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Birthday parties in France

May 28, 2010

Keeping in mind that I have lived in France since I was 17, so maybe my vision of things in the US is a little skewed, but this one has me thrown for a loop…

We were invited to MrB’s ex-bosses 40th birthday party.  (At least I think it is his 40th, and I hope so given the gift we are giving!).  His boss has moved all over France for his job*, so a lot of the people at this party are work related people for MrB.  Moving around means that it is hard to make friends I guess, and given the amount of hours MrB works, I can see how they don’t have many hours of leisure time to go meet other people.  So we are invited and we are going.  It should be a lot of fun.  Where I am lost, is that they all wanted to chip in a get a group gift.  So they tallied up the number of people participating in the group gift and we are 4 couples.  And so the person buying/in charge of the gift went to buy something, and she got him a Mont Blanc.  So we all have to pay 60 Euros for the gift.  Now, I don’t think that I am cheap, and I like to faire plaisir but 60 Euros per couple seems a little steep for a gift to me.  Or am I actually cheap?  Part of me also thinks that this might be a generational thing…  All of the other people going to the party are close to ten years older then me, so maybe that is where the difference is?  At any rate what is done is done, so we will go tomorrow armed with our checkbook and pay up.  All I have to say is that he better like it.  And I hope he writes a lot.

Oh, and the one thing I am worried about it what to do with MissL.  There are going to be lots of other kids, but she will be by far the smallest.  And she has a hard time going down at our house to bed, so I am not sure how I am going to deal with that somewhere else.  Plus dragging the lit parapluie over there and trying to find somewhere to set it up seems like a huge pain in the rear.  I am thinking of taking the Ergo and just strapping her to me…

*a side note, Damien wants to do the same job as he did.  I don’t know if I am ready to move all over France every 2 years…  But we do want to move, so I guess if it is offered to him we would take it, I’ll just have to learn how to pack a little better.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. May 28, 2010 5:23 pm

    I think 60 seems normal for a 40th birthday present for someone that isn’t an old friend. We were at a 40th just a few weeks ago for a close friend and we contributed 150 towards the group gift. On the otherhand, they had organized a huge party, practically a wedding type party, so I felt like we got off easy!

    • ashleyenfrance permalink*
      May 28, 2010 6:29 pm

      I guess so too. I am not even sure if it is his 40th… I just hope I get a Mothers Day gift! Since we can spend 60 on MrB’s ex-boss, I think I deserve something nice too! Lol.

      I have no idea what kind of party this is going to be. MrB isn’t that great at getting details. I do know everyone is bringing their kiddos though, so I am thinking BBQ type thing.

  2. May 28, 2010 6:22 pm

    Be sure to let us all know how the party goes! My first reaction was also “whoa, that is a lot for a gift” but after reading Nicole’s comment, well, maybe I am cheap, too! It just seems like a big expense in a time when many people I know are hardly getting by. But maybe the recession isn’t so bad in France? The main shock I have over the price is the shocking price of the pen. I mean, it’s a pen. A fancy one, I’m sure. But talk about conspicuous consumption! I also hope this man loves to write! 😉

    • ashleyenfrance permalink*
      May 28, 2010 6:32 pm

      Now that I think about it more I think you put your finger on what ‘bothers’ me… A pen is so boring and expected! We will see. At any rate it is too late now… With our next trip coming up for the US, I could do a ton of other things with 60 Euros, but oh well! Hopefully he will be happy!

  3. misschris permalink
    June 2, 2010 8:23 am

    It’s proabably a good investment if you consider that it’s a colleague who works in the same job your husband wants to eventually do. And you’ll eat well if it’s a good party!

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