Do we need a candle?

So it has been a full year since I left North Carolina! Needless to say that time has been flying by. All in all, I guess things are going fine. I came back to France to go back to college and this is pretty much all I have been doing. Grad school is intense, busy, demanding, but I love it. Pretty much every single one of my classes is very interesting… At the beginning of the second semester we have to choose between two specializations: medical translation or multilingual lexicology & terminology. I could not really decide so I am doing both: medical translation -because that’s where the jobs are- and multilingual lexicology & terminology because I really love it. And I have always loved keeping myself busy. At this point, I have only about 7 weeks to go before the end of classes and all the exams will take place sometimes in May.

So with this anniversary, I started thinking about how I felt about it all… Truth is, I am not sure that I like France… I mean, yes, it is all very beautiful… the little towns, the architecture, the fields of sunflowers and lavender, the history, etc… Yet, the daily life just is not quite as beautiful… from a purely visual perspective, I think Lyon is dirty… Dogs’ owners let their friends defecate just about anywhere and everywhere, and I have yet to see one single person pick up after their dogs. The result is that you’d better look where you are going or you might be in for a smelly surprise (I would know: I now have a rule about how I stop if I need to look at my cell phone because you really cannot afford to be distracted). On the other hand, what could be considered worse than poop is all those cigarette butts!! As it is a well-known fact, French people are heavy smokers (about 40% of the population vs. about 20% in the US) and obviously, they have yet to figure out where the trash bins are (in case you are wondering, the answer is “just about everywhere!!”).

Still, overall, there is something really peaceful about being in France. I do wonder whether life here will ever be quite as empowering than life in the US, but I am not ready to go anywhere soon. I do enjoy being close to my family even though I don’t necessarily see them that often. I loved spending Christmas with them: it was the first time in many years that the month of December did not feel some kind of depressing. I loved being here to celebrate my mom’s birthday last month and I am looking forward to my brothers’ in April. I am also looking forward to weekends in Rome, Amsterdam, or even Stockhom… And I will never get tired of the fields of sunflowers and lavender…

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One thought on “Do we need a candle?

  1. Happy Anniversary my friend!! I remember your last day here that we spent together and how sad I was that you were moving. Well, I’m still sad that your not here and I miss our lunch dates, heartfelt talks, and our SATC addiction but I’m so happy for you. Look how much you’ve accomplished! Your almost done with grad school!!!!! I have always dreamed of living in Europe and love hearing your stories…so selfishly, I’m happy your experiencing all that you are! ;o) Good luck with your exams – It will probably be the most stressful part but keep going it’s so worth it in the end! I will be lighting a candle for you today!

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