Candy or Die

Before I left for Italy, the temperatures were getting cooler, but other than that, I couldn’t really see any evidence of fall in Bourg. But since I’ve come back, the leaves are changing colors and there are pumpkins everywhere! Even if I won’t get to go apple picking or make pumpkin muffins (pumpkin in a can isn’t a thing here and I would have no clue how to turn an actual pumpkin into a bake-able purée… also I don’t have an oven), the leaves are changing colors and I am so happy about it! Here you can see the difference between the view out my bedroom window when I first arrived and today!

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This weekend, I got to spend time with the assistant who was in my exact placement last year. Danielle stayed in France this year and is working as an au pair. She texted me Friday and asked if I wanted to hang out Saturday. Of course I said yes and we made plans to make American brunch at my apartment Saturday morning! I found a pancake mix at Carrefour and bought weird fake bacon. We had bacon, chocolate chip pancakes, scrambled eggs, etc. Such a fun excuse to speak English and eat good food.

Saturday afternoon, Danielle invited me to watch the rugby world cup with some of her French friends. Of course I agreed and we watched the match at an Irish pub. They were ALL decked out for Halloween and the bartenders were all in costume. We chatted with her friends and Danielle off-handedly asked, “Hey! What do you French people say instead of “trick or treat”?” Even though Halloween isn’t an entirely French concept, French young people’s love for American culture makes it pretty widely known and celebrated. Her friends replied, “bonbon ou sort” (candy or spell), but her boyfriend insisted that he was taught “bonbon ou la mort” (candy or death) and some of the friends even agreed on that too. Danielle and I were appalled… trick-or-treating is cutthroat here in France evidently!

We celebrated Halloween by attending a zombie party/ concert here in Bourg. There were homemade zombie movies, local bands, and lots of people in zombie costumes. We had fun and ate our fair share of candy.

Otherwise, life is plugging along. I can’t believe tomorrow’s my birthday! That’s crazy.

When I’m not eating pastries and drinking tea here, I spend time preparing my lessons and pondering the nuances of French culture… such as how to faire la bise (French greeting where you kiss people’s cheeks) when both people are wearing glasses. It’s tricky!

I’d really appreciate if someone could figure out how to mail me some apple pie or pumpkin muffins!

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