Little Study Abroad Things, Part III

Here’s part three of my ongoing list, which I lied about–it stretches from J-term break to spring break. We’ll see if I can make part four go until the end of the semester. (Wow, I really need to find something else to write about… I have some poetry sitting around, and next week there’ll be a post about the French Film Festival, so hopefully that’ll be enough variety.) Anyways, without further ado:

  • I’ve never missed Nice more when I was stuck inside my house for all of two days and found myself s l o w l y but surely going insane. I could go anywhere I wanted in the city by foot, bike, bus, or tram, but you can’t do that at all in the suburbs. Basically, wherever I end up after college, it has to be somewhere urban.
  • One day, I was fully prepared to watch a show in French with English subtitles. And then, about a minute and a half into the episode, I realized that the subtitles were missing—but I was understanding everything perfectly. Languages are so weird.
  • I don’t have a problem at all when a song with the lyrics “I will find my, I will find my, I will find my way back” is clearly referring to a person but I immediately associate it with a place.
  • Dear French professor: I hope you appreciate how much self-restraint it took for me to not read all the textbooks during break.
  • I was helping my mom clean the kitchen for Chinese New Year’s, and when she handed me an empty jar, I smiled. Once upon a time, it’d held delicious citrus honey from Menton.
  • Walking through National Harbor made me nostalgic, because just being in a city reminded me of Nice.
  • While I was writing a blog post for English, sleep-deprived and exhausted, I accidentally wrote a word the French way and didn’t quite care enough to correct it.
  • The rest of my friends were yelling at terrible life choices on a cooking show, but I started critiquing the mispronunciations of “haricots verts,” “crème anglaise,” and “frisée.”
  • Watching Mulan and Tangled baffled me because I knew the most popular songs in French. Also, I suggested watching Beauty and the Beast in French and was sadly turned down.
  • As I was telling one of my roommates about the deliciousness of frozen grapes, she asked, “Are you saying crepe or grape?” I indignantly replied, “Grape! I would say crêpe.”
  • Facebook oh-so-graciously reminded me that I’d spent the best spring break of my life in Rome. I started to suffer from the study abroad blues. Thanks.
  • My French professor got to witness me struggle with languages: “I’m halfway through my extrait—extract—excerpt!”
  • When I was working on my capstone project, I got really excited when I realized I had the ability to skim French in books. It made researching much easier.
  • While studying, I was listening to 8tracks, and I got so, so confused when a French song started playing. “This is not English, but…I can understand it?”
  • I’d like to thank my English professor for not only tolerating, but also encouraging, my inner French nerd.
  • In the rough draft of my six-page French essay, there were seven paragraphs with no corrections whatsoever, and that lack of red pen (save for the occasional check mark) remains one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen.
  • …I’m so much of a nerd that I had a dream about editing my French essay. But hey, at least I came up with something that was so useful, I ended up using it in my essay (in real life, not the dream).