Settling into la vie francaise

I feel like after two weeks I am finally getting used to my life here in France. While feeling like a true part of the family will take all semester, I am no longer uncomfortable in the house. Routine is very comforting to me and finally I’m forming one.

Classes at IES started this week and so far they are going really well. All my professors are engaging and challenging while allowing for the differences between American and French university systems. At IES I am taking a French language class, France and the Atlantic World (history of France’s interaction with the west from 16th-18th centuries), Contemporary French Society and History of Art and Architecture. So far the art class sounds most promising and it is really going to help me since I have two art history classes at the university starting next week. The history class sounds a little intense, but I think I will learn a lot from it. I am also taking a medival history class at the university.

I was trying to decide how much detail about my week to go into, but everything seems so trivial now. Of course, in a new county (or any new place for that matter) the littlest things become landmarks and triumphs. Buying school supplies, snacking on croissants, using public transportation and getting a library card are the interesting points of my days now!

So far, I am really glad I am in Nantes. It is such a real town. It doesn’t have to dress up for the tourists because there aren’t any, everything here is here for the Nantais. While it isn’t as flashy as I imagine Paris must be, it still has a vibrance and sophistication that constantly reminds me I really am in France.

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