Monday, September 22, 2008

I'm Lovin' It

Thank the Cosmos for McDonalds free wireless! And for their air-conditioning too!

My goodness, I don't know how much longer I'm going to last without Internet. You see, I finally found a place and have settled in - and, all things considered, I'm in the best possible position I can be in. But there's still no Internet, and I have no idea how much longer we need to bug the daylights out of our landlady...

But enough about that, because now I'm at a McDonalds overlooking the Mediterranean, using their free Internet and I can finally talk to all of you again.

I love it here! Please allow me to gush. My thoughts are all over the place, so forgive the formatting and lack of organization:

*It sounds silly, but I feel so European every time I double-kiss my local friends. In North America, usually only pretentious people do it (unless it's a cultural thing with their families), but here it's what people actually do instead of hugging hello and goodbye. In fact, my first double-kiss was also my first I'm-in-France-Moment - I'd befriended a French girl at registration and when I saw her at class sign-up the next day, she leaned in and gave me a What-the-Hell-Look when I had no idea what she was doing. And then the light bulb went off, and it's almost instinct now!

*I also feel really cosmopolitan because I'm making friends from lots of different countries - France, of course, the UK (England and Ireland so far), Austria, Germany, Italy, Morocco, etc. etc. etc.! I'm hoping to charm my way to a hometown or two so that I'll be able to stay somewhere for free. I really should get to work on befriending someone from Prague and someone from Greece!

*I suspect that some of the streets downtown smell like pee because the French have very bad Washroom Karma - they're very stingy with their washrooms. Even when you're a woman asking a woman to use their washroom - you'd think they'd understand, right? Wrong!

*At every class I have except one, I have a fantastic view of the Mediterranean. It's distracting, to say the least.

*BNP Paribas is the suckiest, most inefficient bank I've ever had the displeasure to work with. Don't use them if you ever live in France.

*Campus is definitely the chicest place in the city. There is all kinds of gorgeousness and stylishness going on there, which totally makes up for the poor, under-funded building. But I'm also more aware than ever what a Casual Canadian I am. :P

*I see that French women love to wear white. The hottest look of the season here in Nice though, has to be the shirt dress - or just a big, floaty shirt - with a thick belt slung low on the waist. And this can be just by itself, or over leggings or over a skirt, or over shorts, or over jeans.

*I lovelovelove the French aesthetic, but it's not so easy to emulate. On one end of the spectrum there's the perfectly-prepped look - elaborate, fancy, high-maintenance, and never the same look twice. Practically impossible for me to do. On the other end of the spectrum, there's the effortlessly beautiful. Like my French flatmate. The girl literally rolls out of bed looking stunning every single day, with her outfit casually imperfect but set just so - she sort of looks like a young Natalie Portman. She just happens to be naturally captivating. And there are many of them here. It's mind-boggling!

*I've identified the Classic French Beauty - slightly olive skin, lush, espresso hair, dark eyes, perfect brows just slightly on the full side, rightly convinced that she is gorgeous, super put-together and with a slightly toplofty air. They are something else.

*A girl in the flat next to mine, which belongs to the same landlady, looks just like Gisele Bundchen, except she's Austrian.

*Hearing English has never affected me this much before - I feel a certain camaraderie here towards other Anglophones. It's like we're in a club or something.

*Prior to coming here, I have never met boys who don't drink. I guess it's not such a huge deal since people are just too used to of alcohol.

*Smoking is way too popular!

*The boys aren't all cute, but the ones who are, are really good-looking. And if he's a mutual friend, you're allowed to double-kiss him. And I've just realized that one of the best ways to hit on me is to praise my superior French-speaking abilities, as well as my intelligence. Hee!

Ok, I need to bring my copy of French Vogue home and digest it from cover to cover. Will talk again as soon as I can - pray that I'll get Internet soon, for me?


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