I love summer with a passion. Not only because of traveling or staying at home and staring blankly to the ceiling, but because I have time to think and explore what I really love. I love science (surprise coming soon!). And I really like learning French. My first experience with languages was through a program hosted by the school on Spanish. It made absolutely no sense and I thoroughly hated it. Then there came this thing called “required course.” cough cough A foreign language is a “required course.” So of course, I thought I was going to drudge through it, passionately hate it, and after 3 “required” years, I would have wasted my time for 50 minutes each day.
The truth is, for some strange reason, I loved it. Learning words were suddenly okay. Conjugations made everything make sense. And the teacher, even though half of what came out of her mouth sounded like gibberish, was fun, engaging, and fiercely passionate about something I passionately hated. Teachers really can change the course for the better. French became a welcoming break between 3 science classes and a math class. It was logical (mostly), it was funny (my class…), and it was (almost) fast paced. I loved it. I still do.
It makes me dreadfully sad that I am on my 4th and last year of French next year. Even though there is zero chance I would major in French, it has been such a great 3 years -filled with laughter, smiles, and the ever dreaded franglais. So this year, I went on the exchange program with the school and made so many different friends, ate A LOT of food (mostly desserts, ofc who do you think I am?), spoke too little French (one week is not enough) and too much franglais. And bien sûr, I took a crazy amount of photos.
All the European countries are crazy close so we went to Switzerland, France and Germany even though we only stayed in Germany for about 20 minutes and Switzerland for 6-12 hours combined because we missed a bus. We probably picked the absolute worst time to go to France though because Paris was filled with water and France had a lot of strikes (including the garbage collectors in Paris -I’ve never seen a stack of garbage so high). As a result, we only spent around 2 days in Paris but I didn’t mind at all. Annecy, with the huge clear as glass turquoise lake and trees on every corner made up for it and more (even though I am utterly untalented in riding bikes and fought with posts every 5 meters in the 40 km bike ride around the lake).
Alsace -with the charming tiny villages and wonderful friends- was probably my favorite part of the trip. The houses in the preserved old towns formed a kind of travel capsule into the quaint towns of fairy tales -dark edging, colorful doors, and bright cheerful flowers on every windowsill. Mountains, reaching up to the clouds floating in a pure blue sky and lined with bright green vineyards, edged the picturesque towns. The names and even the food had a germanic edge, the people (at least the ones I met) were more than welcoming. It was lovely.
For now, that is all and I will stop my blabbing. I will come back with an actual recipe very soon 😉