Friday, 28 September 2012

C'est la vie!

And that's that! In what seems like 2 minutes, I've finally completed the first 2 weeks of French university! And what a learning curve it has been.. I've learnt how to sit through 2 hour lectures on economics and law in my second language, I've learnt how to speak Spanish (again) and I've learnt that English is actually not very easy! I've also got a new car, bought a full length mirror (I'm wayyyy too vain!) and managed to spill pasta ALL over my apartment!

All in all though, things are going really well. I'm currently going through a bit of a reminiscing stage as it is exactly a year (a year tomorrow actually!!) that I packed my bags and jumped on a train to Paris to start the most incredible months of my life. Paris then took me back to London and from London I took a flight to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and out onto Melbourne, Australia. I spent 7 amazing weeks on the east coast of Australia, driving up in a little, beaten up blue Mazda, covering a distance of 6000km. From there, I went back to England (boo, hiss!), spent 10 days in England before catching a flight out to France, to spend a ski season looking after kids and working as a 'fille au pair'. Fast forward 5 and a bit months and on the 10th May 2012, I found myself finally coming home on a plane to the rainy Midlands. 3 weeks sped by before I headed off my next adventure - this time interrailing around Eastern Europe. After doing an all-nighter, we finally arrived in Bulgaria, before heading to Serbia, Bosnia & Hercegovina, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and finally to Germany and back 'home' to France. I then spent the final 2 months of summer back in my mountain home in la Plagne, 'working' before heading for a week to get all my stuff in order to then come to university. Ooft! So I guess that makes 5 weeks spent in England in the last year and the rest spent travelling around the world? Not bad really, although if you look at my bank account, I'm not sure it'll agree! And of course the best part, my parents spent the grand total of £100 on it all - all the rest was a product of my own hard work..!

It is amazing to think about how much things have changed though. When I left for Australia I was in a very different position, personally, mentally, everything. If you'd told me last year how I would be this year, I would have laughed and perhaps considered what I was doing. Although this has been the best year of my life, I feel I have lost some people who were (and are - although they don't seem to feel the same) the most important people in my life. But hey, I guess that's part of growing up and moving on, I guess my time to move on will come at some stage! On a more positive note though, I feel like I have developed as a person (so cheesy!) and I'm so much more independent than I ever was when I was at school. I also know what I want out of life and where I want to be, regardless of whether other people think it's the 'right thing' to do or not.
Work, work, glorious work. Anyone fancy a translation from their third language to their second language? 

But yeah, back to the present. I have finally started lessons and although doing everything in either my second or third language is a tad bizarre, I'm really enjoying it! I've also made lots of friends (which is always a bonus!) so I'm not yet regretting my decision to move over here permanently. The weather is also much better which is a serious advantage! Temperatures still get to the mid 20s during the day and although snow is starting to fall on the mountains that surround Grenoble, it definitely doesn't rain as much here as at home! (although we had a storm the other morning when I was on my way to school, thunder and lightning and everything!) I've also learnt that French students are very much fair weather students. If it rains, it probably means about half of the year will come to lectures so I should probably discourage them from going to the UK for their year abroad!

I have also decided what I'm going to take as my optional module...... - skiing! That's right, I am going to have some of my university grade devoted to my skiing ability.. beaut! I have actually signed up for the ski instructor course so it means I get a qualification at the end and all. Then my grade is produced at the end of the ski instructor course. They seem to mark things like commitment, lesson planning, development etc etc so I think it will be quite interesting to see how it goes and whether it'll actually be quite easy to get a good mark or not. I feel like a bit of a cop out doing skiing, while most of my friends are studying Russian, German, Croatian etc but it's easier for me - I do my whole module in 4 days, so while everyone else has 2 hours extra of lessons each week, I finish the whole thing in the first 4 days of the October half term. This does, however, mean I may not be coming home in October, but it was too good an opportunity to miss. I have also learnt that I have a job back in the village de vacances that I lived in this winter which is SO cool, but it also means I won't be coming home at Christmas either. So I guess the next time I'll be heading back to the UK will be around April time.. bizarre, but hey c'est la vie!

Grenobloise campus.. beaaaaautiful.

I think that's all for now, after a 3 hour nap this afternoon (thanks to a rather late night last night) I think I should probably get up and do something with my life i.e. attack the piiiiles of work I have or cook myself some food.. hard choice. On second thoughts, perhaps I'll just stay in bed.

Bisous, xxx

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