Week 3

WORD OF THE DAY:

chuchoter- to whisper

After a long week jammed full of classes and a two-day trip to Brussels, it’s nice to be back in my bed here in Paris.

If I had only one word to describe my first full week of classes, I’d say this week was overwhelming. Getting used to taking five academic classes for the first time since high school, I did my best to plow through several hours worth of classes this week because I knew what awaited me at the end of it: a weekend trip to Brussels with my new friends.

The new classes aren’t half bad, really. I quite like my teachers, and we went on two really fun field trips this week. The first was to Notre Dame with my Histories and Legends of Paris class. We toured the cathedral and learned about the religious significance behind the scene of Judgement Day on the front of the Cathedral, and behind the stained-glass windows within the cathedral itself.

Notre Dame

 

My second field trip of the week happened on Thursday, when my History of Photography class visited La Bibliothèque Nationale de la France to see an art exhibition of the famous photographer Nadar. I don’t know the first thing about photography, but I have a friend who’s Art Major concentration is Photography. I’m excited to learn more about it.

Portrait of Gerard de Nerval, a well-known French poet. I had to analyse his poem, “El Desdichado” for my French Literature class at Skidmore.

My first week of classes was hard work, but it was all worth it in the end when we spent the weekend in Brussels. This Friday, I, along with ten of my new friends, boarded buses from Paris heading for Brussels, Belgium. If you want to travel over the weekends while abroad, it’s important to take into account how far away your destination is, and how much each option of travel will cost you. Our original plan had been to take a two hour train from Paris to Brussels, but since Brussels is so close to Paris, we opted to take a much cheaper bus into Belgium. The bus was a four-hour ride, but it was worth it because we saved around 80 euros each. Brussels is an adorable city, and a worthwhile visit for anyone studying abroad in Paris because it’s so close. We visited a few art museums and a church, but the crowning attraction for us was definitely the food! One might not think at first glance that Belgium is well-known for it’s food, but just think of all the food that is Belgian: Belgian chocolate, Belgian waffles, Belgian fries, and I think my new favorite, Belgian fried mussels. Needless to say, we ate well this weekend.

La Grande Place
Le Marché
Belgian Waffles are officially the best waffles
Mannekin Pis. I promise I didn’t include this picture just for laughs; this little statue of a boy peeing is actually a national landmark in Belgium. It’s far less impressive in real life than you might imagine.
Cathédrale Saints-Michel-et-Gudule de Bruxelles. I love visiting Cathedrals; they remind me of my Cathedral at home in Washington DC.

I may still be overwhelmed by the end of this week, but I think that’s ok; this is an overwhelming experience. However, that doesn’t mean I won’t do my best to enjoy every minute of it. Next week I’ll show you what we’ve been learning in my new classes and hopefully also some pictures from what promises to be a great weekend in Barcelona with an old friend.

À bientôt,

Elizabeth

P.S: I’ve decided next week to do this challenge they offer here at IES called Le Défi. I have to speak only French all week. Wish me luck!

 

3 Replies to “Week 3”

  1. Nicely illustrated good photos and interesting commentary on what it is like to have a week crammed with work. You appear gifted in writing. Great to follow in your parents footsteps.

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