Still here….

but only for 9 more days!!

I know my mother cannot wait to have me back in the nest, and I can’t either, but I am also going to miss France and this incredible semester I’ve had.

I’ve been all but drowning in work the past few weeks- term papers, presentations, finals preparation, and of course normal homework that our professors still want to give us…

Today was the last day of class, and although some of my classes ended earlier this week, this morning marked the end of my class with my favorite professor on the face of the planet, Nitin.

This photo was taken the last day of our midterms, Nitin surprised us by making hot cocoa, only the first of several times during the semester

This photo was taken the last day of our midterms, Nitin surprised us by making hot cocoa, only the first of several times during the semester

Nitin is my professor for my polysci course on the European Union, a course I didn’t even want to take. But all because of him it was my hardest, and favorite class. We had a chapter quiz every week to which he brought cookies for moral support. And he made us hot chocolate even though he couldn’t have any because he can drink milk. And then he took on the role of grammar tutor for several of us struggling in our grammar class after the mid-term. And he’s an American! He went to Colorado College, but after spending a semester at the AUCP he decided to stay for the year and then got his masters in France and has stayed ever since. So as a way to say thank you, our small class of 5 decided to surprise Nitin this morning with some hot cocoa made with almond milk that he could drink, and various other milk-free sweets (I’ve never seen someone with such a large sweet tooth). We also took a class photo and made it into a card which we all signed expressing our appreciation (and love) for all that he did and helped us with this semester. He was touched, but then he surprised us by getting us each a bar of chocolate from Puyicard, the nicest chocolatier in Aix. How many professors do you know who get their students gifts?! Seriously above and beyond. I’ll end my tribute there.

In other news, I took a break from studying last night to attend a wine tasting lead by a Duke. That was pretty cool. Too expensive for me to buy the wines, but if I marry the Duke I would be a duchess and live in a pretty chateau in wine country….not too shabby

With my time winding down in France I have started thinking about my life in America. I have started making a list of things I will and won’t miss about France.

Things I won’t miss:

  • Dog poop on the sidewalks. Everywhere. So gross.
  • Everyone is more or less the same. The french value equality to the extent that it’s frowned upon to be radically different
  • Showers. First, the stereotype of the french not showering is pretty true. Short showers (like 2 minutes), every few days. And they are super small, every time I hit my elbow…and knock things over….(oh wait that happens in my big shower at home too…)
  • How expensive (most) everything is. Where’s Target when you need one? Other than the french essentials like bread and coffee, Europe is expensive!

Things I will miss:

  • Espresso. So good. So cheap. Drinking large, flavored Starbucks will be completely foreign. Little, strong espresso’s are just so good.
  • chocolat éclaires. and café éclaires.
  • pain au chocolat
  • inexpensive baguettes (90 cents each will not exist in American super markets)
  • The weather. Its super cold right now, like really really cold, but I didn’t realize how much I didn’t miss the rain until I looked at the forecast in Seattle.
Boy does that look fun...

Boy does that look fun…

  • Speaking french with all of my new wonderful friends and host mom

Anyways, I am going to go hope it starts snowing here to make studying for finals a little more tolerable. In the meantime, here are some lovely photos of Christmas in Aix.

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