There are a lot of questions people asked before I left for Paris. Questions like, "Oh, is it through your school?" "Do you know anyone who will be going?" "Do you have any friends over there?" "Do you know French?" "Have you packed?" The answers to all of these questions were: a terrified no. My school made it nearly impossible to go on study abroad due to the cancellation of their program. I had no clue how I would meet friends or make friends; this isn't freshman year where they host event after event in the hopes that you find friends. Friends in France? Who did I know in France? And the language is a mysterious one, but one that with 15 hours of French class a week, I'm hoping to grasp more than I do now. Oh, and I packed, by the way. I know everyone was worried about that one.
But as it turns out, the whole "friends" issue wasn't something I should've been worried about. Sure, I miss my friends back in the States; they're all pretty cool people. But I'm absolutely loving spending time with the folks I've gotten to know here.We talk about art and philosophy and movies. We drink coffees in cafes and get drinks along the Seine at night. They're always down to meet new people, discuss new things, and broaden horizons. I'm finding that the people who chose to leave behind the comfort of their familiar lives in the States and just go to Paris are interesting people.
These people are experiencing the same things I'm experiencing, but they're doing it in a completely different way. Our backgrounds, our stories, our experiences before this shape how we each see this one.
People expand the horizons of your world in a similar way as travel. Both expand your horizons, offer different perspectives, and demand change.
So here's to sunny days in manicured gardens with friends :)