May in Monterey and the City by the Bay

A lot went down last month, and what better way to sum it all up than with a little poetry?

Ahem…

Mikael partied with Muppets and joined the valet,

While Catherine cut veils and sat bay-bays.

We added to our portfolio working as a team

Creating this short video with a freakshow theme.

All while preparing for our big trip up North

To see some sisters sport their new mortar boards.

The first, in Monterey, was for Cath’s big sis, Lauren,

Who can now interpret and translate a language that’s foreign.

Lauren's Graduation 05-18-13

Click for gallery

We had a great time with an uncle, “aunt,” mom, and step-mother

Dad, step-dad, and a kooky in-law brother.

 After greeting Lauren’s Master’s with much celebration

We headed to Frisco with the Ames’ to continue our vacation.

San Francisco Pt. 1

Click for gallery

In the City by the Bay, we saw redwoods and went to prison,

And soon, yet another graduation had arisen.

This time for Anna, Mikael’s little sis

Whose last college class had just been dismissed.

Anna's Graduation 2013

Click for gallery

Joining the Wolde-Yohannes’ to see sights galore:

Treasure Island, the Wharf, and Lombard Street on a Segway Tour.

On the way back home we made a picturesque stop

To camp on the beach – the cherry on top!

We shared some great memories during our family time,

But now in LA, it’s back to the grind!

- C + M

(A snap, if you please)

Yo, Say Me Tay!

Sure, we could fill you in on what we’ve been up to since our WWOOFing adventures, but stories of stealing Marky Mark’s wall clock and dressing up as a terrorist in the deserts of New Mexico would bore you to tears. What better way to ignore a ten-month virtual hiatus than to skip right to the good stuff?

Back in Los Angeles, we’re shacking up in a small apartment in the middle of Dogtown, USA (aka Cypress Park) where we enjoy our backyard garden and nightly melodies of howls and yaps from our neighbors’ canine choristers. When Catherine’s sister and brother-in-law invited us on a camping trip in Yosemite not long after our move-in, there was much deliberation on the practicality of leaving our unemployment unattended to. However, we stayed true to our name and got Lost.

Thanks to Lauren, Mario, and the newest four-legged addition to our LA address, we had a blast. Here are the pictures to prove it:

 

 

Case Closed


Oh boy. Oh girl. Where to begin?

If one were to go by appearances only, one might be inclined to think that Catherine and Mikael disappeared into a barrel of weeds sometime last July and were wheeled away to a shrubbery grave somewhere in western France, the only condolence being that they did get the chance to realize their dream of above-water snorkeling.

Recently, thanks to some highly sophisticated investigation, some interesting new evidence has resurfaced. It turns out, like the gnome in Amélie, it was just another case of two tricksters off having the times of their lives.

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On to the next one…

Rolling green hills peppered with friendly livestock, stone age churches and helicoptering windmills. Heavy clouds proliferating spikey weeds (il fait chaud!), muddy boots and a curly wet coat on our four-legged supervisor barking orders at us. Hot cups of tea, cool glasses of wine and freshly baked desserts. These are some memories we take with us from our time here at Kerivoa. With more weight in our packs (snorkel gear, check!) and muscle on our legs, we tread south to set up camp on Il de Ré before heading to our next WWOOFing destination in Cahors… Still unable to upload photos from the cam so here come a few more off the phone.

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And we’re off!

The final 48 hours of our 8 month stay in Paris were a blur of seeing off our last pair of visitors from back home, saying goodbye to local friends, making some new ones while shooting a short film and of course packing up our apartment (notice sleeping is omitted from the list). We took off early Thursday morning headed west for a quick day of seaside recovery in St. Malo before being received by a most hospitable host at our first WWOOFing location – The Farmhouse B&B, a beautifully restored 16th century farm located in the rolling green hills just south of a small medieval town called Bourbriac – yesterday evening. Without our computers sharing photos while on our journey may be a challenge, but in the meantime we’ll leave you with our parting view…

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Practically Lost Photography

Been a busy past week here on Rue des Plantes as we’re hosting several visitors while simultaneously preparing for our departure from Paris (next week!). Will hopefully (but most likely not) have the time to fill you in with the details soon, but, in the meantime, feel free to check out some of the pics from our first photography gig earlier this month.

A bientôt!

Funny bunnies

Earlier we referred to an incident we experienced last month after signing up for a short film challenge at Kino Paname.  Kino is an international movement of filmmakers who meet monthly to screen the short films (under 6 minutes) they made the previous month, either by choosing their own subject or following a theme from the challenge, le défi. Upon entry to each screening, participants enter their names into either the “directors” bowl or the “actors” bowl, and throughout the night during the break between films, a director’s name is called, who then comes up to pull a theme (this month was “rabbits”) and as many actors as they wish to use in their upcoming project.

Just as Catherine’s cold feet were about to get the best of her, her name was called. From the hats of mystery, she  pulled (at random!) her comédiens - an adorable blonde woman named Béatrice Amaury and a scruffy-faced beau gosse in the back calling himself Mikael Ayele.

“Coup du lapin” was the theme. Catherine had never heard of such a phrase, but upon going home and watching a few instructional videos on youtube, she came to the conclusion that a “rabbit punch” in French is what we call “whiplash” in English. But how could she get more literal with that French expression?

Maybe Mikael’s new dreads could provide some inspiration?

In typical Catherine fashion, she didn’t get to writing the film until the Friday before it was due. This plus some scheduling conflicts led to some scrambling towards the end, to say the least. And by the time she was emailing Kino to say the upload might be later than the 12 noon deadline, they received some terrible news – news no one who has been awake since 8 am the day before ever wants to hear – the screening was full.

But that didn’t stop them. They toiled until they were satisfied, Mikael making the final tweaks to his originally composed score, Catherine trying to stay awake. They were determined to show up at the 8PM screening with the movie in pocket, gallantly proclaiming as the credits of the last film rolled, “BUT WAIT, there’s one more!” The crowd wouldn’t be able to say no. They just couldn’t!

But the bed was…right…there. So soft, so warm. Their bodies were kind of convulsing, and maybe they experienced a handful of psychotic episodes (but they’re not sure because neither one of them were present for any of them).

And then they woke up the next day.

Anyways, we did wind up screening it at May’s meeting instead. We enjoyed hearing the audience’s chuckles, applause, and bravos, but neither one of us can deny that we may have laughed the loudest.

Voilà! Hope you enjoy, and for optimal viewing, click on the HD icon to open via Vimeo.

Pizza, Piazzas & Pisa: A Weekend in Italia

Last weekend we jumped on the chance to once again hit the (Ryan) air, this time headed over the Alps to our friendly Southern neighbors: Italia!

Mont Blanc from the sky

With two nights in Florence (aka Little America) and one in Pisa, we found much to see…

places to hang…

things to smell…

and even more to eat!

We returned to Paris with bloated pance and deflated enthusiasm for our city, mirrored on the Metro-mugs that awaited us…nothing a buttery croissant or two couldn’t cure. Now we’re back to scrambling to make the most of our last two weeks here at 77, rue des Plantes, taking pictures for money and making movies ’bout bunnies – more on that soon!

Avril Living (and life’s like this…)

As you can probably guess from our recent lack of posts, it’s been an extremely busy past month. But now that it’s coming to an end, we thought it’d be a good time to bring everybody back up to speed.

For starters Mikael’s Mom, Catharina, came to visit for an action-packed Easter weekend, filled with adventures both in and outside of the city’s boundaries. From underneath the Pantheon to the top of the Sacre Coeur, from Matisse’s window’s to Monet’s gardens, we saw and did it all. Rising early and collapsing late, it’s no exaggeration when we say we managed to see more of our city during her 4 day stay than we have since we moved here last fall. Click below to see some of the highlights.

Shortly after, we found ourselves jobless, as both Catherine’s contract and Mikael’s boss’ sanity came to a bitter end. Fortunately, we had distractions a-plenty – it was time for another edition of Dimanche Rouge (video coming soon!), and with a fast approaching deadline for our Kino Paname short film project, there were screenplays to write, locations to scout and cats to wrangle as we prepped for our shoot. All this while trying to keep ourselves and our equipment dry from the torrential April showers.

We wrapped pre- through post-production within 72 sleepless hours, exporting it just in time to miss the submission deadline, experience an acute mental breakdown and pass out into a time-zone-altering slumber. Even though it didn’t make this month’s screening, we’re excited to showcase our fun little film at May’s meeting.

Currently we’re still trying to figure out what day it is, only emerging from our cave to catch late showings of The Avengers (Catherine’s name’s in the credits!) and, a far less satisfying to watch than read, Hunger Games. With only one month left on our lease, almost all our summer preparations have been set with three WWOOF hosts confirmed, train tickets reserved and a tent purchased. Come June we’ll be hitting the rails for 8 weeks of campagne living, but until then we’ll be making the most of our final days in the city we’ve learned to call home.

Oh yeah, and we started Mikael’s dreads. It only took 15 hours.