Bonjour! It has been quite a week! New professors, new adventures, and new places (“new” is sort of the theme of this trip, I suppose).
On Wednesday, both of our classes received new professors. The reason is that the French do this thing, where they get around 5/6 weeks of vacation per year, and they usually take it in July or August. Both of my professors decided to start their vacations on August 1st, so naturally we got new professors after they left. But luckily both of them are pretty great and extremely helpful with the whole French thing. Wednesday one of our old professors went out to dinner with our whole class (in total there were about 13 people) and it was pretty great. Because there are people in our class who can’t speak English (they’re from Brazil, Bosnia, Spain, etc.), we all spoke in French the whole time. Actually, my friends and I are pretty good at making sure we speak French for the most part!
On Friday my friends and I went to the Arc de Triomphe. It was a pretty awesome view from the top, and we got to see the sunset over Paris. Afterwards, one of my friends and I decided to do our homework at the base of it. Essentially, we sat on the Arc de Triomphe and did our homework. It was a pretty sweet feeling, and it reminded me of where I was and how amazing this experience is (aw, cheesy!).
Today I went to the Père Lachaise cemetery (Molière, Jim Morrison, and other famous people are buried there, plus it’s beautiful), and then to the Sacre Cœur (a gorgeous, huge white church). We were able to climb up the dome of the church and get a wonderful view of Paris. Someone had written something on part of it that said “la vie est belle, et vous êtes comme elle” which translates to “life is beautiful, and you are just like it.”
After that, one of my friends and I went to the financial district of Paris which has some amazing sculptures, architecture, and a few pools that you can wade into. Basically, it was like Seattle sculpture garden x10 mixed with Paris and water. I don’t know if that made sense, but it was a lot of fun and different from anything else we’ve seen.
A random story: My friend and I got mugged at the beginning of this trip, and I’ve also caught someone in the process of pickpocketing me. Because of this, I’m become rather paranoid of the people around me, especially in the metro. The other day, as I was exiting the metro, a random group of guys passed me and one stopped in front of me. I sort of had an internal freak out, but all he said is “vous êtes très jolie” (“you are very pretty”) and walked away. I probably stood there like an idiot for about thirty seconds before I shouted after him “merci!” and then hurried up the stairs. I’m not good at the whole social situation thing, clearly. 😀
It’s a little less than two weeks until I return home to the US. I’m pretty dang excited to go home to the US, but I’m also going to miss Paris and the people I’ve met here like crazy. We’ve all become so close so fast.