The lack of dozens of photos showing our new room being built this week means -yes, you guessed it- the new room was NOT built this week.
Which is sad, but not at all unexpected. The French building contractor is a rare, shy creature and you really can't expect one to show up according to any kind of predetermined schedule. Wild and free as the wind itself, and all that.
It's a bit tiresome, but that's how it is.
So, this week, instead of watching the addition to the house go up, I kept busy with other stuff. "Other stuff" included taking Severin on a shopping trip to buy badly-needed winter boots. His old ones were worn to shreds and about a month ago started getting actual holes in them, which is not really what a person looks for in winter footwear. But Severin hates shopping so much that he'd rather have snow melting all over his socks all day long than set foot in a store. In fact, he'd probably rather have his entrails torn out by rabid hyenas- but I didn't give him that option (so messy and painful, don't you think?) Cleverly bribing him with promises of a lunch at McDonald's, I managed to get him into a sporting goods shop. We found him a pair of Columbia boots that he liked and, at 40% off, they were a complete win.
What was not so "win" was the moment, right after we left the shop, when I realised that my key card was NOT in my purse any longer.
I dumped everything out of my purse, but it wasn't there. We all (I actually had all four of the kids with me) went out to the mall parking garage, just to make sure I hadn't somehow left it in the car.
It wasn't there.
And to make things worse, I could see our housekey sitting on the armrest inside the car. This meant that if I couldn't find the key card and needed to go home and get the spare, I wouldn't even be able to get into my house. Unless I broke a window....
But no need to borrow trouble. I was sure (kind of) that I'd be able to find my key card somewhere in the mall. It had just fallen out of my purse somewhere.
Or had it?
(This is where you get a small insight into the workings of my tiny mind. And let me tell you, they are some strange workings indeed...)
Right then, I looked around the crowded parking garage and this thought flashed through my brain: "Maybe it was stolen! A clever car thief took my key card and is watching us right now! He's followed us in order to find which car is mine and the minute I take the kids and go search the mall, he'll click the door open, start her up and drive away. OMG!"
Yes, I am insane. Thank you for asking.
I told Sev (my six foot tall son) and Tya (5'9" and quite capable) "Guard the car". Mallory stayed with them and Alexa came with me to help search. Luckily, we hadn't gone to very many places that afternoon. There weren't too many places to cover.
First, we searched the McDonald's. My purse had fallen on the floor at one point as I'd fussed over my salad, so I had a strong hope that the black plastic card would be found on the floor under our table.
No such luck.
I talked to the manager, but nothing had been turned in. So, we walked to Go Sport, looking at the ground the whole way. The store manager there was super-helpful. "I lost my keys at McDo once. I'd put them on the tray and then got distracted by the kids. Threw them right in the garbage! " she told me. Her previous experience (which ended happily after she searched the trash bin) made her very sympatheitic and she helped us look through the whole store.
Disappointed, I left her my name and cell phone number and trudged back down to the fast food place. I was just lifting one of the tables so Alexa could look under it, when my phone rang. It was the Go Sport manager...someone had turned in my key card! It had been found wedged under the bottom edge of the front counter where the cash registers sit.
So, it turns out I was NOT the target of fiendishly clever car thieves.