Diaries Magazine

Spring Fever.

Posted on the 18 April 2013 by Ellacoquine @ellacoquine

spring fever.
The complaining is finally over, spring has arrived here in Paris and the city is in full bloom! Thank God. Making up for all of those hours, sometimes days spent cooped up in my apartment, I am making up for lost time and taking every opportunity to spend just a few more minutes outdoors.
It's a good thing I work with kids because being outdoors is a vessel in which they thrive best. Before classes, I release them at their school's park for twenty minutes before returning to their homes for their dreaded English lessons. It's also been an unsuccessful ploy to get them to release some of that pent up energy that seems to explode at the end of the day. But they are just as wild as they were in the park, if not more because toys, snacks, and iPads are within their reach. They're 3, mind you.
But back to the park. I'm not the only one who wants to let the children roam free: the park is packed with other kids, parents and au pairs from the school. One child, thankfully not under my custody, thought it would be grand to pull the alarmingly bright red lever that was attached to a pipe alongside the facade of the school's building. With a quick yank, a force of water shot out at full speed and launched a 20 pound child who had the misfortune of standing directly in the line of fire - or rather, water. He must have been pushed out about ten feet, looking like a stunt baby being shot out of a canon. Victimized by the force of the water, he was left to lie on the ground completely soaked and helpless. Remarkably the boy was left unharmed which reminded me of my mom's favorite expression growing up that "kids bounce", but seriously, poor little guy. One second he was peacefully enjoying the Parisian spring sun, completely dry and mere moments later he's being blasted by a high-pressure water pipe to the other side of the park. With exceptionally good reason, the kid was pissed and expressed his contempt with howling death screams in the arms of his mother. I was just grateful that it wasn't one of my kids involved...but ah ha! Not so fast. I had my own episode waiting in my foreseeable future. I always do...
Arriving at Franck's home, I set up their books and papers to introduce them to the wonderful world of fruits and the amazing discovery that we say them differently in English. Before I could get them to settle in, there was a disturbance keeping them from concentrating; heard from next door was the neighbor's dog barking.
We're in Paris, the place is run by dogs, but I had to go with them on this because this dog was exceptionally loud.
Much to my horror, after several "barks", I learned that it wasn't a dog barking. 
Oh man. Do I even tell you guys this? It's pretty bad.
Through the wall, we heard, quite audibly, a man undoubtedly receiving pleasure from himself or by someone else. It was hard to discern how many participants were involved as only one voice was really leading the team to victory. I mean really, this guy was really going to town. The boys thankfully didn't comprehend the reality of the situation and stuck to the dog story. With their hands cupped to the wall, they joined him in "barking".   There was nothing I could do to divert their interest as they woofed away, pressed up against the wall to be heard. Somehow the reverb of barking children didn't seem to disturb the neighbor as he continued letting his dogs out.
Several years of experience has taught me that the noise would die down eventually, and I proceeded with our lesson, putting on my ESL for children CD that includes a song about bananas and coconuts hanging in the tree. Unfortunately my kids were interested in other bananas and coconuts.
Paris is alive as spring is in full swing with lingering sunny days, warm temperatures, picnics in the park, crowded cafe terrcaces and why not, masturbating neighbors. Vive le printemps!

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