Friday, June 18, 2010

Le retour!

Yep, that's right.

I'm breaking out the blog again for my next Francophone adventure: a summer in Quebec!

I will be working at an English immersion camp as a counselor. Tomorrow I am making the five and a half hour trek into the North, and if all goes well, will be settling in around 7 o'clock.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Friday, May 8, 2009

Blog Fail

I did not blog about our end of semester activities because doing so would have meant facing the fact that there is absolutely no time left.

But since I'm leaving tomorrow, I figure there's no point in pretending anymore.

Here's what we've done in the past two weeks:

-- went to Grenoble. Pictures are here.

-- saw a movie. This one.

-- went on a dinner cruise. Pictures are in this album.

-- had a picnic on the Champs de Mars and then walked around at night. Pictures are here.

-- Monica and co. came to visit, but we didn't see that much of them since we were working on our final project and had our last week of internship.

-- had dinner at Hippocampus with Trevor's entire family (well, minus the part of it that was here earlier in the semester)

-- had a photo shoot in front of the Eiffel Tower

-- drank THE worst wine I have ever had in my life

-- had our final presentations.

-- had our last day of our internships

-- was forced to sing Paradise by the Dashboard Light at BU karaoke with French professors (with Sam, of course)

-- had one last round of Mark Anthony's famous hot chocolate and pain au chocolat.

And today Sam and I are eating lunch with Trevor and MA and then heading out to Montmartre and hopefully hitting up one last museum before meeting up with some of my co-workers for dinner and jazz.

Phew. Luckily I'm almost all packed.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Fine, Erin wins.

But only because I have to tell you about what a debacle this weekend was.

Sam and I had wanted to go to Normandy. We were planning on going Saturday, but we got an e-mail from BU telling us that the cultural event thing they had planned was mandatory, so we booked our train tickets for Sunday.

So Saturday morning we wake up and see that it is miserable and rainy outside. What a lovely day to go around with BU and take pictures! We debate skipping it, but the e-mail said "rain or shine" and Sam has too much of a conscience, so we trek out in the digusting weather to the meeting point. And there's no one there! We wait and we walk back and forth through the passageway we were supposed to meet in. Nope. No one. Awesome.

Sam and I are kind of really unhappy, but we find a cafe near L'Opera and get some wine and some fondant au chocolats. Then we catch a movie back at Montparnasse. Which was FABULOUS. Here's the trailer:

So Sunday, I wake up late. I must have hit the snooze button without realizing it. But so we kind of rush to the train station. When we get there, the ticket machines won't recognize our credit cards so we have to sprint to a ticket counter to get our billets printed out. We just barely make the train.

Once on the train, I realize that I have forgotten my 12-25 card, the one that gets you discounts. An hour and 45 minutes into the 2 hour train ride and the conductor hasn't checked tickets yet, so I think I'm in the clear. Not the case. With 10 minutes until we stop, he comes down the aisle and makes me pay an extra 25€. Awesome. When I get off the train and find Sam (who was one car behind me), she exclaims, "That's ridiculous! They didn't check our tickets at all!" Uber awesome.

But whatever. We're in Normandy! In Caen. We step out of the train station and look around the tiny town before us. We both declare that we love it here, and we go to buy day passes for the bus, like the Normandy tourism website recommended. Then we hop on and ride it to the office of tourism.

We decide that it's best to just ask the girls at the tourism office how we should go about getting to the cemetary and the beaches. Their reply? "It's Sunday. There's only one bus running. You can only get to this beach. And the bus only runs every 2 hours."

"Can we walk to the American cemetary?"

"No. It's many kilometers."


"...It's Sunday."

Sam and I realize that even if we are to take this bus, we have just missed the 11h25 one and now will have to wait 2 hours. So we find a restaurant and settle down for a long, hearty lunch.

We also pore1 over the maps and the schedules, trying to figure out a way we can possibly get up to where we want to go. We decide that are going to get there, no matter what the tourism women have said. We also decide to go back to the train station to ask for their advice.

After our long, relaxing lunch, we take an extremely long way through the market back to the train station. Once we get there, we ask the employees at the ticket counter how we can get up to the beaches. They tell us that there is a train that goes up to a town, Bayeux, that is closer to the beaches and that has a museum. We ask about a bus line that is going up to that town also, and they tell us to check out the bus station a few buildings over.

We head over to the bus station, but surprise! It's closed on Sundays! We finally find the schedules that are posted outside and eventually figure out that that bus isn't running either. So we head back to the train station, where we buy the train tickets to Bayeux.

After waiting for 20 minutes or so, we hop on the train and get to see some more of the lovely French countryside. I swear, train is my favorite way to travel. But the ride is only 15 minutes, and soon we're stepping off the train and looking at each other in horror.

"Where the hell are we?"

We are basically in the sticks. But we see signs for the war museum, so we follow them. It's a good 25 minute hike to the museum, but we got to see some cows, which was fun. We got to the museum around 2:45, I want to say. There were some tanks outside, so we felt better about ourselves, after having been in Normandy for over 3 hours and not seeing anything war related.

We entered the museum and before buying tickets, we asked if it was possible to get to the American cemetary.

"Oh yes!" was the reply.

Sam and I looked at each other in relief.

"You just take this road..." then the woman stopped. "You have a car, right?"

Fail. Was there any other way to get there?

"By cab..." was the cautious reply. "Would you like us to call one for you?"

Sam and I looked at each other. Did we want to stay here and look at the museum? The cemetery closes at 5. It's already almost 3. It'll take at least half an hour to get there. How much will it cost? OH WHAT THE HELL, WE CAME ALL THE WAY HERE.

"Sure, would you call one for us?"

45€ and half an hour later, we FINALLY get to the cemetery. As we step out of the cab, we see our first glimpse of the ocean and instantly decide that it was all worth it.

It was gorgeous. The beach was wonderful and gorgeous and the cemetery was moving and incredible. Nothing I can write will describe what being there is like, so I won't even try. You can see my pictures here.

We spent a good hour and a half there and then had to make our long trek back to the Bayeux train station and then back to Caen, where we grabbed some pizza before catching our train back to Paris.

It was a very long, frustrating and exhausting day, but the almost two hours we spent at the beach and the cemetery were incredible.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Ask Erin why

I won't be updating for a bit.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

On mange, les filles?

This is by far my favorite saying at work. One, because it means that we will be injesting food within the next half hour, two, because it means that I will get a little break and three, because it shows the importance of punctuation. Speaking of punctuation, I had no idea what to do with it in that last sentence. I think maybe I should have made it a list? I'm a little tired.

That is really I have to say. I am exhausted . But this weekend will be better.

This blog entry format copyrighted by Trevor Taylor.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Grammar Shmammar

I love writing linguistics papers because you get to insert snarky sentences for examples and no one can call you out on it. For example:

In English, commentary adverbs are placed at the start of a sentence:
Unfortunately, this paper is due Wednesday.