After anxiously awaiting my home stay assignment, I moved into my new home, the place I will be staying for four months. I was super nervous to find out who I would be living with, what their name was, where they lived, if they would take me in graciously, if they would try to make me clean a lot, if they were temperamental, or if they would even like me. I know that might sound a bit ridiculous to say, especially since host families volunteer to take someone in (why wouldn’t they embrace me), but living with someone and having a room mate is a different situation. And I can only imagine because I’m an unknown foreign kid staying with someone from a different culture who may have certain rules, customs, and habits. Which I am totally interested in learning and respecting but that’s the thing, I really didn’t know what to expect!
So after class on Friday we were gathered in a big room and handed a sheet of paper that gave the name, address, phone number, and a brief description about the person. My host’s name is Anne-Christine. The brief description said: Elle est très chaleureuse (warm) et ouverte (open), elle a une fille étudiante de 19 ans qui habite à la maison (she has a daughter who studies and is 19 years old who lives at the house). When I discovered this I was very relieved. However I had to call my hôtesse to let her know when I was coming, which was also another nerve-wracking moment ahhhh.
I split a cab with my friend, Emily, and je suis arrivée à 19 (dix-neuf) passage Alexandrine in the 11ème (arrondisement). The neighborhood is cute and quant, not bougy (comme bourgeoisie) laquelle je préfére (which I prefer). I took the elevator up two stories and when the doors opened I saw un petit chat blanc et noir (a small black and white cat). A door was open and I was hoping that the open door was my home and I would have un petit ami qui est un animal (a small friend that is a pet). Turns out I was in the right place.
Anne-Christine welcomed me and gave me a tour around the house. She speaks some English so when I couldn’t quite understand her she would repeat it for me in English. I’m still trying to learn comprehension skills ahhhh. She showed me my room and it is very nice. The bed is much more comfortable than the bed in the traditional dorms and I have tons of space to store clothes even though I did not pack that much ahhh. I have a window and a pleasant view. I also have a little ledge so I might try to grow some les épices (herbs).
Anne-Christine showed me around the neighborhood. Il y a une boulangerie (There is a bread shop), une patisserie (mmmmm), une petite super marché le métro, etc. We stopped at a boulangerie for bread and the super market to get things for dinner. We picked up cheese, nuts (pour l’apèratif), coke, and de la bière (BEER!). Then we returned and had some beer and nuts while waiting for the pasta to be done. I explained to her that I typically do not eat meat, unfortunately she had meat in the spaghetti sauce and apologized but I told her not to worry! I would eat my noodles with du buerre, du sel, et du poivre. C’était super! I helped mettre la table (set the table) and Anne-Christine, her daughter Adele, and I had our first meal together.
I learned a little bit about them and I explained how I was truly sorry if I did not understand them because I was trying my best and know I don’t speak French well. They both reassured me and said it was okay and they understand. A huge relief to me, whew! I am happy to be in an accommodating home in a lovely neighborhood. Anne-Christine and Adele are très gentil et très sympa! Je sens confortable ici et je suis heureuse (I feel comfortable and I am happy). Here are some photos of my room. C’est officielielle, j’emmenageais.