Alex and I have a houseguest staying with us for a month. His name is Robin, and we met him when we were in France last year.

I know I haven’t written anything about my two weeks in Europe last September, and I’m grievously sorry about that. Of course, while I was on this vacation with my neighbors to watch Dave and Sabrina get married for the second time, I was the only one who faithfully recorded the trip in a travel journal. One hundred and eighty pages later, I wasn’t sure whether I had a Web update or a stage play on my hands. I’m still sorting that one out.

Alex kind of killed my urge to Web-purge by looking me dead in the eye and telling me, “I don’t want to see my trip on your Web site.” Oh well.

If my vacation were a play, Robin would have a very large supporting role as the primary French protagonist. Dave and Sabrina were totally stressed out, having just moved to a new apartment when the American contingency arrived en masse. None of us speaks French and only Nik and Thida rented a car.

Robin was our savior. A true ambassador, he hosted us in his apartment and in his car and around the beautiful city of Bordeaux. Took two weeks off from work so he could hang out with us and drive us around. His presence diffused the stress of being in a foreign country with people bearing high expectations.

A crush developed between Robin and one of the ladies on the trip (not I), which I believe was the primary reason he chose to spend his vacation in California. His insistent manner really scared off the woman in question, though, so I’m not sure this trip is turning into what he thought it would be. It doesn’t seem to have bothered him too much, though.

Stacia, Alex, John Lewis and I drove to SFO to pick him up nearly two weeks ago. Stacia and Alex ran up to the catwalk to look for him in the pre-customs area. They finally returned after John Lewis retrieved them.

“Did you see him?” I asked Stacia.

“Yeah. He’s talking to some girl.”

Robin passed through the Customs gate and attempted to sneak up on Alex to wrassle. They caused a bit of a scene at the airport, but I’m accustomed to such things with my exuberant housemate. He shook hands with John Lewis and Stacia gave him a kiss on the cheek.

“I’m so happy you’re here,” I told Robin when it was my turn. Work notwithstanding, it’d been a pretty crappy month and I was looking forward to having a distraction around.

We got him to our street and he pretended to go to Nik and Thida’s house, which used to be Dave and Sabrina’s house and also where he stayed last time he was in California. His previous visit coincided with the visit of his ex-girlfriend and also Sabrina’s best friend. That was also right around the time when Sabrina thought she was pregnant. So we all weren’t spending much time together. Foolish of us.

Robin not only brought us himself, but he brought us a houseguest — a 25-year old Frenchwoman named Cecile, who was to begin at the California Academy of Arts and Crafts the next week. We hit our first communication snag when trying to determine what exactly he wanted us to do with her.

“Robin, do you want her to come to our house?” I finally asked.

“Yes, sure, I think it’s better,” he responded.

I called my mom that night. “Our houseguest brought us a houseguest!”

She laughed.

We drove Cecile to school on Monday, and reveled in the quiet on the drive back.

Anyway, his visit has been going really well so far. He’s sleeping in the office on the futon I scored from Brandon, so he sleeps when we’re not working.

He wasn’t feeling well last week — I think he had the flu. The day he had it the worst, he napped on the sofa, then went over to the side window, peered out, and shook a cat toy on the end table. Then he rolled his eyes in disgust.

“Lynn. I am the same as the cat.”

Yes, it’s going to be a fun month.

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