Haven't written much lately, probably because everything has been super super crazy! I've only been home usually between the hours of 8pm and 9am, and most of that is eating/sleeping. But I'll recap the past few days with some highlights:
Montmartre: We took a little morning trip to Montmartre, and it was beautiful. We wandered around back streets with very very very few people on them (which made me very happy) and visited Saint-Denis and Sacre Coeur. I learned that Sacre Coeur has a program in which people sign up to pray there at different shifts, to ensure that prayer is happening there 24/7. Its a very spiritual concept, I think, and it reminded me that Sacre Coeur is still a place of pilgrimage and very much still an important church in the Catholic faith. I lit a candle there for my uncle Tony, who has Parkinsons, and it's nice to know that someone will be praying for him throughout the day and night.
Bach at Sainte-Chappelle: We saw a Bach concert at Sainte-Chappelle, made up of a string octet. They played some pieces I've never heard before, and a couple that I recognized...What struck me the most was how amazing the acoustics of the building were. When I closed my eyes it sounded as if I was listening to a classical music album- the musicians were so in tune with each other both rhythmically and tonally. The enormous blue/purple/green stained-glass windows, or les vitraux, were only icing on the gateau.
Mouffetard: rue Mouffetard is like a mini Davis Square. It's quaint, has some fun bars/pubs, a few restaurants/markets and clothing stores. Plus, it's full of students because it's so close to la Sorbonne. We had a walking tour in that area and then went to 'l'happy' (aka happy hour, pronounced [lappy]) at a nearby pub. I'm making a concerted effort to develop a taste for beer, as a pint is cheap and can last a long time. I think sometimes all you really want is to have something to hold. Like, something to sip and to occupy you, and maybe give you a little buzz. That's why lately I've preferred having a pint to having a cocktail.
After Mouffetard, we decided to rendez-vous later for the Erasmus party at Mix Club. It's basically a party for international students in that in between 11 and midnight, you don't have to pay a cover if you have an international student ID card. My friend and I got some wine beforehand and moseyed over to the club, where we met up with friends, made new friends, and danced until 5:30am. We took the first morning metro back, and it was the best/worst decision ever. Definitely a one-time thing, but it was fun nonetheless to walk out of the metro station at 6am in heels, makeup, and chic party clothes (don't worry, mom...I mean jeans and a tank top...the french dress more conservatively when they go to clubs)
This brings us to TALLOIRES, aka the most beautiful place in the entire world.
It rained. It was beautiful. It was sunny. It was beautiful. The mountains were green and lush and the air was crisp and the lake was clear and blue and beautiful and I couldn't handle how gorgeous it all was. I think I'm going to have to make a whole new post about the food I ate there. We didn't really do anything special but the food and the drinking definitely deserves its own post.
Currently, I'm bro-ing out french-style. Watching soccer and drinking beer with my host father, brother, a priest, and a Scotsman. And there's a fire in the fireplace. Maybe I haven't moved on to the 'confrontation' stage of culture shock after all...