Sunday, January 30, 2011


Everything has been going really well these past couple of days! I started my translation course which will be extremely beneficial to me, but it looks like it can be difficult at times. Plus, the Friday morning at 8:00 am doesn't quite help that! There are a few classes that I am taking that are simply just for preparation for the exam at the end, which is basically, in my mind, a French ACT, but only with reading and writing. We are doing a lot of old tests and learning how to listen well, time ourselves and things like that. It is stressful because right now I don't see myself doing well on it at all, but I know a lot will change when May comes around.

There are a couple of guys who live in the same building as me and we have created a "date" for speaking French each night. It just happens and it is really nice. I can ask questions, they help me, they re-teach me things! It takes effort on my part because I feel uncomfortable speaking French sometimes, but that is what I have to get over and just talk and I will be better. It's becoming easier, and I've realized I know a lot more than I think I do.

Remember how I talked about the Carrefour by my dorm being like a French Wal-Mart? Well, it is, but moreso a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market. The actual Carrefour, which I discovered Wednesday, is b.e.a.u.t.i.f.u.l! It is literally like walking into a Wal-Mart! They have SO much stuff and it is cheaper than the things at the Market. I've decided that even though it takes more of an effort to get to it by bus, I am definitely going there for everything! That is the one that I am taking my Mom and Sister to when they come to visit.

This next weekend I am going to Bordeaux with Kristen, Kelli, Ebony, Jacques, his friend, these two girls in our class from the Czech Republic, and Alex and Claudia, the two students from England. It should be really fun and I am very excited to go! We are staying in a hostel, taking the train there and back, and visitng a winery! We found a 5 hour city and winery tour that I think will be very interesting. I am happy to finally go somewhere on my weekends and I am looking into where else I want to and can go visit on the weekends and for my first break!

Today I am going to the Rugby game. Tros told us they are playing a French team that they lost to last time and there should be lots of fights! I am definitely wanting to see that! Last week I was at Lelani's and they showed us videos from different rugby teams and the level of intensity and fighting went up and the level of competition went up. It was interesting. All I know is, these poor rugby players have to be either so sore or so dead after playing a match. I wanted to cry when I saw the hits some of the guys had. It looks awful.

That's really all that is going on. Funny story: I needed to buy a mini-stapler because a lot of the copies my professors give me are just pages and pages without being stapled and it drives me crazy. So, I was at the big Carrefour and I bought a hole punch instead. In my defense, they look EXACTLY alike, and the picture looked like a freaking stapler. Oh well. Now that I don't have a need for a hole puncher, I have one. Maybe one day.

I realized when looking at my calendar that I have almost been here a month! It is crazy how fast it has gone by. Just a few things that I really miss:
  • Sonic ICE!!! Or, ice in general!
  • Dr. Pepper, but not as much as I thought I would.
  • My mom, sister, JayJay, and of course, Sassi and Coco!
  • I haven't had Starbucks, BWW, Sonic, anything in one month!
  • RANCH! OMG, ranch! I do miss you!
  • A bathtub. I officially hate showers. So inconvenient, plus, who really wants to stand while getting clean? Not me, that's for sure.
  • Driving, I haven't driven in a month! Honestly though, I enjoy walking now and taking the bus. The public transportation here is ten times better than in the US and it really can take you almost anywhere! Walking now gives me time to think and notice things around me that I wouldn't if I was driving.
  • Kara, Taryn, Shelby, my tortilla!
I am sure there are more things that I miss, but overall I really don't miss home all that much. Sorry, mommy! :) I truly enjoy it here, and could definitely see myself coming back for a much longer period of time. We shall see...


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

All's Well that Ends Well

I have never quite understood the "real" meaning of that expression, but after today, it seems fitting.

Monday's classes went really well. I enjoyed them and actually understood quite a bit. In my "societe francaise" class we talked about education. It was very interesting to me. The kids go to school Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8:30-11:30, and 1:30-3:30. There are different levels of school, like in the US, but tests that determine what level you can go on to and what professions can be taken. In high school, they take this exam that determines if they are "good enough" basically for finishing high school or if they are better off entering the workforce. Interesting!

Tuesday was quite the day. After being woken up by a fire alarm that I wasn't sure was a fire alarm or a drill or what the heck to do, I wandered outside in my PJ's to be met other girl. Apparently, fires are nothing to be concerned about. Just kidding, after about 2 minutes, more people came out and then we were told that it was all good and we can go back inside. I still don't know if it was a drill or if it was a mistake or what. Anywho, I was awake and ready for my day.

I've had complications with determining my classes and credits and no one can give me a straight answer. It is extremely frustrating. I made an appointment today to talk with Guy to go over everything. Apparently, my FLE classes (all the French ones) are 2 ECTS (which is equal to one credit hour at OU) and I am taking 9 classes. Welll, in order to be considered full time, I need to have least 12 hours, and even when I take the DELF exam (the one at the end that is an international recognition of your French level) it is only worth 5 ECTS. So, I would be at 23 which is less than what I need. I decided I would be better off being safe than sorry and choosing a class at UniLim to take, outside of my FLE classes.

I have this fear of failing a class, and I feel that if I were to take a history course or something that I would not pass. Guy suggested a Translation course that will work from English to French and from French to English. Upside: I would meet French students (yay!) and it fits with my schedule just fine. It is 3 ECTS (1.5 OU credits) and I would learn something and be good at it. Downside: It is at 8:00 a.m. on Friday mornings. Now, let that blow your mind that I am going to take an 8 am class! I could barely do in the US, let's see if it is any easier in France!

I am excited to take it and the professor apparently loves American students because we know more about the language and we will participate. I think it will be fun to take and as long as I get my 12 credit hours, I am all for it. So, after deciding what I would do, I went to turn in my form that states what classes I will take. The lady then proceeds to tell me that my first four classes are paid for, but my other five I must pay for on my own. I then respond, "No, with my exchange program at my university I do not have to pay for these courses because it is already in my fees." She says "no" and I get frustrated so I kindly ask for my paper back to keep and talk with my advisor. Guy to the rescue! He clears up the situation and, as always, I was right! ;) I turned it back in and everything from then on was good for the rest of the day. Reason being why I titled this "All's well that ends well".

One of my afternoon classes was cancelled so I got some coffee and read the newspaper while talking some with Kristen. As eventful as thirty minutes of my day was, it was pretty boring in the long scheme of things. Tomorrow I am going to have coffee with a guy named Emmanuel who I met at the club on Saturday. I am just one adventurous gal! Ha, not really.  Don't worry, Mom, I chose the time and place! I might also try to do some more shopping since it is the last week of sales and maybe there is something that I just cannot live without.

I get to talk to my mommy tonight on Skype! Yay! She also sent me a cute card and some pictures today that just made my day (and my wall decorations!) so much better. I love her so much.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Thursday is Still My Least Favorite Day

Hi world! I feel like I haven't blogged in forever, but there hasn't been much to say! I'll start with class on Thursday. I felt very confident in my morning phonetics class because I understood what was happening and even went up the board and wrote! Gasp! I just knew it would be a better day. Then, as always, my oral comprehension class happened. I know oral comprehension is my weakest point in my French, but I want to cry every single time I leave, and sometimes during, this class. It is terrible. I don't understand the 234210943754 miles an hour the news anchors speak, and I also don't understand the professor who asks the questions twice as fast! My professor last semester showed me some websites to help with my listening and stuff, so I have decided to devote at least 30 minutes a day to practicing this, and hopefully before too long I will be much better at it.

My writing class later that day were fine, but just are not very entertaining. Not that class is supposed to be entertaining, but it could be a wee bit fun, you know? It drags on and on and on and never seems like 6:30 will happen. Kristen and I decided after our day Thursday that we needed some wine. At 7:20 we made it to the Carrefour which was closing at 7:30 and we practically begged the security person to let us get some wine. In all the madness and rush of that, we forgot to get a corkscrew! Thanks to Jacques and his skills last weekend, we knew we could at least open it with a pen by pushing the cork into the bottle. Not the classiest way and definitely not the easiest or best way, but desperate times call for desperate measures. :) With 4,01 euro spent on my bottle, this is what my success (after a failed wire hanger and towel-wrapped banging on the wall) looked like:
I am a pro :)
Okay, so I know it wasn't the best way to do it, but I guarantee you one day it will come in handy again!
On Friday, Kristen and I went down to the train station and got our "Carte 12-25" which gives you discounts on trains throughout France. Depending on when you book, it is always at least 25% off and that can definitely add up! We wandered around hoping to find some boots for sale and came across lots of fun things:
La Maison du Fromage: A true French fromagerie. The smell was crazy strong and there was SO MUCH cheese. We, naturally, didn't know what was what, but we decided to try it anyway! Turns out, we got sheep cheese, soft and not too strong.
The "La Maison du Fromage". The smell in this place was unreal. This was just one side of it. I have never seen more cheese in my entire life.
Sheep cheese....
So we ate it. This is the before, and just imagine it all carved out for the after. It didn't have a very pleasant aftertaste and it reminded me of the smell of older people and mothballs, but after a while you no longer seemed to notice. I enjoyed trying it but I doubt I will get it again :)

As we kept walking, we ran into this "2 euro" store, and I was in heaven. I have been saying every since I got here that the French need a Dollar (well, Euro) Tree and my wish has come true! It had everything for 2 euro, or, because of the sales, 1 euro! It was amazing. I cannot wait to take my Mom and Sister!

The "It's 2 euro" store! The French version of Dollar Tree. Love,love, love it!

Friday night was pretty low key. Saturday we went in to do some more shopping and I went to H&M wihth the intention of getting shopped out. Well, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it) I am not a size 2, 4 or 6, so my options were slim of some of the sweater dresses I wanted. I did give in and buy a super cute blue ruffles with black belt casual dress for spring. What I love about France is that tax and everything is already included, so the price you see is the price you pay. I felt very good about getting a dress I am dying to wear for 19 euro! H&M will be graced by my presence again when I need spring clothes!

Saturday night Ebony and I decided to go try out a club and La bibliothèque for dinner. We decided to take the last bus in at 7:56 and eat slowly to be at the club at 11:30 or so. Dinner was so good! I have a pizza with ham (the French are big on ham on their pizza...) mushrooms from Paris (ooh la la!) and black olives. I also had the BEST crème brûlée of my entire life. No joke. It was heaven. We mapped out our course and left a little before 11. We obviously got lost because that's what we do, but we found some cool things along the way:
A monument for WWI Vetrans.

At Place Jourdain with Ebony. It was SO cold!

A Virgin Mobile advertisement. They have them with girls too, but I obviously prefer the "avec" boy..with Joe Jonas' body and face :) Then again, I'll take what I can get!
Turns out, the whole time we bascially went around and everywhere but where we were supposed to go. We finally found "Le Buckingham Club" and were excited. We heard the music and even though it was only midnight, we were excited to be out of our dorms! We walk in and other people. Whoo hoo. Party, right?! The dance floor was empty and so was the bar. We decided most people probably don't come until later so we gave it an hour. After one drink we walked about to see what it had to offer (cute leopard chairs and comfortable leather seats!) and ran into Heather, the lady teaching English here to French kids. She told us about a package for a Bordeaux trip and we ended up sitting with her for a bit and chatting. Time flew by and by 1:45, the club was packed!

We finally got the urge to dance so we took over the dance floor. It is so weird to me dancing at a club in France. In the US, most guys and girls will dance together and be touching, but in France, regardless of gender, everyone dances alone, and it is a-w-k-w-a-r-d! I don't know how to dance alone and I feel so silly! I really don't care because I have fun but it is just different! Since so many people were there now, it was SO hot. About 3:15 we decided to leave and call a taxi since we live further from Centre ville. Yes, I am making progress with my French because I can call and get a taxi :) Yay me! Thirty minutes later we make it back home and I go right to sleep!

Sunday, Lelani invited me to her flat to have lunch and watch movies. Tros and Jacques had a rugby game that was away so she wanted to lounge around and I was all for it. She told me about Cape Town some and showed me the most beautiful pictures. She also told and made me some "roobios" tea, that is South African but is made from a shrub type plant that they discovered is very good for you and they make tea from the leaves of the shrubs. It was very good, especially with some of her South African cookies! She told me France doesn't have much South African stuff so she uses to find it! She made spaghetti bolognaise and I made a salad for us. It was very good! We had nice conversation and I got to see how and hear the story of how Tros propsed to her. So very sweet! We watched "The Social Network" and "Leap Year". I recommend both! The Social Network was so good, and Leap Year was a feel good, aww, sweet movie. It was a lot of fun and I told her we would do it everytime the rugby games are away!

I came home and Skyped with my Sissy, Jason, and even Sassi for about .2 seconds! Tomorrow should be a good day considering I like my Monday classes! Here are some more pictures I have of random things I have found:

The Laughing Cow cheese and crackers!
A Praline I split with Kristen that was good, homemade from a chocolatier!

I was SO close to buying this for my future nephew. It was 70% off so I should have! I may go back...

Well world, that is it for today! Wish me luck this week!


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Oklahoma Wind

If there is one thing I do not miss at all about being at home it is the wind. So far in Limoges, there has been hardly any, and it has been great. Today, it was like I was back at home! It was SO windy and definitely colder than it has been the past couple of days. It was my day off and all the sales were calling my name!

After lunch I went with Kristen and Kelli into centre-ville. We went to Saint Martial which is a shopping mall where they have an H&M, which is my favorite store ever! They had a ton of things on sale and so many cute dresses and skirts for spring. For some reason, I was feeling guilty for shopping so I wasn't quite in the mood to do it. We went through all the mall where there are sports shops (like Academy), gift shops, tons of clothing stores, shoes, shoes, and shoes! I did find a cute sweater dress that was 39 euro that I got for 13 euro! I am proud of myself for that purchase.

I also was in dire need of contact solution. I didn't pack any with me because I just assumed it would be at all the stores here. No such luck! After checking the Carrefour and the Pharmacie, I asked Samy who told me you had to get it at an optometrist's office. Who knew?! He also said it was very expensive. Later at lunch I asked Jacques how expensive it was, and he said 50-70 euro. I was about to be wearing glasses the rest of the semester. I was furious and did not know why it would cost so much. I decided to try my luck because maybe a little bottle would be only 20 euro and I could suffice until my mom sent me some from home. Luckily, I got a big bottle of it for 11 euro and I knew it was going to be a good day! Yes it is still much more expensive than in the US, but it is better than the 50-70 I was prepared for. Then again, Jacques was probably lying. Oh well, once I got my solution I was pretty much jumping up and down and did not care where the day went! I was that happy!

We shopped for a few hours and then tried out a chocolatier. Kristen and I shared a very good praline covered in chocolate. We decided since we split it, it was only 250 calories each, to which we said, "We are in France, who cares?!" I made some soup for dinner and did another load of laundry. I am going to shower and then do my homework that I have so far for this week. Tomorrow is my long day of classes. I may wear my new dress just so I feel cute and maybe the day will be better!


Tuesday, January 18, 2011


School has been much better the past two days. On Monday there was a meeting for international students and it was supposed to be a "Welcome!" type of event. Had I had it two weeks ago it would have been great, but since I had it yesterday, I felt it to be a complete waste of my time. Plus, I also thought it was more for students who were taking Univeristy courses and not doing my FLE Program. In my "pratique d'oral" class we did an exercise like "Telephone" but with stories in French. You know how messed up it can get in English, so just imagine that in another language with stories you knew nothing about. It was interesting and fun, but a complete disaster, at least for me!

Tuesday's classes were good, but it is still such a long day! We are in the same classroom from 2-6:30. The little coffee machine has become my best friend to keep me ready for another lecture. My grammar class will be good for me once I remember what all I learned in ninth grade. It has been so long since I have reviewed a lot of what we are going over, so it makes for a complicated situation. I know the information, but it is filed away so far back that I need to reach in and grab it out! I also have a class on "Techniques d'expression" which teaches us how to write a letter, formal or informal, and it seems pointless now, but I am good at it so it makes it enjoyable for me! I am sure it will come into use later, but so far I do not see me writing a letter to someone telling them I am unable to attend their housewelcoming party, but congratulations on their baby.

Tomorrow is one of my day's off so I am going to go into centre-ville and do some shopping! Since it is sale season it just makes perfect sense! I also want to visit a distillery but I do not know how far away it is yet, but it is on my bucket list! I made a rough bucket list but I will keep adding to it, I am sure. Hopefully each week or every so often I can go accomplish a few things on it. Some are bigger than others, and some are a mere five minutes away. I made it up while I was doing some laundry. The dryer just does not dry so my whole room smells like a clean laundry mat each time I do it. Jeans and towels are everywhere currently, and tomorrow it will be my whites! My mama would be proud!

I get to Skype with my Nana and my Mommy tonight! I am so excited. I think my poor Nana worries about me too much and wants me to come home. It takes me some convincing to let her let me stay here. It will be good to talk to them and I am excited!


Monday, January 17, 2011


Rugby: my new favorite sport! It was so cool, and I found rugby to be exciting. The Limoges team won, 52-3 (I think) and Lelani said it wasn’t too much of a game because the other team was weak and there weren’t many scrums which makes the game more exciting. Since I am a football fan, I am used to hearing helmets clashing and at a rugby match you hear skin and heads and I think it looks absolutely painful and I would cry if I was in the situation of some of these guys. I really enjoyed it though and would like to see another one!

After the rugby match, we went into this little bar place right by the stadium where the players go to hang out for a bit and thank their supporters. We met some friends of Lelani and the Jacques and then we planned out our night. It was too late to eat dinner but some of the group left to go try to find an open place and I stayed behind with Jacques because I felt bad if he was left alone. He is a big talker to all the people anywhere, so he went up to some supporters and then made me speak French which actually turned out to be helpful even though I felt like I was butchering every single word. This French family that we were talking to actually knew about the OKC Bombing which I found surprising because I guess I thought it just made big news in the US but apparently not. After talking some, we left and met up with Lelani and "Tros" (that is her husband, Jacques, nickname and everyone calls him that so it is probably easier to distinguish between who I am talking about) and Kristen, Kelli, Ebony, Audrey (one of their friends) and whoever else we decided to bring. We went to a small rugby bar called Bar Barians that was packed and had the cutest lamp made of rugby balls in one of the corners. Random, I know. I learned the difference in France between a bar and a nightclub. A bar is just like a bar in the US but closes at 2. A nightclub is like a dance club and a bar, but stays open until 7:00 or 8:00 in the morning! Absolutely nuts.

Now that that is cleared, Bar Barians closed at 2 and Audrey, Jacques, me, and another rugby player and his girlfriend went to this nightclub called "Le Speakeasy".
It was small with a dance floor and some booths. It is much cheaper in France when you go to a bar to buy a bottle of liquor for like 5-10 euro and then get mixers there than to buy a mixed drink already which is anywhere from 7-12 euro per drink. We did that and danced some and then left! I met and spoke some French to some "locals" who knew Jacques and attempted to make them my friends. There was a coat check place to put your stuff and as it turns out, when Jacques and I decided to go, the other rugby player had taken Jacques coat too, with his keys and everything in it. So, at 5:12 in the morning (because that’s how the French roll I guess?!) we had to walk to the rugby players apartment, Allo, and bang on his door to get Jacques coat and keys, and then walk all the way back to the car so we could get to my dorm. It was such a hassle but very entertaining at the time. The streets of France are much more open and wide at 5 am than they are during the day.

Needless to say, Sunday was spent sleeping a LOT and finishing up some homework for class. The whole University starts back tomorrow and so there should be a lot more people around. Also in France right now it is sale season, and it started last week in Limoges. Everything starts out at 30% off, then goes to 50%, 70% and so on for one month. I think someone is going to be doing some shopping. I don’t really need anything, but hey, I will only be able to shop sale season in France once, right?! And if it is on sale it is silly to pass it up, right?! Yes, that is just what I thought! J Class should be good and I am going to try to mark off one thing from my bucket list this week!

First Week of Class Finished!

Well, my first week of class is complete. I survived, but not without lots of confusion. Thursday I have four classes and it makes for one long day. The morning class is my favorite, phonetics, and I really enjoy it. My class at OU last semester was phonetics and it was definitely a good preparation for this. In the afternoon I have oral and written comprehension and writing practice. That’s when my Thursday went bad….oral comprehension. I wanted to cry when it was over. We watched these two videos and had questions and I honestly had no idea what was happening. I felt like a complete idiot and wanted nothing more than to get up and leave. It was terrible. The written comprehension and writing practice went much better. There were some small introductions and nothing too major for the first class, which lifted my mood a bit.

After class, Jacques, Lelani, Jacques, Kristen, Kelli and I all went to go get dinner. The first place was closed (even though it was only 7:00) and so our search began again. We walked all over finding nothing but closed places. When we would find a place, no one would decide if it sounded good or if it was what they wanted so I am sure we wasted quite a bit of time. Finally, Lelani mentioned a Moroccan restaurant that she had always wanted to go to when she lived in centre ville. We chose that, and our choices for food were couscous or…..couscous. We all found the menu very humorous. A bottle of red wine and a bottle of white wine later, our food arrived. It was a big plate of couscous, a bowl of cooked prunes, a bowl of some sweet raisin and onion mixture, a bowl of gravy, and two big plates: one full of sheep and one full of chicken, all with carrots, zucchini, and potatoes. I ordered some kind of shish-kabob that had steak and green peppers. It was all very good but we all started out somewhat confused. After drinking and eating to our fullest, we found out that was just the beginning. They brought out another menu with more options for meals and some dessert. Lelani and Jacques got dessert and I settled for another glass of wine for me. Kristen and I were feeling just wonderful at this point and my bad day was forgotten!

When we left there, we somehow ended up at another wine bar that Jacques and Jacques knew the owners of. All over Limoges are these "republiques" which are like town squares with nothing but cement in it, just a big open space. What better are they for than for cartwheels! I have this weird obsession with doing cartwheels in big open spaces. Even at the AOII Convention I did one in the hotel lobby. It is just perfect and seems so free. I definitely did quite a few on our walk that evening. We walked into the bar with Michael Jackson on the speakers and a crowded, popular place. It was very fun! Kelli was the smart one so she kept us all sane for the night. We talked about gold and silver, which Jacques is adamant about buying and becoming a millionaire, South Africa some more, skylines, and who even knows what else. Time flew by and it was so much fun. When we all decided we had had enough fun for one night, we start to walk back to the car, which at this point is somewhere not by where we were. Limoges has many cathedrals and I am dying to go see some, and just my luck, walking back we found one! Picture time!! I think everyone hates me for all my pictures, but my mama taught me well! Thursday was definitely a good day.

St. Pierre.

Doors at St. Pierre.
On Friday, I took Kelli and Kristen into centre-ville to get their cellphones and meet Xasin for coffee. We spent time at fnac and I got a very good book on the history of Limoges with all this information and good places to go. We also found the Office of Tourism which had lots of coupons and booklets for places to visit. I am making myself a Limoges Bucketlist and going to complete it all. Hopefully. We visited St. Pierre church and also St. Etienne where I lit a candle for my Nana and for my mom’s friend, Rhetta. I chose the red and white ones so it is also for Boomer and Sooner! You can take the girl out of the Sooner State but you can’t take the Sooner State out of the girl! J

For my Nana and Rhetta..and Boomer Sooner of course!
 St. Etienne is absolutely gorgeous. The outside is amazing and there is such detail all over it. Inside is even prettier with beautiful stained glass and tombs of many of their Saints. It is so peaceful because not many people were there and it is perfect for a nice afternoon of studying when it gets warmer.

The main entrance with the original doors.

In front of St. Etienne.

Original doors.

Stained glass inside. There was also a beautiful organ (huge!) and high ceilings.
Kelli, Kristen, and I walked around Limoges for a bit and when our feet said it was time to go, we agreed. We went through the train station, which is also very pretty, and took our bus back home! It was a good day of exploring and hanging out but also very tiring.

Saturday is the rugby game! I am sooo excited to go! We were talking about it at dinner on Thursday and I asked Lelani what the attire was for it, like dress up or like OU Football game. She said I could wear whatever, and then I asked if she had a jersey with "Botha" on the back since she is married to a player and she seemed like I was crazy for saying she needed one. I have decided she does, and my gift to her will be to somehow get her one. It is at 6:00 today so it should be a lazy day until then. I met another girl who is from UNC and her name is Ebony. She arrived either Thursday and Samy seems to think I am the person to send all the new people to because there is always a random face knocking at my door telling them Samy sent them here. I think I should be getting paid! She is nice and I took her to Carrefour to get some food for the weekend and see a little of what is right around by us. Ebony is joining us tonight for the rugby game and I am sure we will be quite the crowd.

Train Station, very pretty!


Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Wednesday is my off day from class so it has the potential to not be so exciting each week. Today I went with Kristen and Kelly (Kelly is the girl from OSU) to meet with Guy (our contact at Uni) to make sure we did enrollment correctly and to ask any other questions. He was very helpful and we even got this neat little mini messenger bags for class filled with goodies! There was a map of Limoges (FINALLY!) a student club book, agenda, notes on enrollment, and some other things. I was very excited to get it because it is a hassle taking my backpack when I only carry a spiral to class. We went to lunch at the restaurant here on campus and I must say, for 3 euro we get a really good lunch! We had all planned to go into centre ville today to get their phones, visit fnac, and walk around, but that changed. It was so dreary today. Rainy, but like an annoying heavy mist and drizzle, and cold! We decided we needed to go to Carrefour for sure so we all talked each other into going. My mission was to get nail polish remover because if my mom had seen my nails I am sure she would have died! They were terrible, and even I couldn't deal with it. I searched high and low to find some stupid nail polish remover and it was nowhere to be seen. Finally, I got the courage to ask a lady who looked nice (and turned out to be as well) if she knew where it was. She did, and naturally I had seen it about 100 times but skipped over it. It was next to liquid eye make-up remover and there were only four bottles of it. What a random place to have it. We all got some school supplies and then headed back home. My mission for today was to do my laundry because I actually had a 2 euro coin! I did it while I was unpacking things from Carrefour and making my bed. After the wash was complete, I put it into the dryer which I found either A) doesn't work very well or B) I needed to dry it longer (there is only one timer though so I can't exactly change it) or C) I did something wrong. I am going to go with B but that is beside the point. I now have laundry all over my room and there isn't much room to have it all over! I have a towel and the provided blanket that are practically soaked strategically over my closet door. Luckily my suitcases make for some "elevated" spaces I guess. Tonight will be pretty relaxed. I am going to shower and probably watch a movie while I wait for my mom to get home from work so we can Skype! I miss her so much!

Tuesday's classes went well but it will definitely be a long day. Same goes for Thursday since it is the same schedule practically. Tuesday I am in the same classroom all day and that is a drag. Due to that, I tried to coffee vending machine and it was really good! The perfect amount and temperature of coffee. I must say, I am becoming addicted to coffee. I mean, I have always liked Starbucks with all the sugar and flavors, but I am talking dark, sugar and milk, if that, coffee. Weird, huh?! I have some "methods" class that, by the looks of it, will be really important. There was this one section of our assignment we did aloud where we named all the phrases or verbs with "mettre" and this one girl would not stop naming verbs! After we named about 15 (really) and thought we were all done, we went on for literally 20 more minutes naming more! I decided this girl has either already taken the class or is a human dictionary. It was nuts. The other two classes were about the language and one on proper writing techniques or something. I am still trying to figure out exactly what to expect with that class. Thursday classes should be good. I have my phonetics class in the morning and I am excited for that! I loved learning the phonetics of French this past semester so I cannot wait to learn more. The afternoon classes are for writing, and comprehension of stuff. It will probably be a long day! Oh well, after 6:30 tomorrow it is my weekend!

I was supposed to go have coffee today with Xasin (the painter who showed me around Limoges) but it was rainy and cold and I did not feel like walking around centre ville. I told him we should reschedule for Friday so that, along with rugby Saturday, is my big weekend plans! It looks promising that this weekend will be a good one!


Monday, January 10, 2011

First Day of Class!

So today was my first day of class and I was freaked! I had no idea what was going to happen. I walked over there early and couldn't find the place we were supposed to be at. They had changed the room and told no one, and of course I looked like an idiot trying to find out where I needed to go. I found another lady who was going with me as well so we tag teamed it and figured it out. After going in, they discussed the prices of classes, schedule, and some other business. I placed into FLE 3, and the highest is 4! I was very proud of myself and I guess I know French better than I thought. I was very surprised at this, but I feel a little more confident now. Kristen and Jacques are also in FLE 3 with me so it will be nice to have friends! We get the forms for registration and after this meeting, Kristen and I sit down to fill them out and get WAY confused. There was stuff about insurance, degrees, all this information we had no idea about. We decided it was best to leave it alone, e-mail our higher powers, and go to lunch. It was SO nice to have a real meal and be around other people. We ate and had about a two hour break before class. I will have class Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Monday I go from 3:30-6:30, Tuesday from 2:00-6:30, and Thursday I go from 9:30-11:00 and 2:00-6:30. I am taking "Pratique d'oral, societe francaise, methodolgie universitaire, langue, techniques d'expression, phonetique, comprehension de l'oral, comprehension de textes, and pratique de l'ecrit". Of course there are accent marks there, but I do not know how to do that on the computer yet :) My first class went well. We did an introduction activity that was typical of any first day. I had a South Korean partner named Martial who was 25, liked the color black, and actually had his birthday today. I also became the running joke of the class and the day because I said where he lived. I got really excited because he lived in my building so I thought, "New Friend! Yay!" but the class thought "stalker". It was quite entertaining, and I guess everyone knows who I am now. Next was my societe francaise class. We took some quizzes on French history, politics, cinema, science, and the like. I knew nothing and felt oh so smart. Jacques was a know-it-all but would claim he knew nothing so he got to be the joke of this class. Kristen and I felt it was adqeuate to make educated guesses which worked out just fine....ish. We then were given a map of France and had to label different cities and then ALL the provinces, and there are like 30. That's my homework and Google Maps is going to become my friend shortly.

After class, Jacques asked Kristen and I if we wanted to go get coffee with Lelani and Jacques. I've noticed that the French drink coffee like Americans drink pop. It is a social thing, and it is done before meals, after meals, with meals, whenever! It can come in teeny-tiny cups or big ones, and there are even coffee vending machines! Crazy, but soon to become my best friend I am sure! We said yes and went to this palce called "La Royalty" (I think) and enjoyed hot chocolate and good conversation. I will be going to my first ever rugby game this weekend! I am excited! We also talked about planning trips and horror hostel stories. A couple hours later it was time for dinner and we went to a buffet called Buffet du Monde. It was very good! I wasn't sure what some of the stuff I ate was, but it was very good. I was a tad adventurous and am going to make it a priority to try new things each time I go out. We all shared a bottle of red and white wine. The red was good but the white was SO much better. I am just a white wine drinker I guess. Of course, coffee followed after all this! Time flew by so fast, and the next thing it is 11:00 and we are just leaving. As we walked out, we heard cows being slaughtered. It was sad, but interesting because I have never seen the type of place where it happens, much less hear the sounds of the cows.

Today was a very good day. Classes will be good, and I feel much better talking to people in my classes because we are all on the same level. In the classes we can only speak French, and so regardless of if it is good or not, I have no choice but to talk to the other students in French. I am surprised by the amount of Korean and Chinese students in my class. Out of the 30, about 25 were Korean or Chinese. Obviously I do not know any Korean or Chinese so French sounds pretty good most of the time. Although I don't quite understand all the teacher is saying, I know it will click after a few weeks of class, and I can catch on for the most part. I am beginning to really like it here :) It is going to be wonderful and I am excited to see what else this week brings!


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Le Week-End

I started this on Saturday, but got tired so I am including Sunday and finishing it up together! I have found this neat little site,, that has tons of places and things to do in Limoges. I decided today to visit a church, Eglise Sacre Coeur, and walk around some more to familiarize myself with the city. As I walked outside to mail some postcards, I met a friend, Didiot, who asked me what I was looking for and so we talked for a bit and he gave me some directions. I did have my map, but since I couldn’t even place myself on it, it isn’t very much help. I got on the bus and headed toward Sacre Coeur, which ended up being right in the centre ville. It was further than I thought! I got off and began walking when I saw a sign and thought "Oh good! A sign so I don’t even need my map!" Well, somehow I didn’t find this church. I went right where it was pointing, but I guess not in the right direction. Eventually, after using my map and finding an alternate street to take, I found it! It was beautiful! Huge inside with these gorgeous stained-glass windows, a nativity scene, candles to light, and lots of handouts. I wanted to light a candle for my Nana because she told me to, but I didn’t have 1 euro and that is what it cost. I was the only person in there, besides the "father" and so I didn’t know if I was supposed to be in there or not. I also wanted to take pictures but didn’t know if that was appropriate so I went for the no and skipped them. Here are some of the outside of the church though. There are many more churches throughout Limoges I am sure I will visit. I decided it must be a French thing to have Sacre Coeur in each city because Paris has one too.   

Looking at the church, the right side.

Looking at the church, the right side but to the left of the picture below.

The front steps.

After this I decided to just keep walking and see what all I could find. I was in front of the theatre so I used that as my point of reference. I saw this tall pointy thing and wanted to find out what that was. I walked forever and ever until I found it. It ended up being Limoges Benedictions. Turns out, on Sunday I discovered it was the train station!

For some reason my camera turned it blue, but it was absolutely BEAUTIFUL!

 Now I know why it was so beautiful! I didn’t walk too close to it because people were coming in, but there was a park that I was in just across the street so I admired from afar. I then recharged my cell phone with minutes I bought from the Tabac shop, which is similar to a gas station, without the gas and more magazines. They have Chupa Chups, these suckers my sister and I used to eat all the time when I was little. I got one of those but it didn’t taste the same as I remember it tasting. Oh well, A for effort. Next I hiked back uphill to the theatre and found a little bar that I wanted to go have a glass of wine in. I ordered a rose, and a "tortilla avec les legumes".

Beau Mayne...Bordeaux AOC.
 My wine was good, but not as sweet as I would have liked. The tortilla thing was good as well but definitely not what I expected by any means! After finishing up, I decided it was time to head back home. Walking back, I found this nice little thing on the side of a wall next to a pharmacy, and I found it quite amusing, and apparently there are everywhere, but this is the first one I have seen!

It is a condom machine. I guess even if the pharmacy is closed, for 2 euro you can get protection and some glovin' for your lovin'.
 I took the bus back and noticed a definite cold front coming in. I had been perfect all day but walking home I was freezing! I am about to go make some spaghetti-type dish for dinner. I plan on watching some Jonas episodes in French tonight, without subtitles this time, and going to bed. I’ve already read two books, and I think I should divide my time more productively than to Chelsea Handler’s life, as amusing as it is. I must say, I am quite the chef.

Considering what it is I cook on, I do pretty well!

Bon appetit!
After dinner I Skype-d with my mom, sister, and brother-in-law. It was good to talk to them, even though the video wasn’t too clear. I even got to see Sassi! I tried to go to sleep after finishing my study abroad book, but I was not tired. I started reading "Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang". My Chelsea Handler non-addiction did not last. Soon I got a text message from Heather (the American teaching English here) asking if I wanted to go to the mall with her and Lelani (the South African girl). Of course I said yes! I was so excited that then I really couldn’t sleep! Finally I fell asleep and got up this morning (Sunday) to ask Kristen if she wanted to go, but I couldn’t find her in her room. Her boyfriend left today so I am assuming she went with him. I got dressed in something besides jeans and a T-shirt and did my make-up and everything. Naturally, the second I walked out it started to rain. Lelani took us to this place called "Family Village" that has a whole lot of shops, but since it is Sunday, everything is closed! Sadly. There is a cute café called Café Madeline that Lelani loves so we went to go there and it was closed! Obviously the French have a problem with Sundays and don’t want anyone to have anything to do! Maybe not, but it was frustrating! Eventually Lelani told us about this place called "Buffalo Grill" that she knows is open. We drove there, over Point neuf. I didn’t know this, but the history of Limoges has a poor side and a rich side, only connected with one bridge. This bridge is point neuf, and now there is a new bridge that connects the town and makes it all one city. Buffalo Grill was over there and it was like a little French-American restaurant! We had some hot chocolate, ordered a meal called "Mix Tapas" that has a couple onion rings, chicken wings, chicken kabobs, and some kind of egg-roll thing. It was very good! Not as good as BWW, naturally, but for France it was a close second! We also had coffee and talked about everything. Turns out, Lelani is 24 and is married to Jacque who plays Rugby professionally. I was wrong about playing for Limoges. They got married in June and she told us all about her struggles finding an apartment. She also told us about South Africa. We talked about race, crime, school, cars, everything! She has the cutest accent and although she says her English is bad, it is far from! She knows very little French, but is taking the class to learn it as well. She knows German, her African language, and English. Heather is from New Jersey and has a boyfriend, Matt, back home waiting on her! She is living with another American in an apartment that is actually an old nurses office for the school. We went there after we left Buffalo Grill and it was really spacious! I am saying that after being stuck in a room with window to wall step-span of seven. It was really cool how it was set up, but it was also scary because she and her roommate are the only people on that hall way, and there are TON of abandon old rooms up there. It was neat. We talked about a lot of places we all wanted to visit. There is one place called Rochechouart which is a city that a meteorite landed by and they built the city on. Also, a beautiful castle and village on a cliff called Rocamadour. I cannot WAIT to go there. We are thinking in the next couple weeks when the weather gets better we will go. Lelani and her husband go every Thursday somewhere, and I have decided to take one day I don't have class and go somewhere as well. I learned about this bus website that will tell me which busses to take to go where I want to go. We already have plans to go visit some of them, and even go to a rugby game! My very first one! I had a blast spending the day with them and hopefully there will be many more to come! I returned home and talked with my friend who gave me directions, Didiot, for a few minutes. I decided, since I finally had coins, I was going to do laundry. Turns out, you have to have a 2 euro piece, and a 50 centime euro piece. I am never going to get to do laundry. Oh well. I am going to make me some more spaghetti since I cannot refrigerate my sauce so I better eat it tonight. I need to shower and go to bed early since I have class tomorrow! I am excited, but I wish I knew what to expect. Apparently our level we tested into was posted on Friday (who knew, apparently not me!) so I am going in a bit early to check that out. I start at 10 and will go from there!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Safe & Sound! What I have been up to the past four days!

Tuesday, January 04, 2011
Day 2
I am home, and everything is beginning to feel a lot more like it! I arrived last night, and Guy, the man who I have been in touch with since acceptance, picked me up at the airport. Limoges countryside is beautiful. Although it was dark, I could see most of it. It looks like a quaint little city, simple and pretty. About 15 minutes later we pulled up to my dorm and it was definitely just like the pictures…on the outside. After getting my keys, dropping off my luggage, and going over my paperwork, Guy took me by where the FLE (French langage étranger) classes will be held, the library, some of the eateries, and then let me off! I walked back to my dorms and noticed a huuuuge puddle of water on my floor, like from the air/heat almost to the head of my bed, which in my room is pretty big. I went to the front desk and it was no help. First, it was all in French and second, it was about 100 miles an hour. Yes, I just said that it was fast, and we all know how I talk. Basically all I understood was that a "note" was made and it will be taken care of tomorrow. Tomorrow it was, bright and early at 8:30. It got fixed and I went back to sleep…until 12:30! Not my plan at all, but oh well! I’ll blame it on jetlag. After I got up I went to talk to the International Relations woman to find out where my test is, and to make sure she knew I was here. It made me very upset when I did this because I felt totally incompetent. It is really hard and I guess I didn’t expect that. She brought in another woman who spoke some English so that helped, but after I left I wanted to cry. I realized that the amount of French I know is seemingly none. It’s normal, I know, but I feel like I know nothing! I can say "bonjour, je voudrais, merci, bon soir, de l’eau « and I guess that gets me what I need! It is just really different not understanding hardly anything, and I didn’t get that part of France when I first visited. I will get better, but these first couple weeks will be very hard. So after I got back from the office, I decided to go explore a tiny bit of Limoges, and go to the Carrefour market. It is basically a French Wal-Mart but smaller. Since I had nothing to do all day, I took my time and went down all the aisles and looked at everything. I do not have a refrigerator in my room and there isn’t one, as well as a microwave, anywhere. Due to that, I need to eat non-refrigerated things until the café is open and I can eat there. I bought some bananas, fruit cocktail, pain au chocolat (basically a croissant with chocolate in the middle….soooooo good!) cereal for breakfast, and kinder bueno bars (the BEST candy bars ever made. I will eat one every single day I am sure, and bring back tons of boxes) and then I needed some girly essentials: hair dryer, flat iron, hangers. I also needed to get a blanket for my bed. The room gets really cold at night and in the mornings, and what I brought doesn’t quite suffice. I bought this thing that looked like a small comforter, so I assumed it was a blanket. Remember this part for future reference. When I got back from visiting Carrefour (my new fav place!) I began to unpack all my stuff. I won’t lie; the room looks a lot better and feels SO much better with everything up and not boring. I do still need pictures or something on my walls. As I was unpacking, a knock came at my door. I opened it and saw a short little guy with glasses and a scruffy beard who introduced himself as Sami, the guy in charge of all the international students and he wanted to see if I needed any help. Boy, did I ever! He spoke English and I wanted to hug him because I could actually talk and get the answers I needed! I asked him about some housing papers that I didn’t quite understand and then we chit-chatted about when I got here and small talk. I mentioned needing to get a French phone and he offered to take me into town to get one. So, against my mother’s wishes I am sure, I said yes and we got into his car and went downtown Limoges, about a ten-ish minute drive. We walked through Central Limoges and he pointed out stores and things I would probably need to know: fnac (bookstore, music, movies) Quick (the Dutch version of McDonald’s which is "sh*t" according to Sami) salons, theatre, and other things. There are a TON of clothing and accessory stores that are just waiting for me to bombard. I have planned now to go explore there Thursday or Friday. I got my phone for 25 euro, and I pay like credits or something when I run out. I have no idea honestly. It has an alarm though and that is good! We visited a small bakery and then headed back to the dorms. I thanked Sami and hoped he meant it when he said "let me know if you need anything else" because he is my new best friend. I finished unpacking and unloading from my trip to Carrefour when I one) ran out of hangers and two) bought an entire sheet set instead of a blanket. Joy. I decided when I was done I would take it back (or try to) and get dinner and some other things I decided I needed from Carrefour. Just across the street from Carrefour is a pharmacy, tobacco shop, post office, bank, bakery, and some other small shops. It’s about a 5-7 minute walk from the dorms so not bad at all. I went into the bakery to get dinner in case they closed first, and wanted anything BUT a sandwich, my meal for the past two days. I decided on a pizza! I got a square piece and put it in my bag. I went to Carrefour and was able to return my sheets (yay, I can say "I bought this today and it is not right for me") and I bought a blanket (or so I think…it is still on the floor right now!) I walked back, unloaded and finished making my room homey, and decided it was time to eat. I pulled out my pizza and noticed a lemon, which I took off and then I saw raw bacon, but it turned out to be fish! I am still not sure if it was salmon and tuna, or just salmon on all my pizza but we all know how I do not do fish, except for shrimp. I tried to eat it and tell myself "mmm chicken" but it didn’t work. I ended up pulling off half of it and just eating the lower bread part, but I also had some fruit cocktail and I got the fishy taste out of my mouth with a pain au chocolat! It is very cold here. During the day it isn’t too bad (still very cold though) and at night it gets worse. I have noticed everyone smokes. That doesn’t quite bother me, but it is just weird to me. The market sells wine and liquor. I guess that is just an Oklahoma thing where we don’t sell that stuff at the supermarket because Kristen told me you can buy it in Louisiana. Also, American music is VERY big here, more so than French music. Sami told me that the lyrics could be complete crap, but if the beat is good, the people will love it! I have heard Lady Antebellum, Madonna, Taio Cruz, Britney Spears, Rhianna, Pink, just about all the popular music in the US. Walking here, even by yourself, is very safe. I have asked many people, Guy included, who all say it, and really it is the only way to get around. I will get a bus pass that can take me to the center city though. My dorm is situated in the corner room off of the courtyard. There is one entrance and then it separates into two buildings. I am in building B! My room is on the corner, first one as I walk in. All the rooms are around the bathroom, showers, and mini-kitchen. Maybe it is because of this, but the outside smells like urine or cooking pasta. I cannot decide which it is so maybe it is both! The kitchen has a sink and two warmers for cooking, but I think like ramen type meals. The bathrooms are on the right (from my room) and the showers to the left. There are two in each. The bathrooms are fine and I have visited many times, but the shower will be my experience for tonight. The laundry is off to the side and is 2 euro 50, and it only takes 1, 2, and 50 euro pieces. I found that out today after I went to wash the towels that mopped up the water, poured in the detergent, and then realized I didn’t have a 50 euro piece. So, back into a bag it went and now my room smells like detergent. Better than urine/cooking pasta I guess!
I think I am really going to like it here once I get more comfortable. It is just really hard and I am really out of my comfort zone, but I know once classes get started and I have people in my class that I can do things with I will be fabulous.

My first French lunch!

Why yes, that is all my stuff in front of Columbus cafe.

Talk about a bed covering.

How pretty...

Home Sweet...


All my stuff with the nice towels covering the small lake on my floor.

My FISH pizza.

Getting settled.

My "vanity"

My closet. Above the clothes there is a small space for my socks and stuff.

So far, I have made my bed every day.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Day Three

Today has been much better. I had my exam this afternoon that will determine which level I will be placed into for my classes. It went well, but it definitely showed my strengths and weaknesses, which I already had a basic idea of so that was good. It started out easy and then got harder as you went on. I will find out Monday at 10am (when we start classes) what I will be in. Kristen, the other OU student, was also there and it was nice to finally catch up with her. Her boyfriend is studying in Germany but is still on break so he is here with her this first week. We met a lady named Heather who is American, and is teaching English to French kids in a town about 30 miles North of Limoges. She gave lots of good advice and offered to show us around town so I am sure we will take her up on that. After talking with them a while we met three people from South Africa! They were so very nice! One girl named Lilianah (I think?) and two boys named Jacque (or Jack). Both of the boys play rugby for UniLim and I am in love with Jack, the one who is taller. He has been here for two years and speaks French really well. He is tall, big like muscles, and has brown hair. I have found my first French love! Just kidding. The girl was very nice and very excited to hear people who speak English. I’ll see her again Monday and she already wants to get coffee and stuff. I think they might be my new friends! When I returned to my room I found that my light (the one and only decent one) was out, and that I needed to go speak with the director of housing ASAP. I turned in a notice for my light and then I did just as my note said. It was to fill out all my forms (which I already had done) and to pay my rent. I did it, all in French, even though there were some struggles. The woman was very patient and nice with me, and I got 99% of the business part done. I have to get insurance for the room, which you do downtown and Sami said he would take me and Kristen to do that. I then made a trip to Carrefour (yes, again) with Kristen and her boyfriend, Nick, and as we were walking out we ran into Sami who offered to drive us. After two meals without plates or napkins, I decided I should probably get some so I did. I also got the brilliant idea for future meals of spaghetti and mac and cheese from Kristen. I just will need to buy a pot and bowl and I should be good! I can even grill chicken I guess on the stove-thing with a skillet so I will have to do that. I called my sister and talked to her where she just laughed at all my misfortunes. She even encouraged me to go explore and get lost because that is all part of it. I think tomorrow I may get up and go into the centre ville (city center) and walk around, eat at a restaurant or bar, maybe see a movie, and just be out and about. I figure once classes start I won’t have that much time to do that anyway, so I better do it now! It was rainy and colder this evening so tonight was out of the question for me to do it. I did not want to be lost (if that happens) and in the rain! Plus, I want to take the bus and that runs only during the day mostly. Another day down and it was MUCH better than the past two have been. I found out I have to have a form to get internet in my room, so I am going to fill that out and get me a sandwich for dinner!
Thursday, January 06, 2011
Day Four
Today was quite eventful! I slept in really late, but I decided I would go into the centre ville (city center) and explore more of Limoges. It was about two before I left my room. I went down the street and got a bus pass for ten trips and was going to get a phone card but the post office didn’t open until 2:30. I waited for the bus, after figuring out where it went, what time, and how late it ran. I got off at Churchill (the main bus station area) which is smack dab in the center of Limoges. My adventure began. I tried to remember where it was Sami had taken me, but of course I forgot. I was looking for the fnac store because I knew that that was a central place and I could navigate (somewhat) from there. Well, after walking a couple blocks and being nowhere near the fnac, I must have looked lost because a guy about my age began talking to me. Like I knew what he said, but eventually I understood that he was asking me where I was going. Again, against my mother’s wishes I started to talk to him because he could direct me where the fnac was, and he did. I figured my journey would end there, but oh no, he showed me most of Limoges. I found H&M, along with a whole mall of other stores in Saint Marsiel, and I found le Galeries Lafayette, a huge department store that is very expensive. Saint Marsiel has a C&A, H&M, pimkel, and some other stores that looked very cute. If I can find my way back there, I am for sure going shopping! I also went into the Monoprix, which is another Wal-mart store similar to Carrefour, but it is more expensive. I saw some cheap wine that looked really good that I will have to try out sometime. I also found the movie theatre, opera house, and a chocolate shop that looked like it was to die for! Eventually my new friend, Xasin, who I found out was 23, from Limoges, speaks Spanish and French, and is a painter, had to leave me. He gave me his phone number and told me to call him for coffee sometime or if I had any questions. He was very nice and I wouldn’t mind to have a friend, but at the same time all I could think about was my sister’s voice saying "sex trafficking" or my mom saying "do NOT trust anyone!" I was smart though and said that I did not have a phone yet so that I couldn’t give him my number, although it was right inside my jacket pocket. After he left, I went into fnac and decided to get a TV show series that I know well to watch in French with English subtitles to help my listening skills. My professor from last semester recommended this strategy and I figured now is as good a time as any to try it out. Naturally, I bought Jonas and Hannah Montana to try this method out! I also bought "le petit prince" which is a classic French novel that is about a little boy who lives in his "own" world. I’ve never read the whole thing, but we read an expert in one of my classes back at OU so I thought it would be encouraging to me to read something I actually understood. I thought it would be best to take the bus back about 6:00 even though I think it stops at 8. I decided I wanted a warm dinner instead of a sandwich so I went the this place that Sami recommended called "La Bibliotheque" but apparently they weren’t serving food yet or else I just didn’t get the menu so I enjoyed a Coke Zero and the toilets and was on my way. 
A Coke Zero bottle.
I passed a Quick, the Dutch version of McDonald’s and chose to try that out for dinner. Cheap, fast, and easy. Plus, how hard can it be to mess up a hamburger and pomme de frites? That is exactly what I got, sat down in the corner facing the window so I could people watch, and I enjoyed some warm food that felt like home. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t the best food in the world either. I’d eat there again. They also have free Wi-Fi so I may have to go try that out soon while I am still waiting to get internet here! Apparently I need to fill out this paper that will allow me to get internet, but only after all my housing paperwork is completed, which I need insurance to get. Back to my excursion, I finished dinner and waited for the bus, Ligne 5, to take me back. After waiting about 10 minutes at the WRONG station, I was told, after I asked the conductor, that Ligne 5 to Roussillon is across the street. I went there and waited about fifteen minutes for the bus to finally come and prayed it was the right one. It was, and after many stops and recognizing some places I had passed, I thanked God when I saw the Carrefour market and the strip of stores that marks my bus stop! Even though I was only out for about four hours, I am exhausted! Maybe because I was afraid of getting lost and taking it all in, but I was so happy when I made it back to my room. I plan on watching an episode of Jonas tonight, showering, and going to bed. I may go back into town tomorrow and explore some more, or I may just hang around here. Who knows!
Friday, January 07, 2011
Day Five
Safe and sound, and finally with internet! Today I slept in and read a book for a couple of hours. I then went to Carrefour to get food for the weekend. Everything is closed on Sundays, so I thought it was good to prepare beforehand! I bought some noodles and what I think is spaghetti sauce so that I can make some spaghetti. I also bought boxed milk? Weird to me, and I hope it is decent, but since I have no refrigerator but I do have cereal, I needed what I could get! They also sell eggs that are not refrigerated and I think that is weird! I may have to try it out. I bought a phone card and was so excited to call my Nana and let her know I was safe, when I guess I ran out of credits on my cell phone! That sure didn’t last long. I need to figure out how to check it so I can avoid doing it next time, but I guess I will soon be visiting Carrefour once more to get credits. I do have Skype though and while my internet is slow and I cut out often, I still can talk and it is nice to see people from home. I am about to go shower, where I still need to figure out how to keep the water continuously going because it goes in one-minute spurts, read a book, and go to bed. Nothing too exciting going on today!