Everett’s 10th Birthday

Today is Everett’s 10th birthday. It is also our third day into a visit to Paris, so all of us are recovering from jet lag. Everett, Ted and Melissa were up for a couple hours in the middle of the night last night, but eventually everyone settled down and slept in (i.e. after 9am, which might as well be all day). Everett and Melissa went out for breakfast bread treats and then we all sat down to eat and open presents.

For the next hour or two Chris and Melissa continued to try to figure out how the clothes dryer works. There are two appliances in the apartment: a washing machine and a combination washer/dryer. Neither of them are remotely intuitive, even though the designers seemed to think they are by using a nonsensical set of icons (with no explanation) to convey what they do. We could not find a user manual in English, but we did find a printed user manual in French, so we decided to try to figure it out. We thought this shouldn’t be too difficult because between us we have 8 advanced degrees, of which Chris has 3 in engineering, and Melissa speaks fluent French. We spent hours on it and then conducted several experiments to try to get our clothes dry; each one in fact made our clothes wetter by adding water. Finally on Everett’s birthday morning we mastered it, and came to the realization that after running the dryer for the maximum amount of time at the highest temperature the clothes would merely be damp, also known as French dry.

Around 10am there was a knock at the door: the Gabbys had arrived! They were amazingly energetic after a long flight but it was important to them (and all of us) that they get to join Everett for his birthday.

In the afternoon the Gabbys rested while Chris, Melissa and the kids made a trip to Sacre Couer and had a picnic lunch. Afterward we walked through the Place du Tertre, and then Melissa took the twins home while Chris and Everett had an adventure and went to the Louvre and the Opera House and then home. In the evening we had dinner at Relais de Venise et son Entrecôte. Dinner was just as delicious as we imagined. Everett has now eaten at Entrecote in Geneva New York and Paris. He keeps falling asleep in his profiteroles.

It is now almost 10:30 and the twins are both wide awake despite being “so tired” for most of the day.

Happy Birthday Everett!

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