03 October 2010

A Techno Parade, An Internship, & Some Macarons.

If there is, by any slim chance, anyone who has been waiting with bated breath for my latest update-- I owe you a big fat apology.  It's been almost two weeks since I've written, and that simply won't do since I'd promised myself I would try to blog once a week.  It's just that I'm just a tiny bit lazy, and it seems a lot easier to put off updating rather than just sitting down and doing it.  So now, here I am, sitting down and... well, doing it.
To beat a dead horse completely and thoroughly, I can't believe how quickly my time is disappearing.  I have only three weeks of classes left, an event which marks the halfway point of my semester.  It's unbelievable to think that I'm almost halfway finished here, I can already sense how unready and heartbroken I will be to leave on December 18.
Big things have been happening in my neck of the woods, I'm pleased to report.  I had an interview on last Monday morning with my potential internship maitresse.  I traveled to Trocadero, biting my nails the whole way as I thought about what was to come.  My interview was to intern at a small international law firm located just across the river from the Eiffel tower (the commute involves traveling by metro over a bridge, where I can casually take in a stupendous view of the tower and river).  The firm deals mainly with business law but also has some cases involving tax law and medical malpractice.  The only thing of all of these that was familiar was tax law- thanks to my time at the Villanova Law Clinic I've spent more time on the United States IRS website than I care to admit to, so I have some kind of experience in tax law.
Anyway, after awkwardly waiting on a bench in the rain for twenty minutes, I met my maitresse and we had our interview.  The woman is lovely, the office is gorgeous-  Just two or three rooms with two people working quietly.  The best news, however, is that the interview was a success, and I've consequently signed my convocation to begin interning with the law firm on November 2.  I'm thrilled, and I would be giving you more concrete information with links to websites and all I'm just not sure how much I'm allowed to talk about it.  Rest assured, chers amis, that it is a fantastic opportunity in a gorgeous location with a lovely maitresse.  I'm looking forward to starting in November, I can't wait to see what I'll learn from my time as an intern.
Now that my big news has been told, I can get to the interesting and fun stuff.  Last Saturday my friends and I headed over to the left bank in search of something we'd heard of called a Techno Parade.  I didn't really know what it was, but it sounded like something I could get into so I donned my finest tie-dye tshirt and set off with a big group of friends to see what we could find.  It didn't take long to hear the pounding bass and screaming fans of the Techno Parade.  It was, essentially, a big huge parade of people dancing, punctuated with massive buses pumping out techno beats.  We were so happy, it looked like so much fun, so we jumped on in.  It was unforgettable.  We danced in the streets of Paris for five hours, following the parade all the way to Place de la Bastille where it ended.  I danced, I sang, I screamed, I climbed on bus stop shelters and hopped the fence of the monument at Bastille.  It was one of the most adrenaline-infused and incredible experiences of my life.  I don't even have the words to give it any justice at all, so I won't really try.  It was just completely awesome, so exciting and such an energetic atmosphere.  It was also very tiring, and I have more bruises still than I've had ever in my life-- And for those of you who realize my bruising tendencies, that is really saying something.  All so worth it though, vive la techno!

So many people!

I don't even like techno...

Storming the Bastille, pt. 2.  This resulted in a lot of bruises,
but I'm just glad we left before the police teargassed the crowd...
I got to see my Dad twice over the past week, which was an awesome treat.  He had been traveling for business in Germany and so he stopped by in Paris for the night last Friday and then again this Thursday.  It was super to see him, it's so much fun to show people the little life I've created for myself here.  He's by no means a Paris amateur, but it was still nice to show him what spots I like the most.  We had some really fantastic meals together, too, it was such a treat to go out to restaurants and enjoy someone else's cooking.  I love to cook but eating out at restaurants is a lot more relaxing! Dad's also a total language dweeb like me, so we spent a lot of time attempting to one-up each other by showing off how many useful little phrases we each know.  Even though I'm the one that lives here, I think he's still got me beat.  Dads always know the most, somehow.

Macarons and tea at La Durée with Dad, yum.
Wine and cheese before dinner (!?) with Dad.  Also yum.

This past Friday I went on a field trip with my Art History class to Metz, where we had a  guided tour of the newly built and gorgeous Georges Pompidou center .  The museum is beautiful, with some really fantastic pieces inside, but our visit was unfortunately unbearably long.  It's nice to get out and about and to see some of the art work that we learn about in class, but asking thirty exhausted 20 year old American students to spend three and half hours listening to a French guided tour of modern art....?  It was completely fatigant.  The city of Metz is gorgeous, and is home to a fantastic and awe-inspiring cathedral.  It was nice to be a tourist again, but I did miss Paris and was glad to return that evening, even though it was dreary and we were all exhausted.  I spent a wild Friday night cooking a garlic-infused meal with my friend Becca, and was so glad to get to sleep.

"The Mona Lisa is in the stairwell."
Crazy optical illusion windows.  Metz cathedral seems so close from this end of the room...
But once you get closer, it shrinks!
Last night in Paris was Nuit Blanche.  There was a lot going on in the city, with art installations all over the place and museums open to the public and things of a similar nature, but due to some sort of plan fail my group of friends got awfully separated and we didn't end up seeing any decent amount of art at all.   We were all still a bit tired, I think, so staying up all night was not the best idea in the first place, in combination with the fact that we completley missed the point of Nuit Blanche.  I'm kind of disappointed that we didn't get to see more stuff, because it sounds like there was some great offerings, but I guess it's only one missed opportunity and there will be plenty more later.  What we did see was incredible though- a big installation on city hall which commanded in several languages Love the Differences.  It was very cool.

Love the Differences
This week is a tough one in school, I've got a few presentations and papers which are stressing me out quite a bit.  Hopefully I will get through it, one way or the other.  Though I only have to get a C to get Villanova credit for the semester, my inner-nerd (my outer-nerd too!) has trouble settling for a C.  I just have to keep reminding myself that there are only three weeks left of classes-  That is hardly even enough time to get stressed!  At the end of these three weeks I'm jet setting a little bit, visitng friends and family across Europe, so if I DO get stressed, I at least have that to look forward to.

Reminder to self: happiness can be as simple as good friends, bad wine,
a French board game, and the Seine at night time.
My host parents and housemate were gone all weekend, so it was just me and Pilou, the cat... but he hid from me all weekend, unfortunately.  Kim  is back now, after spending the weekend in Switzerland, and I'm still waiting for my host parents to return from their country house.  I'm looking forward to having them home-- Even if it's not my house, it's nice to have the noise and energy of a family to fill this apartment.
I want to try and get out and about in the city more this week, though perhaps its not the best week to try and do so.  Paris feels like it's on the brink of something these days, when I step outside in the morning cold weather smells just a little bit closer every day.  I can't wait for the leaves to change and fall, it will be so beautiful.  Well, Paris is always beautiful, but it will be something new and different and exciting.  I look forward to it immensely, and I will of course share it with you all.  Until next time!  xo


  1. Paris feels like it's on the brink of something these days, when I step outside in the morning cold weather smells just a little bit closer every day.

    I remember that feeling, even if it was the shift from winter to spring... it's magic! The blossoms are all blooming on our trees outside the house and I wish you could see them. It's no techno parade, but I still wish you were here.