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Understand people better and interact with LOVE, only love (not there yet. It is my bigest training) , be surprised, change my ideas, change the world, show surfers my "zero (almost) waste" way of living!
Hello all! I'm a single mom living with my boy, Mathys. Summer 2017, he turned 4 years old. I always have an au pair girl or guy living at home with us. I still have room for a CS on the living room couch most of the year. Two people can fit on it. I also have a indoor homoc! I travel one or twice a year with my son. Don't wory: he sleeps well at night most of the time :-) Mathys is a very lively and social little guy who was raised into couch surfing. He is dancing, signing and being a clown very easily.
We are vegan. Not extremist, though. We accept meat lovers without problems. I have more problems if you bring tons of garbage (like take away styrofoam everyday) in my house. If I am surfing at your place, I will always ask: do you have a compost bin? A recycling bin?...
This information seams to me too far in my profile for people to notice it: I don't accept surfers for LESS than 4 nights. The maximum is usually 7 days. It is a little flexible but you have to be very convincing ;-)
I accept NEW profiles without references but make an effort to describe yourself in a way the hosts can make an idea about WHO is requesting to stay at their place. Ans the most important for me is the PERSONNAL message you will write. If no reference to you reading my profile or WHY do you want to surf at MY place is made... I know we all look for a cheap (!) place to stay but I am not a hotel, you know. You will be expected to interact with us and spend time otherwise, I don't see why I should bother...
I had the longest CS profile ever! Lol. It described all my professionnal-personnal-and traveling interests (they are all the same). Now I just deleted it because it was simply too informative. You can see above what job I do and you can conclude that I am much into arts and culture. I also love to walk walk walk. I bike a lot. I love the most simple experience in a tent to the expensive hotel bufet experience in Pattaya on the day it is not so expensive. One thing I dislike doing: doing nothing. I love to chat, cook, eat, go for a coffee or glass of wine, take pictures, help you on a project, be your guide in Montreal if I have the time, visit with you, bring you to a friend party! I just don'y go into bars for Mathys can not go there with us.
As interactions really depend of who is coming to my house with what commun interests and what behaviour, I can't describe how I will be towards you ;-) When I surf, I am more of a listener and I try to fit in. When I host, I am very direct on how I appreciate things in my own appartment. In one case or the other, I believe that true communication, sometimes inconfortable, is the key to not feeling frustrated or rejected or juged or un welcome or disliked or dis respected. I tend not to avoid to speak the truth of my heart, in a friendly way, WHEN I feel that the person in front of me could take it as a gift insted of an agression. Anyways, what I say always reflect ONLY my personal vision. It talks to you or it does not.
All I can say is I LOVE receiving people when they seam thankfull, respectfull of my demands and interested in sharing and helping out. Some time I'll have much time for you. Some times, I'm almost not there... But remember the au pair might be there with you all day. Mathys goes to day care. School, almost!
PS find my name in my profile... I always like to see that CS have read my references when they send a request :-P
Why do it simple when it can be more complicated (more to discover, more surprising, unforgettable, more to learn, fun fun fun)??!
I expect great things from the others and I crave for VERY FLUID COMMUNICATION with and from everyone but it is not ofthen the case so sometimes -many times- I am very disappointed by others and I think I dedicate my life to understand that other on witch I rely so much... in order to stop ever being disappointed anymore, one day and become wise...
Some one said (can't remember who) Happyness will not come when everything is perfect but when you will have accepted the imperfections of everything...
I say YES
but... you can try making it less imperfect...
and however, to relate it to CS, I'd say I host a lot BECAUSE I accept that things
could be imperfect and go wrong. I learned a lot from imperfect experiences :-)
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING
Afther a year without surfing or surfers, I intend to participate as much as possible but I have more and more expectations towards surfers. I am less eager to accept all and everyone. Not for lack of time. I can always make time for surfers. Not for needs of privacy. I do not need such thing. I have more rules to make it more fun for me. Yep: sometimes hosting was all work and no fun. So I still receive surfers cause I love conversations at almost all times! Loll. I am quebecoise but that is a very french touch I have: loving controversy, talkative suppers, asking you lots of questions, discovering your specific way of dealing with your life or your traveling philosophy... Everything is more fun with someone rather than alone. But especialy, I think it is amazing the random conversations you can have with a surfer, turning deep and changing something unexpected within you, in the end.
Just amazing! I have surfed first and however the dificulties, I'm now trying to host as much as possible to give back the generosity I received. Despite some less good experiences, I have had soooo many incredible host and surfers! I some times think I receive more from surfers than I give them... See my references/comments on people for more details about what we do when together, couch surfers and I...
THEATRE, ARTS (plays, dance shows, museums, doing arts and theater)
Social and charitative activities (I am volunteering with RESULTS Canada)
OUTDOOR SMOOTH ACTIVITIES (love walking, jogging, hiking softly, yoga, pilates)
NEWS, PHILOSOPHY, ENVIRONMENT, LEARNING. I am also a vegan who likes to talk about animal ethics and climate changes, pollution, reducing wastes and packaging, live a simplier life. I am not a vegan extremist, don't worry.
- outdoor activities
- zero waste
Music, Movies, and Books
Pfff too many! On request..
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
- diving for the first time in Grand Cenote, Tulum, Mexico...
- private picture safari in a biological animal center, Los Lianos, Venezuela
- go dancing in Igloo fest, Montreal, with a sufer protecting my 6 months prengnancy belly from the crazy crowd
- horse ridding the hills between San Cristobal and San Juan de Chamula, Mexico
- treck in the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona, USA
- dancing sevillana with knowing how to with local people, being the only foreigner of the first Spain feria de Abril in Matalascanas, Spain.
- horse ridding in Hyde Park, London, England
- canoing in the sea with wild dolphins in Madeleine Islands, Canada
- listening to a drunk thaï guide signing the Beatles with his guitare, in front of an outdoor fire at night, in the mountains, near Chang Maï, Thaïland
- visit an orphenage in Luang Prabang, Laos and be given the opportunity to give a drawing and painting lesson, a sewing workshop and a shadow puppets workshop
- Assist a private real Azteca dance and try a HOT temazcal experience with a real hippy crowd and real chaman, the next day! Palenque, Mexico
- Try Absynthe (the green mythic alcool of the mytical poets of Paris) in Caveau de la Huchette during a small Jazz concert, Paris, France
-Getting married in Burkina Faso!
- Assisting an outdoor Opera reheursal in a super small and gorgeous village surronded by sunflower fields: San Geminiano, Italy
soooo much more...
Teach, Learn, Share
I'd be happy to teach basic sewing, basic drawing, French, basic English or trash reduction. Love to share visions of life, experiences and maybe change my ideas because of you?
Because I will always have so much to LEARN:
- would love to learn a new laguage
- would love to learn to use a computer better and PHOTOSHOP!!
- would love to learn the History of your country
- would love to learn traditional waving and fabric dying
- would love to learn to knit
How funny that people ONLY have awsome things to share on CS... How not representative of the real experiences...
BURKINA: They are soo generous when they respect you! But get respected because some will always see you as a foreigner wallet on two feet -if you are not an african who stayed in Africa- When you throw a party, you are expected to pay for every single detail, including transportation of your guests some times... and that is including an invitation to go drinking or dancing together. It is never one for himself. Always someone -the oldest or richer or host- will take care of all the group... Being alone, for an African, is way worst than it is for westerners in general. They will share a lot, talk a lot, dance and play music, listen to you but don't go too deep in the private and family privacy department because it is considered way more private than for us. Ofthen, they won't even want to think about it because problems at home are taboo. I found Love was a little taboo too...
THAILAND: They don't like toursts as much. They have too many and their tourists are too wild, loud, stupid, cruising their woman... But the interesting thing is they do not see that (nor prostitution) as much imoral as we see it in Western countries. For them, sex is an exercise and has little to do with love. Getting monney from it is a good thing! You become a super-heroin when you leave children and family to go working (...) in Pattaya, for exemple... Also, I learned they don't consider the link between mother and child as sacred as we do in America and Europe: If the soul of the child does not fit well the soul of the parents, they will give the child to someone else for a better fit...
MEXICO: I learned that mexican guies like white girls a lot! They make them dance salsa like a queen what ever their (lack of) skills. They are often (the men) a little macho too, obviously. But when mexicans have been too long in Montreal, they lose that facination on westerners (normal) and don't invite strangers to danse salsa anymore... Interesting. Of course, some young apasionados of the latina culture do not like westerners and all they represent but that did not seam to be typical. People are very nice and interested in you when you make the effort of speaking their language. The country itself has everything to offer! Mountains, deserts, big urban cities, colonial charming villages, jungle, beaches, ruins, lots of museums, cenotes, wildlife, divine food, mezcal, ancestral knowledge, amazing art crafts etc.
Much much more...
What I Can Share with Hosts
I tend to offer a meal on one of your days with me. Be a surfer or a host.
As A HOST MYSELF, I could offer the first breakfast if you arrived late the previous night. But no more: you must take care of your own meals. I hate to make that precision. I have had a few bad experiences...
As a HOST: I can offer bedding (sheet, blanket, pillow) and a towel for the showers.
As a surfer, I usually don't have a sleeping bag or a towel unless I travel along a beach or plan on being around a swimming pool a lot.
As a HOST: There is no TV here. I do not have a fix phone and I do not let Csurfers use my computer. Again... I have had bad experiences... I DO offer the code to the Free Internet acces. But My Internet is not unlimited. Don't download without asking.
As a SURFER: I will not spend all my time going out without you if you show interest in spending time with me! I don't want to disturb your routine neither. What ever suits you but I definitely don't spend hours on my phone/computer not talking to you... unless you are busy.
As a HOST MYSELF: I am likely to refuse to host you if you don't stay at least 4 days. Max is 8.
The reason is I doubt I will have the time to enjoy your stay if you come 2-3 days. You will have lots to do in little time so you may not want to spend one of your precious evenings talking to me and it is not guaranty I can go somewhere with you and bring my young son with us in evenings... even during the day, some places are simply no good for toodlers...
And if you stay less than 4 days how can I ask you to clean the house a little for me? YES I wrote "clean"! I do not want a gift. I do not want a bottle of wine. I want help cleaning a very generous house to surfers.
Just imagine a typical summer month:
you come 3 days
They come 4 days
he comes 4 days
she comes 2 days
they come 3 days
that is a lot to clean up and a lot of laudry and organisation and suppers. Don't get me wrong: It is a pleasure to exchange and help put a cheap roof on top of your lovely head and do all the above EXEPT the cleaning. It is NOT a pleasure to feel like a FREE Hotel... so I'll ask you clean up a little and I would not dare to do it if you would stay 1-2 nights!!
Participation is expected everywhere exept on rent, electricity bill and Internet acces. That's all ready good, no? Couch surfing is NOT ABOUT MONEY and receiving gifts. I DON'T WANT GIFTS from surfers. I want good conversations and mutual respect.
I will help you very much with directions. I have a good sens of orientation and I like to share ideas of what you could do in my city. I can draw maps, talk about the culture here, the expressions, what to pay attention to. I am very helpfull with any question you have (or I want to be helpful to be more precise) and you will be able to communicate with me anytime during the day (if I am at work or anywhere out of the house) by cellphone or facebook messages MESSENGER...
Countries I’ve Visited
Burkina Faso, Cuba, Côte d'Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Germany, Italy, Laos, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Spain, Thailand, Tunisia, United States, Venezuela
Countries I’ve Lived In
Belgium, Canada, France, United Kingdom