What advice would you give to other exchange students? Specifically, what advice would you give to exchange students in francophone areas & those who will be attending school in French? Enjoy your last few days!!!
i’m FINALLY FINALLY FINALLY getting around to answering this, like a loser
ADVICE TO OTHER EXCHANGE STUDENTS:
- do it. eat the thing. even if the thing is raw oysters.
- make an effort to learn AND USE local slang. fortunately, urban dictionary is available in A SURPRISING NUMBER OF LANGUAGES! (this would have been helpful to me 10 months ago. guess when i made this discovery.)
- be prepared to have your butt OWNED by public transportation. it’s okay. it happens to the best of us. memorize landmarks.
- do the exact opposite of what i did, and stay as FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE from the internet/etc. i have no advice on how to do THAT, obviously, because i sucked majorly at it.
- a lot of people CLICK with their host families and they gain a second (or third) family for life, and that’s great. but a lot of people don’t, and that’s okay too. of course, if your host family really doesn’t work for you, don’t be afraid to speak up and get a NEW host family.
- be prepared to learn and play card games. card games are your friend, and they will make YOU friends.
- don’t let fear make your decisions for you. informed caution, sure, but not fear.
ADVICE TO STUDENTS IN FRANCOPHONE AREAS AND SCHOOLS:
- listen to stromae forever bye
- french humor is really weird??? it’s weird. if you don’t get it don’t feel bad
- likewise, french people will probably not appreciate the INCREDIBLE GENIUS of monty python. what a bunch of scrubs
- make sure you can pronounce the difference between the word “queue” and the word “cul.” i have said ON MULTIPLE OCCASIONS that someone is “in the ass” when in fact i meant “in the line.” wah.
- say “chirurgien” five times fast i DOUBLE DOG DARE YOU
How do you feel about leaving? Will you miss your host family?
this is an excellent question!! thank you, anon!
honestly, i’m mostly just excited to come home right now. i’m sad to leave my french friends and host family (esp. since i FINALLY have a host family that works!!!), but i’m also really really excited to see everyone back home again!
i haven’t been letting a lot of it on this blog, but to be honest this year has been… pretty weird for me. i was talking to my dad the other day and we figured out that a big part of the problem with nantes was that i was having less fun there than i would be having in durham: i didn’t really go out with friends, i didn’t really go out to eat, i didn’t really go exploring… my default setting here is “make myself the least inconvenient possible,” which translates to… doing jack shit, apparently. i get so caught up in NOT BEING A NUISANCE that i end up coming across as boring/uninterested in doing stuff, which is THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT I WANTED. and like, i realize this, and am conscious of it, and yet continue doing it because i don’t know how NOT to.
obviously it’s been a lot better in poitiers— my school was RIGHT downtown, and i became much closer friends with many more people in much less time than in nantes, plus they had more free time, so we’d go out for lunch and window shop and get ice cream and stuff.
A N Y WAY, so yeah: it’s kinda bittersweet to leave, but it’s good to come home. i’ve been pretty much non-stop psyched about senior year since like, february, so i have that to look forward to!! it was weird, the first things i missed were 1. my dogs and 2. durham academy & all my teachers. so it’s gonna be really good to get back there.
i am gonna miss my host family, in particular nicole (host mom)— we haven’t actually had ALL that much time together— since only mid-march!— so it’s not gonna be like… heart-rending? in the way that i think a lot of exchange students’ departures are. so… there’s that. obviously we’ll be keeping in touch, doing the whole cards-at-christmas-and-birthdays thing, that stuff.
i’ve been thinking about how to qualify my experience— was it more happy or more hard? how much fun vs pain/unfun was there? were there more positive experiences or negative ones? — and i think that honestly, there were probably more negative experiences than positive ones for me. it was weird and hard and not super fun for a lot of the time.
this year hasn’t been overall very fun, but it HAS been interesting. it wasn’t good or bad, but it was worth it.
at the very least now i have something to talk about at parties hahahaha
#askies #long post #piera does france