Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Blogging FAIL...part 2?

So apparently this is a theme with my abroad trips: I blog a big in the beginning, and then I fall away from it. Why?

It's not as if I am lacking in things to say; it's quite the opposite! I have so much to say at any one time that it seems kind of overwhelming to sit down and pick something to write about. Also, I've been lazy. Let's not sugarcoat it too much. Another thing I'm not lacking during these months in France is free time. I've such an abundance of it, I actually don't know what to do with myself sometimes. (I know, I know, you're thinking "You're in France, and you don't know what to do with yourself?!" But with a limited budget, you can only travel so much :-P )

Aaaanyway, I'll do a bit of a photo montage to sum up what the last few months have been like.
New Years in Paris - apparently we weren't the only ones with this idea.... 

Allie visited! So nice to see my cousin and do some exploring :-D
Liz, Maureen, Marissa, and Alastair on NYE!

Allie and I took a trip to the port town of Dieppe. It was beautiful, we had a wonderful meal, and we saw this amazing rainbow.

2nd trip to Dieppe with Marissa, Julia, and Alastair. Such a charming place!

This is the Panorama of Rouen, where Monet sometimes went to observe the city from above. The view inspired several of his paintings. It's about a 20-minute walk from my apartment!!

This is the view from the Panorama. It's not hard to see why Monet was so inspired. I love that I can find a quiet spot in an otherwise bustling little city. Nothing like a little perspective!

It snowed in Rouen!!! This is the view from my window. I'm happy to report, this is the only snow we got this year. I'm in the "one good snow per year is perfect" camp. One thing, though: Normans don't know what to do with snow. It stayed very much like this for about a week, until we had a few warm/rainy days and it melted. I can only imagine the lawsuits that would stem from such a situation in the States...
Jenn came to visit me!  The Sacré Coeur might be my favorite place in the city. Miss you Jenn!
Visitors always allow me to re-discover Paris and its many charms.
...visitors also serve as the perfect partner-in-crime for discovering yummy French pastries, YUM.
This demonstrates two things the French take very seriously: recycling and wine. Happy Sunday morning to everyone!
I spend the weekend at my friend Christina's house, and we made a traditional French scallop recipe for lunch, with a delicious wine-cream sauce. If you know French cuisine, you know that butter, cream, and cheese are usually involved, often simultaneously. And wine.

It's amazing how many people pack the cafés once there is a hint of sunshine breaking through. I would love if the US adopted this "café culture"! People just sit, chat, enjoy life, people-watch, and detach from their computers/cell phones for a little while. Above is the scene from me and Julia having a café one day: same phone, same café, and water! Side note: the stereotype that the French smoke a lot is most often true; the ashtrays are a permanent fixture on every outdoor table and not ours :-)
Smoking kills!

So that was the gist of my life until February vacation, during which I took a trip to Marrakech (Morocco), Madrid, and Barcelona. I had the time of my life, and I'll share that in my next update. There WILL be one this time!

A toute à l'heure!