Bonjour tout le monde!
It has been a busy couple of days! I got to Paris Sunday but since our flight arrived late in the evening from London I couldn’t check in until Monday morning. I’m staying in a brand new (opened April 18th) student residence called Campuséa located in the 13th Arrondissement. I’m the first person to live here which is really nice and I have my own kitchenette with brand new kitchen supplies (as if I’m going to use them…bahaha) and my own private bathroom (that’s right Katie, living the good life!). It’s also really safe; I have to go through 3 gates with codes in order to get to the building I’m living in and then have a key to my appartment. I feel like I got really lucky with this housing especially for France.
Monday during orientation I met all of the other AUP students living in Campuséa and a student advisor who took us on the metro (eek!) to the university which is located in the 7th Arrondissement. After getting our schedules and ID cards, there were various workshops about taking the metro and safety in Paris. Then we took a placement test for our French classes and attended some meetings with the dean and cultural experience people. After that, we had a cocktail reception with the dean. By the end of all of this it was about 6:30 and we were all starving and tired! There was a scheduled dinner with our student advisor and then a trip with our group and advisor down the Seine on the Bateaux Mouches. It’s super tourist-y but a fun way to see the city at night and a great way to see all of the bridges (Les Ponts). After the boat ride, a friend and I waited a couple minutes before we got on the metro to see the Eiffel Tower light up.
Here are some pics:
My friend and I had a little trouble getting back to our appartment…we were on the wrong side of the metro but we soon figured it out but at 11:45 at night it’s still a bit scary! When I went out to dinner tonight I seemed to have a better understanding of how the platforms work and I am quicker at reading the maps. I purchased a Navigo which is basically an unlimited metro pass which lasts a month so I don’t have to worry about buying a carnet (10 tickets) or 1 ticket all the time.
Today I started classes. My dad is still here so we went to the 7th Arrondissement together where we went to a boulangerie to pick up breakfast (my student advisor said that one was her fave and it was really good). I have my first chocolate eclair, of which I’m sure there will be plenty more. I picked up my books and went to an office supply store where I spoke in only French and held a conversation with the lady there (booo yah!). Today I had my French class which meets Tuesday and Friday for 3 hours each (so long!!!) but it seems like fun and the professor is really upbeat and friendly. There are only two summer students in the class and the other 7 students are enrolled at AUP full time. I feel like I can keep up with their level of French and compared to some people I seemed more comfortable speaking; I think for a lot of them, this is their first true conversation class and it is not too difficult to get by in Paris with English.
After class, I met up with my dad and we went to le Gare de Nord to pick up my grandad who took the EuroStar from London. We then went to dinner in the Latin Quarter where we had crepes and walked around. There are soooo many bistros/cafes/restaurants and all different kinds of food. Unfortunately it’s been cold all day today (17 C…I don’t know what this in F) but yesterday it was so warm (27 C) so I was not well dressed today. Now that I have internet, I will be more prepared!
Tomorrow I have my Art History class and then I plan on finding a Monoprix (remember our fave store, Heather?) to buy hangers etc.