As it’s getting colder back home, the weather’s finally started to pick as I proceed well into the second half of my semester here in Tours, France. I can safely say that after eating a French pastry (vienoisserie) and “studying” every day in the appropriately named local ‘French Coffee Shop’, I will have a lovely souvenir of several kilograms to work off when I arrive back home in July. Thanks to an amazing French friend from the south, I am also now a proud owner of an official French beret and striped shirt (marinière), now only lacking the mad accordion skills required to really blend in as a native.
To think that I am already over half way through my time in this quaint and classical European “city” however, is a little heart-breaking; the small and familiar little streets, the eating dinner for lunch, the ridiculous keyboard, and the shop staff that have come to know my order by heart have really grown on me – and while it isn’t Paris or Marseille, this bustling river-tangled stretch of 12kms has definitely worked its charm.
With exams coming up soon however, so too are holidays. This means I’ll finally be able to get out and really explore France’s castle region of which Tours is luckily the centre. After that, I’ll really have the chance to practice the language I came here to study by travelling from up the magical northern coast of Normandy and Brittany, down to the country’s summer capital (complete with its tropic-like beaches and its ‘unexplained-by-science’ mistral): the southern coast – Here’s hoping there’ll be some amazing photos to show in my post-exchange blog!
Back to studying now though – this exam season’s looking to be tough (particularly in French!)
À toute à l’heure,
Karl Pahl-Duffy, a Bachelor of Languages/Bachelor of Arts/Diploma in Language student, Semester 1 2016 exchange at University of Tours, France
- Read Karl’s pre-departure blog here