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My first week in France

Written on: Tuesday January 16th, 2007

A journal entry from: Rouen, France

Well, I've been here in Rouen for just over a week now, but it feels like much longer. I've met so many incredible new people from all over the world, explored parts of the city, become familiarized with the campus and my classes, among many other things. On Friday night when I arrived there was a party on campus but I was far too sick and tired to socialize so I called it a night. The next day I walked around some of Mont Saint Aignan (pretty ghetto compared to the rest of the city down the hill), where the school is located, bought some groceries, then went to a movie AND a club later that night. The rest of the weekend and the rest of this week has just been a mixture of clubs, orientation, a bit of class and a whole lot of walking (well, a lot more than I'm used to anyways). Our residence building is the furthest from the school, almost a 10 minute walk from the bus stop, and 15 from Place Colbert which is a small strip with bakeries, banks and a small grocery store. Carrefour is an enormous Wal-Mart style store in the opposite direction, where we do most of our shopping. The food sold in grocery stores is very different here - not just brand names but quantity. At Carrefour there's an entire isle where both sides are just yogurts and pudding. Oh and so much wine? at less than 2 euro a bottle. We've discovered that it is very, VERY expensive for just about anything else here though. Beer at the bar is sometimes 6 or 7 euro a pint, and at some places its 15 euro just to get in! Not usually for the ladies though which is nice ;o). Living in residence is very different too ? the hallways are attached to our rooms where we eat, sleep and cook (you?ll see in the pictures) so making decent meals is quite a task. They?re big believers of conservation here so you have to press a button to turn on lights outside the rooms and they will only stay on for so long. Same goes for the showers ? which is much worse. Let?s just say that it?s not much fun having to wait in the water while it warms up. There are lots of sales right now though, because in France it's the law to have sales just twice a year. So aside from all of this, we've still managed to plan our second break in March, a 10 day adventure to Dublin, London and Barcelona, as well as the upcoming weekends to Paris and Amsterdam. Very exciting!! And how is my French speaking coming along you all must be wondering? Horrible, but I?m hoping that once I meet more locals that will all change? it really doesn?t help that my close group of friends are all Anglophones!

 

From Matty on Jan 17th, 2007

Oh WOW. Very conservative you say of hydro and water. Hmmmm. bad showers, hard to cook meals. That sucks, but again a good idea from an environment point of view! I'm glad you're loving it. Everyone misses you here! I wish I was there to party! Barcelona abd Dublin you say! And Paris and Amsterdam, my gosh Kelso you have to take so many pictures so I can see!! MISS YOU!