Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I Found the Downside of Living Abroad

My brother is getting married to a sweet girl in Chattanooga, TN, on December 10. I am a very lucky sister who gets to attend that ceremony with most of my family and celebrate. I'm excited to attend a wedding (FINALLY people I know are getting married) (I know, be careful what you wish for), and I think it's going to be a ton of work, mostly fun, and might make me age a few years and/or decide to elope. Should be great, honestly.

I have my flight booked, I get into Chat-town around dinner the night before the wedding. Perfect, right?

Except, I don't have a flight booked back yet...a one-way ticket from any major airport my parents could feasibly drive me to on Monday starts about $1500. Roundtrip is not looking much less--around $900 if I book a return for February (wtf do I do with that ticket???), more like $1400 to book a return in May (for Katie(SHOUTOUT)'s wedding). I'm not sure if the airlines are aware that most people can't afford tickets that cost that much?

The sick part is that when I bought my ticket from home to Paris, and Paris to the wedding, I booked a week in advance. A week! And I bought a multi-destination, international ticket, to an obscure airport in Appalachia...for $850. Why is it that 2+ months in advance, I'm being give then run around to fly on a Monday evening in early December? That's not a big travel time, airlines. Who goes places then? Everyone is saving for the major holidays of the month, and the way you jack your prices up then.

I'm annoyed. I'm annoyed because it's not like I can't book a flight. It's not an option--I can't just not go back to France. It's like Kayak, Travelocity, Orbitz, Cheap-O-Air, and Priceline all know that about me, and are taking rude advantage.

Sigh. I'm going to forget about it for awhile. I did big stuff today anyway--I put my student loan back into deferment. That usually takes about 2.5 weeks of whining, ignoring, and lollygagging. Not today. Today I have paid my dues.

In other news...

1. Today walking home from my charge's school we found a leaf that was about 14" across. It was a big maple leaf and it had fallen right onto a café table. Very cool, for almost 10 minutes.
2. I have developed a bruise/cramp in my right foot, on the outside, just below my heel. I don't know if it's my shoes, all the walking, or the cobble-y streets here, but it hurts like a biatch. Weirdly, it feels better when I wear heels, so heeled boots it is!
3. I really like how everyone in France says hello to one another. Not like, total strangers, but like the grocer, and the baker, and the people in the apartment building. My problem is I always say "bonjour," except after 5pm, I should be saying "bon soir." Most people are kind about it.
4. A sparkling wine (a cava, to be specific) that we bought a lot in NYC for $13.95 is 6.55€. (Gals, it's the one in the black bottle!)
5. I'm losing weight. It's cool. Loving it. Of course, as I write this, I'm enjoying a tall beer and some pistachios. Also, the candy corn is seeing its last few days this week. (Luckily, Mom is sending more.) So...we'll see.
6. Going to find some real bargains this weekend. I went to Les Puces (a giant fleamarket in the 18th) a few days ago and it was...not what I was looking for. Did I write about this already? Anyway, I found a more "garage-sale" kind of thing--un vide-grenier--in the 15th this Saturday that I am going to check out. I'm desperately in need to things to put things in, so my room isn't just semi-organized piles.
7. I stepped around an empty wine bottle on my floor for a day this weekend because I wanted someone else to pick it up. Seriously. Let's all just think about this for a while.
8. It's getting chillier. Today I was in denial and went out in just a tank and light cardigan, but my hands were cold. Luckily, the kid is always wearing 4 layers (undershirt, long sleeve, sweater, and coat) so his hands were awesome.
9. I started using my shutters to help me stay safe, and the block the light AMAZINGLY. Also, I feel very Parisian when I lean out in the mornings to secure them. 
10. I think I like it here (except for flight prices).

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