I forced myself to get up at 8:00 this morning so I could catch breakfast before it was done at 8:30. At 11:30 I took the bus to the centre ville where I met the other American girls in the OUS group in front of the hotel de ville and we spent the day shopping. We actually got a lot done. The first thing we did was go get cell phones at Orange, which is what I believe to be France’s largest cellular carrier. I tried to just get a Orange SIM card and put it into my phone, but my phone wouldn’t accept it. So I bought a cheap cell phone that I’m pretty happy with. It was 49 euros and has a touch screen like my iphone and is really little. We actually were there a while because as I was trying to put the other girls’ numbers into my phone, I found that I couldn’t add a name to the number in the address book so I asked them to help me figure it out, and then it took them even a while to figure out. They finally came up with some kind of solution but I eventually figured out a better one. Before we went into Orange we checked out this "palace" thing across the street.
Then we went looking for somewhere to eat. Some of the girls wanted to go to a certain café but first we went into the mall and saw Brioche Doree which is a great place where you can get a sandwich on baguette, a dessert, a cold drink, and coffee or tea for about 7 euros, which is practically a steal. Then we went to Monoprix because the girls had to get a few things like toiletries and such. I just bought a fork, knive, tablespoon, teaspoon, bowl, and a glass. After that, Emily and I went to get our bus passes. Most of the girls got theirs yesterday. Then we lost them but found them again in the mall. Here's some pictures I took along the way. OMG WEDDING DRESSES!!! I love wedding dresses.
We agreed to meet tomorrow to go shopping again at the same time and place. After we separated, I went in search of a hair straightener. Emily and I passed a salon while we were out getting the bus passes, and they had them, but every one they had was more than 150 euros. I think I’ll be wearing my hair up for a while. I might invest in one, but I don’t know. They aren’t very common in France. I went walking around the streets downtown and went into a store in which everything is 2 euros, and got a cute cover for my passport and a little tiny sock with a clasp on it that’s for small change. I took the bus back to L’espace Kennedy, put my stuff away, got more money (I spent a lot today…) and went to Carrefour for a few necessities and dinner. Unfortunately I can’t buy anything that needs to be refrigerated, but I did buy cheese, which at this moment I have taped outside my window so it stays cold. Something interesting I’ve noticed and think is quite weird is that the French don’t keep the eggs and milk refrigerated in the grocery store. That’s something I just don’t understand. While they keep the cheese cold, it’s common for them to not refrigerate that either. I was amazed to see that they sell pretty much any kind of hard alcohol in a grocery store. I guess the reason might be because grocery stores here aren’t open very late, and none as far as I know are open 24 hours. I bought a bottle of crème de framboises (raspberry cream) that is really good but strong. It also feels really good to buy alcohol and not be carded. The French and Europeans in general are very lax like that. That’s one thing I love about this place. People actually enjoy life it seems. It makes Americans look so anal about everything. People don’t really seem stressed. As one of the girls was telling me about Sylvie, Sylvie was really tired after all the stuff going on with us at the fac yesterday, and Lucie (the girl) told me that she was thinking “That’s like my life everyday, and that’s normal”. The French just aren’t used to the high-paced lifestyle of Americans, and I wish we would adopt that style of living. I think, or actually know, that I would like and appreciate life a whole lot more. I could be wrong though. The French complain a lot about life. But I think they do it mostly for the sake of having something to complain about. They love to complain and argue, and appear pretty pessimistic but in my opinion are just being realistic and on the very extreme, exaggerate, because they like to do that too.
Anyway, after shopping I waited for a long time to see the guy I thought would set up my computer to receive the wifi here. It was actually the wrong guy. I went next door and finally got my computer configured and came downstairs to have my computer connected for a little while, but then it was being slow and I messed with one thing too many, screwing something up and deleting a password so I lost internet. I have to go back to the guy tomorrow and have him enter whatever it was I deleted. It’s been really annoying not having internet, but when I get to Roche D’argent, I’ll have internet in my room. It wont be wireless, but at this point I couldn’t care less.
more pictures here