Un peu en retard…

A year abroad split between Buenos Aires and Tours, above average Christmas snowfall and the mind bending transition from Spanish to French left me with a somewhat hectic start to the new decade and goes someway to explain the decided lack of documentation of my first five weeks en France.

Nevertheless, I have taken the opportunity to rectify this, inspired by the tranquil surroundings of a Sunday afternoon train ride through the Loire Valley, returning from a week of vacances in the capital and across the border in Germany (considering it’s French and Spanish I study, I appear to have acquired a surprising number of German friends..which would be where the careers advice failed obviously).

Despite my short time here, it does feel like I am returning to a home of sorts, however temporary. Halls Tours-style are a little different from their more hectic counterparts back in Edinburgh, full of students from all years who, would you believe it, actually study. As friendly as they are, this, coupled with the mass exodus at weekends has driven me to the inevitable Erasmus bosom; a motley crew of Belgians, Italians, Germans, Italians, Australians, Italians, Spanish – did I say Italians? Special mention should be awarded to the six of them all called Giulia; confusing but it has its advantages, namely that I am sampling many a good dinner and can now insult someone by calling them an ‘ugly mussel’ in Italian…

I feel I am making great progress in total cultural immersion with added French acquisition; going to crêpe ‘parties’, watching such intellectual greats as ‘La Princesse et la Grenouille’ , becoming the proud owner of a bike complete with basket, buying trashy celebrity magazines (which is completely acceptable if said magazine is aiding your French) and whole heartedly embracing the café/bar culture. Tours is, admittedly, not the bustling metropolis of Buenos Aires but this little town, with its big student population, much like our own, has enough to keep the average Eramus student occupied. Furthermore, a mere three days in (a literally freezing cold) Paris, seemingly constantly surrounded by English, only convinced me more of a choice well made.

The university itself was fairly straightforward to get the hang of, with an international office thankfully lacking the bureaucratic nightmares found in many a French university It took a while to work out my timetable but there is plenty of choice and thanks to a particularly helpful DoS, I am very settled in my three day week routine…bliss! So I now have six weeks of long weekends until Easter holidays, during which I will endeavour to provide more regular updates, inbetween the visitors and the trips and the wine and, bien-sûr, the studies. A bit more of the sunshine wouldn’t go amiss either…

A la prochaine fois.

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