Saturday, October 22, 2011

Public Piscines

Just when you think you are mature and wise enough to navigate a public swimming pool..you aren't.  Oh hey vending machine selling bathing suits! Oh...no lanes? Totally normal. It's a free for all in there.  Speedos are required for safety reasons...which are?

Pot de Rentree


Two nights ago we had a “pot de rentree” for all the residences of Saint Martial.  It was very much like the ice cream socials you had in your dorms to meet the resident dean and RA’s. But we actually went. It took place in the hallway/entranceway to the building. I may have noted this before but all the lights in the Saint Martial building are on timers. You push to turn it on. Wait 10 seconds it goes off. This occurred for the total of this little gathering which added much awkwardness to conversation.  It was like a very slow, delayed strobe light. However the warm banana juice, orange juice and some little treats helped somewhat.

Weeks Two and Three

Crazy themed crepe place

AHHHH AQUARIUMS ARE AWESOME




Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Teaching


I am almost finished with my second full week of teaching. During the first week I had twelve classes of introductions. Introductions meant I said a few things about myself and the children followed up by asking lots of questions. Some of the questions I have been asked about myself and/ or the US include:

What is your favorite star?
What is your sign?
What is your defect?
Is it cold there?
Do you know Justin Beiber? Do you know Rhianna? Do you see them a lot?
Do you like hamburgers?
Do you like to eat a lot?
Do you like house music?
Where do you live? Where do you live here? Where.
Do you know Obama?
Do you have a boyfriend?

After talking about myself for a week and being scrutinized by twelve year olds I was ready to get to teaching. Alas, not before I went back and corrected all they had written down about me.
But this second week has been great so far. We typically do fun activities like songs, skits, and do word searches. This weeks activities were mostly related to Halloween as they don’t really celebrate it here.  The kids are typically very eager, crazy hyper, and enthusiastic.  It really takes me back to middle school French classes.

One of the English teachers at my school was so welcoming and invited me to dinner at her home with her family last Friday.  I got to try a traditional Limousin dish and even had homemade Tiramisu!  They are a very interesting family –they lived in Bahrain for 10 years and their son is studying to be a perfume maker (not really sure the correct term for this). They were so unbelievably nice and I had a great experience in my first French home.  

Le weekend



Big activity of last weekend was the “Brocante”. The Brocante was like an antique sale/ flea market where everything was actually very old and very expensive. You wouldn’t have guessed these things were expensive because they were basically scattered all over the street. When a friend inquired about a red jacket that would be perfect for Halloween he replied, “Well it’s from the Swiss army and it’s made of gold. Very expensive.”  Remember that this jacket was thrown on the wet cobblestone feces infused street.  The man then proceeded to place an old musket over the jacket so no one else would pick it up.   We bought some homemade wine and sausage and called it a day. 

My new place

So...my apartment! It's a small 18 sq meter studio. Do the math. It's the exact same size as my first year dorm room! Except it also has a kitchenette (2 burners, no stove, mini fridge) and a bathroom yay! It comes with a single bed, a desk, and a bookshelf. The hallways to my apartment are dark and scary so I'm working hard to make my apartment nice and happy.

The whole apartment: I'm taking this from the entrance.

Oh zis? Zis is my tiny kitchen and bathroom and closet and entryway.

My view of the mall parking lot and the Gare

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I know French words

My friend showed me this video. We think it accurately depicts how we feel when we listen to french people speaking to each other. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Running in Limoges


I think running in most French cities would be difficult. One has to endure stares, teeter on uneven cobblestone and dodge frequent dog excrement.  Lucky for me Limoges has a beautiful path running along it's river. Notice I didn't say "running path". I have only seen one other person running. The run along this river is quiet, beautiful, and you very feel far away as you run right next to sheep and cow pastures.

I started writing this post back in the days when I had free wifi at the hotel. After week 2.5 of being denied my "bo├«te d'internet" I am still stealing internet at Cafe Paul. In the mall.  To update this post though I'd like to point out that I haven't run once since I first wrote this. The beautiful 80 degree weather seems to have taken a permanent turn for the worst. It rains a cold mist constantly - you get wet and you don't even really see rain or know why.  I promise I will run...tomorrow...tomorrow... tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The parking ticket

We got a parking ticket after stepping away from the car for .2 seconds to ask directions.  To pay it we went to the building we were directed to go to, and then were lead to three more buildings before we got to the "right" place. We were then lead into a tobacco and lotto shop and paid the man behind the counter who gave us a sticker to put on the ticket and then lead back to the "right" place by the policeman, and all was well. And we have to keep our receipt for three years.  You may be wondering how the money get's to the city hall, the town, the state, the country, from that man in the tobacco store. Me too. But the police man lead us there and seemed happy about it. All was well.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Where to eat on a Sunday

Yes this is a real issue. In most parts of France it's hard to find anything open between 12-2 and after 5, except restaurants. On Sundays we have a much bigger issue. Nothing. Is. Open. No food, no shopping, nope nope. It's kinda like mandatory quiet time at camp. Which is awesome when you have nothing to do but painful when you're need an apartment by Monday, or when you're hungry and didn't grocery shop on Friday.
McDo

large parking lot and large mcdo

Good thing there is the biggest and most elegant McDonalds I have ever seen a few minutes from the city center. No really, it's like the lobby of a 4 star hotel. There are iPads, and table service, and macaroons. Ridiculous.

French songs of the week: Coeur de Pirate

I've known this artist for a while but it's time to share. This is Coeur de Pirate- Regina Spektor esque- you'll like.  (She's Canadian but shhh...)