I am now out of firsts in Toulouse! Ok no, that is the biggest lie I've told in awhile, there are SO many firsts still to be had here. But the point is this is no longer "my first Friday" excetera excetera (is that a real word?). I have passed my first week with flying colors! Or so it seems to me, anyway :)
The first Friday went quite well, although it unfortunately did not include getting my bank card. I'm not worried because I had the good fortune to bring some Euros with me when I came, but a lot of people are running severely low on liquid funds. You can use American credit cards here, but they usually have a tax of a percent of what you buy (on the good ones its a 1% tax, but on many it is 3%) so you try to avoid it. What Friday did include was some more beautiful weather (not quite as warm as Thursday but still probably reached 50-and for January I am not complaining) and another lovely walk around town. Ok, less of town, more of the church that was built to celebrate the first bishop in Toulouse. I learned about the architecture for two hours...it may have been a good thing I was standing the whole time. I have already almost fallen asleep in class here (People who see me in school, who is surprised? No one, k good) much to the entertainment of my classmates. You know what is great for waking me up? Public humiliation by the professor. This professor was quite kind, but I doubt others will be. That is honestly a worry for me, how I am supposed to stay awake in a four hour lecture when I am allowed nothing to eat or drink. Keep in mind caffine does nothing for me. Oooh well, I guess I will figure it out.
Friday night I went out to eat with some of the kids in the program, and then out to a few of the bars that are in my area. It was exciting, I met French people! I talked to three very nice girls for awhile, Marine, Margaux et Marion. It's a lovely side effect of there never being tables at bars, we are getting into the habit of walking up to a half filled table, asking if we can sit down and presto, conversation partners. People in Toulouse seem to really like foreigners, so it has been great so far! To be fair, the three girls were actually Parisian, so maybe I should take back what I said about Parisians not liking tourists. Nope, they still don't like tourists, but foreigners are ok :)
Last night was also the very last night for many of the kids that were here this past semester. There has been an interesting overlap of a week with the kids from last semester finishing exams and packing while we have already arrived. They have been a wonderful resource, after all, they are just like us, only they have done this already. So it has been a comfort blanket for them to be here. And now almost all (I think all...) of them are gone, and it is time to make our own Toulouse. For this week we have been going where they go, learning the city and what was in it. But now it is time to find our own group dynamic, our own places to hang out, and our own modes of communication. Most of us have chosen phones with unlimited texting, as opposed to first semester kids who had much less texting and these giant facebook threads that went on forever. It's sad, having them go, they knew everything. But at the same time, it's nice, a chance to make our own mark on la ville rose (toulouse is known for its pink brick :) )
Toulouse has finally stopped raining, so I promise some pictures soon with sunshine I'm sure some of you will be jealous of :P Take care and happy weekend to all!