My temporary host mom is the president of AFS Ile de France and is working with a football team from the suburbs of Paris to send ten of their players to the Unites States next year. They gave her tickets to one of their games, which we put to use on what might have been the coldest night in history. Well, since the Ice Age at least. I seriously had to count and make sure I still had all ten toes after hours of sitting in the cold.
My temporary host dad is pretty into football, as in to it as French people get at least. So he’s seen a few televised matches and was very excited to see his first live game. I don’t come from a football-crazed family myself but being American, I’m socially obliged to go to my high school’s game every Friday night, and of course watch the Super Bowl each year. But that is about the extent of my experience with the sport.
When the players came out they just seemed so...small. And it wasn’t the enormity of the field that made them appear so because they used a field intended for Rugby. There was no loudspeaker or announcer or scoreboard at that. Nor was there a slow motion replay, which is what bothered my temporary host dad the most. What there were however, were cheerleaders. No comment on them...
What impressed me is how the crowd completely lost their accents when screaming, “Let’s go” and “DEFENSE”. Unfortunately there were no French chants to be learned. Even the coach was American. I listened to him give his players instructions and then as another coach translated them into French.
I think it’s great that different aspects of foreign cultures are spreading globally but those football players sure will be surprised when they get to an American field and play in front of an full stadium.
To stay on the topic of football and to not ignore the elephant in the room, I missed the Super Bowl! For a football fan I suppose this would be like another holiday missed and although I’m not said football fan, it did seem like something this month was missing. A public channel in France did televise it directly but with the time difference it began at midnight here! Lucky for me there are millions of YouTube videos showing parts of the game, half time show and commercials.
Now, to get off the topic of football since it feels like I’ve written that word a million times!
I was supposed to go to my new family today and woke up early to do so. But instead woke up to the news that they may not be able to host me after all! Dun Dun Dun. I’ll have to wait until Sunday night to know. One of the siblings in that family was abroad and is coming home early. So now they are reconsidering whether this is a good time to host and if so, they’ll have to reorganize, as it was his room that I was supposed to use. This is a totally valid reason and I understand the difficult circumstance but after three weeks of this temporary living, it’s getting a little old. I don't want any family to rush into such a commitment but the way I see it, is every day is a day of my experience gone and one less day that I’ll have to get to know my new family and friends. It’s hard to not be bitter towards AFS at this point but a. the job is a hard one and b. I’m sure my mom is doing a fine job at expressing bitterness on her end of things.
I was recognized today in a boutique that I have frequented apparently a few too many times. The clerk was confused as to why I didn’t have their store’s membership card since she had seen me shopping there before. It’s true; I love the store and can’t help but go back and admire their things when I’m in the neighborhood. Which is quite often as they have stores spread out all over Paris. It’s called “Diwali” and is full of jewelry and scarfs. It’s also really affordable which leaves me with no reason not to indulge in their beautiful things!
I also visited the church of Sainte Chapelle and the Palais de Justice since my last update on touristy Paris visits. (My camera ran out of battery, I apologize for the absence of pictures!) It’s great to travel alone at my age because entrance to all of these places is free. Although the ticket lady at Sainte Chapelle did ask why I was alone and gave me a funny look…
I was wandering today and stumbled into the apartment where I stayed with my family when we came to Paris five years ago. It was really strange; I always thought that I didn’t have any memories from that trip since I was so young. But as soon as I turned onto the street I remembered it so clearly. I walked around where we had been and looked at the front door to where we stayed and it all came back to me. Very surreal.
I think that’s it for now. I thought for sure my next post would be about my new home and town, but now I have no idea when that will be. So I hope you don't mind these random 'what I’m up to' (even though it’s not much) posts!
To make up for the lack of pictures from this trip, I've located some from that previous trip with little me:
Yes that right there would be a skort...
We are quite the literary family.
In the apartment that I found today!