My Parisienne life has started!  Currently I’m in orientation and I have orientation lectures in the morning about life in paris and courses at the university, etc in the morning for a few hours and then a 3 hour intensive french class in the afternoon.  THey gave us information on buying a phone, student dining around paris where you can get a meal for only 3 euro 10 !!!  I tried this with some other EDUCO members, but it wasn’t open to undergraduate students yet.  This French class is actually teaching me new things.  I’m impressed, I expected it to be a review of things I already knew, but I’m actually learning! Unfortunately it has homework.  I have a difficult summary due tomorrow, a presentation the next day, and a 2 page paper due friday and an exam on Monday.

I moved into my homestay.  The man is very nice.  He actually lived in California for a while so it’s nice to know he knows perfect English incase I need it.  He has a 14 year old daughter who is very sweet and caring. She moved her stuff so I could have space to put my bathroom belongings on one side of the sink, and have a rack for my shoes near the door.  We share a bathroom and she is very kind, but sometimes speaks super fast!  My room happens to be the son’s room, but since he is away studying they’re renting it out.  Because he is only 17 I get the feeling I’m probably the first (or at least one of the first) students this homestay has had.  They cooked a nice pasta dish the first night with lots of fresh veggies and tomato sauce.  There was an apetizer of cut up cucumber with a dressing of balsamic vinegar and sesame oil and sesame seeds.  It was surprisingly very tasty.  I had one embarrassing event happen my first night.  The house rule is no shoes in the house, which I don’t have a problem with.  So I was walking around in my socks.  I was walking down the wooden stairs which happen to be next to a huge window with a great sunset view and I wasn’t watching my footing and fell down the whole staircase.  It was embarrassing.  I easily looked like the loud and obnoxious and clumsy American stereotype.  The location is great.  I’m in the 5 Arrondissement, I can literally walk everywhere which will save me about 60 euro per month on a metro pass!!!

I also got a french phone. I got the cheapest phone possible with a prepay minutes/text card so I didn’t have to get a year contract and it was as cheap as possible.  Now I can coordinate with my classmates and host family.

I’m starting to think in French, like more often than english.

Today I went to monoprix, its a big everything store.  It had attractive clothes and bags, a full supermarket, toiletrees, and I went for the school supplies.  The french don’t have normal ruled paper! It’s ridiculous.  They’re equivalent of writing paper is below with my friend Amory. Look closely at the cloesup, it’s weird rectangles.   I just got standard graph paper because it’s at least the same spacing as in America.

The course offerings became available to us today.  It’s terribly confusing.  I can take courses at 4 different universities, each of which are at different locations with different locations within the locations, and none of which will state publicly their hours…. so I’m going to have to go visit all these numerous locations to find out what times the courses are offered.  I spent all night looking through a 200 page pdf…. I sure miss the searchable Cornell online system of enrollment.

beautiful meringues!!!

4 thoughts on “Orientation

  1. I’m glad you’re getting settled in and have a nice host family! It is so important to feel comfortable in your surroundings.

    I am excited that you have the opportunity to walk everywhere. Walking is by far my favorite way to enjoy a new country (ok, maybe a close second to motorcycle taxis in Rwanda).

    The meringues look delicious!

    • Aw, thanks Sarah! I enjoy walking because I can get a good understanding of where everything is, although I can’t say I’ve ever been on a Rwandian motorcycle taxi!

  2. I’m so sorry you had that mishap on the stairs. It must have been very scary. I’m quite confident you are not the first person to suffer this fate. I hope you did not hurt yourself.
    Is your host family vegetarians? Your pasta dinner sounded awesome.

    I guess they were not kidding about the total french immersion. I think it is so cool that you are learning so much. I’m always so impressed with people that can speak more than one language.

    The french course schedule seems a little cumbersome. Still better then the old days! It would be fun to have several classes on several different campuses. Looking forward to hearing about your classes. Take care,


  3. When the daughter speaks too fast you are getting a taste of what it is like for the rest of us when we listen to your English! I hope to visit the monoprix! Maybe they use those little rectangles on the paper for miniature math problems. Sorry you fell! Finding courses sounds like a nightmare. I hope you get a psychology class! Roro and I like the blog! Mom

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