Little Study Abroad Things, Part IV

I’m posting part four of my ongoing list so that I can get it up before graduation:

  • When my friends and I were in this cute little tea shop off-campus, I happened to notice French among the decorations and excitedly pointed it out: “Look! It says ‘Parisien!’” One of my friends, utterly unsurprised, responded, ‘Of course you would find the one French thing in here.”
  • I’m so used to writing French essays, I don’t know how to write papers in English anymore. Somebody help. Does bilingualism begin with realizing that it’s easier for you to write in a foreign language?
  • I finally listened to Hamilton for the first time, and the lyrics I most identified with were, “Where have you been? / Uh…France.”
  • During dinner, when I announced I didn’t even know where the Sociology house was, one of my friends argued, “Yes you do! The honors thing was there last year.” I looked at him and said, “I wasn’t here last year.” The ensuing expression on his face was absolutely priceless—he was so horrified that he’d forgotten.
  • I nearly posted an English blog post with the transition “de plus” in it. Whoops.
  • Do you reach nerd status when you dream in French? One of my dreams involved me returning to Nice with a friend I’d studied abroad with, and we both got peach gelato. (The gelato lady, for whatever reason, corrected me when I said “Puis-je avoir…” to “Est-ce que je peux…”) And then I somehow made my way up to Amiens, where I cried because the canals were so pretty. Waking up and discovering that I wasn’t in France was, as you can imagine, a lovely feeling.
  • I got really excited when I wished one of my international friends happy birthday and then we got to catch up a bit! (…during my French tutoring hours. Shhh, it’s not like anyone ever comes to French tutoring, anyways.)
  • As I half-heartedly attempted to prepare for the oral part of my Chinese exam, everything came out in French, and I was like, “…This is not what I wanted.” The proper solution? Stop studying. (It’s fine, I’m pretty sure I got an A in the class anyways.)
  • I might’ve overachieved just a bit on my capstone project—my French professor told me that it “might be a little too in-depth.” Oops?
  • My English professor got really excited about existentialism and naturalism when we discussed Voyage in the Dark because, as he told me, “You’re the only person I can talk about French things to.” I’m glad that my French major is being put to use.
  • Even though I spent 11 straight hours putting together my final paper for French, afterwards, I mourned a bit because I’d finished my last-ever French undergrad assignment. I’m still a bit sad. I’m probably going to be that nerd who writes an essay during the summer.
  • It was an utter tragedy, discovering that the Beauty in the Beast DVD offers neither French dubbing nor subbing. I still feel betrayed.
  • Discovering that I got an A in my 100-level Chinese class but an A+ in my 400-level French capstone is still one of the funniest things that’s happened to me.
  • When my roommates and I were walking back from Martin’s, we saw two cats, and for some reason I declared, “J’adore les chats!” Yeah, I still have no idea why I said that in French, considering that neither roommate understands the language. Multilingual problems…?
  • I was vaguely offended because my summa cum laude cords are gold and ruin the whole blue, white, and red French aesthetic of my French honors cord and French flag stole.
  • Like the nerd I am, I decorated my cap with a French quote from the text I did my capstone on: “Le present s’enrichit du passé et de l’avenir” (the present enriches itself with the past and the future) because it reminded me of my study abroad experience and the time I spent in French class during my last year here.

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