a college student's five month quest to see europe and soak in la vie française

a college student's five month quest to see europe and soak in la vie française

Monday, January 11, 2010

first day of classes

long first day (language intensive class at the institut de touraine 8:45-12:10 and 2:30-3:30 followed by a meeting from 4:00-5:30). took a placement test and argued with bucknell professors about class times (not interested in 4 p.m. class on fridays) and their interference with weekend traveling. i got pretty worked up since this seems to be one of the only programs that doesn't strongly encourage weekend travel as a means of rounding out the european experience. truthfully, the desire to travel is half the reason i'm here. yes, we all want to learn french, yes, we all like our host families, yes, tours is great, but we need a little break sometimes too — and especially with europe at our fingertips! i had a little confrontation with the bucknell professor-in-residence during which i explained that i would be happier if i had some "me" time every few weekends to travel with friends and family and i think, hope, pray that i got through to him. now trying to decide which class to take since the french university hasn't released exact schedules yet (classes start next week!) and i don't want to wind up stuck in a 4 p.m. friday class that prevents me from traveling. frustrating stuff.

anyway lousy breakfast of a slice of stale bread on my way out the door, overpriced lunch of excessive quantity of pasta with group for lunch, but yummy dinner of some sort of fish and broccoli for dinner. my host brother wouldn't eat his serving of broccoli because it reminds him of les arbres, to which his mother asked if the platter of broccoli reminded him of a forest. i think things that might not be so funny in my family or in english — like the dad trying to sneak bread and cheese even though he's on a diet and the mom swatting him away while the kids taunt him and tell him how good it is — are funnier in french. hoping for a better day tomorrow, warmer weather, less homework, better outlook...

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