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Bonjour d'Aix!

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by Lauren F. It is hard to believe that my time here is half over! These last two weeks have gone by so fast but I have been having a great time! On Tuesday, we were able to sleep in as we did not have to meet until 2:00. I was exhausted from Bastille day so I slept until 1:00, which was much needed. We had our elective classes–mine is photography–for about an hour and then we went to the Musée Granet. The museum consisted of many pieces from artists like Cézanne, Monet, Manet, and Picasso. I really enjoyed this museum as there were some great pieces! Among some of my favorites were Cézanne’s watercolor paintings. After the museum we had some free time before dinner. That night we were making our dinners with our cooking groups. We made a classic French dish: chicken cordon bleu. It was my first time ever having that dish but it was very good and now I know how to make it! I really enjoy the cooking groups as it is a great way to bond with the other people on the program and learn how to make classic French dishes. For the people who wanted to, the evening market in Aix was the final activity of the day. I went to the market, which consisted of artisan items like dishes and jewelry. It is much different than the day markets in Aix, which consists mainly of meat, fish, cheese, and produce. Lauren F. boats On Wednesday, we had class for about an hour at our residence and then continued class outside at a café. With coffee and fresh croissants, we really focused on our conversation skills by discussing a specific theme – today it was fashion. I really enjoyed doing a lesson like this because I felt I got much more out of it. The key to learning a language is usage. After the café, we had a short break for lunch and then took a bus to the Puyricard factory. Puyricard is a large chocolate company in France. After we were done putting our hair into hairnets, putting on strange lab coat-like shirts, and sanitizing our hands we were finally allowed into the factory. While there, we learned about how they make calissons, an almond cookie that is a French specialty, marshmallows, and, of course, chocolate. Throughout the tour we were able to try many of their products which were all very delicious. We then took the bus back to Aix for an hour of free time before another night of cooking groups. In our cooking groups we made stuffed mushrooms, mashed potatoes, and a fennel salad. All delicious of course. After dinner, we all went to the café theatre where we saw a play. It was a small stage in the downstairs part of a café and it almost felt like a cave but it was fun! After this everyone was pretty tired so we returned to our residence and went to bed. Lauren F. chocolate Thursday morning just consisted of class. We learned some new phrases to use as connectors (like therefore, however, etc.), which will all be extremely helpful for all of us especially in writing. We had a break for lunch and afterwards met for a beach afternoon at La Ciotat! We took the bus there, which was about 1.5 hours long but worth it. It was such a nice and relaxing afternoon. For dinner, we ate some roasted chicken and couscous with vegetables. I really liked this meal, it was so delicious! After this, we all met Arthur to do some more French conversation practice over dessert. It has been a really fun week! Lauren F. secret beach À bientôt!

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