Culture Shock


So lets be real. I live in a very interesting part of VA… verrrrrry interesting. Good ole’ Roanoke. And because my life is just nuts, my parents decided to move to Richmond. So that is happening. Actually how I found out about that was pretty funny. I got off the plane, had been traveling for like 14 hours or something and crying for most of that time, and my mom goes “Hey honey!! I’m so glad to see you! We bought a house in Richmond today!” Awesome mom. Thank you for that heads up. So boom double culture shock.

Now pretty much I’ve just been lamping around my parents house, annoying them when realators and stuff come over because I am such a bum. To be fair I have applied for a LOT of jobs, both English and French, but no one has called me. So until I get a job, I’m going to be laying out by the poolio in my backyard, drinking wine, and occasionally going for a run. Oh and listening to obscene amounts of country music.

I have yet to venture down to Walmart, because I’m pretty sure I can’t handle that. However, I did go to a clA$$ic Roanoke event, First Fridays, where most of the great unwashed of the city come out to drink some burrs and hit on lonely women. Ill be honest, I saw groups of 30 something women trolling for husbands. You could see the desperation in their eyes. Anyways there was a band who was pretty good. They were a Journey cover band and I’ll be honest I like Journey so that was coolio, or nickel as French people say.

we’re with the band ya’ll be jelz

hottiez

you aren’t steve perry!!! you impostor!! but check out those groupies!

coattails of awesomness

So that has been my life. Yay America! Good Lord someone get me a plane ticket back to France…

Crocodiles, Beaches, and…?


So update time! I am now done with work (insert sad face here) so I’ve just been chillin’ like a villain… u kno how I do. Ok that was awkward. Anyways so update! I have been actually having a great few weeks! Last weekend I went to a crocodile farm!!!! If your mind is currently being blown by how awesome a crocodile farm is, your brain is totally right. IT WAS AWESOME!!!!! SO. MANY. CROCS. So freaking awesome! I’m not sure why there is a crocodile farm in the middle of France but whatevs, it kicked a$$.

walking in to haunt your dreamz

just letting you think they are lazy, just asking you to come closer…

american alligator… usa! usa! usa!

Then this week I went to the beach in Toulon. Toulon is a port city and has one of France’s naval bases. I visited it for a day in October and I wanted to go back and get  my bronze on. And you better believe I got my bronze on, or should I say burn on. I am fried but in a good way! Except that I couldn’t wear a bra yesterday because my back hurt too much. The price you pay for beauty. Anyways it was beautiful and the food was wonderful. I ate salmon lasagne which was da bomb diggity. I know it sounds weird but it wasn’t it was awesome. I also saw a submarine, and a LOT of naked old grandmas. A lot. Also I spotted an old man playing volleyball in a turquoise speedo, socks, and sneakers. I wish I had taken a picture.

mediteranean coast!!!

check out that submarine yo!! time for france to get her spy on

gettin my bronze on yo

Well on my last days at school, a lot of my kids wrote me letters/cards/etc. and some of them are adorable/funny. Here are some pictures of them:

this girl drew me with a nicki minaj butt… nice

i’m not sure what is going on here but maybe an american disco party? also “amerique” is spelled wrong… amerque what uppp

titanic…why???

french flag, shark fins (requin is shark in french), and virginie (virginia in french)… maybe this is a modernist interpretation of my trip home?

Anyways I’ll be back stateside in 7 days exactly. WIZZEIRD!!! How am I going to continue this blog in the US? Maybe I’ll get clever up in hurr and start talking about food or something. Not that that is super clever but schwatevz. Anyways

I can’t think of a PC title


So because I’m being a lazy crazy girl (do you like that? I just came up with it boom!) I havn’t uploaded any of my pictures from Switzerland and Italy so I’ll try to get around to those posts (too much fun for 1!) Friday or this weekend. Maybe.

So today at school, in the Spandex King’s class we were talking about the US geography and all the neat things we have in there (Mt. Rushmore bitches!) and when we were talking about Washington DC the Spandex King goes (in French), ” I heard there were a lot of blacks there” I guess because I’m socially awkward, I said ” black what? Cars?” To which he laughed and goes “HA no. People. Anyways, the next city we will look at is Miami, which is filled with Cubans.”

I’m never going to work with such unintentionally funny people ever again.

Hopefully I’ll stop having mental breakdowns about my life this week and update on my vacations which were super! Also if you have a chance and want to watch a really weird French movie, watch “Perfume: the Story of a Murderer” I watched it last night with my boyfriend and it was super weird, the ending especially. ::Shiver:: but it was French so you know it was good. Also Snape is in it sooo… get on it!

 

Just when you think it can’t get weirder, it does.


So we all know France is pretty crazy. It’s one of the reasons I love this country so much, you just never know what is going to happen. This weekend there was a giant fair. If I could compare it to something, it’d be like the Salem Fair in Roanoke in July. So if you have ever been to that well you know… ::shudder:: So think, Salem Fair but in Nyons. So apart from all the rides and the hillbillys coming in from the countryside hollows (you always know exactly who those people are, some things don’t change no matter what country you are in), there was a giant parade both days. In America an Easter parade would probably just be filled with giant bunnies and eggs and chicks and lots of pastel colors.

In France, nothing could be farther from the truth. I saw more people in blackface yesterday than I have seen in my life… Oh and people trying to be Asian… I mean I know people in France are not PC at all, but… REALLY?? And on top of that none of the floats made sense… Homer Simpson, Popeye, Buddah, the Taj Mahal, the Loch Ness Monster complete with children dressed as the Grim Reaper. That one confused me the most… maybe they are trying to say the LNM will eat everyone? Idk but it sprayed water out of its mouth which although cool, was not fun when I dont want it. So I took a bunch of pictures of all the random floats and so voila, here you go!

D'oh!

hey popeye give me summa dat spinach!!!

it's nessie holla!!! notice the people wearing plaid... thats how you know its nessie

scottish grim reaper children? i don't get it...

best blackface i could capture... as far as I can tell thats supposed to be in africa?

taj mahal bitches

another african float... i think? maybe carribean? honestly who knows but that guy looks like hes about to stab the lady with a spear

buddah wishes you a happy easter

my worst nightmare!!! BZZZZZ

I’m all for cultural diversity, but I’m pretty sure this is how you should NOT do it. But on a bright note, there were “American Country Dancers” who preformed a line dance to Luke Bryan’s “Country Girl.” Yee-haw diggity dawg! Still, wondering what this has to do with Easter but eh some things will never be answered.

I also learned a joke in French… BMW in French is pronounced bei-em-doubleh-vei. The word for foot is “pied” pronounced “pe-ei.” I’m sure you see where this is going. Well if you are walking you can say “yeah I took my BM double pied” (doubleh-pe-ei)… GET IT??? Don’t worry it took me a while too but now I know it and boom joke. But I’d probably try to tell it and be really awkward while doing and and everyone would hate me. But thats the price you pay sometimes.

Well in other news, I’m off to SWIZZ aka Switzerland on Friday and Rome on Monday! Can’t wait! Time to get my culture on peeps. Be jelz!

Mego

Accidental Insults


So I was working with the Spandex King on a family/description/random unit. I’m confused about what the theme was. But at some point it turned into descriptions. I’m just going to put it out there that I’m really bad at describing people in English. I tend to describe people by “fat, skinny, tall, and not tall” and then usually what they are wearing. I don’t properly utilise the English language. Anyways the SK is the same age as my dad (mid 50s) but I thought he was  like 70 for the longest time until he randomly told me what year he was born, which was kind of a weird conversation. The fact that hes 55ish and I thought he was 70 should tell you something.

So we had just revised the descriptor words (big, small, tall, thin, fat, ugly, beautiful, old, young) and then SK looks at me and goes “describe me.” I was like oh no… Because how do you be polite when you call someone old? So because I’m horrifyingly awkward sometimes, I go “well um you are tall…i guess… um you have blue eyes… um and you are wearing a red sweater and black shoes” He looks at me and goes “that was actually horrible” well gee thanks…

Then one of the students start to describe him and the student goes “you have white hair” to which he FREAKED out. He was like, “WHITE HAIR!!!! I DO NOT HAVE WHITE HAIR!!! Meaghan what color is my hair??” which to be honest, his hair is that weird blonde/gray/white color that happens once you turn 50 and you were blonde back in the day. So what do you say to someone who might be in denial about their age?

The SK is staring at me and I’m just standing there like WHAT THE HELL DO I DO, so because I’m awkward, I stuttered out “um maybe it is kind of sorta whiteish grayish blonde?” Then I realized he didn’t understand my butchering of English “kind of sorta  wihiteish” meant nothing to him because those are words and expressions he has never heard. All he heard was “blonde” and that was all he needed to hear. He goes “see class? I am not old, I am beautiful with blonde hair! Strong too!”

If you say so Spandex King, if you say so.

Mego

Here is a random picture of a grotto in Avignon... just because

I’m Famous


My students wrote an article about me plus pictures of me in action, changing lives and teaching english like a boss

Here is the link click it!!!! It is in French but here is what it says in English:

“Meaghan is our new English assistant, here is a little bit about her: She is from Virgina which the capitol is Richmond and is south of Washingon. In her region it is as cold as Nyons. She is 22 years old. For sports she plays lacrosse (mostly played in the US) and running. She was born in Alexandria next to Washington because her parents lived there at the time. She was supposed to go to Grenoble but came to Nyons because she likes traveling and it is easier in France. She can’t  livve in France because she needs a work visa. This is not her first time in our country. She lived in Brittany for four months in 2009. Meaghan does not like people who smoke, especially in the streets. She doesn’t know what she will do later. Her favorite animal is the cat. Her weakness is seafood. Her work contract will soon be finished and she leaves at the end of April, how sad!

This is pretty far off of what I told these kids but hey they are like 10 so pretttty good work dudes!

This cracks me up lololololololol

 

Mego

Oh Punaise!


French people love American music. It is all over the radio here, playing in cafés, the public transportation… you can’t escape it. My favorite is when it’s all old stuff from the 70s and 80s. Well I have just come home from our weekly market and while I was there browsing through the used book stand I realized the song that was playing in one of the stands nearby was, “Take Me Home Country Roads” by John Denver. The conclusion I’ve drawn is that French people love this song. Remember when i couch surfed in Grenoble and the guy I stayed with insisted on playing it on his guitar repeatedly? Yeah…that happened. I just think it’s kind of a strange song because its so America-centric, I mean you can’t have more pride than “Almost Heaven, West Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains Shenandoah Valley… West Virginia mountain mama…”  I feel like this is just another example of how random people in France are haha.

Well in other news the lice outbreak has continued to BOTH of my schools now. I’m living in constant fear that I will unfortunately contract it. I’m trying to keep the children at more than an arm’s length. However this has been going on for almost two weeks so, I think I’ve got pretty good chances. I’m still mildly concerned that no one told me at either school. If theres some weird infectious disease outbreak at my schools will they tell me then? Probably not, they’ll probably just let me get turned into  a zombie with the rest of them. I have decided that in the event of a zombie outbreak while I’m in France, I’m going into hiding at the high school here. It looks like a prison and is surrounded by olive fields. I think I’d have some pretty good odds there. You can never be too prepared.

(I’d like to embed a video or picture of the lice check scene in Billy Madison, but unfortunately the internet failed me)

So at one of my schools (the one I don’t like) there is a teacher I’ll call Mrs. Anger Management. She is really nice to me, but in a sort of backhanded way. I make posters for her every week and shes says things like “oh this looks nice, but the corners on three pictures aren’t fully glued down so it is kind of sloppy. don’t they teach you how to glue in America?” Or my favorite comment was “oh you don’t look as nice as you did yesterday.” Like did she really need to say that? It’s not like I looked like a hobo, one day I wore a dress and the other day I wore pants… Anyways she FLIPS OUT on the students all the time, I mean like 0-60 in .003 seconds. On Tuesday we were working on the parts of the body with some drawings and she looks at one kid’s paper and was like “WHAT ARE YOU DOING? DO YOU KNOW ANYTHING? NO APPARENTLY YOU DON’T!!!!” grabbed his paper and ripped it in half!!!!!! I wasn’t sure how I was supposed to react to that but I’m pretty sure I was just standing there with my mouth open. Not very professional haha.

I feel like this could happen any day now…

In exciting, non-school related news… I AM GOING TO BARCELONA!!!!!!! I can’t wait!!! I’m going the Feb 11-14, then America 15-22 and Greensboro the 17-19 where I will see ERIC CHURCH in concert YESSS, cannot WAIT

No need to complicate he's a simple man...

OH can’t believe I forgot to mention this story… well for this whole medical exam thing we have to get X-rays done to check and see if we have TB (although considering I’ve been here for almost 5 months I think it’d be a little late if I did have it…). As you know, pregnant women can’t have X-rays done. Well at the office the woman looks at me and goes, “are you pregnant [in French]” and I respond, in French, “no I am not” and she looks me up and down and says “are you sure? you know pregnant… a baby inside you” and I was like “yes I understand and no there is no baby inside me” and then she says in English, “baby yes pregnant yes.” Apparently to this woman I looked pregnant, which I don’t get because I’m actually the thinnest I’ve been in a year. Maybe she just thinks American girls are slutty… who knows but I was wearing a turtleneck and sweater soooo that would be the opposite of that… anyways it is a mystery. Also she didn’t ask my two friends if they were pregnant, just me. Awesome.

My xray is in the center... No TB here bitches!

Mego