samedi 30 mai 2009


"Parmi les choses dont la sagesse se munit en vue de la félicité de la vie tout entier de beaucoup la plus importante est la possession de l'amitié" --Epicure

I am really happy. I went back to lycée today and I realized, I've found some really good friends here--and I have a family here and I will miss France so much. Even with my rollercoaster emotions, I've learned a lot here, things I never would've learned if I had stayed another year in Los Angeles.

Last Monday, the school bus came late so I missed 2 hours of math. All the high schooelrs from Liginiac (we're about 8) got to Ussel around 9h30, so we all went to a pub before going back to class ( we had to all go together; otherwise we couldn't get away with it! hehe) We got back to lycée around 10 and we told everyone that the car had just arrived! My English teacher wasn't there all this week either, which was pretty nice (she has some really bad mood swings, and not a very good accent) The weather is finally getting warmer (20-30 degrees celsius!) and so it's generally marvelous. We spet all of last weekend next to the swimming pool--I've started tanning!

The other night, Minette (one of our many tabby cats, their names are: Songha, Minette, Nougat, Tigrou, on other one that I can't remember the name of, and Gaspard) gave birth to kittens! Apparently, Minette started giving birth at like...3 in the morning, on Pauline's bed (I would definitely like to be woken up by that! lol...I'm being sarcastic). Now there are three tout-petit chatons hanging out in Pauline's room.

And yesterday was a Thursday, so we finished at 3 like usual, so we went in a group to le parc de la mairie, and just hung out. I love the days like that. We kind of all lean and lay on each other in the sun, and talk, and goof around. And it's starting to feel like the end of the SES we already got our grades for the last trimestre, so no one takes notes; and everyone has started talking about summer plans. I finish school the 17th of June; and then I'll leave Ussel the 7th of July to return in LA the 12th.

I've just started to realize that I only have...1 monh left in France. About a month...a month and a week really. And that scares me. I think I keep saying that (yes?) but it's true! 10 months has gone by a bit too quickly. 10 MONTHS?! I can't even believe I've been here for that long.

So I've also started thinking about what it'll be like when I get back to LA. I'm mostly thinking it'll be weird? I think I took way too much for granted when I was in LA--the closeness of everything and everyone. I'm looking forward to seeing you. And doing AP work of course (I'm kidding for that one). I should probably see all the movies I missed this year, and start reading only french books or something (or give bisous to everyone all the time!)

But mostly, I'll deal with that in July. Right now I just want to be here with my friends and Helene and the family and the countrside and the swimming pool and Ussel and the afternoons after lycée and general normalness. I will miss it incredibly. I'm glad that I'll have 3 weeks of French summer vacation before I leave--so I can hang out with all my friends here, I'll have enough time to say goodbye. Or maybe I'll never have enough time? I'm not someone who would "accidentally" misplace their airplane tickets or something like that (like that AFS book says people do before they leave), because I know that I'll have to go back to LA. I just wish I had a bit more time, you know...this year has almost felt like a dream. Wake me up in 6 more months!

I don'wanna leave yet.

jeudi 7 mai 2009

Easter and...other stuff

Maymaymaymay!!!!May ?

I should say, c’est mai! Je me sens comme je dois écrire tout en français maintenant ! C’est vrai que, quand j’essaye d’écrire et penser en anglais, tout devient bizarre. (J’ai besoin de penser soigneusement d’abord, et après écrire)

But I won’t continue in french…because then (almost) no one at home will understand me! (exceptions: Mama, Allie, and Sarah?) I feel restless. Not here, but because I keep thinking I’ll be home in 2 months, and how weeirrdd that’ll be. I have changed a lot. I can no longer think back when I was in LA, and remember the conversations I had or how I really spent the days, because my types of conversations and how I spend my days here are so much different. I am home here. I also feel like, once you really settle in, you have to think about going home. (2 months will go a whole heck of a lot faster than I want)

What will I do without the hours after school is done, when we hang out and wait for the car? What will I do without the chateau? Without all the forest to take long walks in? Without the snow in winter? Without all my friends here? Without Louis and Gauthier and Lucie and Marion to talk with? Without fromage?

So, we had another 2 week vacation at the end of April (that finishes next Monday), and I stayed with a temporary host family in Paris for the 2 weeks. (They couldn’t find a family in Marseille). But it was AMAZING! The family consisted of Laure, and Michel her husband, and their 3 daughters: Anne, Claire and Louise. They weren’t at home all that often (at ages 13, 16, and 19), but I did a couple things with Anne, who is hilarious, in the first week. (I also went to her college one morning in the 2nd week, because she wanted me to). haha, but almost every day I woke up pretty early, left the house to go see things in Paris: le Louvre (Mona Lisa!), Montmartre, le Marais, St. Germain-des-Pres, les Champs-Elysees, and elsewhere. The first week, two friends from the lycee at Ussel (Antoine and Pauline) were in Paris too, staying at Antoine’s uncle’s house, so we hung out a bit. And the second week, Nadine from Switzerland stayed with the family too, so we went to the Tour Eiffel and saw everything again. (I saw Marton too, who was there with another host family). Pretty much, I was rarely alone in Paris!

Our last night in Paris, Nadine and I made carrot cake (did you know they make one in Switzerland too? But with a taste of lemon and lots and lots of nuts) We used the American version…but the problem was that we didn’t have flour, oil, cream cheese (for the frosting) or carrots. And all the supermarkets were closed because it was the 1er Mai (La Fete de Travail). So we decided we’d find everything we needed, somehow. haha, we went to the Gare de Lyon (the family lived just next to it), in the metro (they have little stores inside), and finally (after walking 5 blocks) we found a little grocery store that was still open. It was kind of hilarious, we ran around the store trying to find everything (and at the cheapest), and we bought flour, a GIGANTIC thing of vegetable oil, 2 carrots, and a fromage a tartiner, for only 4 euros! We high-fived and ran back to the house (and they loved the gateau en plus!)

I saw about…4 movies: 17 again (the really um…cliché one with Zac Efron), Coco avant Chanel (with Audrey Tautou, which was good), Safari (un film française, really funny but kinda dumb), and Incognito (another French movie with Benabar). There was a movie theater about a block away from my host family’s house, so it was kind of convenient! I also went to a lot of museums: le Louvre, Le musee d’Orsay (impressionists!), Le musee Carnavalet (French history), and Le Grand Palais, where I saw the Andy Warhol exposition (fantastic!) and one about graffiti. It was just fantastic. I really needed to get out a bit from Mareges to be in a big city again—just for a little bit. By the end I was homesick. I was ready to go back to lycée!

Anyways, because I didn’t update in April (sorry…I was really busy!), I’ll summarize it a little bit. Pretty much, it was comme habitude, and one weekend Miyu and Victoria came to visit me (It was soo much fun, we stayed up really late each night and talked and sang in foreign languages) and then the next weekend, I went to Yolaine’s house at Brive for her birthday party. (She’s 18!) We stayed up until 4 AM watching ‘Mon Voisin Totoro.’ (And we ate pasta in the form of flowers and hearts, hehe) And afterward, pretty much like normal: hanging out with everyone after lycee, and doing homework and yup. I got a 12/20 on a dissertation in class for French, and I am pretty proud of myself, because my prof grades severely, and I had the same grade as Marie!

There was also Easter! Here in France, they say that the cloche hides the eggs (not the enormous bunny). Actually, the cloche doesn’t chime (I can’t remember what word I would use in English to describe the noise of a large bell?) at the church for the week or two before Easter, and on Easter, it rings and rings, (right word?) and they say that the cloche came back, with chocolate for everyone. Aude and Lucie went to go hide the eggs in the garden, and afterward, we all went to try and find them. It was a good day; not Easter in the US, but Easter in France! haha, and that’s about it.

Yup… I have to do my devoirs, so, à plus tard!