Gabriel turns Two: Happy Birthday Sweet Boy

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Hungary anyone?

This one thing worked out perfectly: my best friend Jenn slept on my couch the night that our Au Pair, Ivett arrived from Hungary after a brief orientation in New York City. The next day Jenn, Nika and I placed wild tattoos on our bodies -- tattoos of sun, moon, stars and a funky eye, embedded in spirals and poetic swirls that are also kind of tacky. We bought Jenn a pair of turquoise and pearl errands and said beautiful goodbyes.

Help is here to stay, after such a long time of trudging on alone. Let me tell you about Ivett.

She is tall and graceful. Ivett looks a bit like me, although the tall part is clearly a point of difference She bears some similarity to Anne Hathaway, which occurred to me upon her mention a castle near her home occupied by an earl who tried (without success) to buy her beautiful horse named Mirage.

Ivett's quiet love of children shines naturally. She spends long stretches drawing with Nika, and Gabe is smitten, serenading her by name: Ivett! Ivett! Ivett! Avriana is warming up. I am glad someone wants to be a Mama's girl, anyhow.

Ivett is deep, straightforward, mysterious, sensitive and a lover of mashed potatoes, which we served her first full day with our family. She ate about seven small bites of the salty white mash, the most she has eaten of any particular food. She said the mashed potatoes were very good.

Her English is thoughtful and very good, except Ivett confuses gender pronouns frequently when referring to her boyfriend, Peter -- who, by the way, is the son of Russia's Chief Rabbi. Although I didn't know there was such a thing as a Chief Rabbi of Russia until this afternoon, it sounds quite impressive and significant, as this role has landed Ivett's boyfriend at parties frequented by Hillary Clinton and Hengry Kissinger. I couldn't help but ask, "And was Henry kissing her?" Also George W. Bush was at one party.

When I mentioned that I think George W. would make an endearing, harmless character if only he limited his activities to chasing armadillos and frequenting Texan pubs, Ivett observed that she had translated some of Bush's speeches for a language exam and that he sounded "...stupid?"

I took Ivett out driving this afternoon and she said I was a good teacher. I think this was a good sign.


Amy said...

I like her already!

Jemila Monroe said...

Yes, I think she is a good fit for our family. Of course it's an adjustment having an additional person in our immediate family, and I'm a little burnt out on adjustments, but Ivett is a very special person and I'm glad she's here :)