First Entry – Father and I

My name is Eleanor Marie Wiles, but don’t call me Eleanor, just Marie is fine. I’m just now nine years old. My birthday was yesterday and Father gave me this journal. Father and I visited Venice yesterday, which is where my journal came from.

Father says I should write in my journal once a week or maybe even more often than that. I’m quite a busy person, so we will have to see how often this journaling thing happens.

I think Father also gave me the journal so that he can talk to me about what I’m thinking and writing down. Father is trying to talk with me more, which is good I guess, but that means I have to think of things to say back to him. Sometimes what I’m feeling is not good for me to say out loud; it might hurt his feelings.

Father’s name is Basil Gregory Wiles (he has everyone call him Basil. I think he is more of a Greg). He’s a writer and photographer. We travel together so that he can find different things to write about for the magazine The Coffeetable. He writes the articles about other cultures and natural wonders, things that are interesting to have open on your coffee table. His articles are the most popular section of the magazine. He also has a fancy camera that I’m not supposed to touch. He takes pictures of the places we go to and the people we meet. Sometimes he even takes selfies of the two of us. I tell him that it’s weird that he uses his fancy camera for selfies. He laughs. 

Since I’m not supposed to touch his camera, last year in Seattle he bought me my own little camera. I like it because I can take pictures just like he does, and my camera is red. My favorite color is red.

Father is busy with all the writing he does, but he is also busy with me. We travel so much that I don’t really go to a “real” school, but Father teaches me. He has lots of books on his eReader, including textbooks. Textbooks aren’t as fun as real books, but I have to read them for school sometimes. Father loves real books, so we try to use those more than the textbooks. When he has to write for work, I do my school writing and projects. He says school is my work until I’m grown up, then I will have job-work. Real work seems like more fun than my school work.

Yesterday, in Venice, we had a day off of doing school and work for my birthday.
We arrived on the train that came to the city across this land-y bridge-y thing-y. It was kind of cool and scary all at the same time, because you can’t actually see what the train is on, all you see is water! 

Once we got there, we decided that the best thing to do was to go get lost in the city. 

We wandered and wandered all around the city, finding lots of random streets and buildings. Sometimes we went with the hoards (that’s one of my vocabulary words this week) of people, like when we bought my journal, and went inside the basilica (another vocabulary word), which is just a big cathedral: a big church-ish building, but old. It was big and fancy with lots of gold, and pictures of people, and decorations like that.

We were going to go ride in one of the boats, Father says they are called gondolas, along the canals, but instead we just watched them while we ate lunch. Father packed us some sandwiches (egg salad, my favorite).

Finally, we wandered right back to the train station. We noticed a little shop just before the station entrance with lots of masks all over the outside of it. We went inside and Father bought us both masks.

Father’s is white with silver and black detailing around the edges and had a long nose; he said it is in honor of a friend of his named Cyrano, but I think he is making that up. Mine is gold with lots of jewels sparkles and has a crown. I’m wearing it now and feel very mysterious and glamorous. 

Father says this year will be full of new and exciting things. I hope that means we are going to places as magical as Venice!

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