Friday, July 7, 2017

Au revoir France!

As I write this I am sitting in our mess of a living room, among seven suitcases worth of books, clothes, and quite a few legos. We are working our way through our last days in Albertville, planning to leave on Sunday, and after an overnight layover in Reykjavik, Iceland, returning to Bellingham for the summer.
France has grown on me. I'm going to miss the mountains outside my window and the smells wafting out of the Boulangerie on the walk home from school, but I'm afraid that I can't say the same about classes themselves. I'm probably going to miss that small leap of pride when I can understand the lesson or translate the song word for word. And I'm definitely going to miss all the friends that we have made at The Center this year.

I have to admit that I've gone back and forth between ideas for this post. It's not possible to sum up our year in France in a couple paragraphs, but time's running out, and this will have to do.

As a family we put together a list of weird, shocking things that we've noticed about France:

  • Erasable Pens, the French don't use pencils
  • Roundabouts, almost every time streets intersects
  • Dog poop on the sidewalk-such a clean city, but they don't pick up after their dogs
  • Writing on graph paper for everything
  • Everyone writes super well in cursive, even 2nd graders
  • Not everyone is on their phones all the time
  • Small refrigerators
  • Butter, pickle and ham sandwiches-they don't eat Peanut butter and Jelly
  • Lack of air-conditioning 
  • The French week starts on Monday
  • The French don't make small talk
  • They don't carry drinks on the go
  • Handball-we thought that Albertville would be big on soccer, but they're bigger on a game which is a mix between basketball and soccer
  • Woman sunbathing with their tops off
  • And they wear the same outfit multiple days in a row, even fashionable outfits
So now everyone be prepared when you visit France. It is in many ways the same as American culture, but also very different. We have learned everything we needed to know, after a lot of awkward moments. Another year down, next stop...Bellingham WA!

Au revoir France!

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