Monday, January 26, 2009

ma nouvelle maison

Friday, a day of insane rain mom and I ran around Paris for our last 3 hours together before she took her taxi to the airport and I took my train ride back south. When I finally made it back to Montpellier I had an amazing meal and then convinced my new family to have a "family workout session." Complete with downward facing dog, sun salutations and weights! Also... the family has a mini-pooper... dog.


This past week I spent Tuesday through Friday in Paris with my mom for her last few days in France. It was a nice change of pace after a few really hectic and emotional days in Montpellier... Wednesday was our tour of Montmartre, three hours of winding our way up streets to Sacre Coeur and then winding back down. On our way up we stopped at a shoe store, ever in search for the perfect boots... I have yet to find! The wonderfully heinous woman inside said "Au Revoir Madame" when mom decided she didn't want the boots she tried on. Mom proceeded to take her time as I panicked and begged her to hurry out of the store, I had picked up a pair of earrings only to have one break instantly! We crossed the street and to our wondering eyes... what did we see!?!?! YES! MEN, GLORIOUS MEN! After all, it is the red light district!

After an insane fit of giggles and a lot of photos and zoomming in, we recomposed ourselves into ladies and continued to follow our map. Like always we searched for the Eiffel Tower, and there it was, with one simple side step over... We finally made it up to Sacre Coeur, it was beautiful! From the top of the hill the view was stunning. I found it so interesting that against a dark and gloomy sky two smoke stacks stood out above the rest.

Friday, January 16, 2009

DINNER! Confussions! and Les petits cadeaux!

Tomorrow we leave for Bordeaux, where we will spend the weekend with Autumn. Mom and I thought it best to move my things into my new room tonight so that way when we return on Sunday I will be all set. We had a wonderful and semi-leisurely dinner at the hotel before packing our things to go to my nouvelle maison. The dinner was amazing, as was the menu it self. It was one of the coolest designs ever! It also included English translations of all the meals right under every line. Now I prefer to have only French. But this menu proved to be the night's entertainment, with such great sayings as "crispy of apple" and "coffee and sweetie desserts". Mom loved it so much she took a picture. Après le diner, we packed as quickly (as slowly as we could... ha ha grampy) ok, but really, we packed as quickly as we could... and still arived to Véro's an hour behind schedule... but of course! We went down to the front desk and called a taxi while we waited and chated. We then realized it was important to know if we could use a credit card to pay the taxi or not. The nice woman at the desk then called the taxi company yet again to check, and phew... we could infact use a credit card. Ok, great, we were on our way. We arrived quickly to our destination, only to find out, that NO! you can not use foreign credit cards. MAIS MESIEUR, we do not have any money!!!! MERDE! yes, SHIT! what ever shall we do? I quickly called Elizabeth and she ran out with some money. EEEk, a grand catastrophe was avoided. So we say thank you to the taxi driver as we hand him a bundle of bills and coins and breathe a sigh of relief. First we head into Mami's house where we all relax for some tea and coffee. When the dog Natie, who is this little sausage of a thing, very old and sausagy, laid on my legs so happily, and began to lick me... strange, but YUCK what a smell did come from such a little thing. Like dead dyingly dead sausagey scents. Oh, and then what to our wondering eyes did we see... it was the left overs of that entrails mom did see in the train station in Paris.

No... ok, not really. (back to the story)

But really, it was by far the worst of all dead scents ever to be smelled! IT FOLLOWED ME ALL THE WAY HOME! The stockings I was wearing, called, they said, they want their stink free life back. Or that they wish to be burned for the benift of Mr. Kite.

Ok, after drinks and stink we headed across the st to Véro's for me to unpack. When I was finished I gave my gifts to everyone, and I was so happy to see all of their reactions. Firstly I gave Adam (who's 14) a Yankee's cap, and he was sooo happy, he jumped up and gave me a kiss instantly. Then gave Adeline her bag and shirt (cexy) and she seemed happy, although she is much more shy than Adam. We gave Véro her sweater, jewelry, and jewelry bag (the last two made by women in Guadaloupe). It was so wonderful to see how they appreciated everything and how happy Adam was about his new American hat.

We made it back to the hotel, in great spirits and ready to do our nightly ritual... ORDER ROOM SERVICE... but sadly, the stink did delay us so much that we could no longer get our crumble aux fruits rouges et du thé, the kitchen was closed!! Ooooh, NO! So now we are sitting in bed, and we must be up in 6 short hours to get dressed and pressed and ready to go for our little weekend get-away. So it must end here, Bonne Nuit, Mes Amis!


Thursday, January 15, 2009

le village de St-Guilhem-Le-Désert

Yesterday we explored the village of St Guilhem-Le-Désert... a village that found its beginnings during the middle ages (806) by Saint Guilhem with his creation of the Gellone monastery. It is about a 40 minute drive from the center of Montpellier, on some of the windiest roads imaginable. I did all I could to not get sick in the back seat. The experience and the photos that came out of the day made the 40 mins of hell worth it. Before the 3 hour hike the group sat in side the village and ate baguettes, cheese, veggies, cookies, and gross curdled meat... well, i didn't... The views were breathtaking and the hike was invigorating, but best of all i got to know some of the girls in my group. Jenna from long island and Molly from Balston Spa. There was a large group to start out with, but the four of us instantly lagged behind. Mom and I because we took too many photos and Molly and Jenna because Jenna wasn't feeling well. In any event the group left us behind and we decided to catch up... however, the path seemed to split in many directions and left us making "group decisions" as to which path to choose. On several occasions we chose paths that soon revealed theme selves to be anything but... too thin, too rocky, very dangerous! However, those were the cases that gave the greatest photo ops. All in all it was a great day. We finished the evening with a dinner that was like a scene from a movie. Elizabeth, who is clearly going to be my best friend and partner in crime also lives with the family... I live with Véro, Adeline, and Adam, and Liz lives directly across the street with Mammi (grandma) and the two uncles and the 7 year old niece Justine… that little one spent all night telling us about love and romantic movies. Her boy friend’s name is Aurthur. (the cutest boy in class). I couldn’t be happier with my nouvelle famille.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

l'examen orale

I am officially registered as a student at Université Paul Valéry... Montpellier lll. It was the first time I used the Tram system here, which is clean and electric, and moves ever so slowly! The group traveled together to head over to the University for the first time... Today was my first introduction to the campus and my placement exams. First, I must note that on the outside of almost every building there was a condom dispenser. SWEET, a quickie in the library is possible, i'll do some real pleasure reading. ha ha, i must laugh at my own cheekiness (real word??) So, the placement exams... I must say, I rocked the oral section!!! Right after finishing the professor told me where I placed. There are 6 levels of french, A1 A2, B1 B2, C1 C2. The A's are beginner, B1 is low intermediate, B2 is strong intermediate, C1 is advanced/superior and C2 is fluent. SHIT yeah I placed in C1. In the afternoon I took the written protion and I think I did well on that as well, I really hope I placed in C1 in that part as well. FINGERS CROSSED. Ok, how cool is this?... One of the written parts it said, "you have just arrived in a foreign country, and you are writing a blog, tell your friends all about your arrival and your new life..." I AM WRITING A BLOG!!! c'est parfait!!!

I will let everyone know how I did, sadly I don't find out until the 26th, arg.
It is now almost 12:30, and i'm exhausted, and tomorrow we are going for a 3 hour hike with the group, so alas, I must sleep. There were many other amazing aspects to this day... all which I hope to write about tomorrow... including my cute little toy of a cell phone I purchased today and the amazing indian restuarant Elizabeth and I found while getting lost and unlost and then lost again.


Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Things I Left Behind

So I took this photo right before I left. Just in case anyone forgot how perfect my little prince is, this is just a quick reminder. I miss him terribly!

My littlest punkin! We did have so much fun! I have met my nouvelle famille, and they seem amazing, it is my turn to be a big sister (to a female) and I hope that I can be as perfect as my own.

Much like eating and staying hydrated, so is my love for horses.


and making up.

I miss his kiss.

For so long, this was what got me up in the Morning.


I have not always been an Albany resident, but between my job and trying to find parking during the amazing months of snow, I had true purpose in my life. This photo gets me hot.

Oh Sha-ne-ne, girl, you got me so many times!!! She's so determined at work.

Parking tickets teach the city residents about organization and commitment.

Difficulty landing

Alright, today's the day (I head to the south... beaches, warm weather, guys in speedos--I recognize I needn't say more!). I have spent the last 2 days in Paris, after what some would consider a pretty bumpy flight. Firstly, we were almost denied to check in for our flight. eeek! but this wonderful woman came out of nowhere and did some sweet talking and got the gate open so that we could still go... The flight was completely sold out, so there was baggage everywhere and no room for our feet. Followed by turbulence galore! However it was well worth it! The weather here is frigid! However, I think all bad things are counterbalanced by good, i.e, the cold : the beautiful French Men my mother and I made friends with our very first night: really gross wine : dessert that never ceases to delight! (see balances!) Anyway, I created this blog so that I could keep everyone updated on said great aspects of the French Riviera. Off to catch our train. Much more to follow.

leave your jealousy at the door.