So a few things have happened since my last update. The last excursion happened but I’ll get to that in a second. In other news, I’m now 20! My birthday was a day or two ago. Crazy stuff. I’m not a teen anymore. When did that happen? Also, some friends and I briefly met a guy from Liverpool yesterday who is in Angers studying music. That was cool. The month of September language intensive study is now over as well. There was an international soiree/talent show thing last night and that was the official end of the month. That was pretty cool. People danced or sang or played instruments and a few girls from Japan dressed up in traditional attire. My favorite part? A group of students mostly from South Korea I believe, though three of my friends (one from KU, one from Allegheny, and the other from Hong Kong) were in it, did PSY’s dance!! Hands down that was the performance I was most excited for. I’d been hoping that someone would do it. For those of you who don’t know about this song/dance, there’s a Korean singer PSY who’s song Gangnam Style has been hitting it big in a looot of countries around the world. He’s appeared on Ellen and there’s also a really cute video of a mother and son doing the dance in their living room (Ellen also found them and brought them on her show). But here’s the official music video for anyone who’s missed out on this current phenomenon.
Alright, now that that’s all out of the way…excursion story time! So I’ll be honest and admit that I really had no idea what this excursion was going to be because I didn’t end up going to the presentation on it. It’s that these presentations are at the end of the day and when you have class from 9-5 and then a presentation after that my brain’s gone, it’s already checked out by 3:45ish some days. You don’t realize how easy everyday life is in your home country until you go somewhere else and have to actively work to comprehend everything. It’s exhausting for the first several weeks. That I wasn’t really surprised by, I knew that it’d be work but what did kind of surprise me was how physically tired you feel for the first couple weeks. But anyway, so long story short, I didn’t go to the presentation because I was tired.
This excursion was one of the early ones which meant that we had to be at the meeting place in front of the school at 6:45 AM to leave at 7 AM. It was a two hour or so ride I believe but I don’t really remember. So, the first thing we did was a boat ride. Score! I did kind of wonder about people getting seasick though but someone said that no one should because it was a smooth ride? I dunno. So on this boat, there was a top floor which was out in the open and a covered seating area underneath. By some stroke of luck, my friends and I were the first of the CIDEF group to get on the boat so we ran straight to the top floor and got the back-facing seats because that way we’d have an unobstructed view. Most of the others came to the top too but didn’t stay long. It was a little cold. And by a little I mean, it was pretty chilly and then got fairly cold when the boat started moving and the wind started blowing. Though the boat stopped twice to let people off/let people on, CIDEF didn’t get off. At the first stop though, most of the kids moved downstairs where it was warmer. By the end of the ride (I heard someone say it was two hours) Emily and I, a few monotrices, and a handful of other students were the only ones of our group left up top. Emily and I refused to go downstairs when the rest of our friends did because we loved the view too much. I kind of liked the wind blowing too but it was a bit cold.
Lunch was eaten along a small deserted beach about twenty minutes away. That was nice. The view was nice and I think almost everyone went seashell hunting after they were done eating. There were TONS! A bunch of shells would get washed up when the tide came in and then get stuck because of seaweed that would also get washed up which resulted in just big piles of shells surrounded by seaweed. The shells themselves were very different from what we have at home (at least on the East Coast). They were smaller than what’s at home and a really high percentage of them were intact. They also had different kinds than what’s at home. It was a good lunch hour needless to say.
After lunch we made a few quick, twenty minute stops at….Carnac! For those of you who don’t know what resides in Carnac, let me tell you: megalithes. Yep, megalithes. Giant stones/boulders thousands of years old placed in long parallel lines. They’re thought to be from the Neolithic age about 6, 000 years ago which makes them like France’s version of Stonehenge. Understand now? And just like at Stonehenge, there’s a road that goes by right next to the closed off area (there’s a big highway a couple yards from Stonehenge). This wasn’t a highway but it’s a road. And because this particular display of megalithes is so big, we stopped by the museum/gift shop end of it and then drove to another section of it.
The last stop of the day was in a nice little place called Vannes. That was a nice place. The marina was was and right across the street from that is the entrance to this big walking area with shops and restaurants and such. Carina and I had crepes and tried a bit of far (some pastry-food that we were told we should try). There were four things we were told to try while we were there: crepes, cidre, far, and another pastry the name of which I don’t remember. The far was pretty good. I wasn’t a huge fan of the date bits in it but the rest of it was good. And my crepe was good except that I couldn’t eat part of it because it was literally soaked in alcohol. I ordered one of the specialty crepes, la normande. So it was a crepe with roasted apples on top and then it said flambed in Calavos (I think that’s how you spell it). So when the waitress brings it out she puts the plate down and then pours this little pot of liquid over the top of it. Some of the liquid was on fire but not much of it so she basically just poured straight alcohol on my crepe. And let me tell you, it was strong. It wasn’t as bad when it was just a little of the alochol on the crepe with a piece of roasted apple but there was a part in the middle that was just absolutely soaked in it. I know I’m a bit new to the whole alocohol thing but I don’t know how many people would’ve enjoyed it. Oh well, I tried it right?
And I believe that concludes the recounting of the last excursion for the month of September. I’ve heard tell that there’s excursions maybe once a month or so during the actual semester. The only one I’ve heard mentioned though is the one to the Normandy beaches which sounds cool. Anyway, enjoy the pictures. I need to go pack and get ready. Dad’s train gets in in two hours or so and I’m meeting him so I have to be ready. Best birthday present right? My dad comes for a visit. Then I’m tagging along with him to the meeting in Roscoff since CIDEF is on break for the next week before the semester starts. Guess we’ll both find out how that works when break ends.