Mon Weekend

Bonjour tout le monde!
It’s CRAZY to think I’ve been in Montpellier for a month! I feel so at home here, and I have really gotten into a good routine. One thing that I am appreciating here is having a lot of classes with the people from my program. I don’t usually get to have multiple classes with the same people back at the U, but here it has been a great way to make friends in a short amount of time.
Overall, classes have been going pretty smoothly, but I have yet to really have any major projects or tests. For those who don’t know this semester I am taking the following classes:
-French Grammar and Methodology
-French Multiculturalism
– French Phonetics
– Civilization of the South
– My integrated classes: History of Cinema and History of French Animation
The majority of my classes are similar to French classes that I would take back in the US. However, my integrated classes are SO different from America classes. To start, History of Cinema is what we would consider the “lecture” portion of the class, and the History of French Animation is what we would consider the “discussion” portion; although, these two classes really have nothing to do with each other, and they do not build off each other like they would at an American university. Additionally, in both classes it seems that the French students do not take it seriously. The students often talk while the professor is lecturing, walk into class 10-15 minutes late, or eat full meals during class. This mostly has to with the fact that is inexpensive for French students to go to public universities, and they do not start the selection process until after the first year. That is to say that everyone can get into Paul Valéry for the first year, but many students will not be back for the second year. Therefore, in classes meant for first year students, such as my cinema courses, you get a lot of people who do not care about school and do not take it seriously.
Enough about school; I wanted to talk about what I did this weekend! On Friday the program assistants (3 students from Paul Valéry who organize outings for the group to go on) planned an outing to a local Irish pub called Fitzpatrick’s. The bar had a Celtic band playing which was really fun to hear!
On Sunday it was a beautiful 60 degrees here, so my friends and I decided to head to the ocean for the day!
It’s pretty simple to get to the beach from Montpellier; my host mom says that she often bikes there as well. We took a tram and walked a lot to get there on Sunday, but it was worth it! We had fun exploring the beach and smelling the salty air. I cannot wait until it is warm enough to sit on a blanket all day in the sun! We ended the night by eating at this adorable little sea side restaurant.
Overall it was a pretty laid back weekend; we are all preparing for the traveling we will be doing over the next couple of weekends!
Hope everyone is surviving the cold back home! Sending warm thoughts your way

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