Saturday, August 31, 2013

Paris Arrival

Okay...where to start...where to start...

How about with my first international toilet??

This was in my layover to Ireland:


Yep...that's me. Creeper taking pictures in the bathroom.


First Parisian toilet. A little dirtier, but hey I'M IN PARIS!!!FREAKING PARIS!!

As we were landing, the landscape of France was a lot different than what I had pictured in my head. Totally flat. Just divided into separate squares of farm land. And the only trees, I kid you not, are in the towns of people. Little divided populated sections. I think I was just shocked by the realness of it all. 

So, the whole trying to get to my hotel thing was a little scary. Not going to lie. I was supposed to meet up with 3 other girls. Only one showed up, and because France only gives you 15 minutes of Free Wifi, we had trouble communicating. We waited 3 hours extra to see if they would come. We did not want them to be stranded somewhere. But finally, we left the airport and experienced the real world!!

It was kinda cool because our shuttle driver spoke English pretty well, and he was so curious when he found out we were Mormons. He only even knew about them because I guess there is a French Cereal that makes fun of Mormons. Who knew? But it was so cool to explain to him that we aren't a secret crazy group who kills people. Man...you can't even trust Cereal boxes these days:) 

The trip was looking up..until the missionary experience threw me off, and I forgot my backpack on the shuttle....I was panicking on the inside and looking like a jet-lagged crazy American on the outside. Long story short, thank goodness French people know some English, and my BACKPACK came BACK!!


This is my face after I calmed down. I was now ready to experience some Paris. 


I walked down the street and this is what greeted me. BOOM! I just kept staring trying to decide if it was all a dream. My mind was so tired. I just looked and looked and looked. 

On the bright side, I got hit on by my first ever FRENCH MAN!!! And guess what? He was even at least 42 years old. Shorter than me. And Holding a beer in his hand. Sometimes in life you just get lucky:) 

Too bad I had other obligations, or else I could have accepted his offer and went with him to get a drink....

Then, me and some of the girls went exploring and decided to chill out and sit on the bank of the Siene River. 

Here is how cool they are:



I can tell we are all going to get along already! Everyone is so fun and nice. I was super surprised about it actually!


Our first French meal: Millefeuille d'aubergines et ricotta creme d'olives noires

Not only a mouthful to say but to eat as well. It is pretty much olive frosting, cheese middle, and eggplant everywhere else. I pretended it was a Fatboy and I got most of it down:)


Second Course: Entrecote de boeuf
So delicious!! Steak with a melted tomato and herb sauce. I couldn't get enough. 


And for Dessert: Creme brulet au chocolat (there are accents on the letters but I can't figure out how to put them on.) 

So in English: AWESOMENESS!!



Couldn't help but eat it all.


Alyssa and I, after the dinner.
 Fancy Smancy and so tasty. 
Great start to this new journey!

My Late New York City Post!!

With no phone, no internet and a dead computer...posting is...IMPOSSIBLE!

But lets go back a few days to my time in NYC. I visited my friend Ilyssa from BYU. She is pretty much the coolest thing that ever came to Utah. 

Every day, it felt like I had marched across the whole state. I took way too many pictures, so lets just do the highlights:

Day 1: 

World Trade Center Memorial:


Hot Indian Restaurant: (with crazy awesome lights)



Washington Square Park:

(They pretend to be like Paris)





Hanging out in a fountain=BEST FEELING 

Gotta love the Book of Mormon Musical (well the poster at least...)


 The one and only TIME SQUARE:


Day 2:

Since Ilyssa was in class, I went to Central Park. I decided to conquer the subway system by myself. I felt like I went back 100 years, with no phone and no internet. It really is just a massive alone feeling. 

I did just about everything wrong. Wrong stop. Got off too early. Started going downtown on accident when I needed to go uptown. 

But through this, I learned how to buy a map, how to ask for help, how to read a map, and how to laugh at myself. And when I found Central Park, I was on a high!! I have never felt so proud of myself. 

Not even the pouring rain storm and thunder cracking up in the sky could take me down. Instead, I bought some fruit, found myself a nice bench by a pond in Central Park and pondered the purpose of life! It was a moment completely my own, and one I will never forget. 


(Sorry if it looks like I am taking selfies. But when you are trying to document by yourself it happens.)

After this whole adventure, I went around with Ilyssa for one last night on the town.



Chocolate Pizza!


\
(Williamsburg Bridge)
Day 3:

My last day here, I got go to Oceanside in Long Island to see where my friend had grown up. It was such a cool little town. And once again it was hard to say goodbye...


Love ya Lyss!!!

I loved everyone of these places. It was fun to be back in the real world. So many different cultures, people, buildings. There is so much LIFE in the city!


Bye Bye New York!



Sunday, August 25, 2013

Saying Goodbye to Utah

So I thought saying goodbye to Utah would be a peice of cake. Not quite true... I realized all the wonderful people that come along with saying goodbye. I'm not going to lie, it made me a bit sad.

First I had to leave the MTC and when you work with people like this...


It's hard to leave them. They are so supportive and know just how to celebrate my mission call to NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE!! I will miss them for sure. 

Then I had to say goodbye to Just Because Flowers. This place is my own little sanctuary. I worked with some dang good people. Designing Flowers just brings me peace!


Which brings me to my family.....

the best dang family....

                                                   



And because of my mission call, I have a week left with them in two years...


But at the same time, it is all for the best. I am on my way to live my dreams. But I couldn't have gotten there without the help of everyone in good-ole Utah.

I guess I am just grateful for all those people around me. And all they add to my life. 

Well, I'm off to New York City for a few days...

GOOD-BYE UTAH!!!
(but mostly the people that live in it)


Gotta love my Dad in the background!

Friday, August 9, 2013

My New Home

Alright, so for months I have been waiting to hear who I get to live with in Paris and where. In my last post, I talked about how excited I was to live with my host mom, Elisabeth.

And her address is:

18, rue Albert Roussel – 75017 Paris

So, I guess now this is my future address.

The director of the program told us beforehand that it wasn't guarenteed that we actually get to live in the city. It made my whole day, that in fact, I get to live in PARIS!

Here is what google maps had to say about it:


I mean how bad can it be, if "Rue Victor Hugo" is nearby. He is almost calling me to have my own Les Miserables adventure.

Plus, from looking at the street view, I have already made my first friend.

I used to think Google Maps was creepy, but now I appreciate it because it has enabled me spy on my future home.
 
It is in the 17th arrondissement in Paris, which is mainly a residential area. But it is only a 15-20 minute metro ride to most attractions in the city. I don't know about you, but I can't complain.
 
A popular park nearby is called Monceau Park.
 
Here is how you get in:
 
 
and this is what you get to see:
 



 
I am really excited about the area I am living in. I can't wait to explore this park, and to take pictures infront of the apartment building to show you. And instead of a stranger, you will see my familiar face.
 
Real pictures of people I actually know and things I have actually seen with my OWN two eyes....COMING REAL SOON
 
20 DAYS!!!
 
C'est parfait!!
 
 



Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The First of Many

Alright, this is the start of a new journey. THE BEST JOURNEY.  I leave for Paris on August 30th and get to spend 90 days there with the Brigham Young University Study Abroad Program.

I get to live with a real-life Parisian women! Her name is Elisabeth, and I know that she is going to be pretty dang awesome. By the end of the program, we are going to best friends!

In my head our relationship is like this:


Except, add some BYU standard modest clothing....

and maybe the Eiffel Tower in the background...

or in front of her fishermans cottage she wants to take us to in Normandy!

And when I say us, I mean my roommate named Alyssa. I haven't met her in real life yet, but from texting she seems awesome. So, I take back the last picture. We need to add three ladies...

 
 
 
And then just add some sleeves, and we are all set to party in Paris.
 
 
Do you guys want to see a picture of Alyssa? She is gorgeous and you guys need to get familiar with her face, because we are going to be together lots and lots.
 

 
 
BOOM! Here she is!
 
During the semester, I am taking 13 credits, but this time I am not complaining.
 
I am taking:
  • French 102 (I might need some prayers coming my way to survive)
  • French History
  • Religion in a World Setting
  • Fine Arts
  • Paris Walks
My Fine Arts class will be taught in the musuem where the art ACTUALLY LIVES!
 
And the Paris Walks class consists of walking around the streets of Paris. So all in all, it will be a semester to remember.

 
I am honestly so excited to go on this journey. I know that it will be hard and challenging in some ways. I also know that I will have some of the best experiences of my life. I just want to learn as much as possible. My goal is to act like a sponge and take it all in. I'm looking forward to keeping up this blog, and telling all my funny, crazy, embarressing stories!
 
I will end this with my "I'M GOING TO PARIS FACE!!":