Friday, August 6, 2010

Family Values

For the past almost three months I have been living with the Bennett family in Dartmouth, NS. (just across the harbour from Halifax). As described in the About Me section, the Bennetts are old family friends from Toronto. L and P are basically my aunt and uncle and, I guess by extension, their two sons are cousins, though they feel more like little brothers. They very generously agreed to take me in after I graduated so I could get on my feet before finding a place in Halifax to live.

Moving in with a family definitely required an adjustment period, as I have been living on my own with F and various other roommates for the past four years; I also require a fair amount of "alone time".

The biggest adjustment has been dealing with two young boys. Before now, I had always been the one of the youngest in my family and always the youngest in my house growing up, having only an older sibling. I've also spent a large portion of my life living only with women, so co-habitating with boys is not my area of expertise. At first it seemed pretty easy. I was a new person in the house, someone with interesting stories and a different perspective on things. But the curiosity didn't last long. Very soon I became the older sister figure and the perfect target for practical jokes and teasing. As a younger sibling originally, I can take a fair amount of teasing and dish out a bit of my own. However, as a girl (a minority in the house), I was not prepared for the extent to which boys will go to get a laugh out of anything you do, say, or even think.

example 1: An advertisement for Clear Blue pregnancy tests comes on t.v
R: "Emily, don't you need one of those?"
G: "Yea, this ad only comes on when you're in the room"
Me:............ o_O.................

example 2: I walk into the living room and sit down. R is sitting, quite happily, on one of the 3 other empty couches in the room but immediately gets up to come sit by me.
Me: "Why are you going to sit here when the other ones are free?"
R: "So I can annoy you."
Me: "No. Get your own couch."
R : sits down beside me anyway
Me: stares at R
R: "What?! I'll stay on my side"
Five minutes later guess whose limbs are splayed out across the couch digging into every bit of me they can reach?

And it's not just the young ones who enjoy poking fun at me. P often joins in or is the instigator of it all. Though he is also the first to agree to me exacting my revenge on either of the boys, and I definitely do. I cannot claim to be an innocent party.

Teasing and jokes aside though, I couldn't have asked for a better place to spend the summer. It's exactly like being with family.

However, everyone needs to leave the family at some point and as lovely as the summer's been I am very much excited for moving into my first non-student apartment with F and the cats on September 1st.

25 days!

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