CD of rare/hard-to-find stuff, "Prototypes and Painkillers," which is, of course, awesome, and the new Less Than Jake CD "GNV FLA," which is, you guessed it, fantastic. I really can't get enough of any of them.



And now that I am in such a CD buying mood, I am super psyched because the new NOFX CD "Coaster" just came out, and I am going to be buying it as soon as I find a store in France that carries it. And then on May 5 (I think it is) the new Green Day CD "21st Century Breakdown" comes out, and I am super psyched about that.



Oh, and also, Meg Cabot discovered pretty much my favorite band in all the world, the Unlovables, and, not surprisingly, she loves them. How could she not when they are really just the most amazing band ever? Man, I love me some Unlovables!

That's all for now, folks!

Les visiteurs

So I have been meaning to update this for AGES, but somehow laziness always wins out over good intentions (or blog updating intentions, at least, if we can call them good). I can't help but wonder if anyone will actually ever read my blog anymore or think to read it anymore, given that I am SO bad at keeping it updated. But I mean, I have books to read and Smallville, Cardcaptor Sakura, Death Note, Desperate Housewives, Gossip Girl, the Secret Life of the American Teenager, and Privileged to watch. Not to mention Japanese homework to work on and Nintendo DS and Wii to play. Oh and, of course, my job. How can I forget about that? As you can all tell, I am a VERY busy person.

Now, though, I want to write about what a GREAT time I had with Alex here with his girlfriend Janet and then with my mother, grandmother, and sister here.
It was SO good to have them all here, and I am still super sad that they are no longer here.


Alex and Janet arrived on Friday, and I got to hang out with them most of Friday and all of Saturday. It was so good to catch up - and I'm so excited that he's moving away from icky Boston and back to fantabulous New York City where he will be interning in a hospital.



When Mom, Kristen, and Grandma all arrived on Sunday morning, we ate some cupcakes (oishii desu!!!!) and then headed over to Versailles. I thought I had never been, but it all seemed so familiar when I got there, and Kristen informed me that we did, indeed, go to Versailles when we came to France in high school.



On Monday morning, we (= me, Mom, Kristen, and Grandma without Alex and Janet) left super early for Annecy, which is a small fairy-tale-esque city situated right in the heart of the French Alps and at the edge of Provence.




We unfortunately had to walk up a huge hill to get to where we were stay, but it was worth it for the adorable little gite we stayed in and the view of Annecy's castle right next door. We spent Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday there, and it was a GREAT vacation! We cooked delicious vegan food, and Mom, Kristen, and Grandma ate crepes every day. On Tuesday morning there was the Annecy market, so we bought juice and olive oil and cheese (not for me, bien sur!) and soup (vegan, ohhh yeah!) and had a lovely lunch sitting in the sun by the river. There was a very persistent bird that sat by us eating the cheese that Mom, Krist, and Grandma threw at him but that wanted nothing to do with the bread.

(I know that this picture is the wrong way, but I can't get Guillaume's computer to do anything about it, so it will have to be changed later)
After lunch, we spent time by the lake and went shopping and met up with my friend Lauren, who was living there at the time. Kristen was going to be having a fake patio party, so we tried on dresses.



Kristen, Audrey, Grandma, Mom, and Lauren in faux patio party dresses

On Wednesday, we had a lazy morning and then spent some more time shopping (and I discovered that Zara actually does sell fairly cheap clothes that I would actually be interested in wearing - shocking!!) and then got fantastic (but unfortunately expensive) massages. It felt so nice to be pampered. Night times there were also super fun - we played games like MASH and wrote lists of questions that everyone had to answer. We learned lots of fun facts about everyone - for example, I learned that Mom's favorite singer is Phil Collins with Peter Cetera (ohhh yeah!) coming in second. And And that Kristen hates having water in her face. And lots of interesting facts about Grandma (that I'm not sure she would appreciate me posting in my blog) as well.



We got back to Paris late on Wednesday night, and Alex and Janet had cooked us a delicious dinner. They had worked on the impossipuzzle while we were gone. I had started this thing a while ago, and I only managed to get some of the border done and a very little bit of the inside. Almost all of the pieces look and are shaped exactly the same. They made some progress - they completed the border and some of the inside. I have been working on it since.

Then I unfortunately had to go to work super early on Thursday. Krist, Mom, and Grammers went to Pere Lachaise, and then when I got home we all had a pilates lesson together. Grandma does yoga, so she was a little nervous about trying out the pilates, but I think she loved it in the end. Afterwars we spent some time in a little outdoor market, where Mom bought a delicious smelling lavender sachet and Grandma tried on these fantastic bendy necklaces (there seems to be no picture :-( ) and Kristen and I tried on lovely hats. Then we got some delicious starbucks vegan mint hot chocolate. Mieum!


Sadly, Kristen then had to leave on Friday right when I got home from work. :-( So we sent Kristen off and then headed over to les Champs-Elysees. We saw l'arc de triomphe and walked down the street that has all of the haute couture stores on it (Mom has these pictures, and I unfortunately don't have them yet). We saw la place de la concorde and les tuileries and then I left Mom and Grandma to explore the Louvres while I went home and cooked us dinner.

On Saturday, Grandma was unfortunately not feeling so well, so she stayed home and rested while Mom and I explored St-Michel and Notre Dame and l'hotel de Ville and le Marais went tourist shopping. We somehow managed to run out of time before heading over to the Eiffel Tower, as we had to get back quickly to go have dinner with Guillaume's parents. It was, of course, delicious, and Guillaume's dad happened to have just put on Phil Collins, which we now know to be Mom's favorite. On our way back, we had to do a quick drive by of the Eiffel Tower so Mom could get out, as she had never seen it before, and you can't come to Paris and not see the Eiffel Tower:

Anyhow, this is getting ridiculously long, so I guess that's it. Mom and Grandma left Sunday morning, and I was sad. The end.


Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Harajuku Dance Rock Night


Okay, so An Cafe is basically the greatest band ever to exist. As you all know, I saw them in concert last Wednesday, and it was AMAZING!!!!
First of all, I got there a little bit early, and so while waiting for the concert to begin, I got a great look at all of the outfits that people were wearing, and I really felt like I was at a cos-play festival. There were so many Lolita dresses and parasols and stripes, and I'm convinced that's what it must be like to walk the streets of the Harajuku district (minus most of the makeup). Check out some Harajuku fashion to get an idea. I fit in only because I was wearing lots of stripes and fingerless gloves, which I pretty much always do.


Then the concert started. They were wearing the clothes that they are wearing in oe of the pictures in the new album, and they all managed to look adorable and hardcore all at the same time. And boy, do they know how to rock. They played all of the songs from the new album (which I, of course, bought, and haven't stopped listening to since, with the small exception of when my family was here), plus tons of other old great favorites. Unfortunately, they didn't play Maple Gunman, which is my favorite song. They also didn't play Nyappy in the World 2, which is my other favorite song, but that was to be expected, since they are now at Nyappy in the World 4.

And speaking of Nyappy in the World 4, I fell a little bit in love with Yuki during this song. That's him rocking out on the left there. He was so cute in his little glasses and his polka dot pants. And when he came out from behind the keyboard and was all rapping with Miku (that's Miku to the right there), I don't know how everyone in the place didn't just fall a little bit in love with him. I've been trying to decide whom my favorite member of the group is, and I've been thinking maybe Teruki (the drummer - I unfortunately didn't manage to get any pictures of him) because he says in interviews that he hates cigarettes (like me!), but after the concert, I think it's official that it's Yuki. Even if he is a newbie.

Anyhow, so the concert was awesome, of course. They are such great performers, and I really hope that I will get to see them again soon. Perhaps in Japan next time!!!! I leave you with the above picture (of Kanon of the left, Miku in the middle, and Takuya on the right) and the below video (of Snow Scene - taken with my digital camera and thus of very poor quality. It's also cut off about 5 seconds before the end because my arm was killing me).
video