Tuesday, October 28, 2008

6 weeks left? What??

Bonjour tous le monde! Comment allez-vous? Je souhaite que vous etes tres bien! Okay, so in English, "Hello everyone! How are y'all? I hope y'all are very well!" This week has been crazy...and it's only Tuesday! I have so much to fill y'all in on!

I finally got to cook this past week at my friend Candice's apartment. I made my lemon chicken soup of which everyone thus far has asked for the recipe :) It makes me very excited!! I altered it a little bit, as I am apt to do, and it turned out very well. It's amazing what food that hasn't been grown with pesticides tastes like lol. It was great being able to cook again and to enjoy sitting at a dining room table with friends as though we were family. Sadly, I did not take pictures of the soup before my friends and I inhaled it. Sorry!

The weekend was pretty boring as a whole. I went to the market on Sunday and got asked out on a date by a Gambian. That was a fun adventure. He asked if we could be friends, so of course I was like, "Oh totally! Bien sur!" when he really meant "Can I take you out to dinner sometime? Or we can eat at your place if you like." At that point I pretended as though all my French knowledge left me and I proceeded to lose him in the market. Terrible, I realize...but I was alone and caught off-guard; what do you expect me to do? One exciting thing that happened this weekend though was that I got to watch my home church online for the first time since being here. That completely made my day as the music was tremendous and the sermon was great to hear. I still haven't found the Baptist church here yet, so I've been having to attend church in my dorm room. OH!!! I completely forgot! I found a Christmas-themed crosstitch book which took up all of my time on Saturday. I'm making a stocking :) 3 bears in Santa costumes singing carols = TOTALLY cute!

Ok so after the guys who read this have proceeded to vomit from the amount of cuteness that I just exploded on y'all, I guess I'll give you a bit of normal not so cutesy news. I finally got snail mail!!! I got a letter from Nick (totally made my day btw) as well as a letter from my grandparents! I didn't realize that my parents had given them my address, so thank you Mom and Dad!! If you're wondering what my address is and you don't have FB, just shoot me an email and I'll be happy to send it your way! Today I got my Grammar test back, and I was totally dreading looking at my grade. It was on a 40 point scale, and I got 25 correct. Now, I know that translates to a 62.5/100, but that was the 2nd highest grade in the class :) The top score was a 37.5 from some Italian lady who's only in this class to work on composition. She's pretty fluent in French. So, I feel much better about myself, especially after one of the guys who tried correcting me on my grammar last week only got 16 out of 40 correct. I also had my first presentation today. I had to present Rousseau's Social Contract which made me feel like I was freaking back in Social World. I actually did really well, though, and got a lot of "tres bien" on my notes. I think I overloaded the poor Asian kids on Rousseau's theories though. Stupid BIC and stupid paper...made me turn into Rousseau lol. However, I feel like my grade in that class just shot up, so everything is going well :)
TOP NEWS!!! Erica and I got interviewed by L'Ouest France, a major newspaper in Normandy. We were asked questions about the election: who we hope to see win, why we want that specific candidate, if America is ready for a Black president, and if we think we'll see riots or an assassination attempt if Obama is elected. We got our pictures taken in front of an American flag (how patriotic). The journalist was laughing because she was impressed and surprised to see two people able to be friends whose political views were so different lol. We also have an interview tomorrow evening with a rival newspaper lol, and I'm going to a presidential debate on Friday night! Apparently some VP of some committee of Obama's is going to be in Caen at the City Hall on Friday and wants some Americans (pro-McCain and pro-Obama) to get into a debate there. I'm uber excited!!

Pictures: 1. Candice and I (She's Australian)
2. Merlin!! Oh wait, that's St. Jacques
3. Pretty stained glass window in the chateau (we went there on a field trip)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

How quickly time flies by....

No pictures today (sorry!), but I felt like blogging. I leave in less than 2 months!! I can't believe how fast time has been going by. This weekend will mark the halfway point of my graded weeks, and yet I don't have Fall Break until the 8th. I'm hoping to go to Switzerland to visit my friend Christian, but I'm having problems with RyanAir. It's very frustrating. Something about a National Identity card....

Anywho, I had my first grammart test this week. I felt good about it going in because I actually studied for two hours; however, my studying was in vain. The first half of the test was a cinch. No problem at all. The second half...I wanted to cry. We had to change verbs into nouns to make headlines for a newspaper, so there was no way I could have possibly studied for it. You either knew the nominalization of the verb or you didn't. I think I made up words. I know I made up "Fermage." Apparently the word is "Fermeture." C'est la vie.

Oral class was most certainly interesting today. If you have been to my FB, then you have noticed that my status is...interesting to say the least. One of the Chinese girls had an expose today, and she did hers on sexual discrimination. That led to a discussion of positive discrimination, which we Americans call "affirmative action." Paul, whom I lovingly call "Panda bear" for a multitude of reasons, is known for making perfectly normal conversations become immediately awkward. When one of the Chinese guys was trying to explain a biological process where you take genes from one fruit and add it to another for a new species, Paul asked if the fruits were getting married. We had a good time with that one. Today, he asked about transexuals, and we had to educate the Chinese on what that word meant. That was fun, too lol. My teacher, Mme Geslot, for some reason mentioned "gateaux secs." I think she was trying to explain how to pronounce "sexuelle" and "sex." Anywho, she wrote "gateaux secs" on the board, which means "dry cakes" in English. She explained that it was sort of a pun or something b/c the little kids, when they say they want "gateaux secs" for breakfast, pronounce the "s" at the end (the "s" is supposed to be silent in case you were wondering). We were all roaring with laughter. It was a good ending to the class. :)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Cherbourg my Cherbourg

This weekend Suzanne, Erica, and I took a spontaneous trip to Cherbourg, a port city in Northwest France. We couldn't decide if we wanted to go to Honfleur by bus or Cherbourg by train, and we wound up going by train. It was a fun hour-long ride that consisted of reading British Cosmo and listening to my mixed CD from Siobhan :) Odd combination, I'm well aware lol. Anyway, when we got off the train we saw a Texas bar!! I really wanted to go in and see how legit it was, but neither of my friends wanted to go. I was quite sad, but at least I got a picture! :) We ate at a restaurant that overlooked the port and the 50 bazillion boats that are docked there. The food wasn't amazing, but it was pretty good. Erica and Suzanne got a huge pot of mussels as an appetizer (which the French call entrees), fish, and some cheese for "dessert" for only 13.5€. I had a massive tuna salad (which the French put as "tunny" in their pseudo-English), some steak and fries, and a piece of lemon tart for dessert.

After lunch, we went on a walking tour of the town that consisted of seeing a beautiful theatre, two churches (one without a door), a Napoleon statue, and some beautiful port scenery. Oh, and a guy dressed as a male body part. That was most definitely the most awkward part of my day. I called him Pillowcase Man because me being my typical sheltered self only saw him as that. Suzanne had to explain what he was to me. He was giving away suckers, but since Suzanne and Erica didn't take one, I figured I wouldn't either. Guess that was a good idea! Mommy always told me never to take candy from strangers lol :P

This morning I went to the market in search of some new boots because I have finally decided to retire my 6 year old brown ones. I almost had a funeral for them, but then I realized how many blisters they have given me this semester and I just trashed them instead. The boots in an earlier picture are actually my friend Kylie's, but I really wanted some, so I got some! I found a pair for only 20€, and they're a lot like my brown ones at home except these are black...and French! :) I'm so excited!!! The girls all loved them, and I can't wait to wear them tomorrow morning! :)

Pictures: 1. Texas bar
2. Stained glass window in Notre Dame de Cherbourg
3. View of Cherbourgian meadow

Friday, October 10, 2008

My apologies

It's been forever since I've blogged! I'm sorry! Last week was a very, very rough week, so I really didn't feel like blogging anything. This week has been much better...lots more stuff going on to try and get my mind off of things. Anywho, on Monday we went to the Abbey aux Dames for my French history class. It was rather boring, but it took out 2 hours of my 3 hour course, so I'm not complaining. The church isn't much to look at sadly. Yesterday I had my first test in my Comprehension and Expression d'Oral class. OMG it was terrible. I think I might have gotten an 8 out of 20. The questions were easy, but they play a tape recording w/ a guy who speaks very quickly, so it's almost impossible to hear everything. Even Curtis, who has taken French for like 6 years or something, had trouble understanding it verbatim.

Now the fun part...I went to my first pub last night!! It's called the Glue Pot Pub (strange, I know). Of course, me still being me, I got a Coke :) It was my 1st glass bottle of Coke, so give me a break! Anyway, I had a blast being w/ my friends from Texas, Connecticut, and Kentucky/Kansas. Emilee came, too!! She's my French friend who speaks almost perfect English. She's probably one of the sweetest girls I've ever known. After the night was over, Ana, Suzanne, Aaron, and I decided to take the last tram home. Ana and Aaron wound up walking, but Suzanne and I got on. There were about 30 students in there drunk off their butts. It was kind of terrifying but also somewhat entertaining. They were singing some random French song and chanting. Anywho, there were some Brits in my car that were watching it as well, and I started talking to one of them. I tried telling him I was from Wales, just to see if he would believe me, and he did!! He asked me if I was studying abroad as part of the IBP program and I was like, "Of course! I'm a third year!" I interjected randomly with "bloody mad" and " very clever," and he thought I was legit! He wasn't even drunk! Very nice guy...from the RAF (that's Royal Air Force for you Americans :P ) He and his mates were here to see the Normandy beaches, as most of the Brits who come here are apt to do.

Anywho, that was my last couple of weeks. Send me mail!! My mailbox is getting very dusty!!

Pictures: 1. Emilee and I!
2. About to go bar-hoppin'!
3. The very bland church lol