Tag Archives: Grenoble

“You Can’t Go Wrong With More Speed”


Herro again. I just finished freezing my nips off in this snow storm we’re having over here in Rhode Island! I mean, in comparison to Vermont and other areas of the country I’m sure it’s child’s play; but it’s more than the 401 has seen all season I believe. My friend Aly interviewed me for her senior thesis, so I jut spent the passed two hours frolicking in the beautiful snow talking about horses. Whatever, I’m a nerd.

Street Decorations

Anyway, I said that I would try my best to re-cap my final days of studying abroad in Grenoble, France, so here it goes (oh, I’m also going to be weaving my pictures from the Lyon Festival of Lights into this post to add some pizazz):


Tuesday, December 11th: Long day of classes, but the last one of the semester! Score. It was also my last literature and translation class (thank god, I HATED THAT CLASS), so I was partially okay with having to sit in that wretched course for two hours. I finished up around 16h45, which was earlier than usual, but I really didn’t have the energy/feel in the mood to party much. I’m pretty sure that after class, I just went home to read more 50 Shades Darker and start studying for the multiple finals I had coming up. If I did anything else of merit, I really don’t remember.


Wednesday, December 12th: Class from 8h30 to 10h20, which wasn’t too bad, especially considering we spent it watching a movie and learning French slang. After class I actually have no recollection of what I did. Considering I had finals coming up, I think I probably went to the coffee shop for at least a little bit to try and start studying. Honestly though, I could have done anything. Sorry for being so scatter-brained.


Thursday, December 13th: Last day of classes for real!!! I had my final regular class on this day, which was actually quite sad. I had come to really enjoy the company of all my extremely diverse classmates (Germans, Americans, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Australian and South Koreans), and our professor was just amazing. We wrapped up the final class by giving our professor gifts and pictures of our lovely faces, then we finished watching a movie about this guy whose job is to break up engaged couples by seduction.

Afterwards, I went to the post-office to pick up a box to ship home because quite frankly, I have too much shit. I somehow managed to shove 7kg worth of books, nail polish and sports clothing into a tiny box, gold star for me! Once that was over with, I went to the Christmas Market to see what they had to offer, since I still needed to find a few more Christmas presents for family and friends. I don’t think I did anything after dinner this night because I had an exam in the morning, so most likely I just finished up reading 50 Shades and did a minute amount of studying for my exam the next day.

Les Fleurs

Friday, December 14th: I had to wake up early in order to get to my exam on time. At my University, the program I was in was called the CUEF, and at the end of every semester you need to take a final called the DUEF, which basically makes sure that you learned enough French to move on to the next higher level. A lot of people seemed to stress out a bit about it, but quite honestly I wasn’t worried. We only had to get a 10/20 to pass, and my professor prepared us more than necessary for this exam. The only thing about it was that it was very annoying, and took forever! There were three parts to the exam: oral comprehension, written comprehension and actual writing. Between the first and second portion, we had a few hours break, so Hannah, Emily, Ellisa and I went in town to eat a decent lunch, then we spent some time at the Christmas Markets just enjoying the atmosphere and eating tasty treats. It was a good way to pass the time.

Finally, it came time to take the last exam of the day, and once it was over we were just about exhausted with school. Which meant… it was time to rage! I went home, had dinner with Madeleine and let the festivities begin. Hannah and I had plans to meet up with our classmates at Subway, so she came over and we each faced a wine bottle while just hanging out waiting for the time to come. Emily ended up meeting up with us an hour or so later, and then the three of us walked the short distance from my house to the bar. Now, Hannah and I were pretty drunk at this point, which made meeting up with our international friends that much more hilarious. We had to speak French the entire time, which was a lot of fun. The rest of the API group wound up at Subway at some point, but Hannah and I remained behind with our classmates for another hour, then we met up with the rest of our friends at London Pub. The workers at the bar were being douche-bags this particular night, so we didn’t stay for very long… just long enough to get free passes to Vieux Manoir. Finally, we ended the night at the Manoir, where we danced the night away, and I was eventually escorted home by two of the Chinese guys in my class. Night = success.


Saturday, December 15h: Somehow, I wasn’t hungover when I woke up, which was a mystery to me. Thank goodness though, because I had a lot of work to do prepping for exams. I pretty much spend the entire day at the Coffee Shop stuffing my brain with facts about History of Art, while at the same time trying to start studying for French Literature. I stayed studying and gossiping until it was time for dinner, then went home to spend the night cozy in bed. I figured my liver would enjoy a break, plus I had 35+ slides of Art to memorize, so I hunkered down, did the work I had to do, and had a good nights rest.

Van Gogh

Across The River

Sunday, December 16th: Same old study grind, I’m sad to say (well, not sad — but it’s incredibly dull to write about). I spent more countless hours cramming historical art facts into my mind until I just couldn’t do it anymore. As a break, Richard, Hannah, her host sister and I all went to Tacos de Lyon for some kebab nomnoms, then to “the best” bakery in Grenoble (whose name I forget) where I bought some cookie fruit thing. It was pretty good, but considering I still had a broken retainer in my mouth, it probably wasn’t my greatest purchase.

After our food break, I realized that I needed to go home and be away from the internet in order to make any sort of progress, so I bid adieu to my friends and went back to the apartment to be productive. I figured that since I had already finished 50 Shades Darker, I wouldn’t have as many distractions; I was wrong. I still had Game of Thrones to finish so of course that became my first priority, teehee. Eventually, I did get around to studying enough to feel confident, but I had an oral exam early the next morning, so I went to bed before 22h00. Fiestaaa.


C’est La France


Wow. Okay everyone – first of all, I apologize for my lack of activity on this these last few weeks. I’ll try to recap all that I can, but it’s been a crazy time so I probably won’t recall all of it.

*Actually, I typed all of this up while I was still in Grenoble, but with the lack of internet I never got around to posting and finishing it. I’m still not caught up, but this seemed better than nothing for the time being. Also.. it’s my 100th post — I am appointing myself an honorary badge for that.*


As I sit here typing this, it’s my last day in Grenoble (Friday, 21/12/12), and I can’t quite absorb that idea yet. I think I may be numb to it, but that’s probably for the best. These past four months have been some of the greatest thus far in my life, and this has been an experience that I will never forget. Not only did I learn so much more about myself and travel to some unreal places, but also I met some of the best people on this trip, which is really what made the whole thing so unparalleled. We were (ARE) a crazy bunch, that is for sure, but I became close with some of the most unique and genuine people ever, and some of which will definitely remain friends. I can’t believe I will be leaving them; it’s painful to think about, but at least with all this technology, communication won’t be limited. We gave Grenoble, France a run for it’s money, and it definitely showed us a great ass time. A piece of me will forever be resting somewhere in Victor Hugo, awaiting my return.

What have I been doing, you ask? I’ll try and fill in as many gaps as possible:

Monday, December 3rd: School, blech. It was my last day of Culture and Society though, so that was at least a morsel of niceness. It was wayyy to long ago for me to remember what I did in the evening, but being the day after Rome and a Monday, I can deduce that I probably just went home, ate dinner, did some homework slash read 50 Shades of Grey and went to bed.

Tuesday, December 4th: Today was Carl’s birthday! I had the usual full drudging day of classes, unfortunately. After school though, I went home, ate dinner with Madeleine and sipped on some vino while finishing up 50 Shades! After my lovely accomplishment, I met up with Maddie, Ian, Carl and Max to celebrate Carl’s birthday at the one and only Subway. I was already a little buzzed from my celebration wine (whatever, when in France), so I think I only nursed one drink the whole night, kudos to me. I also was given this semi-gross cherry chocolate candy that has a pretty large amount of alcohol inside. We hung out at Subway for a solid amount of time, but I had a 8h30 class the next day, so I called it a night after the bar and went to bed.

Wednesday, December 5th: Hah. So, I had every intention of going to class, but I just couldn’t force myself to get out of my cozy, warm bed at 7h00. C’etait trop tot, et j’avait seulement one class on Wednesdays, so I skipped. Turns out I picked the best day to skip though, because we did nothing in class. So much so that my professor bought everyone coffee and they just hung out in the cafeteria.

I’m pretty sure after I peeled myself out of bed, I went and met up with Hannah at the coffee shop to do whatever. Once again, it was a very long time ago, so I can’t quite remember the details anymore. I do know though that after dinner, I went to Max’s to hang out while he prepped all his stuff for Florence and Rome. That’s about it for this day, though.

Thursday, December 6th: Finished up school for the week at 12h30, yippee! Unfortunately, I had to spend the majority of my afternoon copying down all my Culture and Society notes, since my exam was on Monday. It was a fun time, let me tell you.

After we logged a bunch of studying hours, I went home to drop off my stuff, then grabbed dinner at La Salsita and met up with a bunch of kids from my program for our soiree theatre. We saw this French film, called Populaire (je pense), which was about this small town girl from France who ended up being the best speed typewriter in the world. It was a romantic comedy, and I actually really enjoyed it. I was also very pleased with the fact that it was entirely in French, and I understood all of it minus a few instances. Three cheers for improving!

Once the movie was finished, those who were still in Grenoble felt the need to let loose (when don’t we have that urge, though?), and we instated a girls night. If I remember correctly, it was Hannah, Emily, Maddie, Ellisa, Evelyn and myself. We speed drank some wine/champagne in the foyer of my apartment with pure class and then walked around the corner to Subway to get some more liquor in our bloodstream, duh. We were a rowdy bunch of individuals this night, and Hannah and I become even crazier when a few kids from our class wound up at the same bar for our friend Jascha’s birthday. It was a fun time, and we were probably there for almost two hours. When we exhausted Subway, we changed the scenery and made our way to Couche Tard and were equally crazy. Fun things ensued, and I got to practice my French, that’s all I’m going to say. 😉

Friday, December 7th: Let’s just not talk about how exhausted everyone was after our night full of extravaganzas. Unfortunately being lazy all day wasn’t an option since we had that stupid exam to study for… mer. I spent my day at the French Coffee Shop with Emily, Maddie, Natasha and Hannah prepping for finals and draining our brains. Multiple breaks were taken. I was too beat to even think about going out that night, so I simply went home for dinner then hunkered down for the night to read 50 Shades Darker; I’m pretty sure I read close to half of it. Great success.

Saturday, December 8th: After a full night’s sleep, I was back at the coffee shop squeezing a few hours in before I went with Natasha, Maddie and Hannah to the Lyon Festival of Lights!!!! We took the 16hish train into Lyon, and hung out and enjoyed the festival in all its beauty until 23h30.


I think the entire population of France was crammed into Lyon that night… too many people. Don’t get me wrong, it was a grand experience and the lights were unreal, but it was just too crowded for my liking. You also had to pay for toilets, which is outrageous; so we just snuck into Quik’s. Another thing that was irksome about the festival was how poorly the map correlated to the city itself. We got lost a bunch of times, and it was almost impossible to figure out where you were. One would think for such a popular festival they would be more organized. No matter though, I had fun and got to see some crazy lights. Don’t forget to watch the insane video that I will most at some point in the near future.

CrazinessThat's A Building

The train ride took foreverrrr, and I didn’t crawl into bed until passed 1h00. It was freezing that night, so my cozy covers were more than appreciated.

Do DaLook Closely

Sunday, December 9th: I bet you can guess what I did all this day… that’s right: study. My electives here in France were tricky business. On one hand, it was very nice that I didn’t have homework for the entire semester, but at the same time… our final exams were 100% of our grade. How insane is that?! That’s not how we do it over in America, so needless to say I was massively stressing out for this exam. It was also extra important because I needed to pass the class (and History of Art) in order to get credit for one of my necessary classes for the European Studies major. I don’t think I had ever studied for an exam so much in my life… literally all weekend, blah!

After once again posting up in the coffee shop for hours on end, I went home to eat dinner, de-stress with 50 Shades and get a good night’s sleep before my exam. Eep.

Monday, December 10th: Had the normal class protocol from 10h40 to 12h30, then it was exam time, ew. I didn’t think it was that difficult. The one good thing is that these grades don’t get factored into my GPA, so I only need to get a 10/20 (that’s a C in France) on the exam to get credit for it. I am pretty positive I passed… if I didn’t I will be really angry and shocked, especially after all that studying I did.

Normally after I take an exam I am much more relaxed and just hang out for a little afterwards, but sadly this was not the case this time around. Classes were still in session, so directly after the exam we had to sit in History of Art for an hour and a half. It was not my idea of a good time, but it was the last time that class met, so that was a positive aspect of it.

I got home after class to find out my host mom was gone, so I was able to eat dinner while reading 50 Shades, which was a nice way to unwind. Afterwards I just hung out and putzed around for the night; it was all I could manage.

~~~~~ So, that’s all I had written down in my draft box. Looks like that’s all you’ll be getting for the moment. I don’t have too much on my agenda tomorrow so hopefully I’ll make some strides. Happy Holidays, Everyone! I know I’m a little late, but the good times should always be in session. ❤

Well, We Once Were The Jesters In Your Kingdom By The Sea


Bonjour! I’m once again in the French Coffee Shop “studying” my arse off for my Culture & Society exam tomorrow… eek. I really have been studying, but I need a mental break from all this nonsense. BLECH EXAMS — je les deteste.

Sunday, November 25th: We were supposed to leave the hotel by 9h00, so I was up and munching down another tasty breakfast by 8h00, but one of our lovely API family members (whom shall remain anonymous) never made it back to the hotel the night before *coughfrenchlovercough* so there was a mad search around the city until said person was dragged out of a locals bed. Teehee, I love my group. We probably ended up leaving passed 10h00, and then we were piled onto the bus once again for the dreaded ride back to Grenoble.

Quite The Attractive Courtyard

In order to break up the monotony, though, we made a two hour pit stop in Colmar, which is an hour away from Strasbourg to discover this lovely town’s marchés de Noël (Christmas Markets). Obviously, it was not as awesome as Strasbourg’s, but I bought a tasty honey lollipop and another Christmas present for a family member. We also did a quick walk through of le Musée d’Unterlinden, but if I’m being honest… the museum kind of freaked me out a little bit. I took some pictures, so you can see for yourself, and if you agree with me or not.

Well, Hello There

Note: Bottom left corner

Note: Bottom left corner

So SicklyWhat On EARTH Is Going On Here?Er...Heyyy, Boys

In case you’re interested in some factoids about Strasbourg and Colmar, I copied and pasted them from our itinerary below. It’s in French — sorry, I’m too lazy to translate for you… just use google translate if you’re curious:

  • Colmar: ancienne ville libre du Saint Empire romain germanique. Elle est devenue française en 1648. C’est la Capitale des Vins d’Alsace et la troisième ville de la région par sa population. Colmar est la ville natale du créateur de la Statue de la Liberté à New York, Auguste Bartholdi.
  • Strasbourg: Strasbourg est une ville située dans le nord-est de la France, sur la rive gauche du Rhin. C’est la septième ville de France par la population, et l’un des principaux pôles économiques du nord-est. Elle est devenue française en 1681.
    Grand carrefour historique, Strasbourg fut de tous temps un lieu de rencontre de religions et de cultures différentes.. En 1440, Gutenberg y inventa les caractères d’imprimerie ; Mozart y donna de nombreux concerts ; Goethe, le célèbre poète allemand y fut étudiant ; la future reine de France Marie-Antoinette, s’arrêta à Strasbourg en arrivant d’Autriche….
    Aujourd’hui, Strasbourg, est devenue le symbole de l’unité et de la reconstruction européenne.  Elle est, avec Bruxelles, l’une des deux capitales de l’Europe, siège du Parlement Européen et du Conseil de l’Europe.
    Située au cœur de l’Alsace, Strasbourg est aussi  une capitale gastronomique (foie gras, vins d’Alsace, chocolat et eau-de-vie).
    Enfin, elle est aussi connue pour son Marché de Noël, autour de sa prestigieuse Cathédrale, marché qui date du 16ème siècle (1570)….

Well, there you have it! Haha, I’m sure most of you didn’t understand a lick of that, but maybe that will be incentive for you to learn a little French 😉

Awesome ColorsHitler 'Stach?UNICORN

Anyway, after we finished our stop in Colmar, we continued on and sat on that dang bus for hours on end. I thankfully fell asleep for a little, so it didn’t seem as bad. We arrived in Grenoble close to 20h3o I think, so I made it just in time for dinner with Madeleine. Wahwahweewah. I was supposed to go to a party for my classmate, Kevin, but I was so exhausted that I had to bail on that fete. Hannah wasn’t pleased, but I wouldn’t have been any fun. So instead, I took a shower and passed out into a much needed slumber.

Monday, November 26th: Had the usual nonsense and was at school from 10h40 to 17h30 for classes, and afterwards I went with Hannah, Richard and Emily to renew our tramcards for the last time! Ahhh, so sad. It was actually a rough time because while I was waiting in line, I was going in on a semi-stale gummy, and I broke my built in retainer! There aren’t any dangerous sharp points in my mouth or anything, but it is definitely broken, and if you touch the right spot, it is sharp. Woops. I mean, I was supposed to get it out once I turned 21, but I just didn’t have time over the summer. My mom is making me an appointment for once I’m back in the states though, so this won’t be in my mouth for too much longer.

After my dental issue, I walked through the Grenoble Marche de Noel to see what it was like (it opened while we were in Strasbourg) and browse the shops. I ran into Max while I was there, so we explored it and I ate this tasty little number:

After 8 Mousse on a Waffle Encased in Dark Chocolate.

After 8 Mousse on a Waffle Encased in Dark Chocolate.

It was delicious, and would not be my first rendez-vous. After we explored some more, I had to go home and do the usual homework and personal cleansing routine, then I read some 50 Shades of Grey, and went to bed. Cheeel.

Tuesday, November 27th: Another rough, long day of classes. I actually ended up skipping my Translation class a) because the professor sucks and b) because there was a hockey game this night, and I really wanted to go, but I had my last big homework assignment due on Thursday, but since I wouldn’t be in class (ROMA ROMA), I had to hand it in on Wednesday, so I spent those 2 hours where I should have been in class doing homework. It felt good to be productive, teehee.

After my Literature class was over at 17h15, I went home to eat some dinner and get ready to go to the hockey game. Madeleine wasn’t home, so I was able to eat while burying my nose in 50 Shades. The weather ended up being terrible, and the hockey game was more expensive than usual due to it being the semi-finals (we lost…mer), so I didn’t end up going. Instead, I had a movie night and watched Cool Hand Luke — I had never seen it before, and I must say I really liked it… except for the less than happy ending. Oh well.

Wednesday, November 28th: SNOW IN GRENOBLE!!!! Usually at this point in the year, I am used to being bombarded with snow due to living in Vermont, but I was spoiled this semester. I can’t say I was entirely thrilled for the snow, it was cold, but it did make Grenoble look even more beautiful than usual.

Erm, after class, I think I went to the Coffeeshop to either dick around, work on this darling blog, or do some homework. I can’t really remember, but I know I didn’t hang around for too long. Then, I went to the train station with Emily and Nina to buy our bus tickets for the next day to Lyon, and we made a pit stop in the 2 euro store, where I bought this:

My Sign <3We also walked around the Grenoble Markets, where I bought some more Christmas gifts (seriously, I am beyond broke it’s disgusting) and another one of those tasty morsels.


Mocha Mousse This Time

Eventually, the cold got the best of us and we parted ways. I went home to read some 50 Shades and pack for ROMA!!! I had to be up pretty early the next morning to make the bus, so after dinner I just relaxed and went to bed shortly after. Week of school = complete. Next stop: ROME, BEETCHES.

Dear EasyJet & RyanAir: You SUCK


Hokay, so here’s the first day of my Ireland adventure (or lack there of… you’ll know soon enough). It’s finally not so fresh and raw that I’m willing to talk about it.

Thursday, November 15th: Class as usual from 10h40 to 12h30, then I went back home to drop off my school stuff and traded it in for my IRELAND things (aka my sweet ass backpack)! From there, Hannah and I met up with Emily and McAuley to get some tasty kebabs at Fraternite Kebabs for lunch. Afterwards, we grabbed some snacks and then Emily and I started the long day of traveling ahead of us. Destination: Dublin, Ireland. This is where things got interesting.

We took the train to Lyon, France from Grenoble; it was about an hour long trip, and virtually painless. Upon our arrival to Lyon, though, the problems started blooming. There was an air traffic control strike — typical French behavior — and our flight that was supposed to leave at 19h00 from Lyon to London (Gatwick) was postponed until 21h00, deux heures en retard! This posed a major problem because London was only our connecting flight, and we were supposed to catch another flight from London to Dublin at 21h55. Umm… problem, considering our Lyon flight was about an hour long. Turns out, there is an hour time difference between London and France, so we would land in London before our Dublin flight left, but being an airport we would need more than like 45 minutes to make our flight. Obviously, Emily and I started freaking out. We talked to the woman at the help desk for Easyjet (the airline we were taking to London), and she was negative help. Seriously, fuck her (excuse my language. I’m still pissed thinking about this). We asked if there was anything we could do to try and make our flight, or if there were other options for us. Her answer? “I have no options or advice for you” — are you freaking kidding me?! You’re job is to help us, you worthless whore, do your goddamned job! So clearly that bitch was no help.

We both called our parents (and Anna, one of our API mentors), who really didn’t have any options for us either, which was expected being a continent away. The only choice we had was to just get on the plane and hope for the best, so we waited in line to check-in. When it was our turn to show our passports, the lady at the desk informed me that our flight was only 20 minutes late, not 2 hours… wait, what?! Emily and I were soaring with happiness at that, and we may or may not have done a happy dance in the airport. In our glorious moods, we made our way to the correct terminal, but it took them about 40 minutes to get us on the plane… and then the bad news struck us in the face: the strike was still going on, and we had to wait our turn in the queue for an undetermined amount of time. SHIT. I swear, now I have an idea what it’s like being bi-polar, my emotions were being brought on a roller coaster of a ride this day. We ended up sitting on that stupid plane for another hour and what a surprise, we didn’t take off until 21h00.

Somewhere on the runway taking off from Lyon, I lost all hope that we were going to make our flight. Emily clung tightly to hope for a little while longer, but it was very apparent our trust was diminishing. Still, we had to try our best. About 15 minutes before we were scheduled to land, I went to talk to one of the flight attendants to explore some options. Here’s how our conversation went down:

Me: Excuse me, sir, but I was wondering if it was at all possible for my friend and I to be one of the first people off of the plane when it lands. You see, our connecting flight is very, very soon, and we may have a fighting chance if we can get off the plane quickly.
Him: *with a mouthful of airplane salmon* It depends on where you’re sitting on the plane. If you’re in the front, you’ll get off first. The exit is in the front.
Me: Pardon? We’re sitting in the middle, that’s why I’m asking you this question. Is it at all possible that 5 minutes before we land, my friend and I move to the front so we can make a quick exit?
Him: No, you can’t do that.
Me: Herm, okay. Well, is there any way that you can call the airport, or the airline or even the flight we are trying to get on, and let them know the situation? It is not our fault the flight was delayed, and we really need to make this flight. Could you possibly ask them to hold off for 5 or 10 minutes? Or let them know we are close and they can expect us?
Him: No.
Me: Alright then. Is there any way, shape, or form that you can help us? At all?
Him: What time did you say your flight is?
Me: *slight sliver of hope shining in my eyes* 21h55.
Him:*looks at watch* It looks like you’re going to have to run.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? That makes two shitty human beings that I had come in contact with in under a 5-hour time frame. At this point, I’m starting to hate a portion of the human race… especially those in association with Easyjet. Utterly defeated, Emily and I slunk back down into our seats and started to formulate a game plan to hopefully make our flight (no thanks to the stupid flight attendants). Emily is a serious runner, and God graced me with long legs, so we decided that we had to a) get off the plane as soon as possible and b)SPRINT as quickly as we can with our luggage to customs, check-in at the desk, and the run even faster to our terminal. We had about 40 minutes to do this. A slim chance of success, but we had no other option than to try.

So… the plane lands. The seat-belt light turns off, and Emily and I are instantly up, bags in hand, ready to hustle. We explained to the woman sitting next to us our situation, and her and her fellow travelers are understandable and let us pass. Then I meet terrible human number three: fatty mcfatfat. This guy very obviously spoke English; I tried telling him our situation, and he straight up ignored me! Actually, he reached above my head to get out his luggage while I stood there with a hurt-puppy look in my eyes, pleading to get off the plane… to no avail. Eventually I reached pissed off level, so I muttered something mean under my breath and pushed his obese ass out of my way. Sorry bro, maybe you should go to the gym, you fat, ugly fuck. Within a few minutes we were off the plane, and I started sprinting down the terminal, with Emily at my heels. It was probably quite the sight, us running down the hallway shouting “excuse me, excuse me… MOVE”. I mean, come on people! If you hear feet behind you moving at a rapid pace, and yelling, look behind you and move. I was not above crashing through idiots at this time.

Within minutes we made it to customs, and a kind elderly man gave us directions, and the guy at customs questioned why we were breathing heavily. We explained our situation and he pitied us and let us path without further questions… and then we met the biggest asshole of the day: the ryan air man. We made it to the check-in desk 35 minutes before our flight, pretty damn good considering, and we sincerely thought we had a fighting chance. No one was at the desk when we arrived, so we started pounding on the desk demanding attention. After two precious minutes, a grimy looking man with a greasy ponytail saunters up to the desk asking what we wanted. We explained our situation in rapid succession, and he simply told us ‘No’. I think I almost puked on him, ‘what do you mean no?’ we demand. He simply told us it was not possible (even though we still had 30 minutes, and the plan was still attached the terminal), and that it wasn’t ryanair‘s fault that our plane was late since they only do direct flights. Then he dismissed us and told us we would have to buy another ticket to Dublin for the morning.

Okay, I’m not normally a person who gets worked up, but I was at the end of my motherfreaking rope at this point, and I wanted to strangle this man by his nasty ponytail, then break things, then fall down and cry. I almost did them all, but I remained composed. Of course, to add salt to my wounds, my phone decided not to work, so I left my mom a voice-mail saying “hey mom… I’m stranded in London”, and then waited for Emily to get off the phone with her parents.

At this point, we were officially stranded in the London Gatwick Airport… and we had no idea what to do, so we decided to get some food and ask for help. Of course, no one was at the ticket buying area since it was passed 10 at night, so we found the help desk and she said to try looking for options on-line. So, we bought 20 minutes on the computers in the lounge, ate refreshing mango and pineapple, and started surfing the web. Eventually, my phone decided to function, and Emily and I both searched for ways to get from London to Dublin. We looked at boats, trains and planes, without much success (theme of the day, apparently). Thanks to our lovely parents helping us out, we ended up buying a plane ticket for 6h50 the next morning… for $300. Yeah, not pleased, especially because I’m already broke beyond comprehension; but, we successfully bought tickets and had a tangible solution to our current situation, so that was a large weight lifted from our shoulders.

By the time we had all this figured out, it was after 23h, and we were exhausted from one of the most stressful days in my young 21-year life. Like true vagabonds, we got ready for bed in the airport bathroom and hunkered down for the night, on the airport floor. Lovely, I know. I probably got about 3 hours of sleep total considering we were on the hard ground without blankets, and it was cold! At least we weren’t the only ones, so it wasn’t as creepy as it could have been.

So, yeah… that was how my day went last Thursday. Bet you’re reeeeaaaal jealous of it.

Some Old Grenoble Pics


Let Me Show You Some Things…


Bonjour again! Posting twice in one day, wowza. So, I was going through my photos/videos and realized I had forgotten to add some to my blog for you lovely people. They’re kind of old, but better now than never, right? Anyway… behold the remaining old videos maintenant.

^Self-explanatory title, but a view from the top of the Bastille. Peep those mountainsss.

^ It’s a bit of a hike getting to and from the top of the Bastille, so the lovely Grenoblois build these giant balls to take you up and down the mountain, if you so desire. I would hate being that lazy, so I hike up… but we were offered free passes to go down (it usually costs money), so how could you turn that down? I figured it would be interesting to video the journey.

^ I don’t have much to say to this… typical human behavior. In Grenoble, France.

Make A Point To Make No Sense


I’ve been going on a Modest Mouse binge lately; if you don’t know them… get to know them! They are lyrical geniuses. A little bit angst-y, but I mean.. who isn’t?

Also, I realized I never actually posted the Drinking Out Of Cups video that I referenced last post, so here it is. Don’t judge; it’s strange but I find it utterly hilarious, and I quote it regularly.

I digress. Here’s what went down this passed weekend.

Friday, November 9th: Slept in like a bau5. I think the only reason I woke up was because Hannah called me and wanted to meet up.. I mean, if you don’t go to bed until 4h00 it’s only normal to sleep in a bit lot. I had a tasty chicken fajita wrap for lunch from this Lebanese restaurant right next to Burgers & Cie, then I met up with Hannah and Jeremy at the French Coffee Shop. We originally intended to go to SNCF, which is where you go to buy train tickets, because we wanted to go to Bonson (a town on the outskirts of Lyon, France), to cheer on Mike and Emily in their half-marathon, but it ended up being a fail. Normally, it only takes about 45 minutes by train to get to Lyon, but Bonson is so small that the train would have had 2 layovers, and overall would have taken 3 heures to get there, and 3 to get back. It just wasn’t worth it for a simple day trip, plus it was way more expensive than it should have been. Sooo instead, we just chilled out for a while at the shop, and eventually Evelyn, Nina and Richard met up with us and we figured out a game plan for the night.

After I left mes amis, I headed home to shower and have dinner with Madeleine before the night commenced. I met up with Hannah and Jeremy at 21h00 at Chavant, then we made our way to Parc Paul Mistral where we met up with Richard. Jeremy is one of the babies of the group (he just graduated high school), and all of his friends were in Paris for the weekend, so of course we decided that we had to take Jeremy out on the town. Richard is his “big”, so he bought him a bottle of champagne to start off the night. Everyone kept on peer pressuring the poor kid (eventually Ellisa, Nina, Evelyn, Jordan and Max met up with us) and he kept complaining about the bubbles, but I helped coax him into drinking at least a solid amount of it. After we did a little pre-gaming in the parc, our group made its way to Subway, which is conveniently right next to my house. Preston, Ian, Carl and Jordan’s friend ended up meeting us there, so we were totally that loud group up on the second floor. Whatever, we had a lot of fun.. and a solid amount got pretty toasted (notably Ellisa), and poor Jeremy was convinced/pressured into drinking a beer, but his stomach caused him to call it an early night and go home.

Eventually, we found ourselves in Vieux Manoir and boogied once again. My dancing partner for the night was this awesome guy who I originally thought was French, but turns our he was British and from Brighton! Needless to say I was sold with the sexy accent, plus he was another fantastic dancer and we totally killed it on stage. Nina and I ended up being the last people at the club (typical), and we left a little passed 3h00. Another late night, but it was fun per usual, and I burned off the majority of the calories that I drank… I hope.

Well, I had the intention of recapping all of my weekend, but I’m about to leave and watch Twilight so it will have to wait. Bye loves!

Dance, Dance Until You Die


Getting all my ducks in a row, little pamplemousses. I figure it would be easier on me and more fathomable if I just did a few days at a time until I’m caught up. Donc, pour vous:

Monday, November 5th: “Remember, remember the 5th of November, Gunpowder Treason and Plot”, in case anybody didn’t know 😛 I happened to have watched V for Vendetta a few weeks ago, so that phrase was fresh in my memory. Anyway, I had the usual slew of classes, and had to fight the Monday boo’s, yada yada. I finished class at 17h30 – no more extended classes, yay – and then went home to chillax, shower and do the lovely thing we like to call homework, erlack. I know I shouldn’t complain since in comparison to last years hell, the amount of work I get here is laughable, but c’mon! I’m in France, gosh darnit. It should be an unwritten rule that if you are studying abroad in a country that doesn’t speak your mother tongue, homework simply shouldn’t exist. When I become president, don’t worry… that will be one of my first amendments. Amongst other green things.

So yeah, that was pretty much it for my Monday. I spent the next hour or so prepping my expo for Wednesday, which is pretty much a 10-minute presentation on anything you want, as long as it is in French and not read directly off of a sheet of paper. To unwind, I read some Game of Thrones per usual, and went to bed at a decent hour.

Tuesday, November 6th: Class, class, class. My translation professor gave us our “fake exams” back… and I’m pretty sure no one in the class got above a C-, COOL. I mean, for goodness sake, she expected us to know what BD was in French. I’m sorry, no (for future reference, BD = bande dessin, which is comic book in English. Why that should have been in my vocabulary, I’ve yet to comprehend). We actually read some interesting stuff in literature though, so that at least made the hour and a half pass by a little quicker than usual.

During class, I ended up convincing Nina to come on my night’s adventures, so after class we went to my apartment quickly so I could drop off my laptop and headed to Centre Ville for some dinner. Of course, being addicts, we went to a kebab place, ate some tasty kebabs with frites inside (!!!), and we were told that we speak French well. Being the proprietor, I’m sure he was just being nice, but I’ll take a compliment when it’s handed to me. We also didn’t have to pay for our frites, score.

Post-gorging, we met up with Natasha to go to her campus for a hot wine party. Yes, it was very delicious. Plus, it was hosted by GEM (the business school, chock full of foreign students from every corner of the globe), so we had yet another opportunity to parlons français with some natives. One of the students we conversed with complimented our French (twice in one night, quoiii), so it was yet another stroke to the ego, despite the fact that I’m 95% sure it was just a nice thing to say. Don’t get me wrong, my French has definitely improved, but I’m nowhere near good enough to be deserving of compliments from natives, but hey, I’m not going to tell them that.

After an hour or so, Ian met us at the party, we stayed for a little while longer, and then Nina, Ian and I made moves to Ian’s house to drop off our belongings. From there, we bought some brewskis (well, Ian and I bought one, had to keep it casual on a Tuesday night, plus I had my presentation in the morning), and went to a punk concert, wooop. Before we went in to witness the music, the three of us ended up having a mini-bonding session on a stoop for about 30 minutes, reminiscing on the best day of our young lives, aka Marseille/The Calanques. It was nice, and the music was pretty awesome as well.

Unfortunately, there were only two bands, but I guess it was kind of a blessing in disguise considering I really did need to get home at a decent hour to a) do my homework and b) get a full night’s rest before my presentation. I ended up getting home around 23h45, and somehow managed to do all my homework – of course I chose the one night to go out where I had to write a mini-paper thing – within 30ish minutes. Showering didn’t end up happening I’m sad to say, but I can be gross if I want. Needless to say, sleep came easily.

Wednesday, November 7th: I presented my expo in class. It was supposed to be 10-minutes, but my topic was music festivals, so of course I was obsessed (plus I brought in all my rave toys), and ended up talking for about 30. Woops, not my chair, not my problem (don’t get the reference? Peep below). Wednesday’s are easy, so we were all done with class by 10h20, so Hannah and I went to the French Coffee Shop so I could Skype my grandparents and potentially get some homework done, but of course that didn’t happen. Nina ended up meeting us there, and after my Skype date was finished I went to WokBar with Max to hear about his Amsterdam adventures… GAH I WANT TO GO BACK. Oh yeah, and we both got shit on by a stupid pigeon, what the hell. Actually, I thought just he did so of course I was making fun, and then realized there was some on my fleece, eeeeew. Definitely not one of my top ten favorite moments. So gross, stupid rats with wings; I can’t say I’ll miss them when I get back to the states.

Herrrm, afterwards I went home to nap and do the usual necessary life things, had dinner with Madeleine, and then watched most of the first Twilight movie. The last installation is either out or coming out within the next day or something, and I’ve yet to see the most recent, so I was trying to re-cap and watch them all. Unfortunately, that’s not going to happen because Nina, Emily, Hannah and I are seeing the newest one of Wednesday, so I’ll just have to settle with watching the one I’ve missed out on. I think I’ll survive… plus I forgot how absolutely horrendous their acting was in the first one. Gag me with a spoon. Thus concludes my hump day.

Thursday, November 8th: Class from 10h40-12h30, had lunch on campus, and was then forced to sit through a torturous deux heures of translation for the second time that week, erg! We had to make-up for the fact that during Toussaint class didn’t meet, but half of our stupid class didn’t show (well, like 3 of the 8, harhar), and it just wasn’t how I wanted to spend my Thursday afternoon. Thankfully the majority of class was spent watching this French comedian, so I guess it could have been worse, but still, I didn’t get out until 15h00, and then the finally weekend! Woo!

It’s like a holiday every week; I love not having class on Friday. I can only imagine what next semester is going to be like since I’m 98% positive I will only be taking one class, hell yeah part-time student status (I’m so proud of myself for getting all my credits and classes out of the way by my junior year). Anyway, after class I went with Hannah to the shop and attempted to Skype my mom, but that kind of was a fail, plus she didn’t have too much time. Instead I just caught up briefly on the phone, and then ended up Skyping Danielle for a while until she had to go to work. So I guess my afternoon ended up being a success after all.

By the time I was done Skyping, my computer was dead and my iPhone was dying, so I figured it was about time to head to my apartment and start prepping for the night. I showered, had some dinner with Madeleine, and then met up with Hannah, Preston and a few others outside of Parc Paul Mistral to start the evening off right. Richard, Emily, Nina and a few select others ended up meeting us there, too, and once the group was rounded up, we went to La Bobine, which is a bar in the middle of the park. It’s nice because you can drink your own alcohol pretty much on the deck, so you don’t go completely broke at the start of the night.

Hannah and I, of course, ended up splitting our usual whisky and coke, and we stashed a bottle of champagne in the bushes for later. Actually, when were drunk, we kept on just running outside and filling up cups of champagne. Yes, we are classy, and yes we are nuts. Thank you very much. Max, Maddie and her friend ended up meeting us at the bar, and once we were all sufficiently drunk, we made our way to Vieux Manoir. Actually, we ended up losing a good chunk of the group, and Richard was rejected from the Manoir, and Heather and Evelyn didn’t even try due to their level of intoxication (go hard or go home, that’s the API way), so it ended up being Hannah, Maddie & co, Max, Preston and myself. I think; I may be forgetting someone, and if I am… my sincerest apologies. We ended up running into Robin and her friend at the club (Robin is an API member who I virtually never see, so it was exciting, especially because I was buzzing), and we soon became dancing machines. I had my first experience dancing onstage at the Manoir, and it was a pretty fantastical experience. I ended up dancing with this French guy who had incredibly sexy dance moves, so needless to say I was satisfied. Robin’s friend also knew how to boogey down, so of course I danced with her a lot, too. We stayed there for a while, and then had to walk home in the rain… eew (it’s been raining here a lot lately, I guess we’re in the heart of the rainy season). I got home at 4h00, and then fell into a deep, uninterrupted sleep. Great success.

Toussaint Vaacaation


Bonjour my sweets.
It’s about that time where I need to update you once again. I’m sucking and over a week behind now *gasp*, so here’s to hoping I can remember everything clear enough.

Friday, November 2nd: From what I do recall, Nina, Hannah and I larded it up at my house for the duration of the morning. After we were done filling our lazy person quota, we met up with Emily and Peter to head to Grand Place, which is a mall outside the city center. We went there originally to participate in a free cooking class offered to Grenoblois, but there was a bit of a language barrier and we had difficulty figuring out what exactly was going on. It kind of seemed like it was a cooking class primarily for children, and parents cooked a little while waiting for their kids. So, we ended up calling it a failed mission, and had some lunch instead at a pizza place. I decided to branch out a little, and ordered pizza with baby shrimp on it! Not gonna lie, I was nervous it was going to be weird, but it turned out being pretty delectable, mission success.

After munching down, we decided to explore the mall a little bit. I’m still broke student status, so I had to resist the urge to buy about a million things, but I actually succeeded so I gave myself a pat on the back. Not going to lie though, I was thissss close to caving in and buying a pair of fuzzy footsie pajamas. Don’t hate.

After the mall, I made my way to the French Coffeeshop to have a Skype date with Sarah, which was a semi-success. Sometimes the internet decides to be a pill and cut out on me mid-conversation, but talking sporadically is better than not talking to her at all. Once my date was over, Nina met me in centre ville so we could grab some dinner (I don’t remember what we had… mersauce), and then we made our way back to my apartment to get ready for the night’s festivities. Woo! Hannah, Emily and Peter ended up coming over to pre-game, so before long the room was a buzzing a little bit 😉 I remember going to London Pub, then waiting until close to 1h00 so we could get free tickets to Vieux Manoir. We went to the Manoir, but it was early and there was no one there, so Nina, Hannah and I just ended up going home and eating copious amounts of bread before passing out in the apartment. Great fun.

Saturday, November 3rd: Another morning where we lazed around for a few hours to try and not suffer a hangover. Emily ended up calling me before noon, and we made plans to go to Vizille, France for 12h30. Vizille is a beautiful, adorable town about 40 minutes outside of Grenoble, and there is a bus that takes you there from Victor Hugo, which was pretty awesome. Before the bus, Nina and I grabbed Texan sandwiches from Sandwich House, and they were pretty much amazing. I just realized I haven’t uploaded my pictures from Vizille yet, so once I get home I’ll get on that and include the pics in the next post, they’re totally worth seeing. We spent the day in this beautiful park that had ponies and peacocks and reindeer! Along with rivers and bridges and a free museum, so overall it was a pretty fantastic day trip.

Remember that guy Hugo I mentioned in the last post who I met on Halloween night? Well, he ended up giving me a call this day, and wanted to hang out… so being a nice person I let him know where we were, and he ended up driving to Vizille to spend the day with us. He was a pretty cool kid, but my fake crush soon faded, so I kind of lost interest after the park, but still, it was nice to hang out with a real life French guy… especially one from Marseille! The reindeer and peacocks though were what really made me day, since I don’t think I had ever seen those animals in real life before.

When our little excursion came to an end, it was time for dinner.. so Nina and I, being addicts, ate Curry Sandwiches from Sandwich House and then went back to my apartment to start getting ready for the night once again. Around 21h00, Hannah, Emily, Peter, Evelyn and Ellisa came over to my place, and in the usual fashion we played Kings and got sloshed. We bounced around to a bunch of different bars and clubs, and met up with Hugo and his friend, and I probably didn’t get home until close to 3h30. It was a rowdy time to say the least, and we learned that sometimes combining the three sassiest girls of the group (Nina, Hannah, Myself) and adding alcohol is not always the best idea, but always the most entertaining. That’s all I’m going to say, haha. Once we got home, I drunkenly snacked on eggs and then went to bed. Rawr.

Sunday, November 4th: In Grenoble, the first sunday of the month means that all the museums are free to the public, so Richard, Hannah, Nina, Peter, Evelyn, Emily and I decided to take advantage of that. We were all kind of dying though from our weekend ways, so we didn’t fully experience as much as we wanted to, but I still got to see some old Roman Ruins which was pretty sweet.


















We ended up losing Nina along the way, and after our museum excursion the majority of us went to the movies to see 007, Skyfall… it was so good! Seriously, if you haven’t checked it out I totally recommend it. The acting was pretty fly, and you can’t really go wrong with Daniel Craig. <333

Apparently it’s the rainy season in Grenoble, because I was practically drowning from all the rain this day, which obviously made it perfect for the movies. The movie ended pretty late, so from there I just went home, gave Nina all her belongings, ate dinner and went to bed. It was a nice and much needed loooong sleep. Thus ending my splendidly long weekend for Toussaint. Allez!



Without further ado, I present to you… my parapent (paragliding) videos! Bask in the awesomeness that was my life this day. I want to go back and do it again, like now.

^Before running off that mountain that you see in the video. Quoiiiii?

^ SO close to take off


^And again. So freaking AWESOME.

^ Just cruising above a lake… and spinning… *stomach lurches*