Everything is so much better now, finally. Those first few days felt so long, both because I wasn’t happy, and because of jetlag. But yesterday was a fabulous day – the only thing that wasn’t good was that I didn’t have time to get on a computer, and believe me, there are far worse things than that. ;-)
We’ve gotten into the pattern of classes all morning and ateliers in the afternoon, and then hanging out and traipsing around Tours the rest of the day and night. The funniest part is having to be home for dinner, especially at a specific time; our host mom always has dinner at 7h30. And last night, dinner was particularly fun, because her daughter and her two little girls, as well as a family friend, came over. The petites filles were so cute! One’s just a baby, but the other, Angèle, is 6, and she and I got along very well. We ended up chasing each other around the back yard playing tag after dinner.
The ateliers are sort of mini field-trips in the afternoons, but we don’t have them every day. Thus far, I have gone on a boat tour of the Loire in the rain (it was rather miserable and cold, but still pretty enough for us to take lots of pictures), and gone to a confisserie. I’m not sure I spelled that correctly, but it’s basically an artisanal candy shop. The confiseur showed us how to make all the specials of Tours, and then we got to taste them, so that was fun. Afterwards, some friends and I were craving more, so we went and got pâtisseries and hung out for a while, which was super fun.
As I mentioned, mornings are reserved for classes. Our classes are just intensive French classes, basically meant to refresh our memories and get us used to French in the classroom again. They’re not too interesting, though today in my conversation class, we did end up having to debate French wine versus California wine. Rather funny, and believe me, it was not my professor’s idea.
Also as I mentioned, nights are usually for going out. Last night was particularly fun. Practically the whole program ended up taking over a very cute wine bar (Patrice, I took pictures just for you :) I’ll put them up soon enough), and we had a blast. I’m finally really making friends and having fun with people, so it’s really good.
I know there was a short list of stuff I wanted to talk about, but I don’t remember much now.
Oh, yesterday afternoon, we went to see (for free, grâce à Sweet Briar) the new Michel Gondry film – The Science of Sleep, or La Science des Rêves. So amazing. For those who don’t know, he also directed and wrote Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which is probably my favorite movie. This one stars Gael García Bernal, of Y Tu Mamán También fame, and it’s probably trippier than Eternal Sunshine. Once again, Gondry plays with perception and getting inside the human mind, as well as dealing with interpersonal relationships, both in real life and through the influences of our minds. I’d recommend everyone see it when it’s out in the US. It’s part in French, part in English, and they’ll have subtitles for whichever you don’t speak. ;-)
The other thing I was going to mention is the smoking here. I know, I know, it’s Europe, it’s France, people smoke. But Sunday, after we were out Saturday night, my throat hurt from being around so much smoke. Disgusting! To all you who were convinced I’d smoke here, believe me, I won’t.
Okay, that’s all for now, I won’t bore you any longer. I’m going to send out another email soon with my contact information, since I have a cell phone, and in case you want to send me any mail or care packages… ;-) As for my cell phone, I can get calls for free, so call me whenever, especially from Skype!
A tout à l’heure, mes amis!