The other day I asked my kids what had been the hardest on them when thinking about our move to France. I regularly test the temperature to see how they feel about things in general.
School was the first thing they mentioned. The difference in program, having to adapt to another system, making new friends and so-on. But this didn’t stay on the list for very long. It took them 20 seconds to change their minds. And to my surprise, they both agreed on what had been the hardest on them.
Now, what could it be for a then 6 and 8 year old, now 9 and 11? What would you say? Not seeing your friends, not having friends, missing your family, new surroundings, …
Nah, nothing like that. For my kids, the hardest thing they are still struggling with is counting. They can’t seem to get used to the idea of going from sixty to sixty-ten, eighty (four-twenty but that’s the same in Belgium and in France) to four-twenty-ten!
To be fair on them, at home we still count the Belgian way. When going out for shopping or talking with my French friends, I switch to my French brain and you wouldn’t guess it’s not natural to me. But comes the moment I need to write down a phone number, then I’m no better than my kids. Gosh can it be confusing!