Not having classes on Fridays here in France is a beautiful thing. I'd planned to use today to wander around Aix and scavenge for a travel bag that I could use for the upcoming IAU sponsored trip to Nice and Monte Carlo this weekend. Ironically, I can't do that because there is an actual scavenger hunt this afternoon. Hopefully a travel bag is on the list. Preferably in a nice cognac shade with a long shoulder strap.

To bring you up to date, it's officially been a week since I left home. The trip here was a whole lot more than I bargained for with an eight hour layover in Madrid before arriving in Marseille. Despite having one of the worst colds of my life, the layover afforded me the opportunity to see the Spanish capital for the first time. And it was beautiful. I'm still kicking myself for not charging my iPhone (I'm using it in lieu of a real camera- Mom's lucky I'm so thrifty, right?) but I'll be sure to make the extra effort to take pictures and put them up here for the rest of the semester.

I adore my host mom Sophie- she's a wonderfully kind woman with two grown kids out having their own abroad adventures. She speaks English incredibly well, though she says she just "dabbles" in the language. But I feel like if you use the word "dabble" you don't exactly dabble in English. The apartment I'm staying in is 15 minutes from class (yay!) and between 20-30 minutes from Cours Mirabeau, the main street (boo). I like not being directly in town though, first of all because I can pretend that the walk to class/Cours Mirabeau is balancing out my new French diet and second it's peaceful here. Also, lots of cats. I wasn't really expecting that. 

Luckily, I have host pets too. I cried when leaving my dog, Snowy, behind in the states. I'm a dog person, what can I say? Reglisse, an adorable mop of a dog, is very sweet and Kitty, a chubby cat, is warming up to me. They were both confused when I started living where Faustine, Sophie's beautifully named daughter, used to be. But I think they're okay with it as both have trotted around in here once or twice while I was doing my homework. 

Aix itself is a dream. I can't believe how gorgeous it is here! Even the IAU classrooms look like backdrops of romantic movies. The Gothic cathedral across the street is incredible and last night I saw it for the first time all light up and it was breathtaking. I'll take a picture today and put it up with my next post. 

I have to run, the aforementioned scavenger hunt is soon and I'm still in my pajamas. Did I say how great not having classes on Friday is? Because I'm loving it. 



09/18/2012 8:16pm

Great blog!! Keep it up. Love to hear all about your experiences in Aix. Sounds line you are settling in nicely!! Your Mon keeps us all posted as well. No surprise there! Enjoy

09/04/2013 6:23am

I enjoyed this post of yours and I’m going to share it with my friends. Thanks for this wonderful and knowledgeable post.


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