Monday, 23 May 2011

French Story

This is the story of a French woman. I wrote it a year or so ago and I recently discovered it hidden away in a file on the computer. I thought I might share it with you.

I stared absent-mindedly into my flat white. The milky water swirled around in different patterns. In the distant background I could hear the usual sound of French chatter. Half a pan au chocolat sat on a smooth, white plate next to my cup. It was the middle of winter and I sat bundled up, grateful for the dull heat emitting off the warm fireplace nearby. The wind rustled my long, chestnut hair as the shop door opened and closed and I was brought out of my trance.
I sighed and took another sip of my coffee, cupping it lovingly in my cold hands. I sat hunched over to protect myself from the bitter cold of a French winter. I looked around at the many tables surrounding me. I loved to observe people going about their daily life. A young woman sat chattering eagerly to another young man who stared at her dismally, looking as though he wished he could disappear into thin air. I chuckled to myself and took another bite of my croissant. The table across from mine was occupied by an old man, who sat reading a newspaper and sipping a coffee. Every morning he would come with his newspaper and order a cappuccino with extra sugar.
I knew this as this was the place I came every day also. I worked as a waitress here and loved to take my breaks sitting at the corner table with a flat white and pan au chocolat. I closed my eyes and breathed in the crisp, morning air. I was always happiest when sitting alone, protecting myself from the cold with a warm drink, listening to the chatter of the familiar French citizens.
I sighed and finished off my coffee and croissant. I took up my black leather handbag and headed towards the kitchens. Putting my bag down at the back of the room, I strolled over to the cupboard to fetch an apron and remove my coat.
The orders flooded in and the day went on. At 4 o’clock I finished up my last order and went back to the cupboard to remove my apron and put on my coat. I picked up my bag and headed for the door, calling a goodbye to Violetta and Christophe as I went.
The sweet, little bell chimed as I left the little cafe on the corner of the street. A cool wind greeted me and I pulled my arms in close to my body, warming myself. A little further down the street was my car; a white VW bug. I dearly loved my little car and I smiled as I neared it.
Pulling out of my parking space I started the journey home. I passed many little French shops and cafes on the way and, about halfway home, the heavens opened up and it started to snow. Beautiful, white flakes descended down onto the streets of Paris and I laughed out into it, turning on my windscreen wipers. I loved the sound of the gentle wipers softly sweeping the screen. It always made me feel relaxed and at peace, as though they were whispering to me in low, dull tones that all would be well. At the lights, I craned my neck to look up into the frosty heavens and I thanked God with a silent prayer for His wonderful creation.
The lights changed and engines started as the cars moved dreamily on. The snow fell steadily all the way home and, by the time I had reached the cottage, there was a soft, white blanket covering the ground. My cottage sat just a little way off a small street called the Rue du Flueramont. I left my car in the small wooden hut Edward had built me for use as a garage and made my way to the little wooden home near the stream. I unhitched the frosted gate and bustled on through, the snow crunching under my boots. The garden was covered by a blanket of snow. My white roses grew in the corner and they seemed to call to me as I passed them, begging me to release them from this frosty hell.
I reached the little, green front door and pulled the key out of my bag, my leather gloves squeaking. It clicked softly and I pushed on through. Stepping into the front room, I quickly shut the door behind me. I shook the snow off my coat and hung it on a peg protruding from the wall. My boots came next and I wrestled with them until, with a final tug, they released their firm grip and I stumbled backwards. I then placed them on a shoe rack near the door. I could hear the gentle chirping of a friendly robin outside the window as it called to its mate. I sighed. Life was blissful and I was content.

So there you have it. Ahhh, don't you just love winter?
Much love,
Miss Aalyn xx


Dearest readers,
I was searching the internet when I decided to look up different types of nuts and where they come from. I have decided to share what I have found with you, readers. Aren't you excited? You may already know a lot of this already but, nevermind!

The acorn, or oak nut, is the nut of the oaks and their close relatives. It usually contains a single sead enclosed in a tough leathery shell and borne in a cup-shaped cupule. Many wildlife eat acorns. These include; birds such as jays, pigeons, some ducks and several species of woodpecker, mammals such as mice, squirrels and several other rodents and also large mammals such as pigs, bears and deer. Acorns are toxic to horses. Acorns can be stored for long periods of time after drying to discourage mould.
Chestnuts come from the chestnut tree of which there are three types; European, Asiatic and American. The flowers of the chestnut tree appear in late spring or early summer. Two to three flowers form together a four-lobed prickly calybium, which ultimately grows completely together to make the brown hull or husk covering the fruits. The fruit is contained in a spiny cupule or burr which are often paired or clustered on a branch and contain one to seven nuts. Around the time the fruit reached maturity, the burrs turn yellow-brown and split open in two to four sections. Chestnuts produce a better crop when subjected to chill temperatures during the dormant period. Frosts and snowfalls are beneficial rather than harmful to the trees.
Almond is a species of tree native to the Middle East and South Asia. The fruit of the almond is not a true nut, but a drupe, consisting of an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed ("nut") inside. Shelling almonds refers to removing the shell to reveal the seed. The almond tree is a decidous tree. The young twigs are green at first, becoming purplish when exposed to sunlight, then grey in their second year. The flowers are white or pale pink with five petals.

So there you have it, I also researched cashews, pistachios, pecans and walnuts but I think that is enough for now, don't you?
Until next time, my dears.
Miss Aalyn xx

Friday, 20 May 2011

Disposing Wealth Into the Pocketbooks of the Wealthy

Something undesirable-

Money: a round nugget or a leaf of paper used in trade for the purpose of purchasing goods. Although I am only 15, I am already starting to feel the need for this wretched item. I have many weaknesses. One of them which I will presently share is that I have a substantial urge to spend money. I walk into a shop, I see something I want, I buy it. Simple ... or is it? More often than not I don't actually have any money with me. It stays safe and sound (rather too safe and sound) in the bank. Consequently, I find myself owing people. I am in debt! Thankfully, this money is soley owed to family members, but the feeling of being in debt is already starting to weigh on my heart. The problem is birthdays. There are just so many birthdays in the year that I find myself bankcrupt! Just when I have saved up enough money to pay back my family, a birthday arrives and I spend it all again! Round and round this cycle goes until finally I have just enough money to pay back my family AND buy presents. This moment is finally here and I am tremendously excited. But wait, what is this? Another birthday? Another TWO birthdays? It cannot be! Yep, that's right, both my parents have birthdays at the start of June and now I have to go and buy them presents. Oh, have I mentioned that I like to spend a LOT on people's birthdays? Usually (the price halved with my sister) I spend around $30-$50 on my parent's birthdays ... each! And now, when I have finally saved up enough to pay back everyone I owe, another two birthdays come up and slap me in the face! It's just one on-going, vicious cycle.

If I have learnt one lesson from all of this, it is to THINK before I spend! That's usually my problem. As soon as I have money to spend, WHAM, it's spent, just like that! Most of the things I buy are bought on sales or when a particularly cheap item appears. But all these little things add up and before I know it, I am faced with a large sum. I must learn to think 'hrmm, before I buy this particularly lovely item, how much money do I have? How much do I owe? Is anyone's birthday coming up? Do I really need this?' and so on.

So there you have it readers, there's my rant for the day. It feels good to get it out of my system! When I grow up, I shall save!

Contrary to everything I just said, today I bought (well, actually, mum bought) some lovely winter clothes; a black trench coat (which I had to unpick and then resew onto different spots the buttons), a black and white scarf and a black and silver belt.

Much love,
Miss Aalyn xx

Tuesday, 17 May 2011


Dearest readers,
Goodness, it feels as if I haven't written in ages! How have you all been? Cold? Fluey? Well, it's flu season so, if you don't already have it, be on your guard for red nosed and puffy eyed individuals!

Hrmm, what have I been up to since I last wrote? Well, I saw a movie this weekend: Source Code, surprisingly fantastic and I am now in love with Jake Gyllenhaal, the main actor. He is amazing!!

I also went up to Melany with my Grandma, dad and little sister. We had lunch up there and then wandered around looking into little shops and bookstores. I bought an old fashioned milk bottle (glass, reading: 600ml Wash and Return)and rolling pin from an antique store. They are simply gorgeous readers!!

Ooh, and mum has given me the beautiful french chair we used to have sitting in the loungeroom. It now sits beautifully in my room, waiting for the rest of the gorgeous french furniture to be purchased by myself and situated around the room.

Here is a photo of the french chair with the milk bottle and rolling pin sitting on top:

Aaahhhh, I just love autumn, don't you readers? Now I can get back to drinking tea and reading with a duvet, all rugged up.

Speaking of reading, I have a novel to finish for English by the end of this week and then I have to do the family tree of the main character ... fun!

Better go then, chaps!
Much love and complete affection,
Miss Aalyn xx

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Career Uncertainties

For most of my life I have known exactly what I wanted to be; a teacher. I have chopped and changed that idea and added on and off other occupations but a teacher, nonetheless is what I have always dreamed of one day becoming. Today I was in class (set-planning) and I was asked to write a description of what I wanted to be and why. I wrote the usual; a teacher for early childhood or a journalist for a lifestyle magazine. Then I thought about the why ... and I thought ... and I thought. Why do I want to be a teacher? Is it because I have seen so many romantic old movies and read romantic old books and the characters I admire are teachers? Or is it because I actually want to be one? I have pondered over this for some time and I have come to the conclusion that I no longer have any idea what I want to be when I leave school! Me!! The person who has her whole life planned and who has always known, since she was but a child, what she wished to do! I am not used to this feeling of ignorance at what the future might hold for my career. Ever since I can remember I have always had something in mind. I feel quite lost. Indeed, I feel I cannot rest until I know.

Who, you may ask, are the mysterious book/movie characters which have so heavily influenced my wanting to be a teacher. Well, there is the lovely Anne from Anne of Green Gables. There is the delightful Laura from Little House on the Prairie. There is Jo from Little Women. There, I cannot think of any more but I am sure there are countless still.

I don't know why they have influenced me so but I have always dreamed that a teacher would be such a romantic and rewarding job. I have to remind myself though that we are in a new day and age now and perhaps teaching is not quite so romantic as it used to be. Or maybe it is simply the fact that these are only stories. Life is not without sin and unpleasant situations. I have to keep reminding myself that stories choose only to have things happen when they are supposed to. All things are planned and have a purpose in a novel.

Well, I suppose I shall know some day. When that day will be I simply don't know.
Goodbye readers,
Miss Aalyn xx

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Autumn Reverie

Autumn... a wonderful time of the year. Well, at least, in Scotland it is. I love the way the leaves turn and flutter to the ground, creating large piles of golden glory. I used to love to step on the leaves on my way to school and here the loud crunch as they were crushed beneath my shoe. I also love the feel in the air that winter is coming and the cold nip of a chilly morning. I have to say, weather is a very important factor in life for me. I simply do not believe I could convince myself to live somewhere where the weather is hot and unforgiving. And the fact that in Australia Christmas is in Summer is one that I simply cannot live with when I have children of my own. I would so love them to grow up knowing Christmas to be in the winter where they can make snowmen and ride down the hill on a wooden sledge.

Today in drama we did a meditation exercise at the beginning of class. I cannot say when I have ever felt so relaxed. Shall I tell it to you? Well, here it is.
Breathe slowly. In ... and out. In ... and out. Block out all thoughts and sounds from your mind except the ones concerning your breathing. Forget about everything else. Just breathe. In ... and out.
Imagine you are stepping into an elevator on the 21st floor. You see the rows of numbers on the elevator wall. You notice that the light for number 21 is lit. Imagine the elevator is slowly moving down. You see the numbers counting down from 21. Count them slowly and breathe in between each number. 20- in ... and out. 19- in ... and out. 18- in ... and out. Keep going like this until you have reached number 1. The elevator doors open and you step out. In front of you are 21 stairs descending down. You step onto the 21st step. Breathe in ... and out. Step onto the 20th step. Breathe in ... and out. Keep going like this until you have reached step number one (the bottom step). In front of you is a door. You open it. Inside there is a long corridor. All the way up and down the corridor are doors. Someone greets you and leads the way to your door. You open your door and go inside. This is your room. Noone else has ever been here before. It is yours and yours alone. What does your room look like? Is it small or large? Is there furniture or is it bare? Is the furniture antiquated or modern? Is there anyone else in your room? Is it messy or tidy? Is it bright or dark? Take a walk around your room and take in every detail. Once you have taken a good inspection you leave your room. You walk down the corridor and open the door. You walk up the 21 stairs, breathing in between stairs. You step into the elevator and breathe between floors. Step out of the elevator.

By the end of the exercise (we were lying down by the way) everyone was practically drooling. There was some other nonsense which I left out about 'your subconscious leaving you a message' but I just wanted to have a look at my room, who cares about my subconscious! My room was beautiful. It had a single white wooden bed against one wall with beautiful lace sheets. Beside that was a bedside table with two old fashioned books and a white clock. To the left of the bed was, against another wall, a large wooden wardrobe. Beside that was a full-length white mirror and beside that, on another wall, was a small grandfather clock. Beside this and opposite from the door I had entered was another door. Beside this was a rocking chair with a shawl draped over it. On the fourth wall was, over to one side, a window with a window seat. Light was pouring in through the window. The room was very bright and pristine; everything in its place. I have been there before. Sometimes I am the only one in it. Sometimes there is a small white dog there, sleeping on a rug. Sometimes my future husband is there and the bed is upgraded to a double bed. Whatever it is, its beautiful and I adore it.

Well, dear readers, there I shall leave you.
Until next time, my dears.
Miss Aalyn xx

ps. please tell me, readers, what your rooms look like! I would love to hear all about them.