It’s hard to believe I’ve been calling France home for over six months now. Looking at a calendar, it feels like a long time without hugging some of the people I hold most dear but it just feels like a small step as far as my journey living in France goes. I feel so at home.
Based on that fact and also my love for French pastries, I have decided to stay in France for year 2!
It’ll be a bit different of an adventure this time as I will be stepping into a friend’s au pair position in Lyon. I’ll miss certain things about my lovely home here in Bourg-en-Bresse (namely the kittens), but I’ll be happy to stop spending so much money on train tickets. Life as an au pair will look quite a bit different than it does now, but I’m excited for the challenge and change. I’ll be taking pretty rigorous French courses to try to move from conversational fluency to academic fluency (including taking an important official exam called the DALF) next year and I’ll be looking into masters programs here in Lyon too. It’s an exciting time!
Coincidentally, the day I celebrated six months in France was also American Day at the school cafeteria! It involved pre-packaged hamburgers and french fries! It was the first meal all year the cafeteria hasn’t made from scratch. They hung American flags and all of the chefs wore cowboy hats. They gave out packaged muffins for dessert. The whole thing was too funny. I left my phone in the teacher’s room that day and I totally regret it. It was a sight.
I sat down with my colleagues and realized that every single person was eating their hamburger with a fork and knife. I thought to myself, “oh no, I can’t do that!” It’s just SO un-American. But at that moment, the teacher across from me picked his hamburger up and took a bite! I whispered to him, “Est-ce que j’ai le droit de le manger avec mes mains ??” (Can I eat it with my hands?) and he repeated what I said for everyone to hear. They all cracked up and told me I could eat it however I wanted… it was American Day! I got such a kick out of the whole thing.
So that’s that. France may not love foreigners, but this foreigner isn’t quite ready to quit the land of wine and cheese yet.