I took Dear Boy grocery shopping at Woolworths instead and bought two bunches of flowers to soothe my disappointed spirits. But that's not the something new; I couldn't leave it there - our 'somethings news' were meant to be celebratory or joyful. So I jumped on line and researched some new nursery rhymes to sing to my boy. I thought I might even brave some in another language.
LISTEN: I found this song ('L'alphabet Des Scouts') via mamalisa.com, which came with lyrics and an .mp3 to help me learn the melody.
LEARN: I studied French in school and university, but belatedly realised that there was a threshhold for my foreign language vocabularly and ability to conjugate. In France, it came in handy but there were no long rambly conversations about literature and philosophy for me. I ordered food; I purchased tickets; I read the comics in the newspaper. But children's songs I can do. I still remember the incredibly depressing kids songs we learnt in German - one about kids living in high-rises and breaking down fences to play in rich people's gardens; and another featuring bloody baby seal eyes and a very stern animal rights message.
This song is much more cheery, or at least, a little more wholesome. It's a scouting song and also helps you learn how to pronounce the French alphabet... with the exception of W ('double-v') and Y (i-grec') because those are just a bitch to rhyme.
It's going to take me a while to learn this. In the meantime, I've picked up a few shorter nursery rhymes in English that I'd never heard before. This is by far my favourite - mostly because I do not love the feathered creatures of the world and they do not love me.
Un jour la troupe campa A A A
La pluie se mit à tomber B B B
L'orage à tout casser CCC
Faillit nous inonder A B C D
Le chef s' mit à crier É É É
À son adjoint Joseph F F F
Fais-nous vite à manger G G G
Les scouts sont sous la bâche E F G H
Les pinsons dans leur nid I I I
Les loups dans leur logis J J J
Chahutaient quel fracas K K K
Avec les hirondelles I J K L
Joseph fit de la crème M M M
Et du lapin de garenne N N N
Et même du cacao O O O
Mes amis quel souper M N O P
Soyez bien convaincus Q Q Q
Que la vie au grand air R R R
Fortifie la jeunesse S S S
Renforce la santé Q R S T
Maintenant qu'il ne pleut plus U U U
Les scouts vont se sauver V V V
Le temps est au beau fixe X X X
Plus besoin qu'on les aide U V X Z**
And this one:
Away, birds, away!
Take a little and leave a little,
And do not come again;
For if you do,
I will shoot you through,
And there will be an end of you.
** It's not altogether clear to me who 'owns' this song, if there's even a copyright on it as it's a common song. If the owners want me to acknowledge them, please contact me.
"Buzz, Buzz, Buzz," says the great buzzing bee.
"Go away butterfly – this flower is for me."
"Why? Why? Why?" Says the little butterfly.
"If you may sit on this flower, why mayn't I?"