Thursday, June 30, 2011
pleeeeease look up the town Lantic, in Brittany France for me on google images.
it's honestly the most beautiful little place. and all the surrounding towns.
just imagine rolling hills, with fields of golden wheat and the green rows of corn.
of course along all the sides of the roads are covered with wild flowers. :)
something that sets this region apart are two things:
not only is this beautiful farmland with the cottages all around,
but there are forests.
it's a jungle, then when you come out of the jungle, its beautiful fields,
then you go back in under the trees.
it's in and out,
and of course, don't forget about the flowers.
oh, and did i forget to mention that the ocean is 10 minutes away.
so when you get to the top of a hill,
you look out.
and there it is.
oh it's amazing. i told you about the cliffs. yes i definitely could write a book on it.
yesterday i decided that i better do something about all this butter and sugar and chocolate i have been eating every day,
so i went on a run.
at sunset. about 9:30 or 10:00.
i got to run through this countryside.
this absolute BEAUTY.
i see now why my dad loves our ranch that we have.
it's sort of the same that way; in that it's far away from everything.
a place to forget your worries.
a place to wonder.
a place to enjoy without distractions.
and for me,
a place to run.
run away from my fears,
run away from everything i hate,
run away from life,
i can just be. be a new person when i run.
i guess thats why i love to do it.
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
it was just a day of relaxful nothingness.
so, here's just a little something of what i love:
SONG NUMBER ONE.
(out of my league-stephen speaks)
yeah i can't figure out how to post the actual video. click on it. you'll love it if you don't already.
SONG NUMBER TWO.
(you and me-lifehouse)
sometimes i wish that these totally genius songs were sung by girls cause then it would be applicable to boys. i guess theres taylor swift for that. but sorry people. i think shes a little overrated. i still like her songs by all means. but it just starts to all sound the same after a while. i like a little variation and a little more uniqueness.
SONG NUMBER THREE.
(miserably loving you-artist vs. poet)
so basically i love this song. for a few reasons. main reason. its about a girl named emily. second reason. its a suuuper cute song. i just wish boys would actually listen to it, (HINT HINT), and take it to heart.
listen to these other ones, they are good. i definitely would recommend listening to them.
goodbye i'm sorry-jamestown story
i miss you-jamestown story
wait for you-elliot yamin
over it-katherine mcphee
better off alone-katherine mcphee
falling stars-david archuleta
love remains the same-gavin rossdale
okay. those are my sappy love songs for the day. and i need to be done. if you would like more, pleast consult me, and i will consult my grooveshark list.
here's my new favorite mainstream.
STEREO HEARTS. GYM CLASS HEROES.
i hope all my links work.
it always takes me an eternity to blog.
but like my good friend annie said,
"it's a disease." please visit her blog. its wonderful.
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
And then when I sit down to actually write them down, nothing comes to me.
You know, I want to write a book someday.
I feel like that would be the one way that I could explain myself, get all these thoughts out of my head, and share them with others; I believe they are beautiful.
The only thing about writing a book is that you have to actually write it.
I would love to dictate it to someone, and they can write if for me.
That's what I will do when I'm old; pure joy.
Anyways. Just wanted to pu that out there. Now for today and it's many adventures.
Today couldn't be described in any amout of words;
A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS.
Oh, how true this statement is.
This morning I went to l'iles de Brehat with Florence's parents.
Please, go ahead and take the time to "google image" that. It will definitely be worth your time.
Probably one of the most beautiful, exotic, ancient and historic, cultural, and interesting places I have ever been, all packed into one tiny island.
Here's a little background of the island:
*It's inhabited. But only through family inheritance: if you wanted to live there now, it would either cost you billions of dollars to buy a house there, you can't build one yourself because there's no room to, and even if you did have the money to, no one would sell it to you because of the difficulty to accquire one in the first place.
*There are no cars on the island. The only way to get anywhere is to walk, or on bike. Which is what we did today, rode a bike around an island. The only car on the island belongs to the doctor. Not even the miniscule fire department has a car (they get golf carts)
*The houses are some of the smallest houses I have seen. And they are your typical, cottage style French houses that you think of. Colored shutters and matching doors, thatched roofs, open windows, etc. And of course the walls of the house covered in flowers; pink, red, and magenta. Hydrengias lining the walkways. And a picket fence. My dream house.
*The history of the island is insane, and I don't have nearly any room nor the patience to tell you any. If you are so inclined, look it up on Wikipedia.
*They have amazing food. Crêperies aplenty, and fresh seafood at every little café (my selection today was mussels and french fries, then a delicious chocolate souffle).
I hope I haven't bored you yet. Because we're not even to what I did today yet.
As to not delay you any longer, here is a quick synopsis of my day (not too detailed to take too much time, yet enough to try and get my point, rather the image, across.)
First we drove past St. Quay-Portrieux down to the harbor, where we boarded the boat to take us across the the island. We then continued on a 40 minute tour via boat around the entire island. We were shown all sorts of different historical lighthouses, moulins (mills; the kind that are powered by water), old historical harbors and houses, so many other things as well.
Then we proceeded to walk from the dock to the island (arriving at low tide=a far walk) and got ourselves some lunch. As I said before, lunch was mussels, the most I've ever seen, and eaten, at one sitting. Then we went and rented our bicycles. Mine was totally an old beach cruiser. It had a basket. Then we rode around the island, visiting different sites. We first visited the Paon Lighthouse. It is built on le granite rose, and is a beautiful lighthouse, one you definitely wouldn't typically see in America; its architecture is outstanding. Then we went to another lighthouse/tower belonging to the defense of entry military. Then it was on to the Saint Chapel. An interesting little church, but the view from atop will always be in my memory; tiny cottages dotted across a landscape of rolling hills of fields and tropical foilage. The overcast weather added to the entire effect. After that was a visit to the moulin, or water mill. Then we rode around some more, discovering all sorts of little parts of the island. To finish off the day, i purchased gaufre au chocolat (a chocolate covered waffle), which was absolutely delicious. I can't get enough of the chocolate here. It's a thousand times better, obviously.
Then the boring part. Went home. Slept on the boat. And in the car.
I swear. It takes SO MUCH ENERGY to listen. I definitely take knowing a language and recognizing what people are saying to me for granted. Because when you don't unconsciously know what is being said, there's a good chance you don't know when someone tries to say something to you unless they mention your name. It's a good thing people have noticed that about me. So, all this intense listening is taking a lot of energy out of me.
So, that was today. This week's adventures include: Seeing my cousins and grandparents (WAHOO. so incredibly happy they are coming to visit as well. it only means my family comes soon.) possibly watching horse jumping...?? i don't know the correct term for it. But when they jump over those high posts/hurdles. and several other things that i don't know about!
i can't wait, and neither can you.
Stay tuned, folks.
Monday, June 27, 2011
[we had been discussing a recently received SAT Subject Test score and Sunday drives in the mountains]
I miss those drives too. Probably some of my favorite memories of us as a family are those long drives through the mountains; sometimes not exactly knowing where we will end up or when we will be home. It's a never-ending adventure. So is this. I am learning a lot, and it makes me not want to grow up. Thanks for the comforting words--I have really been beating myself up about this for the past few hours. I'm disappointed. I guess that it is good to know I probably passed the AP test then! I miss you dad, I will see you and the family in two weeks. Make sure that Adam knows that I miss him so much, probably the most. I take him for granted--I would hate to be an only child. It's hard to be with a family when you don't have your own to be with as well. It makes me really understand The Plan of Happiness. I couldn't live with myself if I didn't have my family. I can't wait for the day when I see you guys again.
I just used my finger to brush my teeth.
And didn't shower.
And I just slept in my underwear :)
So on Sunday since I forgot everything, I couldnùt go to church, which is what I was planning on doing.
Quite a disappointment.
I slept in instead.
Not a bad replacement, i must say.
So I woke up at probably 11:30, had a cup of hot chocolate for breakfast (by the way, their chocolate is AMAZING. I'm sure you already knez that, but it's not only the chocolate chocolate, but their powdered, packaged, and stored chocolate. Pudding, hot chocolate mix, etc. All. One Thousand. Times. Better.)
After my breakfast, we started cooking lunch. Like a half hour later.
Here's one thing about the French: their meals are HOURS LONG.
They start out with appetizers, and plenty of drinks. The French drink like nobody's business.
That goes on for an hour or so.
Then, they start cooking dinner.
An hour or so later, then it's time to eat.
So for two hours, you sit around a table waiting for food.
I don't like it.
The other thing they do is they have cheese and salad as their last course.
Kind of different, you might say.
I ate one of those shrimp-like things (the ones with eyes and legs....) on Sunday as well.
I didn't like it.
But hey I don't like shrimp anyways.
So after lunch we went to Fanny (the cousin of Florence who is 17)'s accordion concert. Yes she plays the accordion. Pretty cool I think; she's good too. After that we went down to the beach (a beach of rocks. No sand. They apologized for the lack of sand and said the next beach would be better.) We only stayed an hour because we needed to get back for dinner. This time it was short, only an hour this time. Then we went home, finally, where I was able to have a shower, charge my phone, and talk to my parents.
The other thing that is driving me insane besides the meal schedule is..
A french keyboard.
Just when you think it looks normal, a key is in the wrong spot.
Plus, you have to use shift and things like that to get normal punctuations, etc.
I HATE IT.
Because I've had to use one every time I use the internet because my computer won't connect here, sadly.
And now that I switched back to my computer to write this,
I KEEP TYPING LIKE ITS A FRENCH KEYBOARD.
Anyway, that was yesterday.
And now its today.
Who knows what crazy things will happen today?
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Last night for dinner we had Ratatouille.
I consider that extremely important to the French experience.
After dinner, we went into town to "La fête de l’été" or the party for the beginning of summer.
Kind of like our Summerfest.
Before we went to the fête though, we decided to go to la mer (the ocean). I just expected a beach and a typical ocean.
There, right in front of my eyes, was the most beautiful ocean scene i have ever seen. It was cliffs, beautiful cliffs, with a small beach as well. There were rolling hills of wheat fields; and little cottage houses as well. Absolutely amazing. We walked around for some time, taking pictures and walking out to the edge of the cliffs. Then we went back to the fête.
But instead, they make a ginormous stack of branches and burn a fake witch at the top.
Instead of watching the burning, my eye caught something else:
yes. a beautiful, white, extravagant building calling my name in the distance.
I went with Florence to go see it.
We were the only ones at the château because everyone else was watching the witch burn.
Consequently, we got to meet the Countess of the château. (yes people still live in them)
She introduced herself, and we introduced ourselves. We explained that my great grandpa was the american pilot whose plane crashed in their town in WWII and was the one who changed the entire history of the town itself (that is another story for another time; when there is more of it).
She immediately invited me to take a tour of the inside of her chateau.
No one gets to do that.
Highlight of the night by far.
Also at the fête, there was traditional dancing and singing from the region of Brittany, plenty of crêpes to eat and plenty of drunk teenagers. It was fun nevertheless.
AND THAT WAS ONLY YESTERDAY. AFTERNOON.
Here's a quick view of today:
Woke up later (9:00).
Left for Brest for Florences' brother's house (Other side of Brittany; one hour away)
Little did I know that we were sleeping over in Brest....
Good thing i grabbed my swimsuit last minute.
This afternoon we went to a small harbor and watched the boats, and looked at the scenery.
Then we went to a park.
It was full of flowers.
Those are so expensive in the United States.
And rare too.
They grow like weeds in France.
In this park, there are 50 different varieties. I took a picture of the sign for proof.
Also in the park there was a little zoo....
llamas. ( :) )
rabbits. (also plentiful here. common pets by everyone.)
many other random animals.
Then we came home for dinner. Which just finished.
It's 12:30. In the morning.
It started at 9.
I don't have anything.
No contact solution or case.
No clean clothes for tomorrow.
I learned my lesson.
Listen more closely when you don't quite understand where you are going.....
Friday, June 24, 2011
When you throw a little kid in the deep end who doesn't know how to swim,
they might drown.
And if you leave them there, they may just do that.
Unless they are strong.
it just never is enough to be left on your own.
I guess this explains me, at the moment. Here I am, thrown into something completely different from my ordinary, thousands and thousands of miles away from my family, my friends, and my entire life pre-Français; and yet while definitely drowning at the start, now that is starting to change.
For the better.
Yesterday and today, I have had the opportunity to accompany Florence at work: She's a teacher.
A kindergarten teacher.
You know what this means, kids? They don't speak English. And how old are they? 5 and 6.
#1 problem: they speak French only.
#2 problem: they have that little kid accent thing. (where sometimes you don't even know what little kids are saying even in your own language)
So yesterday I was basically dying trying to understand what these little kids kept pestering me about, and shooting a thousand questions for me, and all i could say is "Je ne sais pas.." (I don't know) or "Je ne comprend pas" (I don't understand) or "oui" (yes) or "non" (no). And that was it.
I wanted to crawl in my bed that night and just cry..
But I said to myself,
"Stupid, what are you thinking. Of course you can't do this alone. Don't you DARE cry and pity yourself when you haven't even asked your Father in Heaven for His help."
So that's exactly what I did.
I said my prayers in French last night.
And guess what?
I understood twice as much as I did yesterday, and it required much less effort.
I was able to speak more, and enjoy myself.
I'm learning a lot.
That was my #1 lesson for today. You can learn from it too.
Listen to your heart, when no one else is there to help you.
Thursday, June 23, 2011
I made it. And I'm not dead :)
so i got on my flight from Boston to Paris, and slept the entire 7 hours (good)
I found my way to the train station inside the airport (good)
I found my train on the monitor (good)
I had to wait two hours (bad)
I got on my correct train at the appointed time (good)
I sat in my seat (good)
I slept the entire train ride to Rennes (okay)
TIP #1: Okay people, NEVER NEVER NEVER EVER take a 65 lb. SUITCASE. ANYWHERE.
I attempted to carry my stupid suitcase up steps into the train, then into storage ABOVE MY HEAD (bad)
Luckily, i got help (good)
But, i arrived in Rennes nevertheless (good)
I got off my train and found my second train on the monitor (good)
I waited (okay)
I saw on the screen what platform it was on (good)
I saw there were two trains on the same platform (bad)
I became confused (bad)
I lugged my suitcase down to the platform (bad)
I tried to find someone who spoke English and failed (bad)
I sat down (good)
My train was leaving in 10 minutes (bad)
I was not on it (bad)
A conductor walking past me noticed i was a little flustered (good)
He asked me if his train was the one i wanted (no it wasnt)
I asked him for the one to Brest (good)
He pointed out i needed to run down to the second train on the track behind the one i had failed to notice (good)
I walked quickly (good)
I boarded (good)
I got help with my luggage again (good)
I sat down in my seat (good)
5 minutes later the train left (good)
I barely made it (good)
I got off on my stop at St. Brieuc (good)
I found Florence (good)
I made it to her house (good)
She speaks English well (GOOD)
We then continued to go to her parents house in St. Quay-Portrieux, where i met Florence's parents and some of her nieces. They had kindly prepared crèpes for us as well as brioche and hot chocolate :) That made me feel a little better. (good)
I don't understand anything (BAD)
I can't say anything (BAD)
My brain freezes up (BAD)
I'm homesick (BAD)
And don't feel prepared for this at all.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
The forum was absolutely amazing. By far one of the best experiences I have ever had in my life. It changed my entire perspective on my interests in medicine and also learned a lot about myself.
All morning we had our Medical Ethics Caucuses on differentmedical issues including Animal Testing, Universal Health Care, and Sex Selection.
My group was chosen to fight against Universal Health Care. Then we listened to some people talk to us about HIV/AIDS. Stuff I'm used to. Then we had our freaking awesome Variety Show (talent show) which was so much fun :)
Saturday: FREE DAY.
We did a public health simulation, which was a little bit boring, but then we boarded the bus for HARVARD SQUARE. Second best day of the week by far. We went to Cambridge and got to walk around and see the sights for 5 hours. I got some shopping in, plus photos everywhere. Not to mention photos at Harvard University campus. Then that night we had a DJ Dinner/Dance. It was CRAZY. The East Coast knows how to party. Although the downside was that lots of kids were drunk and it was a massive grind fest (ew). Goodthing i participated in neither.
Sunday: FREE DAY TWO.
The day started off with suturing bananas (for all of you who don't know the term: it means stitching someone up) and practicing taking blood pressure. Then we did some Lessons in Leadership (for all those people i asked to take that online survey, yeah i read everything you said about me. for some of you… im on to you.) Then we boarded the bus for CENTRAL BOSTON and QUINCY MARKET. This happens to be the best day of the week. Not number one activity or single thing i did, but day in general. I got lots of shopping in again (yes i know it was a sunday, but it was my last day in the states to get anything i needed or wanted for the summer), and then we got to walk the FREEDOM TRAIL. I saw Paul Revere's house, the Old North Church (where the lanterns were hung: one by land, two by sea, etc.) Then got some gelato (delicious) and had a great time! We walked down on the boardwalk at Boston Harbor, which was absolutely beautiful. It was overall an amazing day. The weather was beautiful. The sites were too.
We did some med sessions, and lectures on Public Health again, and then did a disaster triage simulation. Then we had another med session to prepare for our DINNER CRUISE in BOSTON HARBOR.
cruise. on a boat. [yes they played i'm on a boat; it was crazy.]
we cruised around boston harbor, saw the skyline from afternoon to sunset to sundown. We partied and danced hard again.
Beer was smelled everywhere by everyone, again. (not my favorite)
again the grinding was unnecessary. but. it was so much fun. we got back terribly late. i was exhausted.
I checked out. Said my final goodbyes. Cried.
I already miss everyone SO much. and i miss them all more than ever. especially my New Zealand friend (this kid). yes, he had an accent. it was amazing. he lives in New York. sorry, he's mine. i was his "big sis" the whole week. Love you Jordan!
Now, i'm just waiting for the planned time of my departure to the Boston Logan Airport for my 7 hour plane ride to the Charles De Gaulle Airport in FRANCE.
Currently i'm 2,250 miles away from home.
Tomorrow, i'll be over 5,000 miles away.
Wish me luck.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Friday, June 10, 2011
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Monday, June 6, 2011
Saturday, June 4, 2011
Thursday, June 2, 2011
Wednesday, June 1, 2011