Saturday, September 10, 2016

It Already Feels Like Home

>>> Hello Genuine Bliss <<<

I hope everyone I'm moderately close to would attest to the fact that I am generally a very positive person. In my twenty years of life I've been loved and blessed beyond measure, so it's a natural reaction to be happy and full of joy. With this said, there are few events and opportunities in my life that compare to this year in Strasbourg, and I can't imagine waking up tomorrow, the next day, or even next year any happier than I woke today. This is bliss.

Pictures can't do the cathedral or the streets of Strasbourg justice.

Look Ma, I made friends.

I struggle to remember all of their names or what countries they're from, and I also can't pronounce many of the names I do remember.     But they're my friends, and we're having a ball getting to know each other better.
Francisca is the perfect roommate,
and she's been such a comfort to me on this adventure!
This night we were out at the "disco" until 6:30am, and that's normal for them.

Our Italian friend, Paolo, made us an amazing dinner on our first night in La Marne.

A Belgian, an American, and three Portuguese beauties.
We've been going to "Lac du Baggersee" and enjoying the lake and the beach volleyball
 since our schedules are fairly empty and it's way too hot to hang out inside (without AC).

The first Sunday of the month it's free to go to the top of Cath├ędrale Notre Dame
I'm going to spend this year feeling uncommonly pale next to all my beautiful friends.
Six nationalities are represented in this picture.

Oh, and this is Marta! She's Spanish and awesome,
and she'll be my roommate next semester when Francisca has to leave me.

Sidenote: Let's talk Portuguese cultural immersion

There are three Portuguese girls here who've adopted me into their tribe and taught me some basics: 

  • Basic lesson 1 It's extremely rude to say "I don't care" when someone asks if you want to do something when you translate it into Portuguese. When I'm trying to be polite and accommodating while we make plans, I should say "We can do whatever you prefer" or "How about you decide", instead. Thanks Joana for finally calling me out.
  • Basic lesson 2 I can't pronounce most Portuguese names and words, but I've finally learned how to properly pronounce Francisca... It took me a week.
  • Basic lesson 3 When Portuguese people say the name "Ana", I hear the name "Hannah"... So eventually I learned my Portuguese friend "Hannah" is actually named "Ana", but I can pronounce it either way so it's whatever.
  • Basic lesson 4 "Good night" in English = "Boa noite" in Portuguese 
(Very little French cultural immersion has occurred so far, but I'm getting more comfortable each day)

I miss my Bowling Green favorites, but I'm in the right place 

Kelsey (think best friend and freshman year roomie at BGSU) is the sweetest friend ever for sending me the most thoughtful letter and my favorite poetry book. I definitely teared up in the elevator with Francisca and a random Italian neighbor when I opened the package. In so many ways Kelsey is more of a sister than a friend, and ever since I've been living my "adult life" she's been my rock and my constant supporter. She wrote in the front cover, "Have too much fun to miss us back here. We'll do that for you & then we'll come find you in Europe." It's a deal, girl.

Oh, and updates on communicating with me: 

Whatsapp, Snapchat, Facebook messenger, and BGSU email ( ) are all good ways to get in touch. 

I can't wait to share about my classes and events at the university, but my first class isn't until Tuesday. Now that I'm mostly settled in, the next mission is to start traveling (everywhere). Oh, and I never have Friday classes... Go Bachelor of European Management program directors.

 Love, Jules 
"Wander with wonder and the whole world becomes home"-Tyler Knott Gregson 


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