Tag: seine

No safety net on the ring of death

Here are my kids jumping on trampolines next to the Seine River.  What would stop them from having a misstep and plunging 20 feet below into the river?  Nothing.  Let it be known that Paris is no place for American helicopter moms and their sheltered children.

One day I witnessed the spectacular, cringe-worthy, sometimes bloody wipe-outs of neighborhood child-gladiators risking their lives on “the ring of death”.  The circular apparatus tilts 20 degrees and spins on several hundred ball bearings.  Here are my kids enjoying the gizmo:

Ten kids jump on.  Zach and Asia jump off.  Zach continues to monitor the situation at a safe distance.

And down they go.  Meanwhile Zach continues to monitor the situation.

Lance says hi.

Yesterday we walked along the Seine River.  For the last 5 summers, they’ve turned parts of the Seine into giant beaches.  Pretty fun stuff.  Here we are playing Petanque (French Bocce-ball) along the banks of the Seine:

Afterwards we swam in a big outdoor pool with a million other people.  Waiting in line in my new Speedos reminded me of swimming class, freshman year in high school, where everyone had to stand in line naked waiting for a swimsuit.  You just stood there looking straight ahead trying not to think about anything.

After swimming, we went to the Arc de Triomphe and watched the end of the Tour de France.  Oh man.  I’m not into any of that nerd bike junk, but it was amazing.  People had been waiting hours along the Champs-Élysées, and here we popped our heads out of the subway just as the bikers blew past.  And dang were they flying.  And like inches apart.  Seriously, it was mind blowing.  And back breaking, since I was holding Zach in my arms, while Asia sat on my shoulders.

Don’t bother asking for Speedo pics.  It ain’t gonna happen.

A thinning resolve…

Rather than put on some dorky American shorts, I was determined to wear long pants all month, just like the locals.  And yes, I see a few of you Parisian men wearing Capri’s…you look like idiots.  Up and down the street, African men wear traditional DRESSES, or pajamas, or whatever you call them.  THEY don’t seem worried about not looking like a local.  This hot weather is wearing down my resolve.  It got up to 86 degrees today.  (At least today I smelled like a local!)  Next time it gets this hot, we’re going swimming.  I should mention that “for health reasons” all males are REQUIRED to wear Speedo’s in public pools!  Lordy!  Thankfully the rest of the week calls for cooler temps.

Yesterday the kids drew scenes from the Seine River.  Nothing too exciting.  I gotta start bringing a book with me, because I am quickly dying of boredom carting these nerds around.