Posts Tagged France
Less than two years ago, I became proficient in French. I can remember the exact moment it happened. I was in France for the second summer in a row and had finally reached a point in which I could understand every single word in the sentences of natives. Then I began guessing the meaning of phrases and words unfamiliar to me. It was awesome, even though I didn’t fully appreciate it at the time. Lola’s family invited me and Angela to stay with them for a month and a half and definitely got more than they bargained for with me, but I’ll get to that shortly.
Regardless, the three of us had an awesome time in Juan-les-Pins, which was warm and beautiful for the entirety of our visit. I particularly loved the dynamic that formed between me and Angela. Given that we were -literally- around each other 24 hours a day (we shared a room), it was only fitting that we’d have an interesting rapport, and I can still say with total certainty that she is the only person I can be around every single moment of the day without ever growing irritated or in need of space. We were quite the duo and could hang out all day:
It was too much fun. I wish I’d appreciated my time off more rather than been so consumed with thoughts such as, “Oh crap, I just graduated college and have no job.” And as you may know from a similar situation, it’s pretty futile to search for work while traveling in Europe. Poor Lola could see the panic all over my face. I feel awful that my friends had to watch me crumble and fret away when I should have been enjoying every single moment in Cannes. When else am I going to be there again? Unless I somehow become a big star and make it to the festival for whatever reason, never. But hey, I can dream. After all, my father did propose to my mom in Nice. Maybe the same will happen to me someday…Nah! I think I’d prefer less of a cliche than to snatch an element from their story. I want plenty of stories of my own.
I’m very lucky that Lola and her entire family took me in, and I’d hope they’d visit with me again if I were to return to France. It was a blast, and they had me in stitches almost every single day. It was very generous of them to house me and Angela as well as help me with my French. I never would have reached the point I did without them. I hope to get it back someday, whatever that may take.
Here are some videos that remind me of that summer. The first is one I took on a beach in Vallauris:
Angela and I loved these two songs most:
We made fun of these songs on the Italian hotel TV:
Good times. Miss you both a lot:
This morning’s news in tech, memoirs, hostages, meetings, and politics.
1. Google spreads free holiday WiFi beyond Virgin to AirTran and Delta this year (Tech Crunch)
2. On Portia de Rossi’s memoir of her eating disorder/binging struggles (DoubleX/Slate)
3. Former employee takes hostages at BMW’s French headquarters (RFI)
4. Bill Gates meets with Joe Biden at the White House (Politico)
5. Write-in candidate Murkowski leads big in Alaska (CBS News)
6. Former UW student Amanda Knox indicted on slander charges in Italy (Oregon Live)
7. George W. Bush’s 15 most memorable pop culture moments (The Atlantic)
8. Gibbs stands up for U.S. press corps in India (Daily Caller)
9. ‘Lady Gaga stole my boyfriend’: actress (New York Post)
10. One word: Preparation. How Harry Reid beat Sharron Angle (Las Vegas Sun)
For the past two weeks, I’ve been able to escape the reality of post college graduate life, which I’m both terrified and thrilled to experience.
I have another two weeks in France, and I’ve been chronicling my adventures and stories in this Summer in Cannes blog. For light reading on south of France culture, my eternal love for Nutella, and many personal anecdotes, check out the blog. You’ll laugh, either at or with me.
As a graduating senior, I’m done writing stories for the Arizona Daily Wildcat. What a great experience. Now, it’s time to find another publication to obsessively write for.
Be sure to read Jazmine Woodberry’s Everyone has a Story article on me. That was a nice way to end my time at the Wildcat. I had such a blast working in the newsroom, and I’m grateful for the friends I made all throughout my time at the newspaper. To the people who loved my articles and sent fanmail to my email account as well as the parade of people who hated me like Captain Ahab despised Moby Dick: Thank you for reading. Really.
I wrote a story on ASUA’s immigration forum, which took place after the Daily Wildcat issues stopped going out to print for the semester.
Of course, there will be a commencement issue out on Wednesday, and my final Wildcat articles will be in that. I interviewed 2009-10 ASUA President Chris Nagata and wrote a short blurb for the “Top 10 News Stories of the Year” section. And that’s it. C’est fini.
Speaking of French, I am delighted to be going to France in exactly 20 days (!!!). I’m staying at my good friend’s house in the south of France for three weeks. I will, of course, miss my Blackberry, which does not work over in Europe. I am not sure how I handled not having my Blackberry all last summer…Call me superficial, but my one vice is my cell phone. I’m not into shopping, television, or sports, but I’m all about texting and bbm’ing. Quel dommage. Does anyone know if I can order a phone (with my same number and contact information) to take with me to France? I am sure it can be done..
I’d be lying if I said I don’t want the Eat Pray Love story to happen to me during my France trip.
I’ve actually never read the book, but I know the gist, and I’m hoping for revelatory experiences now that I’m graduating and leaving behind everything I know, cheesy as that sounds. I’ve already studied abroad in France, so this will be more relaxing, not to mention a great opportunity to practice my French again. I’m excited to spend more time with my friend Lola and her family, all of whom are absolutely incredible. Let’s hope I can learn to cook Croque Monsieur, and for the love of God, I hope to maintain my size. Last time I went to France, my host family gorged me with bread, pasta, and Nutella. Didn’t do wonders for my figure. I guess that’s part of the Eat Pray Love experience, though, being that the author gains a mess of weight during her year in Italy, and who wouldn’t? Anyway, here’s to exceptional cuisine, swimming, traveling, good friends, nights out on the town, and great memories.
Ever since its DVD release on April 27, I’ve watched It’s Complicated an obscene number of times. As you know, I’m anti-television shows (aside from Gilmore Girls and Sex and the City), so I only turn on the TV to watch movies. It’s Complicated is playing in my mini-DVD player right now. I just like to have it on for background noise, and I am not ashamed to admit that I adore Meryl Streep.
My two finals are separating me from the rest of my life. Boy, will Friday and Saturday be surreal.
Tomorrow, I am going to hatha yoga class. I’ve definitely missed doing yoga, but I haven’t had time since last semester. Plus, nothing beats yoga classes in Santa Cruz. Just sayin..
Here are some brief videos that I took while in Paris.
The following videos will give you an idea of how insane the Paris Metro can be during the Fete de la Musique celebration every summer:
On the Metro:
Watching the Metro pass by; I can hear the insanity from outside:
The music party by my host family’s apartment, which is right by the Eiffel Tower:
I miss Paris!
Read my final entry about my summer adventures in my study abroad blog. As much as I’ll miss writing in that particular blog, I’ll miss the experiences that sparked the entries in the first place.
Thank you, summer 2009 for being perfect to me. Most of all, thanks to all the readers for cheering me on during the good and bad times in Paris, Rome, Florence, Vegas, Boston, and DC. I really appreciate the following and the personal support.
And now, it’s time for me to be a student.
As an American tourist in France, I’m not sure I can comment on the behavior of French tourists, but this Yahoo article apparently captures the French tourist stereotype pretty well:
“The French don’t go abroad very much. We’re lucky enough to have a country which is magnificent in terms of its landscape and culture,” he said, adding that 90 per cent of French people did their traveling at home.
“So when they’re on holiday they can be a bit stressed, they’re not used to things, and this can lead them to be demanding in a way which could be seen as a certain arrogance.”
French tourists are also accused of generally spending less than other nationalities when abroad.
De Roux said the French, not accustomed to leaving large tips at home where a service charge is automatically levied on restaurant bills, can seem “tight-fisted” compared with other nationalities.
I’m not the only Arizona in Paris student running a study abroad blog. My two good friends and classmates, Maya and Ben had blogs of their own. For different perspectives on the Arizona in Paris experience, definitely take a look at these personal blogs.
I highly suggest you look at their posts, especially if you’ve been reading my Paris entries. They cover so much about their personal experiences, and they talk about things that I normally overlook on this trip.
The Associated Press just reported that the French eat and sleep more than any other wealthy world nation. I’m spending seven weeks in France this summer, so while I’m glad I won’t be sleep deprived as I am in the United States, I hope not to gain weight from all the eating:
The average French person sleeps almost nine hours every night, more than an hour longer than the average Japanese and Korean.
Despite their siesta habit, Spaniards rank only third in the poll after Americans, who sleep more than 8.5 hours.
Do Americans really sleep that much every night? There’s no way in Hell I’ve ever slept that much, and after being in college for three years, I don’t think my body allows me to sleep longer than seven hours a night.
And while more and more French people grab a bite at fast-food chains these days or wolf down a sandwich at their desk, they still spend more than two hours a day eating.
“Italian men have nearly 80 minutes a day of leisure more than women. Much of the additional work of Italian women is apparently spent cleaning the house,” the OECD said in a statement.
All this leisure time sounds nice for a month, tops, and nothing more.