Bonjour from France! Having arrived in Lyon just over a week ago, I can honestly say it feels like I have simultaneously been here for months and no time at all. Despite filling much of my time in the past semester and summer with preparations and to do lists for coming abroad, I don’t think I fully processed what a huge and exciting adventure this would be until I was literally stepping on the plane en route to France!
As a textbook overthinker and worried type, I remember waving goodbye to my Dad at the airport in Alabama thinking about how much I would miss my family and friends at home, and of course, my community at Georgetown for the 4 months I would be away. However (and I’m well aware how cliché this sounds), as soon as I stepped off the plane in France, I felt an instant sense of calmness and excitement in my decision to go abroad.
Since arriving here in Lyon, I am continuously astounded by the beauty of this city and this country, as well as the beauty of the French people. In addition to being effortlessly chic all the time (still unsure how they do that), the French people I have interacted with have been SO generous and kind. I’ll admit I was partially expecting to be severely judged for my ”less than perfect” French accent and general “American-ness”, but I have found that the people here encourage me to continue speaking and even make an effort to let me figure out what I’m trying to say in a language that is clearly not my first.
Overall, after a little over a week in Lyon, I have learned new phrases, re-learned old grammar (that I should have already known), and most of all, I have grown even more excited for the opportunity to study here for a whole semester! I’m looking forward to sharing many more experiences in the coming weeks, but for now, Á Bientôt!