During the past few days, I have been reminded often that I am definitely not in Texas anymore. Although I’ve spent much time in France, and many weekends in Hazebrouck (where I’m staying until I move to Douai next weekend), it’s the little things that I see or experience that serve as clear examples of the unique French (and Flemmish) culture in the north of France.
The food. The drinks. Both are quite different from what I’ve been eating all summer. French people drink often. I don’t know how their stomachs can handle 4 cups of strong coffee per day, but they do. I’ve been getting strange looks for requesting just water to drink – no, not carbonated water, just water – which makes me giggle. It usually goes like this – Host: “Do you want a coffee?” Me: “No thank you, but I’ll just have water if that’s okay.” Host: “Juice? Coke?” Me: “Oh that’s ok, just water please.” Host: “???”
Who knew my trip back to France would be so full of adventure?!
Wednesday afternoon, my family & I left for the airport only to get a flat tire on the way. Luckily we left 3 hours early, and my dad is a pit boss. We continued on the spare (at a torturing 50mph) until we reached DFW International Airport. Once I checked in, they weighed my bag and of course it was one pound overweight. I pulled out my 1.25 pound container of chili powder and transferred it to my carry on since the employee said it was okay to do that. Then, when I check into security, I’m pulled aside to have my carry on bag checked through on the special table because of my huge container of Texas spice. Luckily it wasn’t a problem after all and I headed towards my gate.
Two weeks and one day before my plane leaves, I feel surprisingly prepared.
About a month ago, I pulled my suitcase down from the highest shelf of my parents’ closet. I thought, could this be too early? No. Knowing my airline’s baggage policy (first max 50lb bag free, overweight fee of $200, second bag fee of $200), I have no choice but to take one suitcase and one carry-on. My beastly hard-case Delsey suitcase weighs 11lbs (it’s also purple), therefore I have a good 39lbs to pack with lots of layers for the cold weather of northern France. I’ve slowly been putting sweaters, leggings, and long-sleeved shirts into the suitcase – items that I’ll have no need for during September in Texas.