France March 17: Notes from Kayla

I want to share some of the highlights of the first five days here in France. When I first arrived at the school, I wasn’t sure whether to kiss the French on both cheeks as is custom, and so we awkwardly danced until we finally settled on a handshake. The next highlight was that their school bell was actually “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO. Then after lunch in the cafeteria, they drink only water.

Skipping to Monday, my first day of service, I struggled a little bit with understanding the students, but things got better. Then at lunch, I dropped a glass in the cafeteria and as if I didn’t already stand out as a new face who spoke English and was loud. Now I was the new face who dropped a glass in the cafeteria.

After school, I took notice of the scheduled time for a snack everyday at home. Dinner is then served later in the evening. While at dinner, conversation was a mix of English and French as we tried to understand one another and they commented on how weird it was to see me eating sausage and bread for breakfast that morning.

Tuesday at service, I dropped a stack of plastic cups on the floor and then later, I got locked in the bathroom and had to leave through the window. That was interesting! Finally at the end of my work, a small child, with whom I had spoken when he was put in “time out” in the room in which I was working, came and gave me a “bisous” which is a small kiss.

The last highlight was that the school buses for the students were in fact coach buses and I rode in comfort to and from school as opposed to the cheese buses in America.

Now we are on our way to Paris!

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