238 rue Gray
4 June 2010
The news seemed to return with our cameramen this week — Christian, Reuters’ veteran cameraman, a consummate pro who seems to know everyone in this town, just got back from the Cannes Film Festival; Hervé, a young freelancer who’s an absolute riot, from a gig in Spain.
The pace this week was significantly faster. It was quite the week for news: lots of implications locally following the raid of the boat in Gaza (mostly demonstrations for the release of prisoners, including five Belgians), and the unprecedented shooting of a judge and clerk in a Brussels courtroom. I got to shoot the ad hoc memorial service on the day of the shooting.
Tyler and I also covered the visit of the Iranian foreign minister, getting up early to cover a (really, REALLY small) demonstration outside a hotel where he was speaking. We were the only news organization with pictures of him leaving the building. The week ended with a little cherry on top: I helped cover the Mexico-Italy World Cup friendly match at Stade Roi Baudoin — the first football contest I’ve seen live!
I also feel like my broken French is piecing itself together a little bit. I helped out on a feature about a guy who runs a vineyard in the middle of a Brussels city park — he was Francophone, and I did the interview almost completely in French. For the first time, I feel like I can really understand what people are saying back to me, and I feel like I’m actually communicating with people. The newsroom is almost an immersion environment: French is Marine’s and Hervé’s langue maternelle, Christian is fluent, and Yvonne is inclined to talk with all of them in French. And I’m gradually understanding more and more of what they’re saying. It’s fascinating to feel my brain adapt to the multilingual environment.
Off to Antwerp for a long weekend this weekend!