Holy Crap!

Posted by Big Daddy Paul in Amy and Me

I have a secret to share. It’s a good one too. It’s not quite as good as “I was waiting at the pharmacy and just overheard all of my neighbor’s medications,” but pretty good nonetheless. Actually, it’s better than good. It’s huge. You really won’t believe me at first, like when I told the guy at the AT & T store that my phone had not been wet even though I had jumped in Lake Shasta with it in my pocket and it still smelled like lake. Wanna hear my secret? I bet you do. Patience. I’m going to make you wait. You’re going to have to sit through an entire blog post of my useless drivel to get to the good stuff to hear our big news.

Malcolm started reading books by himself. I have always been jealous of parents who tell stories about their kids sitting and reading quietly by themselves. While Malcolm does a lot of things that I find cute and interesting , like …

Ah shit. I can’t do it anymore. Time to spill the beans.


We are moving to France.


Whoa. You read that right! France. Croissants. Wine. Croissants and wine! I was trying to think of a third thing there, but my brain wouldn’t let me. Seriously! We are moving to the land of croissants and wine! I can hardly stand it.

You have questions. I have answers.

This is my first day ever in Paris. It was a pretty good day.

This is my first day ever in Paris. It was a pretty good day.

Why? Why you ask? I say why the hell not? They have croissants and wine, for starters. They also have bread and cheese. And butter. And gelato. And crepes. And steak frites. And crème brulee. And duck confit. And pastries. My colon is literally vibrating just thinking about the food. Well, I hope it’s my colon. Or do I? Is it good or bad to have a vibrating colon? I’m gonna have to check on that. Actually, the real reason for our move is Amy’s work. Her company (Workday) is growing rapidly in Europe and they want to make sure that the company culture makes it way overseas. So Amy will be thinking about company culture while I have croissants dancing through my vibrating colon. (So, we’ll both be pretty busy.) We are moving to Paris for a year and are a bit excited by the prospects.

Who? All three of us. Amy will be the one working in Paris. She will buy some fancy shoes and spend a lot of time flying around Europe talking to people about business software. Malkie will be there too. He’ll be going to school. The international schools there fill up their slots in March, though, so we are going to have be flexible with whatever school he gets into. Don’t be surprised if he sends you a yearbook picture from mime school or if we just get him a job as a busboy and call it work study. He took the news pretty well, asking if we could go to Barcelona and Italy and then immediately starting to pack. He’ll be fine. As for me, I will be there, as always, trying to get us pointed in the right direction. With all the access to quality food, I may have to change my blog title to “Big Fatty Paul,” or its French equivalent.

When? We have selected October 12 as our move date. It is exactly one day after our visas are supposed to be approved. We will petition the EU to name October 12, “Big Daddy Paul Day.”

How? Stupid question. Not gonna even answer it. I would however, like to take this moment to talk about how much we are going to miss our family and friends here, as well as Malkie’s sports teams, Amy’s coworkers in Pleasanton and the community at Malcolm’s school, Urban Montessori. Our excitement about our move is tempered only by the temporary loss of the lives we have here. We will feel this sting, and have to hope that we can replace each and every one of you with cooler, more interesting people in France. OK, back to the questions you are dying to ask:

Paul, you are so sophisticated and sexy, are you worried that the entire female (and male, for that matter) population will fall madly in love with you? You betcha! I will however, have to change my game up a little. The hoodie and flip flops that have served as the mainstays of my “look” here in Oakland will sadly have to be left behind. I bought myself some skinny jeans at an outlet mall, which, from far away, make me look like a baby alpaca. The hip wrinkle that I  bring to the look is that my legs are different sizes right now, due to the atrophy in my left leg from my broken ankle. So, if you are gonna search google images for pictures of me in Paris, be sure to type in, “Fat, baby alpaca with different sized legs.” That should do it. I probably shouldn’t have started shopping for Parisian fashions in the town of Vacaville either, but, at this point, there are a lot of things I shouldn’t be doing. Femmes D’Paris beware, Big Daddy Paul is on his way!

Do you speak French?  No, unless you consider French to be the language of love, to which I would say that I do a remarkably poor job at it for 20 seconds and then roll over and fall asleep. The first few times we visited Paris, I refused to speak the language. I felt so awful about my pronunciation that I didn’t even try, except for the one time I asked a garage attendant where the elevator was. (I’ll never forget it, “Ou a la ascension?” which roughly translates to “Or did Jesus go to Heaven?”) This time, I am not going to be a tourist. It’s not just the skinny jeans. It’s everything. I want to learn the language. I want to learn about art. I will put down the Weird Al and listen to some jazz. I might even pay attention to <gasp> tennis! Ha, ha, just kidding. That’s just crazy talk. Tennis is for people who like the look of yellow gold against a hairy chest. That will never, ever be me. There are a lot of things that I don’t do now that I want to do when we are there. Speaking French is one of them. My accent won’t be perfect and my words may wrong order be sometimes in, but I will be in the trenches trying.

Will you blog? Yes. Heck ya! I will be writing. I don’t really know what I will blog about. There are already enough blogs about expats in Paris, parents in Paris, foodies in Paris and even one about taxidermists in Paris. It won’t do anyone much good to talk about all the stuff that has already been covered. (There’s dogshit on the sidewalks! French bureaucracy is slow! The men are horny and the butter is divine!) I will however, find some way to entertain you, I promise you that. Most likely, I will just put a fetal monitor near my colon and you can hear it buzzing with excitement. I can’t really say what the future holds except that our future lays there and not here. And that is our news.

Told you it was good!


17 responses to “Holy Crap!”

  1. Laurie says:

    Wow! We are so excited for you guys and more than a little jealous!

    I’m sure you’ll rock those skinny jeans Paul.

    All the best from your Montana brethren.

  2. Regina says:

    You’d be perfect! Alpacas are stinky.

  3. Brad says:

    How’s the metric system going to affect your golf game?

  4. Tunzel says:

    Oooooo la la! So excited for you all!

  5. jon says:

    want me to “watch” your wine?

  6. Julie says:

    I’m shocked into near speechlessness. Excited for you and bummed for your impending absence at the same time. I’ll talk to Rich about planning our European trip to visit the baby Parisian alpaca!

    btw…one of your best posts

    • Thanks! Every time I get too excited I realize things like “I don’t know how to use the past tense in French” and I go from excited to scared shitless. I guess I need Rich to learn it and explain it all to me…

  7. Scott says:

    Instead of fetal monitor, shouldn’t it be “fecal monitor”?

  8. Rich says:

    Bon chance!!

  9. KC says:

    We think you should consider the Julia Childe approach to being an American in Paris. In fact, I think a spoof on Julie and Julia would be aaaaawwwesome.

  10. Cathy Hatcher says:

    Paul, Amy & Malcolm! You will be missed so much by all of your Friends around Bay! Our Food & Wine is pretty darn good. Start chopping those onions Julia!! Will you be wearing a red scarf as well?

  11. Cathy Demos says:

    We will miss our occasional 5:00 converge with you and Amy!! So excited for you all, especially Malcolm — what a great experience. All of us will hold down the fort on the Street until your return. At which time you will out-class all of us and we will be forever jealous! Et si vous savais, j’avais etudie le francais pour neuf ans… c’est tous facile a comprendre quand vous parler un peu tous les jours avec les autres jens. Bon Chance et Bon Voyage!!

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