It’s OK, we do this in America


If you’ve never been to France, well one in my opinion that needs to change, and two you are seriously missing out on the comic relief that is French people dancing. When I studied abroad I went to the disco once and I ended up with some great photos of the French people in the background, like this:

He's got moves illegal in most countries

Just to illustrate what I’m talking about further, watch this video I found on youtube…

Alright so moral of the story is here is that French people dancing is one of my most favorite things. On Friday, Stephanie and I decided to go out after going to a game night with some weird old people (I’m talking Dungeons and Dragons) who all smelled like b.o. and/or alcohol. When we arrive at our favorite place, La Ruelle, we run into the son of one of the English teachers at the high school who is super nice. Anyways everyone is having a good time talking and dancing bla bla bla being social butterflies when around 2am I decide that it is time for me to start dancing. I inform the DJ that he needs to start playing some good music so I can get my groove on. The logic that I was deluding myself with was that French people are funny dancers so therefore I will look awesome doing whatever I want to do.

Generally when I start thinking along those lines, I embarass myself. A lot. Beer in hand I’m on the dancefloor grooving (I’m talking about busting out the snaps, some crazy arm movements, basically things that are generally embarassing and socially unacceptable) having a blast, yelling ” AUX ÉTATS-UNIS, ON FAIT ÇA!” translated to, “don’t worry, in the US we do this.” Awesome logic, except that its simply not true. My belief in that I was super embarassing was confirmed when I walked in last night and the bartender said, “you are a really good dancer” and then walked away laughing.

Ever heard the song, “I Can’t Dance” by LMFAO? Well listen to it because thats basically what went down on Friday night…Although this song is LMFAO so if you have sensitve ears I will tell you to maybe skip out on this one. 

Other than embarassing myself with my awesome dance moves, or lack there of, not a whole lot has been going on here soooooo FOOD UPDATE!!!!! yayyyyyy food!!!

I’m calling my 8 months here my cultivation of cooking gourmand on a stove. That doesn’t really  make sense but you know what I mean. Anyways I don’t have an oven so basically everything I make is made on the stove. I was pretty scared at first but now I’m pretty sure I’m about to Iron Chef level of awesomeness on stove cooking. My favorite meal that I’ve been making is Coq au Vin and it is super awesome. I have also eaten some other awesome things while here. In Marseille I had bouillabaisse which is a regional specialty: seafood soup. Basically they take a bunch of fish and shellfish and throw it in a pot and are like here it is ya’ll! It was heavenly. I love seafood so it was probably one of the best meals I’ve ever had in my life.

Another regional specialty, in Nyons, is the olives. I eat so many olives all the time. I can’t not buy them! If you can, look for Nyons Black Olives back in the states. They are like 80000x better than any other olives eva so get on it. In fact, I’m going to snack on some I bought today while I finish this post.

YUMMMMMMMMMMM

Our olive oil is also famous and pretty good, I went olive oil/olive tasting the other day at our town’s co-op. By that I mean I suspiciously loitered around the olive bowls at the co-op eating as many as possible before the workers got mad at me. Anyways we are SUPER famous for our wine here. Not Nyons specifically but this area. Cotes du Rhône is the type of wine made here and it is awesome. Before I came to this part of the country I did not like red wine. Merlot, and Burgundies were just too heavy for me. However, I am a total red wine convert and am madly in love with Cotes du Rhône wine. This is my favorite:

Wine makes everything better. Except a hangover.

This one was made here in town or like somewhere near here. Also I have been eating quite a bit of pastries and bread here. The bread is divine and I don’t know how I’m going to survive without it when I get back to America. The pastries are also baller. France has the best pastries eva hands down. This was a rose macarron with raspberry filling and cream filling and raspberries. Describing it in werdz does not do it justice:

Jealous?

I felt guilty eating it. THAT GOOD.

Well that sounds about it! This coming weekend I’m going to visit Mika in Montelimar, where she lives about an hour away by car. Its signifigantly bigger than Nyons so hopefully it will fulfill all of my hopez and dreamz. Actually, I’m just excited because it has an Irish pub and a movie theatre that is playing Contaigon. The weekend after that I am going to Grenoble to hang out with some girls that I know so yayyy for travel and friends!!!!

Have a wonderful week!!!

Grand Bis

Meaghan

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Believed Ham and Crystallized Plug


WOW! Sorry, long time no write. I’m sure all you avid readers (cough my parents cough) are dying to know what I have been up to recently. The good news is LOTS of fun things and I have lots of funny stories to tell so you are in luck (quelle chance!)!! My title is from a menu that Stephanie found in Nyons… the owner tried to have translations of meals in English and this was one that I found. Another favorite was “vagueness of St. Jacques on his crawfish beach” which really meant like clams on crawfish but hey to each their own crappy English translation LOL. I told Stephanie that I’m going to tell the owner that if he gives me free dinner one night I’ll redo his translations so that they actually make sense. If he says no well then it is funny and if he says yes then holla free dinner!

YUM I definitely want "vagueness of St. Jacques" in my belly!

I also started my first week of school last week. I worked two days, what horror! Ha just kidding it was awesome. I think I’ll be working something like half days Mondays and Thursdays and all day Tuesday. My life is awesome! The schools are pretty cool they are just basically like “talk about America” so I tell the kids things like we do nothing but play sports and eat McDonalds erryday and drive SUVs because we have nothing better to do with out time. Just kidding! I do talk a lot about sports though and for some reason spend an inordinate amount of time explaining that America is NOT England. That however has gone right over most children and teachers heads. In one class the teacher said “Alright you are from America you know English, here explain this map of England to the kids.” That ended with a bunch of 10 year olds staring at me like “who the hell is this girl and what is she talking about?” because I stood up there and looked like an idiot. I don’t know the first thing about England’s geography. I said things like “well here are some rivers and that is London and Scotland is at the top and Ireland is over there and yup that’s all you need to know…”

The kids are pretty funny though. One class asked me if, since I lived in America, I knew any rappers. I was like no but I live like 6 hours away from ATL (durrty souf) which is where T.I., Jermaine Dupri, Usher, and Justin Bieber (I’m a biebliever don’t hate), all live. The girls immediately started screaming “JUSTIN BIEBER!!!!” and then asked me if I knew him. I said no but that didn’t stop one girl writing me a love letter on the back of her math notes for him. She asked me to give it to him the next time I go to his house (where she got that out of the conversation I don’t know). The note is written in terrible French and doesn’t really make sense. She says things like “I live near a ‘pisseria’ that you can see my mom from at my house” and that she lives in “nionce.” She also misspelled his name. Before you jump to conclusions and say “oh but it is just a child!” I will say to you she was 10 and I feel like 10 year olds should be able to spell the city that they live in haha.

Justin Bibere pleese come to nionce!!!!! We can eat pissa!

On Friday my friend Mika came to visit and it was super fun. We went out with Stephanie to our fav club called La Ruelle and it was fun. Naturally since I love clubs I am now becoming bffs with the manager and bartenders. SW33T LYFE. Also I’d like to point out that it is our favorite club because it is literally the only thing open past 10:30pm in town. Anyways, the next morning I had to pack for our stage (orientation/learn how to teach/seminar/truc idk) in Grenoble since Stephanie decided to do a weekend in Grenoble before the stage. Unfortunately packing hungover is not conducive to bringing things that one might actually need. I managed to bring an iPOD cord, my charger for my computer, and hairbrush but forgot underwear, pajamas, and enough clothes to wear. I had to buy underwear and PJs in Grenoble. Grenoble was fun though, we couch surfed with a young guy who was nice but a little odd but he was nice for letting us stay so I can’t really complain. We also hiked to the top of the Bastille, which was AH-MAZING!!!!!!

Str8 illin with Mika at La Ruelle the most bumpin club in Drome!I didn't photoshop myself in

I didn't photoshop myself in, I promise this is real

Our stage started yesterday and was in a building downtown somewhere and then they bused us up to the Vercors mountains to a town called Autrans. It was super cute! BUT we managed to miss the bus. YUP we missed the bus and were chauffeured up by a nice lady working for the department of education. Embarrassing, yet awesome because tour buses are kind of smelly and weird. Anyways after dinner last night Stephanie and I wandered into town and went to some bar. The manager started talking to us and showed us a bunch of pictures of himself with Prince Albert of Monaco playing petanque together (sidenote: petanque is basically bocce ball but French). I don’t think I really believe that they are bffs or else he wouldn’t be working in a ski town bar, but the pictures looked real enough. Also he was like kind of really old.

Sad faces... bus missed!

Well I’m pretty sure that’s the update… France is getting weirder by the day! I’m sure I’ll have more stories about the chitlins as soon as I start spending more time with them. I’m excited because this week is when our fall break starts and I am heading to Thionville to visit Natalie for a few days then hopefully to Marseille with Mika and Stephanie for the end of it. FRANCE GIVE ME MY PAYCHECK so I am not poor/ using all my savings…  Well until next time avid readers, go and eat some believed ham for me!

Grand Bis

Meaghan

Juice box wine HOLLA

So silly…and probably not so good


So since the only preparation that I did for this adventure was throw some clothes in a suitcase and get a visa, there are plenty of things that could go wrong. Like today, when I realized that I never called my bank or credit card company to tell them that I was going to be abroad. The result (dum da da dum): my cards got canceled. What the sheesh is all I have to say. Also sometimes I question my intelligence since now here I am with 60 euros accessible to me for the next 2 weeks which is how long I feel a new card will take to get to me. Dear French postal system, please dont hold my card hostage longer than you need to!

I also questioned my level of intelligence this morning when I decided to wear shoes that do nothing but hurt my feet to the Louvre. Smart? Nope. I am so silly and it is definitely not good. Now my feet might fall off and I am like well you did this to yourself… GO ME! So smart… haha

Anyways yesterday I went to Versailles (you know Marie Antoinette’s castle) which was AWESOME!!!!!! Any idea of how big it is that you have please throw that out the window because it is MONSTROUS like the pictures will not even do it justice.

Like half the castle... see? MONSTER

Like 1/10 of the gardens

Basically Versailles is the queen of all castles in France, in my opinion. I spent 3 hours wandering around yesterday and it was awesome!!!! SOOOO totally gorge!

Everything was covered in gold and the gardens were immaculate. The reflecting pool (behind me in the pic above) was my favorite part. I’m kind of obsessed with how cute it is.

Last night I then joined my friend Lisa for wine by the Seine. It was super fun and I love wine sooooo…

It's always wine time!

For being 2 euros, that bottle of wine was pretty bangin’. France, I love you and your cheap yet tasty wine!

Today I chose to continue my adventure of culture and go to the Louvre. It was pretty cool and I had fun but I’m not sure I’d ever go back. Some of the stuff was really cool but a lot of it was kind of like “meh” which is terrible since it is all priceless works of art and like famous and old and stuff. However some of it was just downright weird, like this:

A dude checking himself out 4x

Like did the sculptor wake up one day and say, “I suppose I shall sculpt a man contemplating himself ::smirk::” and did he laugh at the pun? Anyways I think it is a little wee bit bizarre (haha).

But the Louvre did have some cool stuff, like the Mona Lisa or La Jaconde as it is really called. I feel like I got a pretty good picture of it considering there was a swarm of like 800 Asians on some tour taking up all the good picture taking space haha

Why hello there Leonardo Da Vinci

I took some other cool pictures of some things like this suit of armor

Suit of armor for a very short man

My one comment on the suit of armor was that the king that it was designed for (Charles the something…) must have been quite short because honestly it looked like it would fit someone my size and I am 5’2″. Innnnnnnnnteresting.

Anyways I’m having a great time, minus getting my credit cards canceled (whooops…) and can’t wait for whatever else is going to happen!!!

Grand Bis

Meaghan