Saturday, April 21, 2012

I Love Montpellier

Montpellier was so great! I think that Brandon would agree, we has so much fun. So where did I leave off last time. 

Brandon and I went to the beach. We made it back downtown, and of course, we were hungry. Celia had told us about an ice cream place that is the best in Montpellier, so we went there. I had stracciatella and chocolate, it was huge and amazing!! Brandon had a crepe nutella. Really good, the afternoon was hot, and the lady that we were sitting next to was nuts, but overall it was fun. 

What did we do next..... yep! We headed over to Monoprix to get some food for dinner. It was about 5h30, but we were meeting Anne-Lise and Alexia at 7h45 to go to church. This may shock you, but we were really full, so we decided to go with soup. Vegetable soup. I'd explain it, but you can just look at it here.

The soup was delicious!! And then suddenly it was 7h35 and we were going to be late for church. We rushed out of the apartment as it should take about 15 minutes to get to where we were meeting up for church. We get to the tram stop to see that the trams have gone haywire, rogue, whatever you want to say. 

Like I said earlier, the trams are in chaos this week. Adding two new trams has screwed the entire system up. The board will say a tram is coming and then it will just disappear, and no tram will come for minutes. 

Finally, one came around 7h50. Wow, we were "en retard."

We finally, arrived at 8h05, and the service was supposed to start at 8. Anne-Lise was waiting for us.... obviously we felt terrible because we were late, but she said it was no problem. We quickly walked to the church and arrived just as it had started.

This was so cool. I had been so discouraged about France as of late. Really, it seemed that Christian churches had ceased to exist here. But apparently not. This was the same thing as walking into Trinity on Sunday. Some kids got up and said why they came to church here. They sang a song. Then we sang a few songs lead by a worship leader guy, one of which I knew, it was just in French. Then the pastor got up and preached on Matthew 13:18-23. It was so normal, except that it was in French.

Then Anne-Lise introduced us to a bunch of the people there and that was cool. I was so bummed that I didn't know about this church when I studied here. That would have been way cool. But it does encourage me that you can find fellowship anywhere. So that was neat. 

The service was from 8-9h30, and we were supposed to meet our friend Philippe at 9 for a drink, but had asked him to meet later so we could go. So, right after the service, we headed to a bar! Go figure.

So we went to a bar, hung out with Philippe, I had a shot called at TGV (the name of the trains here), can you guess what's in that? I'll tell you, Tequilla, Gin, and Vodka. Then, later that evening, we headed back to Celia's. I really wanted to go to McDonalds, Brandon wanted cereal at home, halfway there, he had to pee, so he politely peed in a gutter, as Celia keeps her rabbit, Proust, in the bathroom at night, in her cage, so we don't hear the noise, and since Brandon can't fit through the 8inches that the door can open while the cage is inside, and because it was 1am, he had no choice. I fell on the ground, it was funny. We made it back and ate petite ecolier cookies cereal. Yum! Picture of the gutter to follow. 

The next day, Celia cleaned out her fish tank. To be honest, it was really nasty. But after she was done, it was so clean! She even put gloves on for the endeavor. Meanwhile, Brandon and I ate breakfast, cereal, then ate lunch, soup, all while reading, Water for Elephants and The Reason for God.

After the fish tank was done, we wanted to do something that involved exercise, not eating, so we decided to go on a hike. However, halfway there, we found the old swarma place that we used to go to and couldn't pass that up.
They were delicious! I also had a coke! So good!

The swarma place is right next to our old school. We wanted to see if any of our teachers were still there, so we headed in. Here's the sign! IEFE!

Some of our teachers do still work there! Then Brandon want to go find Soumiya, our program adviser. What or should I say, who we found was Andree, our program director. Although we used to be scared of her, Brandon braved it, went into her office, and ended up talking to her for 30 minutes while I hid in the hallway. Good thing though, as I got to hear a French man insulting Americans!

He said, "Oh, well I just put her application aside because she's American!" My first thought as he said this in front of me, "Well, at least he thinks I'm French."  Brandon emerged, but not without my getting called into Andree office before we left!
Good job Brandon!

Then we headed for our hike. But by now it was late, and Celia had to be back by seven, so we kind of just walked around instead. Here is a large rabbit we found at an elderly home.

An ugly building. This one is brand new! It hasn't even opened yet.

And then we found a new grocery store that not one of knew existed, and it is super close to Celia's apartment. We were like, "It must be new," so we asked, and apparently, its been open since last June. Go figure. Celia was thrilled!

Then, of course, after a roll of Oreos from Carrefour, it was time to eat again. Our friend, Tibo, works at an American burger place called, "Country Rock." Here they serve huge burgers with weird names, chips and salsa, and play really old and bad country music.

I has a burger called The Beatles. Brandon had I'm a Redneck, and Elodie had She's My Baby.

A french birthday party!

Our brave burger eaters! Elodie, Brandon, Mathieu, and Celia! Brandon looks so tall next to Elodie!

The next day was Thursday (jeudi)! Here is Brandon's drain from above. Such a class guys, aiming for the drain.

Today, the weather was cold, so we made a tour of Montpellier. Here's some shots.

We realized this sign lies! It does not take 20 minutes to get to Place de la Comedie!

Took this pictures for Milds!

So, the other day, Brandon and I were standing around and a woman handed us Subway coupons. Buy a meal, get another sub for 1Euro. So we went. I have always been terrified of Subway, you have to answer so many questions!

 It was way better than American Subway, but they didn't give you as much stuff inside. The bread was amazing. They have 5 kinds of bread, two of which are white and italian. Still not really sure what the difference is.

Brandon thought the reflection in these chairs was cool. You can see the reflection of the square.

After lunch, we walked around some more. Here is the center square.

Some cool guys dancing!

He was my favorite guy. I was scared to talk pictures of them after the cat man incident.

Walking some more.... saw this. This is cool!

And then this is for Marisa. Brandon wanted a gaufre, so of course, we had to go to the best gaufre place in all of Montpellier and in all of the world. Brandon head nutella and I had sugar.

Then we headed back home because I was so cold! We read some more.

Around 8, people were coming over for our farewell dinner. Pizzas at Dominos on Thursday nights is 8 euros for any pizza, any size. It took about an hour to decide what we wanted, but in the end, we selected four.

Here's a really long video of the choosing. Probably don't want to watch the whole thing, maybe you do, but at least you can see the French deliberation with American commentary.

Oriental, Cannibale, Hawaiiene, and Bella Donna.

Brandon, Anne-Lise, and I headed downstairs, dominos is really close, to order and pick up the food.

 Total, I had 5 slices! Too much! The Bella Donna was my favorite.

Here are the peeps! Elodie, Anne-Lise, Me, and Brandon

 Mathieu and Celia

Yep, that was Montepllier. I was so sad to leave! It was so much fun and so neat to be back. Sadly, Celia is moving so I am not sure when I'll be back, but maybe one day.

My pants are starting to get tighter... crap. But at least I'm well fed. This week, Brandon is going to put Claire and me through boot camp, so hopefully i'll be back in fighting form soon.

Off to sleep, had to get up early in the morning to catch another covoiturage to Vichy!

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