I decided that since I am studying abroad for a month this summer, I should bring back the blog. Feel free to live vicariously through my adventures.
I left for France from the DFW airport at 1:00 on Thursday, May 31st. After a bit of a delay on the tarmac in Philadelphia (Ladies and Gentlemen, we are experiencing a rather odd problem. The Skyway is apparently stuck to the side of the plane. This is very unusual. Unfortunately, the Skyways are serviced by a third party company. We've alerted the company, and they will be on their way momentarily.) I was on the way to France. I arrived in Paris at around 8 in the morning on Friday, the 1st of June. After successfully negotiating the Metro with my luggage by myself, I had a few hours to wait at the train station until my train left for Vichy. Now I realized that I've never actually ridden a train besides the tourist train that runs between Durango and Silverton in Colorado. It was a slightly terrifying experience boarding the train and getting off at my stop, mostly because I was a bit unsure what the announcements were saying. Fortunately, I managed to get off at the correct stop.
The mother of my host family picked me up at the train station, and I was on my way home! My host family is very nice, and our house is absolutely amazing. It's rather terrifying because no one in the family really speaks English, and I haven't actually taken a French class since Junior year in High School. Thankfully, I'm remembering more French than I thought I would. I'm an awful lot better at understanding what they are saying than actually speaking it myself, which is to be expected. This has led to me mostly listening and only responding minimally. Hopefully once I actually start classes, I'll get back into the groove of speaking French, so I can be a bit more talkative with my hosts.
On Saturday, I spent some time walking around Vichy by myself. The city center is the area with the most stuff going on, and it's where both my house and the CAVILAM school is. It's nice that most places I would need to go are within a fifteen minute walk of where I'm staying. The city is absolutely beautiful. It's small, but it has so much history and so much personality. I plan on walking around with my camera within the next few days, so I'll post pictures soon.
I start classes at CAVILAM off tomorrow with a placement exam to determine the level of French I'll be taking. I'm super nervous, but I know that I'll feel better once classes have started. Once I get into the swing of things, I know that I'm going to really like it here.
Au revoir pour maintenant!