Monday, October 31, 2005
It's so much fun here. I love it! I have changed/found another flight to stay here until Sunday morning! My flight cost me 00.01 GBP (unfortunately plus tax) but how cool is that! I like it here! I like it!!!!!!!
Thursday, October 27, 2005
My friend Alexandra on the left (French) et Alisa (Canadian) on the right
The second 'natural curiosity' for the day. A cross between a giant pile of rocks and a mountain...how curious! I like it!
The group atop the second 'natural curiosity' (left to right): Alisa, Jens, Moi, Sebastian et Mathise. This shot looks like a post card with everyone placed so nicely.
The most beautiful Autumn leaves I've ever seen. This is the part where we all stopped and got out of the car with our cameras.
The thrid 'natural curiosity'. A cascade/waterfall. Look at the hillsides behind us, covered in colours. This waterfall was extraodinary and different to any others that I have seen. Tired in levels and 'fat' if you can describe a waterfall as overweight.
Alisa and Cara is a castel built atop this jagged rock in the background. Incredible! I've never seen anything like it and Alisa siad it was Mordor from Lord of the Rings.
The last town we stopped at night on our way home. It's amazing. I've never seen anything like it. A church perched on a giant rock or as I like to say a rocky outcrop that goes up instead of out!
The Cara at night in her natural habitat.
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Sunday, Oct. 23rd, 2005: Today was one of best the days of my life. One day incredible. One day euphoric. Night last, right before I slept (2:30 in the morning), I went to set my alarm clock on my mobile and I realized that I received a message or 'texo' as they say in French. The texto, sent by Jens (German exchnage student) asking if I would like to 'tour' the area of St Etienne. He has a car and has spoken to me in the past about going for a drive/tourist foray. Texto: Cara hello, do you want to make a southern tour of St Etienne tomorrow? One will leave has 8h. So yes, one needs telephoner to speak about the details! Jens.
I thought that it was a good idea (especially because this weekend I am free and not traveling) but Alisa (Canada) slept over and it seemed a little impossible to say to her at 8am in the morning` I am leaving but you saty here and sleep' thus I had to answer the texto that I am interested but speak to you in the morning. In the morning, Jens called (7:30am - Oh la la!), and asks whether I would like to come. I said ` No, not possible with Alisa staying at mine and she was sleeping'. 15 minutes later Alisa's alarm clock went off (a mistake, normally it for university during the week) and I have awoke. I decided that since Alisa was awake I would ask her about the trip. Normally, I don't think she too spontaneous and asked how many hours is the tour? I wrote the following reply to Jens: You left already? The girl awakes! How long is the tour? Can this girl come too? I'll ask demand? As I was speaking with Alisa about possibly going
Jens replied: Be there to get you in 15 mins! I thought Alisa would continues to debate but instead she said ` My Gosh, 15 mins!' and we began to move quickly! Throwing clothing on, run to the boulangeie/bakery to buy a baguette, scoff small lunch/breakfast, make the baguette- add tomatoes, cucumber and bree (cheese... of course... It's France!) in 2 seconds flat (lol, thats not a French expression) and run outside. The weather was rainy. Met Jens and his 2 German friends- Sebastian (a friend also on exchange in France) and Matise (his colocator/housemate). And we' re off. Everyone is very nice! Alisa and I in the back seat with Matise. First stop, small village. I am certain that we were the only people who did not live there. The weather started to fine up and some sun! Around this time, Cara and Alisa start to become euphoric. It was indescribable. The countryside so pretty and I am in France! In France! Really in France! No, really! Incredible. I am very happy that I have decide to come today. I fell in love with the countryside at that moment. I think it was one of the happiest moments during my life. Indescrible It was. My eyes drank in everything and I became intoxicated with the landscape. Gerogrous, fresh and raw. I was smiling uncontrollably and I felt that same feelings of being in love with someone. My soul was free. My soul was. My soul was euphoric. My soul was singing.
After that hiking on a hill/mountain. If I knew that hiking was a possibility I have would have chosen better shoes. But, 'sans soucci/no worries'. Hike, anyway! The view at the summit was incredible! Alsolutelyt! It was covered with ladybugs too. Then, a second more difficult hike at a mountaine/big rock thing called 'Saint Martial'. There were arrows spray painted on the stones of the montain and you follow the arrows up and another series down. There were ropes use to go up and decend. Nonie, you would have been ` Oh Honey-ing' all the way!
Next stop, a look out: Countryside and Mountains. Very very pretty. Drive through the stunning mountains with the leaves changing into the colours of autumn. Alsolutely amazing. I hae neer seen the colours of Autum like this. I think each person in the group said at different times that they now thought autum is best time to see this region. At this point we actually had to stop the car and get out to see the leaves. I do not know weather it was the time of dayor the the angle of the sun as it hit the leaves but it was breathtakingly beautiful. Lookout: Waterfalls. Lookout: nature/sceanry. Lookout: Another waterfall. Lookout: cute village. Amazing landscape. Alisa sleeps in the car. She is tired beacsue we were up late talking with my French friend Alexandra. Next stop: Lake and to see the Ardechoise mountain. U turn. Find a chart. Encounter a heard of cow. After that a dog tries to attack the car. Literally he threw himslef at the car... I said that he must hae thought we were a giant sheep beacause the car is ight in colour and 'Alisa added with lots of eyes', ery funny/cute except for the mark we found later on the car from the dog! Next stop: castle/fort on a rock mountain (really medieil looking). Cara's toilet experience...small iallge, weird toilet. Lets not go there. The last village by night. Also ery medeil looking. This area seems to be characterised by rocky outcrops but they go up into mountain like rocks instead of out! Amazing, really amazing.
Now, its 2am but it was important for document this extraordinary day. Good night.
P.S. I saw the photographs as I was posting this and and I am so happy. Should I say it again? Incredible!
Dimanche, Oct 23rd, 2005:
Primere arête, petit village. Je suis certain que il n’a y pas any autres gens la sauf les gens qui habite dans la village. Le temps fait beau by this time, pas pluie…soeil! Arund this time, Cara et Alisa commence devenir euphorique. It was indescribable. Le campagne so joli et je suis en France! En France! Vraiment en France! Non, vraiment! Incroyable. Je suis tres heureuse que j’ai decide pour venir aujourd hui. I fell in love with the countryside at that moment. I think it was one of the happiest moments pendent my life. It was indescrible. My eyes drank in everything and I became intoxicated with the landscape. Gerogrous, fresh and raw. I was smiling uncontrollably and I felt that same feelings of being in love with someone. My soul was free. My soul was content. My soul was euphoric. My soul was singing.
Apres ca un randonne sur un colligne/mountaine. Si j’ai connu que randone est un possibilite j’ai would have choisir mieux chassures. Mais, sans soucci. Randone, anyway! La vue de la l’aiguille est incroyable! Alsolument! Il y aux coccinelles partout sur la terre.
Apres, un deuxieme randonne, plus difficile bien sur! Le nom de la mountaine/grand piere chose etais Saint Martial. Il y a les fleche spray painted sur les pierres du montainge et c’etait necessarie pour suivre les fleches pour montee et une autre série decendu. Il y les cordes aussi pour tenir et utliser pour monter et decendre. Nonie, you would have been ‘Oh Honey-ing’ all the way! Arrete a une petit point de surveillance. Les compangne et mountaines. Tres tres joli. Conduire vers/traverse stunning mountines avec l’abres ou les feuilles est changer les colours. Alsolutely amazing. J’ai jamais vu les colours d’Autum comme ca. Je pense chaque personne dans le group a dit que l’autume est le mieux temps pour voir cette region/endroit. At cette point we actuslly had to stop the car and get out to see the leaves. Je ne sais pas weather it was the time of day or the angle of the sun on the leaves but it was breath taking. Lookout: Cascade. Lookout: la natures/sceanry. Lookout: Cascade Lookout: mingnon village. Amazing paysage. Alisa dormer. Elle est fatigue. Lac et voir la montagne Ardechoise. U turn. Trouve une carte. Vache. Chien. Voir castle/fort. Cara’s toilet experience. Le deniere village.
Maintenant, c’est du matin mais c’etait important pour document cette jour extraordinaire. Bonne nuit.
P.S. J’ai vu (juste maintenant) les photos que j’ai prend heir et je suis heureuse.
Sunday, October 23, 2005
BORKEN FRENCH:J’ai amiees francais! Aujourd hui j’ai awoke lazily et j’ai prend un douche. Apres ca, j’ai ecrit un project pour mon cours qui s’appelle tutorat geographique. Pour moi, j’ai un sens de je travaille duree. Je voudrais finir cette project donc dans l’avenir ce ne pas necessaire pour inquiette au subject de ca et aussi j’ai trove le temps pour aller au muse. Un bonne idée pour ‘cease le jour’. Apres ca j’ai visite maccdo pour utilier l’intenet. Je voudrais contacter Stuart qui travail avec mon l’universite. Il est ici a Lyon just 4 jours mais j’ai envoie un email au subjet de si c’est possible pour lui pour prenderais un cadeau pour ma mere a Melbourne. C’est lourd et peut etre c’est possible pour addjouter les autres choses aussi! Ma mere a telephoner moi! Youpi!
Ensuite, j’ai partie a maccdo et prend le bus a Carrefours (en anglais c’est crossroads). J’ai achete les choses pour le diner et rotuorne chez moi. Kristine (Danois) et Alexandra (Francaise!!!) ont arrive après ca et ensemble ont cree le diner. J’ai fait le stirfry avec le riz. Claire (francaise) a arrive avec frommage pendent la cussiner! Deux gens francaise! Bien! Diner est un ressuir avec toutes le monde et après c’est fromage- le petit munster, coulommiers et rocquefort avec pain et les raisins. Les formages sont tres bien. Bonne choix! Ben parti pour travail et Loubna (Francais) a arrive. Nous parlons ensemble! C’est bien! J’ai comprend un blague et faire un blague aussi! Alexandra est de Dijon et Calire d’Orange. Je pense que elles voudrait rencontre les gens a l’universite comme moi. Touts le monde exchange les numeros de portable! Loubna parti et après Kristine aussi. Calire, Alexandra et moi parle pour longtemps. J’ecrit les mots francais que j’ai apprend sur un affice pour mon mur. J’ai beaucoup maintenant. Les deux filles parlent anglais un peu et doce c’est bien pour apprendre francais. C’est le meme chose que le soiree la nuit denierre, le Franco-American soiree.
A le Franco-American soiree, J’ai rencontre 2 freres et leur ami qui parle francias courrant mais aussi angalis parce que leurs parents sont American! Tres bein pour parler. En ce moment je trove c’est plus facile pour parle avec 1, 2 ou 3 gens. Pas un grand groupe. A le soiree la nuit denier j’ai parle avec un group des 3 filles un plus ages de moi et c’est facile pour parler avec elles. Je pense dans l’avenir je lui verrais encore. I am looking forward to it. La soiree etait un peu triste parce que je suis le seul American etudiant qui bothered to come! Slackers. Il y avait les demi American garcons mais pas le meme chose. J’ai pense que comment touts les gens dit les Francais est rude et pas syampa et il y a les gens Francais qui faire un grand effort et les Americans n’est pas la!
Apres, le soiree la nuit denier je pommande avec mon velo avec les hommes francais avec parents American. C’etait facile pour parle avec un homme at a time. Et j’ai l’opportunity pour parle avec toutes les homme pendent le prommande, one at a time. Bien! Apres ca j’ai fait mon velo chez Niki. Elle n’etait pas la donc j’ai decidee pour fait mon velo a ‘transborder’ un discotheque entre du Parc de la Tete d’Or et Lyon 1. J’ai vu une amiee sur la route (What are the chances?) et nous venions ensemble parce que j’ai accune idée ou est transborder. It’s a good thing I went avec eux parce que I was way off. Transboder c’etait pas mal mais il me manqué le mood pour moi. J’ai vu beaucoup des gens qui je connais et obtenu un pince, t-shirt, lanyard et trouver d’argent (presque battre le pince), toutes advertising la ville de Lyon. Je pense la ville est tres keen/plein d’enthuasim pour promotion de Lyon. Sur un grand screen, il a monte une film pour promotee Lyon avec beaucoup des sports est la musique vite. J’ai decide pour chez moi a 2:30 heures je pense a peut pres. J’adore mon velo est le liberte avec ca!
EVEN MORE BROKEN TRANSLATION (which I have fixed to make it barely comprenhendable):
P.S. My favourite translation is: Two Frenchwoman people! hahahaha all the way home!
Cara's room! Thats then best bed in the world and wll worth dragging it on the tram, train, pushing it down the street and hauling it up 4 flights of spiral stairs! My coat rack, how posh (never had one before...oh so novel), thank you landlord!
Cara's room...the other direction. There are my nice big windows which let the morning sunlight in which warms up my house! The big blue worm is from Ikea and is filled to breaking point with clothes (say no storage space). The hooks on the back of my doors are a life saver. The blue bobbles/beads hanging from the ceiling are a house warming present from a French friend!
Cara's 100% free book shelves made from real French wine boxes!
Random French Facts:
-Cobbled streets make ridding a bike very bumpy and make you feel like your teeth are going to fall out of your head.
-I get discounts from my little local shop because the guy thinks I am ‘vraiment joli’(really pretty)
-Everyone tastes/eats the grapes here at the supermarket and as a budgeting student Cara gives that the 2 thumbs up!
-The 2 rivers (Rhone and Soane) that run through Lyon are massive. It makes the Yarra blush and run for cover.
-Wearing a skirt that is shorter then knee length says ‘I really really want you to start up random conversations with me, preferably starting with a sleazy-ish Salut/Hey’.
-It is not compulsory to wear a helmet when ridding a bike here and French driving is a little nuts.
-When people honk here they do so with dedication! I mean serious honking like ‘That’s not a honk’ *with Crocodile Dundee accent*. It’s push and hold, all the way! And continue to do so for as long as necessary until things go your way….okay maybe a little exaggerated….
-Dogs: Most dogs here are little what I call ‘Benji’ type dogs but terriers probably makes more sense to most people. In general people hold the leashes too tight I think. Lyon is full of dog poo because no one picks it up.
-In response to ‘Je suis Australienne/ I am Australian’ everyone replies with one or both of ‘C’est loin. C’est beau/It’s far. It’s beautiful’.
-At the flea market people gave me things becasue I was Australian (hairclips from one place and a necklace at another). People here like Aussies! Keep up the good work guys!
-In the international office at uni people smoke in their offices.
-On the news here they have really good maps that show you exactly where the country in question is. It really educates you on geography.
-At my uni there are co-ed toilets. At my uni it is common not to find toilet paper or a holder in the stall. In these situations it is necessary to take your toilet paper in with you from on main dispenser. So far I have not forgotten….lol. At my uni it is common not to have toilet seats….no idea…don’t ask….saving on plastic? Maybe because they are co-ed the women can complain about the toilet seats being left up?
-In the majority of buildings here have ‘push button lights’ in the corridors and stairwells. Push the button, the lights turn on and then after a while they go off. Finger crossed you are not still in the stair well at the time. Power saving. Also, particularly fun when intoxicated I imagine!
-Pretty much all sandwiches are made with baguettes.
-There are some funny names for shops here: 'Pin up' (not really what I want my clothes to shout), 'le dressing' (Italian, vinaigrette or blue cheese?), Tati (lol again...not my image), 'Sinequanone' and 'Mephisto' (would you like that un tablet form or injection?), 'Slipissmo' (A crazy Italian verb: 'Oopso! I slipissmo ona bananana peelo'...oh this is now my new favourite word... when I return I will use it to describe everything!)
-I found a store that sells American food: jello/jelly: 3.50Euros/5.50USD.
-There are Hagendas ice cream cafes here that are expensive but really good. I now wish I had binged in the USA when it was 2 500mL tubs for 5USD (in Hawaii with British hostel friends).
-At the moment I have 7 different kinds of cheese in my fridge!!! I challenge anyone to a cheese duel! En guard!
-When I look out of my apartment windows there is a big white hotel across the road and at night they turn on lights in the windows which all change colours at once.
- I think that the word ‘poissonnerie’ is funny. hahaha
-Last night a man played the accordion at the bar/resto below my house….the one where my pants fell on the roof.
-You cannot buy peanut butter here or over the border in Italy. Americans, forget peanut butter and chocolate! Oh shock horror!
-Most cheese here is made with un-pasteurized milk.
-You can buy boxed crepe mix.
-Roquefort cheese looks like it is decomposing literally it is ALIVE…and it’s yummy.
-Guys sometimes wear headbands if they have longer hair here.
-There are ATMS which allow you to borrow DVD’s.
-There are supermarket ATMS too.
-You cannot use payphones here with change. You have to buy a card. My friend Aura (Finish) thinks it’s funny to see payphones because in Finland they don’t seem to have them. Everyone has a mobile phone!
-It is hard to find an internet café here.
-The other day a guy told me in French that ‘he speaks with God’ but he meant it in a ‘I am o-so-powerful kind’ of way not a ‘I am a nut case’ type of way. Uhuh? What a charmer! What a pick up line ladies! Catch’em quick!
-Sometimes I see swans swimming on both of the rivers.
-There are long barge like boats that sail the rivers. Sometimes families live on them and that have plants on the top and a picnic table. Imagine living like that for a while. Sailing the world! It is now on my list of things to do!
-I think my English spelling is getting worse.
-Try understanding French with an Italian accent, or a Japanese accent (I admire the Japanese students…how hard would it be to learn French. French and English are similar, French and Japanese?….not really).
-To avoid men’s propositions I usually ignore them however when confronted I have so far pretended to be German (because a lot of the youth here speak English and can continue converse) and on another occasion, deaf (yes, I started signing on the train!). Next time deaf and German?
-Cara got a big package from her Nonie today!!! Thank you!!!
-Cara loves mail....and blog comments!
Cara is tossing up going to England this weekend ...so spontaneous!
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Sunday, October 16, 2005
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Rode to uni. Today I went to my FLE class and did my expose oral on Midnight Oil. Didn’t go as well as I wanted it to since the ipod wouldn’t actually play the music so I don’t think anyone knew what I was talking about. Then, since I had my lap top I went on wireless internet at uni! Found a class room all to myself, what luck since they seem to lock them all and looked at mail without having to sign up at the computer lab! A worthless process of French bureaucracy which involves you having to line up, have your student card taken and the details written down and then being assigned to a computer. And there are 2 people working in each small computer room who know nothing about computrers! Maybe if they worked in the offices then something would get done here faster then a snails pace. Then I rode North to Lyon 1 to once again battle it out and try to find a science class. I want to know if it’s a option or not. I want to know. So I went to Microbiology in Apitheatre 3. Snuck in the back and ate a bagette sandwich while listening to a French professor talk about transcription and translation. Hearing ‘le sigma factor’ and ‘le promoter’ made me laugh…on the inside. Try saying topoisomerses 5 times fast with an accent Francais. After speaking with some girls I found out that you have to do this class both mon avo and tues morning which doesn’t work with my schedule. I then went to the lab/prac just to see what it was like. The guy running it said I shuld come back and see after the prac, which finishes at 7!!!! Oh I walked out of there so happy that I could clearly not have to do anything there! It’s a pity beacsue I like the capus, it is more open and spacious and the people eem freiendly and more casual too. Its more backpacks and jeans rather then hand bags and heals. Lyon had business subjects and I think that snobs them up a bit. Also, the trams drive right through the university which is a bit fn. So I left for Lyon 3, stopped at Niki’s on the way but she was absent. Went to the bank, they think it’s odd that I have still I haven’t received mine. I don’t, C’est la France! Chatted to people and looked to make another ppointment for mon carte de sejour (the card that gives me money for housing) but of course the person I needed to speak to wasn’t there! C’est la France! I went to Rachel’s and swapped Nice/Marsaille photos. Then road to Part Dieu to meet up with the Italien’s and Nikki to shop for this evenings Oven Party (none of the residences have ovens so I decide to have a small oven party to celebrate and the Italien love the idea since they both love to cook). Marta, Lara (with a rolling r) Nikki and I bought yummy things and went back to mine to cook. We made 2 quinces – the first with layers of cheese (emmental, motarella and bree-trois fromage is very popular here), mushroms and prosciutto and the second with veggies, cheese and for desser chocolate cake! All baked! It was SO good! Yum. All those cheese! Walked the Italiens to the train, chatted with Nikki, ummmed to the Budda in a shop window, returned home, checked out traveling and talked way to late into the night!
Monday, October 10, 2005
Cara on the tarin to Marseille.
Arriving at Marseille.
The Vieux Port of Marseille.
The girls and I are lost!
The church is on the top of a hill whihc has panaramic views of all of Marseille. Incredible.
Vieux Marseille- I fell in love with this place. At first it looked a little dinky but it is a photophers dream.
Sunday, October 09, 2005
Cara, Natalie(USA), Rita (Aust), Greta (Aust) and Kate (USA) departing for Nice on the 9:15am train. YAY!
Me and the Nice sunset our first day there.
A Saturday morning book market in Nice at le Palais du Justice!
Rachael (UK), Nikki (Aust), Jane (Canada) and Cara at the Saturday flower market (which also has all sorts of food and art). These 3 girls are not in the photo at the start as they were in the 2nd wave and arrived friday night instead of firday afternoon.
Morning of departure. Goodbye Central Nice.