I've somehow never had to use the French word for efficient since living in Paris. But, yesterday I found myself searching through my pocket dictionary to figure out how to describe the unprecedented situation at, of all places, the préfecture. That's right, folks! I wanted to describe my visit to the préfecture as efficace! Of course, I arrived prepared - hot panini in hand, interesting book to read and my current knitting work-in-progress were all sorted in my bag in preparation for the long and nail-biting experience that never materialized. I finished my sandwich, knitted a couple of rows, and not even 20 minutes into my wait-time some brilliant woman decided to prepare the carte de sejours in advance for people who were there to pick theirs up - people like me! Only minutes later, I was walking away with a smile planted on my face and my freshly-minted card in hand. We won't talk about the fact that I'll have to start the renewal process in merely three months, or that I look like I'm holding back a toothy grin in my photo, because I just really want to savor this happy, hassle-free (and likely, once in a lifetime) moment as long as possible.
Things are also coming along swimmingly with the Christmas shopping. I never knew I could get so much done with my day until I tried to get so much done. Besides Gui's sister, we're done with his family, and apart from a few little things I plan on taking back for peeps, all the things that require treks across town or special ordering been taken care of. I plan on getting most of the stuff I'm missing from a last-minute trek to the mall and Target in Dallas or Kansas, which I'm sure is going to be a mad rush! I'm keeping a pretty thorough and strict list, though, so let's hope I don't get too sidetracked by all the glitz and glamour of holiday shopping at American stores while I'm there!
I'm also happy to report that my first knitting project is more than halfway done. It would be two-thirds done if I decided to stick with the three skeins of yarn I'd initially planned for it, but I've decided to add one more skein (if it's available) since it's not going to be as long as I'd thought it'd be. So far, I'm really pleased with how it's turned out, but being my first project and all, it's not without its flaws.
I still need to learn how to weave in my ends and cast off, but that'll happen soon enough, I think. Right now, I'm kind of obsessed with the knitting (etc.) website, Ravely and can't keep myself from dreaming about what projects I want to tackle next. I'm still so impressed by the beautiful work people are able to create with their hands and some imagination. I'd love to move on to a pair of simple socks or baby leggings next, but I'm not sure if I should be less ambitious for my second project. I'm thinking I'll be able to draw some inspiration and advice from the talented group that's meeting tonight at Aimee's, so we shall see soon enough.
I know it's my pessimistic way of reasoning, but I'm really hoping that things aren't going so well and so quickly because something's bound to go wrong next week. It would be nice if all of these little triumphs would lead to a culmination of smooth travels for us on Tuesday, but as that's kind of out of my hands, I won't worry too much about it now.