Adventures in Yonderland

A log of my adventures, both real and imagined.

Archive for the month “May, 2013”

Things I No Longer Understand Since France

1) Pancake mixes. (They don’t exist in France, so I’ve just been making them by scratch and it’s so easy!)

2) Gallons of milk. I mean, liters were working just fine and now I feel cowed by my own milk.

3) American alcohol culture. I just literally don’t understand anymore.

4) The lack of bakeries. Seriously though. Where the hell am I supposed to get pastries and bread?

5) Where’d all the cobblestone go?

6) How am I supposed to go places if I can’t walk there?

7) So…where did the espresso go?

8) You mean I can actually SEE my friends again? Wait. What? They live in the same time-zone? Woah man. One thing at a time please.

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In the End There’s Only Love

Well my time in France is done for now and I am back home. As we all know, I will never forget my time there and it is so bitter-sweet to be home. I made some pretty fantastic friends. Friends from different countries, different states and all with the most wonderful views and experiences. I think that might be the hardest part about leaving. Leaving all those wonderful, fantastic people.

What isn’t hard is leaving French University. And that’s the last time I complain about it here! Because I will also miss just how jank the Fac des Lettres was. I doubt I’ll go into a building like it again!

I’m also going to miss this. My home street. The place I walked up everyday for a year. Cobblestones, a sketchy shisha place and the strangest lingerie shop I’ve ever come across.

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France, I’ll miss you. My friends, I will miss you more.

p.s. culture shock is really gonna suck.

It’s The End of the World as We Know It

Exams are done and I don’t have to deal with the French education system anymore! Woohoo! However, as good as it feels to be finally done with school for the year, it also means I’m done here.

So many goodbyes to be said. So many said already.

But in the meantime I’m running like a crazed chicken trying to do EVERYTHING before it’s all over. Including shutting down my bank account, which will be interesting. Oh the glories of French bureaucracy. You might be the one thing in this country I most definitely will NOT miss.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Love you momma!

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Photo credit to NPR

 

Insanity

I’m currently trying to balance seeing all the awesome things around me for the last time, hanging out with friends (in some cases for the last time) and studying for two exams on Tuesday. What does this mean for me? Something like this:

London ft. Baker’s St. and Tea. So Much Tea.

London is amazing. It was at once exactly what I thought it would be and so far from my expectations. Foreigners from around the world crowd streets that are surprisingly wide, world famous sites are crammed next to modern-style buildings and 19th century buildings and massive gardens. It’s incredible that there could be so much to do in a city with as relaxed a beat.

In other words, it’s a fantastic vacation spot.

First of all, the public museums are all free. Including the Natural History Museum.

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First step in and I suddenly remembered why I loved Dinosaurs as a child. It took all of half a second for it all to come rushing back!

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And we can’t forget about my favorite museum ever! The British Museum! Home of the Rosetta Stone! However, I say it’s my favorite museum because it’s basically a giant course on human history through artifacts. Tons of signs explaining the life, times and culture of what is in there. Just beautifully done.

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You can’t forget the English Breakfast either, with its rather strange and wonderful inclusion of beans. [sidenote: every time you go to a different country, I suggest trying their bacon. Because nobody does it quite the same way and that’s so cool!]

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And pubs. If you go to London and skip out on going to a pub, you’ve just missed out on a super cool part of culture. If you’re not into pubs that much, go the the Cheshire Cheese Pub. It’s not the oldest pub in London, but it was frequented by the likes of Lord Tennyson, Mark Twain and Charles Dickens (who seemed to have enjoyed it so much, he referenced the place in A Tale of Two Cities).

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Then of course is Westminster which is either my favorite or second favorite cathedral ever, I can’t decide (the St. Mary’s Cathedral in Barcelona would be the other contender). I went to a service there as well as did the whole tour. And I’m just going to say, it was entirely worth everything.

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I’ve decided one of my new life goals is to go here, because it is my favorite set of buildings in all of London:

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Never complete without Baker’s St. That was worth it just to be there.

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And Cheapside! From my favorite film of all time A Knight’s Tale! William Thatcher was born here!

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So much to do in London. I certainly didn’t do it all. If you’ve never been, go. For the non-travelers it’s an easy one (English-speaking and similar culture) and for the travelers, well. There’s plenty to experience.

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My Old Kentucky Home

2009 Kentucky Derby

It’s the Kentucky Derby today!!!! Everyone grab your Juleps, hats and friends. It’s time to watch the race!

Churchill Downs—with the University of Louisvi...

Churchill Downs—with the University of Louisville Marching Band in the foreground—during the 2006 Kentucky Derby. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Love where I’m from.

Morocco

Going to this country was a blessing. Two weeks later and I still am not sure what to say about it. It was my first time in Africa, my first time in an Islamic country, my first time riding a camel, my first time haggling. So many firsts. So many new experiences. So many new ways of seeing and understanding.

The camel ride in the desert was the best thing ever. Two dreams in one. Camel riding. And sleeping in a sand desert. So cool.

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The Souks are pretty sweet too. It’s fun to haggle with people and really just talk with vendors. You can learn so much about them, the culture, whatever. And in the end everyone leaves happy. Even if you don’t get the “best” price you could have.

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We met all kinds of people. Super posh English women who are all three lawyers, Moroccains and Bedouins, Dutch. All kinds.

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And in the end I found I realized that the world is no bigger than I thought. Just a hell of a lot deeper.

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Coming Soon…

Morocco and London posts. However, for the moment I have to study for a developmental psychology final I have for tomorrow. That’ll be interesting!

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