We continued with French class and wine classes this week. I think the longest I’ve gone without having a glass of wine thus far is one day, but hey I’m not complaining. We visited 2 wineries and a farm this week and didn’t have very much class. Friday we had a “field trip” to downtown Toulouse for French class where we were supposed to go to a market and essentially make a dinner menu and look at prices for the ingredients. We are presenting is information on Monday as our final evaluation for French which I am really eager to be finished with. The French language is beautiful, but so difficult to learn if you’re not a native speaker. I think what makes it so difficult for me is that the spelling and the speaking of it are not similar in the slightest. Okay maybe in the slightest, but still. As a class we pretty much decided that it’s a safe bet to not pronounce the last letter on any of the words and to make a hissing/gargling noise whenever there’s an “r”. It’s much different than English or Spanish when pretty much the spelling is the same as the pronunciation so it’s pretty hard for us to get the hang if. Which isn’t to say that I’m not learning anything because I am, just very slowly. The highlight of this week for most of be people in the origin was finding out who our host families are going to be for the next half of the program which is an internship. We are all dispersed around France on different farms or wineries and live with a host family for four weeks to work for them. My four weeks will be spent on a vineyard and winery in Moncaup, France which is a very very very small town of a 4.2 square mile size according to Wikipedia. My family has three girls that are ages 5, 12, and 14. The parents own a vineyard and winery that I will be working at. A girl from Purdue had the same family last year and said they were very nice and that she considered them family by the end of her trip so hopefully I feel the same way! She also mentioned that the dad is the only one who speaks English so that could get interesting…stay tuned! A small group of us took a little break from Toulouse this weekend to go to the beach. This weekend was our only free weekend so we were able to go wherever we wanted. Six of us rented a condo for the weekend that was in walking distance of Valaras Beach aka Vias Plage. Getting to the condo was a bigger challenge than any of us expected. Our tickets were at the train station so we got there early to pick them up. There were plenty of kiosks to buy tickets but for some reason we weren’t allowed to print ours out from the kiosk so we had to wait in line. After taking a number, we made it up to the counter with five minutes to spare before our train was scheduled for departure. Turns out, three of our tickets were bought for the week before and we had to re-purchase them within this five minute period. We were all panicked about missing the train but luckily our terminal was close and we were able to sprint to our train. Of course as soon as we got on the train we were stuck at the station for a little over an hour so we were worried about time for nothing. An hour and a half later we made it to the train station in Bèziers and took a taxi to our condo. The condo was brand new and very nice for the price that we paid for it which was a pleasant surprise after our stressful train experience. The area was a quaint beachy town that reminded me a lot of a small town in Florida. Saturday we went to the beach which was hot, windy, and the Mediterranean was like ice water. It was a very relaxing day and we got dinner and drinks later that evening. Sunday we had an evening train departure and wanted to make sure we arrived early enough at the train station to avoid any issues like the ones that happened Friday. We had about half of the day Sunday before we left which I spent most of sleeping partially because I was sunburnt from Saturday and partially because I was pretty sick the previous few days and figured it would be my only time to get some solid rest. We haven’t had wifi for the weekend so I will post this as soon as we get back to good ol Toulouse! Au Revoir!