And I thought I was so close to achieving my goal of not breaking anything this semester.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
My mother told me that my last entry was "dumb" and that I had to conclude my semester with something intelligent. I guess since she birthed me, she apparently has total control over what I do. That statement is false, I am updating this because I want to and because I am motivated. Let it be known!!!
This past week has been full of excitement, which is nice because who wants to spend a boring final week in France? I spent the weekend doing fun summer things like attending bbqs and climbing a mountain. It was no easy feat and I am proud to say that I conquered Mount Sainte Victoire...for the most part. I won't actually tell you whet
her or not I made it to the tippy top. Some time constraints and the need to catch a bus might have been involved, so don't judge too much.
Once the actual week commenced, things were not that fun because of my many mind numbing finals. HOWEVER, as of this morning, all of that is finished and I can continue to enjoy my remaining days here in peace. Tonight was my host father's birthday which we celebrated by eating outdoors and staring at a hedgehog while it lay motionless in the grass for 15 minutes. I also had the following conversation with my 11 year old brother.
Me: C'est vraiment un bordel dans ma chambre.
Mathieu: Oui! Je l'ai vu!
Which translates to "My room is a mess!" "Yeah, I saw." So presh.
Somehow I got roped into cooking dinner with LB for the fam on Friday. I am making mashed potatoes and if I can find the ingredients, jello poke cake. I have never been more frightened in my life. Except maybe on the night before I took my 6th road test. That ended well and so will this. Right?
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
So I'm back from my 10 day whirlwind of vacances. I've got tons of beauty shots of Florence and Athens and will definitely share them with you all. At some point. I haven't the time to recap my entire vaycay but I just wanted to share something with you all.
I can't stop eating those English licorice candies. I eat them all day and then I want to vom. It's a vicious cycle but they are sooo delicious.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
I can't take it! After weeks of tactful avoidance, the nagging e-mails from my mother and the words of disappointment from Elena have finally wore me down. What can I say? I'm sorry? I've been washing my hair for the past 3 weeks? What do you people want??? LIES or the truth?!?! Well, the truth is I started recounting the details of my break, got bored and walked away. I wrote a nice review of Amsterdam and you can have it. I don't want it anymore. Tragically, Paris is no longer fresh in my mind so you will all have to be contented with photographical evidence. Personally, I'm a visual learner. I would love it if someone told me I didn't have to read about their life but simply SEE it with my own EYES. So here it is, just for you, my adoring public. February 28th through March 8th in pictures AND words.
Break officially began when I forced myself awake at the ungodly hour of 3:30 on a Saturday to run to the gare routière and catch a bus to the Marseille Airport for my 6:25 am flight to Eindhoven. Once there, myself and my traveling mates(some friends from my program) got on another bus which, after and hour and 45 minutes, finally dropped us off in front of Central Station in the heart of Amsterdam. A few words about the city, it is one of the most beautiful and impressive places I have been to yet. The layout and general appearance of the buildings is really cool and they all border little canals that snake about Amsterdam. For being there only 4 days, I managed to see a lot. I visited such gems as the Tropenmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Rijkmuseum. Lots of museums! I think the Van Gogh museum was my favorite because I got to see Starry Night which quite ironically was on loan from the Met. I think, however, that it was a lot more appropriate to see it in Amsterdam in a place dedicated to the works of Van Gogh. The piece was beautiful and I feel extremely lucky to have gotten to see it. In addition to gallery hopping, I took a pleasant canal ride, wandered the red light district, and visited the zoo!
And that, in a nutshell, was Amsterdam.
And there you have it.
Monday, March 16, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
So, I had a slight epic fail with my lunch today after horribly burning the garlic for my garlic and olive oil pasta. However, the need to escape the stench led me to open the kitchen window above the sink and breath in the delicious spring air. It is so beautiful outside today, I almost cried. I am actually looking forward to strolling down the hill towards my 3-6pm class this afternoon. Unfortunately, tomorrow I am headed north and back into nuclear winter. I'm not too worried though because a week from now, it will probably be so wonderful I won't know what to do with myself. C'est le printemps!
Side note: I would like to direct your eyes to the photograph posted below. I managed to fit 8 days of clothing including toiletries and 2 pairs of shoes into that bag. When I originally showed the empty version of it to my host mother and told her my intentions, she laughed at me and walked away. Who's laughing now, Hélène?
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
So some days, specifically Sundays, I wake up at 11:30 and sit in my room all day until I can eat dinner and go to bed. Maybe this also happens on Saturdays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays....ok I'm lying. That would be horrible. The point of this story is that today I did not do one single productive thing. And that is ok because it's Sunday.
Luckily for me, tomorrow marks the commencement of vacation week countdown! On Saturday, at the ungodly hour of 6:20 in the AM, I will be boarding flight 6505 to AMSTERDAM. Well, technically I'm flying to Eindhoven, it was cheaper, but a short bus ride from Amsterdam!!! I'll be blowing up the spot for 4 days before heading to Paris. Roommate reunion with my Elenkaaa. And also Nick, who counts because he will be my roommate for 4 days. In the month since I have been here, I have grown to love Aix dearly but I have underestimated the fabulosity of familiar faces. Basically, shits gonna get cray cray. In a good way, of course. What up Winter Break 2009?!
Now I must bide my time and attend class for the next 5 days. Impossible.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I apologize for the lack of updating but I promise you, by the end of this post you will know more about my life than you ever could have wanted. SO. Here we go.
Since my last post two weeks ago, I have spent a great deal of time delving into my studies here in France. I would just like to say that this block scheduling is still extremely painful after having been here for almost a month(February 21st!!). HOWEVER, I am slowly but surely learning the art of patience. When I get home, school is going to be the easiest thing ever. 50 minute classes in English. Cake. Although long, I am still finding my classes to be quite enjoyable, both due to the subject matter and my professors.
That is enough of that because the real reason I am
blogging is to make you all jealous of my recent weekend excursion to Nice and Monaco. Seriously, lifestyles of the rich and famous. I will start off with Nice because that was our first stop on this magical adventure. The Mediterranean is the most beautiful body of water, there is a reason they call it the Côte d'Azure. I would be showing you the millions of photos I took but my camera tragically decided to reformat itself and delete EVERYTHING. I will just have to content you all with stolen pictures taken by some lucky person on my program. So, for your viewing pleasure, I present to you in all its glory, Nice!
Jealous yet? It's ok. Also, it happened to be Carnaval time so these images occurred.The parade was pretty impressive, never before have I seen such detailed costumes! Some brief history: Carnaval in Nice is a 10 day festival that goes on during Mardi Gras time and each year it has a different theme. This year happened to be Masquerade hence the ridiculous fashions. Also, they throw flowers at you from the floats! The flower thrown is this yellow thing called a Mimosa and it traditionally starts growing around this time along the French Riviera. Do you guys feel smarter yet?
I spent the majority of Saturday in Nice and then piled back onto the bus and drove an hour through the mountainous countryside before reaching Monaco! The city of Monte Carlo is so unbelievable, I can't explain it in words. View these and be amazed. Real people do not live here, there is no possible way.
Apparently, foreigners don't have to pay taxes so I might have just found my future home?
My stint in Monaco led me to a brief afternoon in the town of Eze where I visited Galimard, a local Parfumerie. With the help of the United States government and my stafford loan, I was able to purchase a nice 35 euro bottle of legit French eau de parfum. I have been looking for a signature scent for the past two years and was finally able to find it in Journal Intime. Thank you, America.
Now I am back in Aix where dreams of summer estates and million dollars yachts have faded but at least we'll always have Monaco.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
Just this morning, while I have been sleeping, in the span of 45 minutes I have received 2 wrong numbers. For real? I think the first guy was trying to find a classroom and the second guy was looking for somebody. I don't know because I can't understand French when I am still sleeping. I can't even understand English when I am still sleeping.
So please, people of France. STOP CALLING ME AT 11am ON A FRIDAY. I don't have class until 3 and I definitely would not like to be awake until then.
In other news, I'm going dancing tonight with some legit French people. At midnight!! Scandaleuse.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
This is boring but I just wanted to say how amazed I am at the differences between French class in French and actual class in French.
Today I went to a theater literature class and it was the most tiring thing ever. Imagine having to pay attention to a professor shouting off facts about the life of Albert Camus while taking notes and translating it in your head into English all at the same time.
I'm pretty sure I got confused somewhere because I have it written that he was born in 1930 and wrote Caligula in 1942. That must have been some genius 12 year old.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I was holding off updating because I wanted to post pictures of my gorgeous excursion to the countryside outside of Aix, an area called le Luberon. We went to 4 little towns which were absolutely beautiful and completely different from each other despite their close proximity. Unfortunately, my camera has decided to refuse to let me upload anything. Because it is a huge jerk.
However, I do have a nice little story that while is incredible embarrassing for me, may or may not be totally hilarious to the rest of you.
Ok. So, I had a 10 am class this morning and it only takes 15 minutes to get to school but I didn't know where the class room was so I figured I would leave at 9:30 just to be safe. Some background information: My house has some weird security situation going on. There's a gate and then a pathway up to the front door which is this HUGE wooden monster that requires a legit 1890's brass key to open it. Behind this door is a smaller one with glass windows that leads you inside of the house. It's not usually that difficult, but it is borderline a pain in my ass.
As I was leaving this morning, I got through the glass door no problem. A crisis arose when I came to the beast after it. I 100% spent 25 minutes trying to unlock this door. 9:57 rolled around and I had no choice but to wake up my roommate who did not have any class today. She opened the door in 2 minutes. I felt extremely foolish and was 20 minutes late to class where the only seat left available was 2 chairs stuck together. I ended up being about 5 inches taller than the rest of my classmates.
And tomorrow I have class at 9am...
Saturday, January 24, 2009
I have arrived. I don't know what to say except that is it very French here. Obviously, that is kind of a let down of an adjective but I can think of no other way to describe Aix-en-Provence. The past three days have been all kinds of crazy getting oriented, taking placement exams, and attempting to figure out this city. I kind of love it though.
Some things I have noticed about the Aixoise:
1) Everyone is beautiful.
2) Wine is like water here, in fact, sometimes it is cheaper than water.
3) People party like nobody's business. Most clubs don't start getting awesome until 2 am.
Also, I am legal. WHATUP MOM AND DAD???
I'm kidding. Kind of.
People here live a totally different lifestyle and I have found that I need to learn an entirely new form of etiquette. Eating is an entire adventure which I can't even begin to explain. I also am not supposed to smile too much on the street because that is apparently an immediate sign that I am American. It's very interesting and mildly frustrating but mostly the former. I will just smile on the inside. As much as I want.
I have been a very bad tourist and have not taken a single picture yet mostly because:
a) I forgot to bring my camera with me yesterday.
b) Today it rained a lot.
c) I am lazy.
HOWEVER, I have 4 months to document all of the beauty that is this city. Prepare yourselves for some 17th/18th century architectural sexiness.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
I have entered the zero hour and am about to head for the airport. I am both exhausted and excited. I somehow managed to pack 4 months of my life into 2 suitcases in less than 12 hours. You do the math.
I think this is going be awesome. And that is all I have to say about that.
I forgot to leave some contact informationzz so if you feel the need to holler at me(and you should always feel that need), here is how you may do it.
Snail mail style:
50, ave Phillipe Solari
For those with big bank accounts, I'm always down for chattin' up the honeys:
I guess that's it. See you all in Central European Time!
Sunday, January 18, 2009
The answer to that question is probably yes, HOWEVER, I am embarking on a great journey and feel that everyone needs to know about it. But, like, I mean, it's ok if you don't want to, or maybe are busy...it's cool.
I am leaving for France, more specifically Aix-en-Provence on Tuesday. I like to call it "Aix" because that's what the natives call it and I want to fit in. Obviously.
So. Tuesday. TUESDAY. It is currently Saturday. I haven't started packing but it's aiight because that is how I usually operate. But I am starting to get nervous about my inability to self-motivate. Other anxieties include:
1) Will I be embarrassing when I can't handle my two overpacked suitcases in the Marseille airport?
2)How long will I have to eat lunch by myself at school before I make friends?
3) Will I quickly be able to obtain a hair straightener?
Aside from those minor issues, I AM READY. So ready I want to pee a little bit but I will refrain as that would be extremely inappropriate.
So there it is, the highly fantastic start to my highly fantastic adventure. I'm goin' abroad bitchezzz!!!!!