Cooking In, Like Everybody Else

I am now starting to wonder how long we are going to be here. Of course, this isn’t what we thought roving retirement was going to be like but Mike wanted to actually live in Europe and we are certainly doing that.

We shop every other day because we want to get out of the apartment and shopping is a good excuse. We have also discussed that we don’t want to store too much food in case we find we can leave in a hurry, but that doesn’t seem very likely right now. It has now been nearly three weeks.

Last weeks lockdown post.

Saturday April 4th

Diana Lockdown in France Day 19

Today is beautiful and sunny so we decided we needed to shop, the long way. We went to the store but on the way back, we decided to walk into the really old part of town that we hadn’t been to before. It is really beautiful and quaint and we were very surprised to stumble into a farmers market in one of the plazas. There were only a few vendors and they have spread really far apart, but there were quite a few people politely standing 6 feet apart. Again, we realized that this town would be awesome when everything is open. In addition to the food shops open around the square, there are lots of restaurants in the old town that we look forward to trying sometime in the future. It was a real treat to just be able to wander around the old streets and look in the windows.

Originally, today we were going to drive to a large market that is a few miles away. But yesterday, they had a roadblock set up on the main street outside of our apartment. We saw on the news that it is the start of the usual spring holiday in France and lots of people were trying to get out of Paris to go on vacation. That’s a no-no, so we figured we would try the big market on another day when the patrols might be lighter.

We are planning to have a party tonight on Zoom with a bunch of our friends and I’m so excited, I’m even going to wash my hair and put on makeup for the first time in at least two weeks.

Sunday April 5th

Diana Lockdown in France Day 20

Last week I mentioned that I colored my own hair but I picked the wrong color, too red. Then I had to use several packets of vitamin C, in two separate sessions, to remove the red, especially from my highlights. The DIY ways to remove hair color on line worked great.

I mentioned this because this week’s beauty challenge is my nails. It’s been three weeks since my nails were done, just before the lockdown, and they have grown out quite a bit. I’m pretty sure that no nail shops will be opening anytime soon either here in France or back in the Bay Area. So, I figured I am going to have to do them myself. That decision lead to hours on the Amazon French web site looking for all of the equipment required to do gel nails.

On the plus side, there are several Amazon lockers in the area within our allowed one-kilometer radius for pickup. I didn’t like any of the gel nail kits, so I bought all of the required bits separately. In addition, I had to choose items that could be delivered in the next week. That’s what made the process take so long. I figure I’m going to be doing my own nails for a while, so the investment is worth it. The downside is that I’m going to have to carry this stuff around with me, at least for the foreseeable future.

This brings back memories of my stay in France in 1992, I had to do my own nails then too, only now the products are much easier to use.

Monday April 6th

Lockdown in France Day 21

Today was sunny again but the temperatures are still in the mid-60s. We decided to go shopping again today and we went the long way so we could get in our third walk in three days. We spent the rest of the day studying French, reading and watching the news and Netflix.

I also ordered food gifts for both of our sons’ birthday, which is tomorrow. But that was a fail. By the time I realized that the order didn’t go through, I had to reorder for delivery on Thursday. That was a bummer, but I did select an assortment of cake pops, a perennial favorite. I mean, who doesn’t like cake pops?

Tuesday April 7th

Lockdown in France Day 22

I didn’t feel very well today, something disagreed with my stomach most of the night so we just stayed in and read today. I am absolutely amazed at how quickly the days go by when we are doing nothing, but they do.

Today seems like a good place to talk about all of the cooking we have been doing. We started taking pictures of the food we are preparing a few weeks ago with the intention of posting it some time. Since not a lot happened this week, I thought I would share some of our homemade meals. We did get Mediterranean food delivered once, but it wasn’t very good so we are still cooking for ourselves. Here are some of our meals.

Wednesday April 8th

Lockdown in France Day 23

We took another nice walk today under the guise of shopping. We did actually go to five different stores, so our shopping excursions have gotten much more sophisticated. For me, I’m just looking for ways to take long walks because my body needs them. On another note, after every one of our walks I have at least one sneezing fit. It turns out I have allergies in France the same as in California. After all, it is spring even though it doesn’t really feel like it here.

I am also anxiously awaiting the Amazon package with my nail stuff. I keep getting notices from Amazon saying the stuff is coming. It should be at the local Tabac tomorrow. Of course, smokes and magazines are essential services so all of the Tabacs are open.

Thursday April 9th

Lockdown in France Day 24

Today we were supposed to be flying back to the US for a one week visit. We planned to pick up more supplies while we were in the US, but we can’t do that so we have had to adapt.

Today’s project was to pick up my Amazon order, which went really well. After that, I had to use all of my new tools to do my own nails. It took about 1.5 hours because I had to figure out how the electric nail file worked, everything else was self-explanatory. Of course, the nail polish colors didn’t look like they did in the pictures, so I picked what I thought the least offensive color in the group.

The bottom line, it certainly isn’t the best nail job I’ve ever had but it isn’t the worst either. What do you think?

Mike says “ditto, except for the nails.”

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  1. Got a chuckle out your comment about washing your hair and putting makeup on. I finally had a motivation to wear a little makeup because of possible Easter photo ops. We hid beers in the yard instead of eggs. Worth a photo!

  2. Diana, you were brave to color your own hair. I’m too chicken to even try so I’ll just have to live with my grey roots for a few more weeks. Like you, I also tried to do my own manicure but did not get anywhere close to your nice-looking nails.
    We are now starting our 6th week of shelter-in-plce. I never realized how difficult WFH would be. I really miss bouncing ideas around with colleagues and the collaborative nature of office life. For you guys, not being able to browse these wonderful shops and stores must be driving you crazy. However staying home is working nicely to reduce virus transmission. Soon we can all put these restrictions behind us and get on with enjoying retirement and vacations. Until then, keep your blogs coming. All of us are living vicariously through your adventures.

  3. I have to admit that I was pretty freaked out when I realized what I did to my hair. But Google came to the rescue again.

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