(photo by Alexa: Washington Square Arch is basically an infant compared to the Arc de Triomphe. I can’t wait to see some of the most beautiful architecture in the world on a daily basis.)
I try to practice my French every day, but I lack discipline. It’s summer, I have a job, and I do a lot of outdoorsy-type things. It’s hard to think of the French word for “leaf” when I’m hiking to a new bouldering area with my fave Americans. As an aspiring journalist, though, I try to at least keep up with French news. So I thought I’d break the first rule of journalism and share my sources.
I’m about to take creative liberties by organizing my thoughts into a listicle, because it’s edgy and I’m busy.
1. This (http://nyti.ms/1l6OI3Y) is a two-and-a-half minute clip from the New York Times’ “Intersection” series. It’s a quick intro to Parisian fashion trends. Interviewees from Le Marais — the historic-turned-trendy quarter — talk about “frou-frou” and “bobo chic” (bohemian bourgeois). I’m so stressed about what to pack, but knowing that I can’t go wrong with traditional, classy styles makes me feel better. (How cool is that dude’s watch, though??)
2. I’ve been emailing back and forth with Tim, my future co-habitant, about rock climbing. We’re sharing stories and videos, and I’m trying to refrain from using Google Translate too much. Here’s a YouTube (http://www.grimper.com/video-urban-climbing-lyon) video of a few crazy Lyon climbers just doin’ their thing right in the middle of the city. Scaling a bridge? NBD.
3. Rookie is my favorite online publication for teen girls. Not a teen girl? Doesn’t matter. I find some of my new favorite songs from their Friday Playlists, and this (http://www.rookiemag.com/2012/02/friday-playlist-paris-les-filles-qui-chantent/) one, “Les Filles Qui Chantent,” basically rules. Listen up: France sounded better in the 60s.
4. I’m not really a fan of Buzzfeed (I say as I write in listicle-format) or Cosmo or ThoughtCatalog or Gawker or anything, but when I read trashy news in French, it’s a different story. Honestly, sometimes Cosmo France is easier to read than Le Petit Prince. AND it is pretty entertaining to see English hashtags introducing photos of macaroons (http://www.cosmopolitan.fr/,macarons-chats-lenotre-badou-badou-elodie-martin,1901328.asp) shaped like cat faces. I feel way prouder of myself for reading about my guilty pleasures en francais, you know?
5. The best for last: I found the most adorable little infographic on how to (http://technonouvelles.blogspot.com/2014/06/infographie-montre-commentaire-voyage.html) pack a suitcase. Whew!
When I’m not looking to French-ify my life, I’m getting my visa documents prepared. I have EVERYTHING, and tomorrow I will make one hundred copies of each one, and the next day I will put on my poker face as I hand them over to an indifferent consulate worker.
“Everything” includes my acceptance letter, two emails from Campus France, a recent photograph in passport format, my passport, proof of sufficient means of support, my airline ticket reservation, my license, the OFII (French immigration form), a long-stay visa application form, and a processing fee! Oh, I love French bureaucracy already. So, so much love. Drowning in love.