As of today, I have officially been living in Paris for just over a week. Just over a week of macarons, black jeans and shiny white apartments.
So, I thought I’d share some of my thoughts and feelings about my new life in France. Prepare yourselves – if I’m honest I’ve had a really awful week…
For a start, my French is really bloody awful. Like, so bad. I’ve been going to classes every day from 9h-13h (occasionally finishing at 17h…) and for some reason I’ve been put in the top set and I really should not be there. REALLY should not be there. I barely have any idea what’s going on and the grammar goes straight over my head. I do feel like I’m learning a few things though and I am getting more confident in shops and stuff. Ah man, though. My French is so bad.
Paris is really dirty. I don’t think you realise how dirty Paris is until you have to walk somewhere off the tourist route by yourself. My walk to university from home is gorgeous, through the Luxembourg Gardens, but seriously the whole city could do with a wash and a little TLC. Right now I’m sitting in between two Paris landmarks (I can literally see both) and there is a smashed up car just sitting in front of me. It has been there since I arrived. Is it me or is London normally sparkling? Since the Olympics, a lot of work has gone into keeping London ready for anything. Paris is the opposite. It is truly beautiful, sure, but also its gross. Sorry, everyone.
Why does nothing open until 10am? Seriously?! I mean, obviously the supermarkets and boulangeries open at like 8 and some of the bigger shops open at 9 – but on my road nothing opens until 10am. Nothing. I’ve already been up three hours, walked to uni and had an hour of class before I can buy myself anything. What is this about, France? And why is everything shut on a Sunday? And then why still shut on a Monday? Pick a day! Seriously, I’m really annoyed that I can’t buy milk unless I walk 20mins up hill on a Sunday.
I’ve had an absolute nightmare sorting out my wifi. You may have seen my desperate tweets yesterday morning. A week after ordering my internet, the box came. I plugged it in and nothing worked. I went to the shop to ask (30mins on the metro), they told me to bring it in, I went home and brought it back (another hour…) and they didn’t even look at it. A different guy just checked his iPad and told me it’d be another week before it worked. So, I’m still here in McDonalds, living my dream.
I think I’m being too mean to Paris. I’ve had a long week, had to find my way round a completely alien city, in French, and have spent far too much time in a classroom. I’ve been having nightmares, have to download TV in maccys to watch later, and the Americans at school are very American and laughed at me for getting upset at missing GBBO. I’ve had card problems, money problems, phone problems and wifi problems. I can’t FaceTime properly so haven’t really spoken to anyone from home. I’m tired. I’m so so tired. Yesterday I almost fell asleep on the metro. I want to come home so badly but want to stay here just as much. The wifi has just dropped in McDonalds. It was too hot at the start of the week and now I’m freezing. I don’t own a light jacket. I can’t afford a light jacket. Student finance have screwed my loan around and I’m not sure if it’ll even come.
(Lol a car just drove past with the most dodgy custom job wheels and lolololol welcome to Paris everyone)
I guess, though, this was to be expected. Moving somewhere brand new always has problems that come along side. I am, however, intensely fortunate to have been offered this opportunity. I am living in the Art History capital of the world and my flat is beautiful. I have made friends with some people on my course and have had an evening picnic in front of the Eiffel Tower, watching it sparkle at nightfall. I’m not about to run home.
Next week I’m going to post some more Paris specific things – maybe a few actual photos etc. I’m sorry I’ve been so absent.0