So here’s the deal. MrsM was asked if she would like to go and work in Afghanistan for a year. It would be the opportunity of a lifetime, and would give us a bit of financial security through various allowances and stuff.
We discussed it, and after much soul-searching, she said yes.
We talked about how I would be able to look after MiniM on my own, and the only remedy……….an Aupair.
To most adolescent English boys (and men), this conjures up images of blonde buxom wenches, willing to comply to the Master’s every whim.
The reality is very different, and a much better experience.
We had 3 Aupairs in total over the 12 month period. The first one, we will gloss over and not talk about, but the 2nd and 3rd were absolutely fabulous. They were angels, and are still part of our lives today.
We had decided that for an Aupair, we would try and get a French speaking girl (we did consider a male Aupair, but quickly dismissed this). Why French? Our plans are to move to France when we retire, so we wanted to give MiniM the opportunity to learn Francais.
Laura came into our lives just after Christmas, and MiniM took to her very quickly. It would be fair to say that they both bonded quickly and easily.
At the time, I was working shifts and Laura assisted me in the running of the house, cooking, cleaning and looking after MiniM.
MrsM and I had always said that we wanted any Aupair to be part of the family, but at the same time we wanted them to have their own space so that they could have some time alone if they wanted. To that end, we put a TV in the Aupairs room, and I spent ages putting an aerial feed in so that it worked.
We needn’t have bothered. Both Laura and her successor Cecile, spent most of their time
in the lounge with me and MiniM. They really did become part of the family.
Laura only ever planned to stay with us until August because she was starting a University course in Paris in September, so we reluctantly had to replace her.
And Cecile came into our lives.
Cecile speaks English, Spanish and French and had spent some time in Mexico. She loved to cook, and was pretty excellent at it too!
Cecile, like Laura, immediately bonded with MiniM, and MiniM bonded with her. We were a bit concerned that having got so close to Laura that MiniM would be ‘strange’ with Cecile. Not a bit of it!
And Cecile, like Laura, became part of our family.
Cecile stayed with us until MrsM came home, and then she moved out to Mexico.
Would we get an Aupair again? You’re damn right we would. How did we chose our two angels? Well, we never met them until we collected them from their entry port. I had email contact with them, and a telephone call with them both. That was it.
But MrsM and I had a hunch about both Laura and Cecile. And that hunch paid off. We had to trust these girls. We were giving over to them, the most important thing in our lives. We showed these two girls the ultimate trust, and they didn’t let us down.
For helping through the year that MrsM was away, we will be eternally grateful. MiniM still remembers them in her prayers.