jeudi 27 septembre 2007

open market

As I mentioned before, I live on a street that has a "Farmer's Market" kind of feel going on. Loads of vendors selling fresh fruits and vegetables. You gotta hand it to these guys. They work 6 days a week. They set up way early in the morning and take it all down at night. How do I know this? I can hear them from my window, 6 in the morning, putting up their tents.

For the first time since living here, I bought fruit from them. Not the guys outside my door, but up the street. And it was...interesting. I usually don't like communicating with people, even in the States, so this was a feat for me.

I was bagging some apples and peaches, and then I take it to this old cashier guy. He weighs it, tells me how much it is (in rapid French). I caught a deux in there. I give him 10. He puts the 10 in the register, and then starts to give me my change. Then he stops. He says, "How much was it?" (Remember, this is all going down in French). "I forgot." He asks, "What did you give me?" And he had this look in his eyes, like he was testing me. We both looked at the register, overflowing with the profits of the day, stacks of 20s, 10s, and 5s. I figured he eyed me as a student, probably poor, who buys 2 euros worth of fruit anyway? It was 3 apples and 2 peaches. "I gave you 10," I say. He takes the 10 I gave him out of the register and says, "This 10?" "Yes." Then he's like, "Okay." And then gives me my change. I bid him "au revoir".

Jeez, I'm not going to sheist you, old man. Don't know if I'll go back there, but maybe this could be our little thing, our little relationship. It was my first time there.

Also, for the first time, I used an ATM for my bank account here. And I swear, I freaked out because it asked for my pin, and there were 6 spaces for digits. They give us two codes, one 6 digit one and one 4 digit one. And I swear I thought the 6 digit one was for something else and not for the ATM. I only memorized my 4 digit code. I didn't want the machine to eat my card because it would be weeks before I get another card again. You can't just get the bank to retrieve it for you; they make another card. I felt like Indiana Jones in The Last Crusade when he had to spell out Jehovah, but in the latin alphabet it's spelled with an "I". I know that scene and my situation aren't similar, but I liken it to that. I typed the 4 digit code and left the remaining spaces blank. Enter. How much money would you like to withdraw?

Sweetness! Those tricky French. Don't mess with Indiana Jones. Went to McDonald's with Lucia, and it kind of sucked. I always see these skinny boys getting BAGS of food for just themselves there. Then they take it to Jardin du Luxem. and lounge and eat. They have this "double menu", where it's 2 burgers, twice the amount of fries and drink. It looked like a heart attack. And yet the boys are skinny here. I don't get it.

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