23 December 2011

One week.

In one week I will be on a plane destined for France.

I am freaking out. There is no other sophisticated way for me to say it. I wish I was cooler and could eloquently say how excited and nervous I am but instead I shall fumble a little. Forgive me.

I can't figure out what I am feeling. I think I am supposed to feel nervous and worried, but right now I am just excited. When I close my eyes I am not seeing the difficult time I will have understanding my professors, I am seeing the beauty of the country, the way my French will improve, the way I will bond with my host family, and the way in which I will change.

Will it be like Eat, Pray, Love? Certainly not. But I will be eating a lot, pray to understand the language, and loving everything I can. But I am not setting out to try to live someone else's story. I am going to write my own.

I am nervous for those moments when the unknown gets overwhelming and I feel lost. When all I will want to do is call up my friends and watch a movie without subtitles. I am nervous for my exams that will be in French and for that chance that I will not understand anything they are saying. I am nervous about meeting my host family. I am nervous about insulting someone with my pitiful accent.

But it is almost Christmas and my excitement is building. I have started to get together my stuff I am taking. And I am figuring about how hard it is to pack six months of a life into a 50lb suitcase. Maybe I will upload my packing list later so you can see how silly some of the stuff I am taking is. I haven't started packing all of the big stuff yet, but I have made lists. Let's just pray that it all fits!

I have started thinking about the things that I want to accomplish when I am over there and what I think I will get to experience, but they are mostly just flashes of my imagination. I want to wander the streets with my friends, shop at farmers' markets, go hiking in the Alps. I will travel to foreign places, and meet strange people. I will put my camera to good use, travel with my appetite, and hopefully when this is all over I will be able to speak French fluently.

I pray that at June 4, my passport will be bursting with stamps, and my life's story will forever bear the marks left by those places I've visited and people I've met. My wallet may be empty, but I'll be all the richer for it.

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Merci mon amie!

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