Exactly one year ago, I started my first day of work as an English teaching assistant in Douai, France. If things would’ve worked out as I was hoping for, I would be doing the same thing today! Unfortunately, that’s not the case – but when I look back at this year and everything that has happened, I am like whoa.
I spent 8 months in France, teaching 12 hours a week to French high school students. I definitely had my ups (like my great class of senior students who always greeted me with a smile) and downs (like that one time that I ended up yelling in French at my sophomores who didn’t want to listen to a word I was saying), but I definitely learned a lot. If I ever have the opportunity to do the assistantship again, I would take it.
I lived in a small city but made great friends from all over, including my roommates from Spain, Italy, and Germany and my other assistant friends living nearby.
After finishing my teaching contract three weeks ago, I am now on permanent vacation – but let’s look back at March…
For my spring vacation, I decided to do something a little different: I participated in a week-long program called Angloville. It’s a fantastic language immersion program for native Polish people to improve their English. I spent 10 days in Poland overall, giving me 2 weekends in Krakow (before & after the program) and 6 days in the mountain city of Zab (during the program).
I was traveling by myself, so it took lots of tries for me to do each step to get me closer to my hostel. Two times at the ticket machine. Three times walking past the train stop – it was seriously not marked well… that’s my excuse. Two times asking for directions to the hostel (which was literally right down the street from the station). But I made it!
So much has been happening in my little corner of France that I am incredibly behind on blogging about it – I’ll take that as a good thing! I still haven’t written about Grant and Matt’s end to their trip, and I’ve just returned back to work after having spent a week with parents visiting me. There are lots of exciting updates, but for now, I’m going to tell you all about what has been happening in my little French life. How is work? How is food? How are the SNCF train strikes? Keep reading to find out. (I probably won’t talk about the SNCF train strikes though… thinking about it too much can probably lead to stomach ulcers.)