Sunday, December 6, 2009

Le Début de la Fin

Sunday, December 6, 2009
This is it - the final push.

The good news: I passed the DELF with flying colors, as difficult as it was and as sleep-deprived I was from waking up at 4:15 that morning to catch the train at 6.
My birthday was lovely, though quite calm for a 21st. After my class at the university, I spent the morning and much of the afternoon wandering around the center of town. The Christmas decorations have certainly given the city a new sense of life in the form of LED lights and garlands hanging from every balcony. Heidi and I had tea at La Cigale, the most reputable restaurant in Nantes. However I was in bed by 9pm thanks to that test.

But I'm certain I'll have plenty of chances to celebrate again once I return. ;)

Until then, I'm stuck with a week and a half of bad news: spending the majority of my waking moments studying for exams - two at the end of this week (naturally, the two hardest will be the week BEFORE our official exam week) and then three next week.

Thankfully I'll finish on Wednesday, which will give me some time to enjoy Nantes before we stuff our suitcases and take off for Paris on the high-speed TGV on Saturday evening.

In situations like this, reflecting on the passage of time proves nebulous; the way in which my senses feel so used to everything now makes me wonder how the time slipped past. And yet the summer day I arrived on Theresa's doorstep in Freiburg seems so far away.

How will I possibly be able to summarize the last 5 months in a few sentences when someone asks me about them? (Thanks to those of you that have kept up with my blog, and thus kept me from having to go through that painful process when I return home!)

With each significant trip I've taken, especially those in the past few years (India, London, Germany) I've been surprised at how what I've really taken from the places I've been doesn't actually occur to me until much later, when I'm in the middle of sharing a story from that trip with a friend or I suddenly discover a certain aspect of one place mirrored in another, halfway across the world. And it's then I realize how these places have shaped the person who I am in that moment, who I'm still discovering.

And so, in these final two weeks, what will I end up taking from my European experience? I guess that's a question that I won't properly be able to answer until much later in life. But I think all my reflecting in this blog has been a good start.


Joye said...

Congrats on passing the DELF! I'm sure thats a load off your shoulders! Enjoy the rest of your time in Nantes!

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