Best things I brought

  • Big purse- I have a huge carry-all purse.  I can carry my laptop and notebooks and umbrella, and jacket, and pens, and snacks, and … practically the whole world.  I used this on my overnight trip too but just packing a change of clothes in! Also, students in Paris don’t normally use backpacks.  It’s all about the large purse here.
  • Umbrella- Rain is unpredictable here (much like Ithaca) so I came prepared
  • Tylenol- The pharmacies here are ridiculously expensive and have different brands than I’m used to.
  • Lint Roller- I wear primarily dark colors, and it just keeps everything looking nice
  • Nail Clippers- again, something that’s pretty expensive here for no good reason, and I’m happy that I brought my own
  • Chapstick- They have different brands here, I’m just happy to stick my good faithful Chapstick brand
  • Toilettrees- The brands here are very different and the flavors are bizarre.  I haven’t had to go out and buy anything yet so I’m just glad I got to use my normal stuff for the transition period to living in a foreign country
  • Scarves- They’re HUGE here.  I love scarves too.  With unpredictable weather, it’s nice to quickly warm up or cool down just by adding or taking away a scarf.
  • Granola Bars- I brought a box of my favorite granola bars.  Whenever I start feeling weak or I screw up and don’t have time for a real meal, it’s nice to have something to grab and eat quickly
  • Comfy Shoes- I walk everywhere! It’s really nice to have shoes that aren’t killing my feet at the end of the day.
  • Specialty Skirt Hanger- I really don’t like folding nice long skirts because they get all wrinkly
  • Synonym Dictionary  in French- This has been unbelievable useful for writing papers!
  • Converter-  I wouldn’t be able to use any of my electronics without it! I got it cheap off amazon and I haven’t needed more than one.

Things I wish I’d brought

  • Peanut Butter- This is very expensive and difficult to find here!
  • Sticky Notes- Again, another thing I use all the time at home, but is expensive and hard to fine here
  • Notebooks- The style of paper is different here.  I posted about it in one of my first blogs in September
  • More Comfy Sweaters- I brought some, but I didn’t quite bring enough in my opinion.  I bought two on sale two weeks ago and now I feel better
  • Pocket French-English Dictionary- I accidentally packed it in a box before I packed my stuff to study abroad and didn’t want to dig and find it after.  Wifi is not as easy to find here, so using an online dictionary isn’t always as easy as I’d imagined.

Things I wish I hadn’t brought

  • Specialty Pants Hanger- I have a ridiculous amount of shelf space, I really didn’t need this
  • Iron-  I have used my iron, but I could just as easily use the iron of my host family.  I’m a little picky about wrinkles and I feared I might not have access to an iron.
  • Thin High heels- There are cobblestones everywhere.  I have thick heeled boots and even they get caught in cobblestones sometimes.  Thin high heels have no place in paris.
  • Electronic Toothbrush- In addition to scaring my host family, it won’t charge here. I think it may have to do with the different voltage.
  • Neck Pouch- The travelers kind where you put your money and passport around your neck and under your shirt. Both my mom and my school suggested we use them.  To be honest, I haven’t used it once.  My super purse (see number one)  has a zipper and then I cover the zipper with my hand.  Furthermore I have molded my way into the French culture so I don’t speak English and I don’t dress like a tourist so I really have no reason to be a target for pickpockets.  If anything, they’d realize I was a poor college student anyway.  Please note: if you are older, don’t speak french, and dress like an american– You will look like a pick pocket subject!


One thought on “Réflexion

  1. Darling Michaela, I have been privy to your delicious journal for the last 2-3 wks…at your Gramma’s suggestion. I can’t tell you how much I’m enjoying the ride…it’s almost as good as being there! We have family in Switzerland(Montricher and Aubonne)as well as France (Calet)…so we’ve been there to visit four times now since the 80’s. The three ladies (my sis and sister in law and I) plus my brother in law spent three days and nights in France 7 years ago. We toured Giverny, indluding Monet’s Garden, and walked all over Paris within the vicinity of the train station, until our connection to Giverny…what a thrill! Wish we had known your tips for American tourists before we went! Joanie was the target of a pick-pocket attempt, and Gary had wad of money taken from the front pocket of his shorts. My sister in law, Elisabeth, served as our interpreter, though we used a bit of cursory French when we dared. We were in Switzerland last year for a family wedding..for two weeks! Those relatives came to Carmel, CA this April for my daughter’s wedding. I am vicariously savoring every detail, thought, taste and experience that you have MADE TIME to share with all of us. I’m sooo happy your dance class went well, since that is one of my passions too. Thank you for including all of us in your adventures, good and bad. I look forward to each update and photo…with affection, Ricci in Poulsbo, WA.

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