For those of you who don’t know, the school that I am studying at is called Purpan which is an agricultural college that I believe is part of the University of Toulouse. We had tours of the school on Monday and our first day of actual class on Tuesday. The school design reminds me of a middle school more than a college since it is so compact. The majority of the day was tours and a two hour lunch break. The school lunches in France are much more elaborate than those in the U.S. and they have many more options to choose from…like bottles of wine in the cafeteria.
Tuesday we had our first day of actual classes which included a culture lecture (of three hours) and another lecture on the French language (another three hours). We were essentially in class from 8:45 am until 5 pm with an hour and a half for lunch. The lunch sounds nice, but we have to walk about fifteen to twenty minutes to get to the cafeteria and it is consistently sunny and hot here in Toulouse. Also, hardly any of the buildings have air conditioning so all of the people from our program are essentially dying from the heat by the time we get back from lunch. Side note: the French act like heat doesn’t exist and are capable of wearing long pants and jackets without sweating.
French class was a little rough for all of us in the beginners class. We were under the impression we would be learning letters, numbers, and colors to start with, but we immediately learned common conversational phrases. It will probably be the most helpful, but we were all pretty overwhelmed. Aside from the language, we learned how to appropriately do the kiss on the cheek greeting which a lot of people seemed to be uncomfortable with. It was entertaining for the rest of us though.
Last night we met our French neighbors from across the hall. They had a fun time making fun of the terribly cheap wine we were drinking (mine especially because I bought wine for cooking seafood with apparently). They were pretty good with English and told us they practiced it by listening to American music and watching TV shows and movie. They really like Game of Thrones and Project X over here.
That’s all I have for now!