Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A Trip To Paris

My husband graduated from culinary school in 2004.
We lived on the north side of Chicago. 
A block and a half from the lake. 
A few blocks from the red line train.
I had been working the whole time he was in school. 
He just went to school. 
Yes, I'm nice like that. 
He had struggled through the years trying to figure out what he really wanted to do with his life. 
Many people urged him to try culinary school. 
He succeeded and we thought, how can we celebrate this?
Why...with a trip to Paris of course!
So, off we went. 
To the City of Lights. 
The land of baguettes. 
Napoleon...open air markets...the Louvre...it would be heaven. 
And it was. 
It wasn't heaven for my ankles, though. 
My ankles hated that trip. 
Because I was 5 1/2 months pregnant. 

My pregnant uterus was big. 
My belly wasn't one of those sweet little bumps. 
I have super stretchy skin and gave my baby lots of room to roll around. 
You couldn't tell I was pregnant if you were walking behind me. 
A big thank you to the pregnancy gods for that. 
But if I would turn to the side...BAM!
I looked 8 months instead of 5.  

We flew overnight from Chicago. 
On standby. 
My friend worked for American Airlines (still does) and we used two standby passes to get to and from Paris. 
It was pretty easy getting on a flight out. 
But standby passengers get on after everyone else is in their seat. 
We boarded last. 
"Hello! How are you?  Yes, I'm sitting waaay back there.  In the back middle of the plane.  It's so far back there.  Sorry.  Sorry.  I can't find anywhere for my bag.  Stupid big bag that I can't lift up with any grace at all.  Honey!  Is there room up there?!  Wait!  There's a spot back here!  Come back this way!  Excuse me.  Sorry.  Oh, you want me to sit in the aisle seat?  Yes, I'm going to get up often!  Ha Ha!  You've been around pregger ladies before, haven't you?  I'm going to have to pee a lot!"

We sat. 
We ignored the scowls from our neighbors. 
We snuggled into out seats and into each other. 
Watched a flick. 
Ate dinner. 
I got up and walked the aisles. 
About 322 times. 
Peed that many times. 
Finally, we slept. 
When we woke up things looked the same. 
But something felt different. 
Was it the stagnant cabin air?
I was all tingly. 
Was it my swollen ankles and toes?
We were in France. 
It was the tingle of France I was feeling. 
Get me off this plane now because I've got shit to see!
And I need to pee again.

To be continued...

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