Lou's Diary
A little prince, not quite like the others
  Hello, I am a little boy who only sees right with his heart...
Which doesn't make my parent's daily life any easier. So I'm blind and different (mentally speaking).




« september 2009



 Monthly archives

Lou and space


Welcome to Lou's blog

This blog was born in french during autumn 2003 and is now progressively being translated in your language.

New articles will therefore appear on a regular basis.


... my apologies to the people who hadn't understood this yet, all articles on this website are created and written by myself (his dad).

Lou is currently unable to do it,, just like he is to this day unable to grasp the concept of a "computer", "internet", or to focus for a long period of time on a conversation. Only time will tell us if we manage to integrate him completely in the world in which he lives.

Therefore all stories, despite relating actual facts, are obviously biased by my interpretation of his behavior. But having known him for over five years, I don't think I'm getting it wrong.

Want to know more ? Check out the "read me" page.

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Thank you to the "Roi Baudoin" foundation ( "Parcours hors pistes" ). The new design, hosting and translations were partially made possible by their financial support.
Many thanks to Marco Pappalardo et Laetitia Bouet for the translation.


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wednesday 30 september 2009

NEW !!!

Now, thanks to an automatic translator on the French page of the « Journal of Lou », you can follow our incredible adventure with Lou in your language.
It’s here (page French).
Choose your language and, optionally, learn what Lou is now, or go back (with the archives) where it was stopped here (October 2005).

Good reading.
The little prince
By Luc Boland, at 18:12 :: My own world :: #149 :: No comment

wednesday 12 october 2005

125. My perception 4 : What does being mean

percpetion (Mc Lean)(continued)

So you have to be patient with me, extremely patient : to explain, to explain, to explain.
Again and again.
By looking at the problem from any possible angle in order to find the right words, the words
I'll understand.

Daddy and mommy have quite a few brainteasers to try and explain to me !
For example : what does being blind mean ?
Easy you say ? Well explain it to me !
Is it "not seeing" ?
Yes, of course, but what's "seeing" ?
I know I have eyes, but I don't know how to use them.
I can tell daddy, mommy, and everybody else around me move with an insolent ease, they guess things, prevent them, and that's thanks to "sight" ... But you can tell me it's thanks to sight all you want, I'm still none the wiser, because what is "sight" anyway ?
One of the five "senses" ?
What's a "sense" ?

Ok, I get the first four (and even then I must still understand they are my tools of perception and they are called "senses")
But the fifth, the one I'm missing...
Is it seeing pictures ?
Sure again, but what are pictures to someone who's never see one ?
Besides, I also create "pictures" in my head, in my own way.
The picture of mommy, for example, is a stamp, an odor, a noise, the grain of the skin, spatial shape.
Go try and explain me sight !

Let's reverse the roles :

lire la suite

By Luc Boland, at 11:51 :: My own world :: #145 :: 26 comments

monday 10 october 2005

My perception 3 : My body


Basically the doctor said about myself that perceiving life is still very complicated for me (it's already hard enough for each one of us !). I'm still too busy defining "myself with my body". Only when I'm finished touring my little house, from the basement to the attic, and I therefore have a "practical" and reassuring map of it, will I begin to show a little more interest in the garden all around it. The trick is not to let me become complacent in my mansion.

I could decide to lock all the doors and immure myself in my little house, just like I could slowly go on a journey outside (which is already happening a little).
Such is the challenge ! Nothing is won and nothing is lost.
In conclusion, there's still some work ahead for daddy and mommy.
It's up to them to find the right strategy, to reassure me, to be my guide.
Up to them to block the door with their foot when I want to slam it, to discreetely go through the chimney to meet me home.
Up to them to place lots of shiny garlands outside to make me want to leave "home".

In fact, I'm more like the fox in "Petit Prince", who needs to be tamed in order to come out of its den.

(to be continued...)
By Luc Boland, at 10:43 :: My own world :: #144 :: No comment

wednesday 28 september 2005

123. My perception 2 : Demonstration at the doctor's

All that to tell you that yesterday, me and daddy went to see the neuropediatrician
(for once, mommy was off duty).
It's a man I see every six months to evaluate my psychomotor and neurological development.

As soon as daddy picked me up from school and told me where we were headed, I demanded some guarantees : "no little jabs !" (I get the daily evening "little jab" for my hormones - which goes down without a problem - and hospital "jabs" confused).
Daddy reassures me : we are indeed going to the hospital, but there will be no jab.
So I stay cool.

After an hour long trip (we must go the other end of the city), we get to the hospital.

In the admissions hall, it's full of noises, children yelling and also crying.
I don't like that ! I need to be reassured, I need explanations, otherwise ...
Then it's the stroller ride in a maze of hallways.
Finally the waiting, not long for once, before meeting the doctor.

Feeling in great shape, I give him right away a demonstration of "how well I can jump" :
I jump up and down, without any support, and manage to defeat Newton over a few centimeters.
The doctor appreciates.
I also perform the "stroller, stay !" show in the hallway, to show him how well I can walk now.
He's very proud of me.
So I blurt my usual verbiage (Marie-Anne, little dog Courage, swear words, "piapaille woops!" etc...), punctuated by my repetitive gestures, kicking, and other movements called "reassurance" movements.

Daddy knows all about it, but for your benefit I'll explain again what "reassurance" movements are : since I can't see, all I have to remind me of the existence of parts of - or my whole - body is the sense of touch and feeling my extremities move. Even sticking my finger in my mouth (see post 116) betrays the need to feel that part of my body as actually being there. The problem is, I can't do a hundred things at the same time. I can't "pick up the pieces" while I'm comunicating. That's one of the main problems with me.
But the doctor is hopeful.
He talks for a while with daddy, while I listen. It's going into one ear, and soon enough it will be going out the other.
Hence my crude transcription, because to me it's all chinese.
Maybe someone will be able to understand, and hopefully I'm not twisting their words too much.

(... to be continued)
By Luc Boland, at 18:43 :: My own world :: #143 :: one comment

monday 26 september 2005

122. My perception 1 : The Doctor Family

DocteurAmong all the people I meet, some of them are part of a very particular tribe : I'm talking about doctors.
They resemble each other so much one may think they all have the same daddy and the same mommy.
Maybe they do, maybe they all live in the same place, and they're one big family.

Doctors are funny guys whom I meet in rooms that always have the same smell and the same peculiar vibrancy : cold and muffled at the same time. I also recognize them right away by that starched tissue, with that neck and those buttons going down to the knees. It looks like a shirt-skirt.
(daddy says it's a white doctor's apron).

lire la suite

By Luc Boland, at 15:49 :: My own world :: #142 :: No comment

thursday 22 september 2005

121. When I make a phone call...

Téléphone CabourgWhen I make a phone call for real (not with my Buzz Lightyear phone), I'm overcome by a verbal frenzy.
It's so much fun.
So I end up not listening to the person on the other end and I just blurt out whatever is going through my head (preferably my stereotyped sentences of the moment).

An example ?
When daddy and mommy called me from Cabourg where they were spending a romantic week-end and I was ill (a nasty conjunctivitis which required Dr Jean-Francois' intervention) ( see post 72), here's what I told them on the phone :

lire la suite

By Luc Boland, at 08:31 :: My own world :: #141 :: No comment

wednesday 14 september 2005

119. Chronicles of time passing time 6 (continued) : I listen to everything !


On this rainy sunday, they wouldn't even let me go walk the dog in the forest. Daddy got
all wet on his own. Serves him right !

When he came back, he kissed me in the neck (I was busy with my gargantuan late afternoon lunch), then I heard give mom a passionate kiss.
Eva who was passing by on her scooter (inside the house!), while continuing her visit of the ground floor, let out "Oh, I just met romanticism !".
Daddy and mommy burst into laughter...
I didn't react, but I did hear it, because despite appearances I listen to everything !
Want proof ?

A few moments later I hear daddy talking to Eva in the living room and telling her : "Swear !"
Since I'm becoming the
"swear words keeper" at home, I didn't let it slide : "Daddy, you can't say swear words !" (in french just like in english, to swear means both to make a promise and to use swear words or to curse)
Daddy was taken aback : "...But, I didn't say any swear words !"
Mommy put two and two together right away. So daddy tried to explain to me that there is "swearing" and "swearing", well..., before admitting the correct word would've been : promised or promise.

Speaking of which, this is still one of my favorite subjects : whether it's Lou,
little dog Courage , Mister René
, or anybody else, I remind them every hour of the day (and night) that they can't say swear words.
I even asked mommy while taking a bath how to say "you can't say swear words" in dutch (speaking dutch has also become one of my centers of interest lately).
Mommy rushed to daddy's office, who was busy writing on his computer. I heard them laugh
in the next room.
Good question !(regarding the dutch translation of "swear words")
Headed for the "Frans-Nederlands" dictionary.
Of course "swear words" wasn't in it. They decided to go with "insult".
Back in the bathroom, mommy gave me the translation : "Je mag geen beleidiging zeggen !" (literal translation of course).
So I applied myself to repeating that sentence.
One of these days I'll use it again for sure !

Despite the dull weather on this sunday, things were far from dull at home.
I must say I gave it all I got.
Besides, mommy and daddy found a way around my refusals and my "no's" which often ended up
with me throwing a fit : the word "soon" !
In other words, they warn me well in advance of the deadlines : bath, bed, etc...
And it works !

So, see you soon !
('cause it might work on you too, dear readers !)

By Luc Boland, at 08:45 :: My own world :: #139 :: No comment

friday 15 july 2005

112. The stairs - 2

Lou dans les escaliers(continued)
My ease with the stairs lies in a logic quite unlike yours, you visually unchallenged !
You won't find a place with more points of reference than a regular staircase : a confined area, a wall on one side, a handrail on the other, bars, a floor defined by the foot bumping into each step, it doesn't get any better than this...
It's the total opposite of a large room which I don't know and whose boundaries I can't feel.

Speaking of which, they say some blind people only need to clap their hands to determine the volume of a room, and the ammount of furniture in it, a sort of preliminary recon if you will.
I haven't reached that level yet, far from it, even though I do recognize many of the places I regularly visit.
By Luc Boland, at 14:50 :: My own world :: #132 :: No comment

tuesday 12 july 2005

111. The stairs - 1

Lou et les escaliersYou're probably thinking (just like daddy and mommy at first) that the stairs are the most dangerous place for me.
As amazing as it may seem, there's nothing easier than climbing the stairs ! Daddy and mommy really make me laugh, going on and on all day : "be careful in the stairs Loulou" or "Lou, hold on to something !" or even "You're gonna hurt yourself !"

Just think about it, you unbelievers, and check out my prize list : in the "junior / lightweight" category :
- I'm "vice champion of myself" in climbing the stairs facing the wrong way and jumping with both feet at the same time.
- "Finalist of the Interlou Newton descent cup" (standing in balance with both feet on the edge of the step, until gravity makes me slip on the next step, and so on).
- "Triple gold medal winner in sillyness" (standing in balance on one step as long as possible while turning around. The best being when I'm able to do it without holding on to anything).
- Record holder in the "Little Lous Super Cup" (and there are quite a few "little lous" around the world, except their name isn't really Lou), that is, the best performance of the year in climbing down the stairs as fast as possible.

In short : good thing I'm blind, otherwise I would notice daddy's hair going greyer and greyer.
(to be continued)
By Luc Boland, at 14:45 :: My own world :: #131 :: 3 comments

friday 8 july 2005

110. The spin wheel

This morning we went to the playground. For once daddy came along. I can tell you I really enjoyed myself while he suffered !
It's his own fault for wanting to take pictures of me in the spin wheel !
I can stay on it for hours and walk straight the second I get off, but him ... I could tell afterwards that he was all quiet.

Lou et le tourniquet
By Luc Boland, at 14:43 :: My own world :: #130 :: 28 comments

monday 20 june 2005

105. Colours without seeing them ! (colours 2)

Josée Andréï ; la femme aux cheveux d'orAs amazing as it may sound, colours have meaning for blind people !
My parents for example know a sweet blind person who loves to wear a red sweater because it's "warm and flashy".
So despite appearances colours have codes : cold, warm, flashy, discreet, etc...
You seeing people tend to forget that kind of perceptions !
We can nonetheless "feel" the colour of our clothes by the way they absorb sunlight : try wearing black and standing in the sun on a hot summer and you'll see ! The opposite is also true for white.

Speaking of which, attached is a picture of a painting that decorates the living room of my house. This painting was made by a blind belgian shaman / artist living in California (Josée Andréa). She paints "by touching" and picks her colours by "feeling". In the case of this particular painting, the hair is golden blond. This was specifically chosen by JosÈe.
And truly it is an astounding colour : it changes from "gold" to "blond" according to the light.

Just goes to show that you can see things without seeing them !
By Luc Boland, at 10:47 :: My own world :: #125 :: 3 comments

thursday 16 june 2005

104. I paint ! (colours 1)

Peinture de LouThe other day Eva asked mommy if she could do some painting. As soon as I heard that I demanded to be allowed to do the same ( whereas at school Marie-Anne must sometimes fight for me to agree to do some.)
So I painted my first "picture" by chosing the colours myself : "Mommy, I would like some... green, orange, and red..."
And here's the result.
I really liked it !
By Luc Boland, at 18:49 :: My own world :: #124 :: 3 comments

sunday 12 june 2005

103. Aaah ... the cow !

Marguerite, la vacheIf you are long time readers, you must know I love playing with words and sounds.
Being at the countryside, last week, daddy told me a little reptitive story that was really in context : the cow !
Do you know it ?

"The cow has two byproducts : milk and dung.
Milk ? Doesn't matter, but dung is either one of two things : it's either on the field, or on the road.
If it's on the field, it doesn't matter. But if it's on the road, it's either one of two things : it's either dry, or it's fresh.
If it's dry, it doesn't matter. But if it's fresh, either one of two things can happen : you can either see it, or you can't see it.
If you can see it, it doesn't matter. But if you can't see it, either one of two things can happen : either you don't step on it, or you do step on it.
If you don't step on it, it doesn't matter. But if you do step on it, either one of two things can happen : you either don't notice, or you do notice.
If you don't notice it doesn't matter. But if you do notice, yell : the COW ! ... has two
byproducts : milk and dung. "
(and here we go again)
I love it !
Daddy explained what dung was (and the rest) so I could get a vague idea of what the song is about. Since then, we regularly tell the "cow" story together. Daddy starts one sentence... and I complete it :
Daddy : "Milk ?"
Me : "It doesn't matter !" (etc)
Sometimes I even do it on my own. I must admit I do get confused though.
Me : (...) " it's either in the field, or on the road. If it's on the road it doesn't matter, but if it's on the road, either one of two things can happen, you either step on it ... (etc)"
My favourite moment ? The transition when we loop back to the beginning of course !
Me : " ... if you notice yell (and I yell) The Cow ! (I leave a blank, then get back into it) ... has two byproducts, milk and dung ..."

(the drawing is from a children's tale realised and illustrated by daddy) : See the tale (in french).
By Luc Boland, at 11:21 :: My own world :: #123 :: 4 comments

friday 10 june 2005

102. Walking in the leaves

Daddy tried using his explanation about leaves falling as an excuse to make me appreciate walking around on them. Kids love it... so why not me !

The first experience wasn't exactly thrilling : I walked a little on this unstable ground.
It's just like sand : most blind or visually impaired people don't like walking on "soft" or uneven surfaces.
Makes sense.
On the other hand I loved hearing daddy's footsteps as he kicked leaves around while walking in a circle around me.
Another one of his brilliant ideas, he's not about to give me a break !

picture :
Lou dans les feuilles
By Luc Boland, at 06:19 :: My own world :: #122 :: one comment

monday 30 may 2005

99. I'm scared ...

Lou sur son petit pot(or how to take advantage of the situation)

Ok, once more I must admit I really pushed it.
A whole series of things rightfully scare me.
You don't even need to be blind to be scared ... whether of heights, of the unknown, of the future, or just anything that you need to do and which reminds you of a bad experience.

So logically I have fears ... and probably a few more than other persons. Such as for example pooping... It's related both to the possibility of hard feces (it happens) and ... the evacuation of a part of myself. It is said to be a normal stage in childhood, but it's easier to get over it when you can see that "little part of yourself" go away down the toilet (which is not the case for me).

I finally figured out the power of those magic words : " I'm scared " which immediatelytrigger a reaction of sympathy and I tend to abuse it. Maybe that's even why my schoolteacher,daddy, and mommy end up slightly making fun of me or teasing me when I'm obviously abusing it. If that keeps happening I'll have to find another trick to avoid doing what I don't feel like doing, or at least delay doing it !

(P.S.: that's me on the picture, still in my potty era, together with my elephant who
repeats everything I say.)
By Luc Boland, at 18:52 :: My own world :: #118 :: 3 comments
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