Monday, March 21, 2011

Half way over!

sooo i'm trying to update this more often after Annie, my little sister, told me i NEVER do it and then once i do they are too long for her to read! this past week has been crazy ...pretty much like all of the other weeks ive described! i had a ton of assignments due and this week really isnt going to be much different with all of my presentations and final paper proposals due! ayiyiy but this week has been a lot of fun too. i went to laduree, a famous pastry shop around Paris and had the most amazing macaroons and brunch which was so much fun! then i did a ton of work but my classes were all over the city which was great. at least one a week my art and architecture class has been meeting in the louvre. it seems tough at the time to be staring at paintings and sculpture for so long and then i leave and realize who else is getting such an oppurtunity? seriously, most people run in to the louvre see the mona lisa and run out but i really feel like i am getting the whole experience!

my entire program also went to the chateaus Chantilly and Ecouen. Chantilly is famous for their whipped cream but the castle itself was amazing! it had a moat the length of a football field surrounding it and was gorgeous! when i become a bagillionaire i will build a house just like this one :)
So many people have had visitors which has been so much fun. it is always interesting seeing people's friends from home in paris because we are such a mixed group! with my friend sarah and her best friend from home, zahra, we went to a restaurant called derriere. this is not a normal restaurant ..instead of sitting in a normal seating it is themed like a house and you eat in different areas of the house. we were fortunate to sit in the "den" and lounged on big comfy couches while others were seated in the bathroom, dining room, kitchen, play room and bed rooms. the food was...interesting but the atmosphere made the experience! 
of course this week was st. patricks day and being an american, i had to celebrate! i went out with my roommate Mia and her friends from BC to a couple of irish bars that were around Paris and met some very interesting people. it was so funny to see how many americans were out celebrating..and how few french there were! we even met some crazy welsh people who were in town for the 6 nations rugby match of wales vs france. they started talking to some of the girls from bc who play rugby at school and offered us 4 tickets to the game! we went the next night and although i have absolutely no idea what goes on the entire experience was insane and fun! mia and had seats on one of the goal ends surrounded by a million welsh people! between singing the Marseilles  or screaming "allez les bleus" the welsh werent very happy with us :) but we had a great time! now i am just trying to get through the next two weeks and then i will be off to croatia!!! i am so excited it is going to be absolutely amazing and i cant wait for a break from school! i will write again soon 
xox magpie

one of the rooms in derriere

Mia and I with really awesome hats!

our new welsh friends

allez les bleus!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

its spwing, its spwing, its spwing!

It has been far too long since my last post im sorry!! with classes starting to pick up, midterms already around the corner and planning breaks its been pretty crazy but i will finally spill out everything i've done in the last ...3 weeks! ayiyiyi

ok so first of all my first spring break!! it was so amazing being so in such different countries but definitely a challenge being so out of my element. i went with three people from the program, sarah, katie-lou and will they were all fun and ready to see all of the sights which was good but they were all such sleepers haha it definitely made me appreciate all of the family vacations ive been on and the early risers i usually surround myself with! we started off in Berlin which was really cool. the city is enormous which i wasn't expecting and our hostel was really nice. randomly there were a bunch of other kids from st. louis staying in the same hostel and even more random a good friend of mine from camp in minnesota who i had not seen in years! it was so much fun being together! we went to the jewish museum which is so intense but definitely a must-see and a bunch of other contemporary art museums because the other people i was with are art majors! we also went to the zoo which was definitely the highlight of our time in berlin for me! it does not compare to the st. louis zoo but you can get so close to all of the animals it was insane! here are some pictures...

 The whole group with the elephants!
for some reason all of the monkeys were sleeping. they were so adorable!

i love this picture and it isn't even zoomed in, we were actually that close!
An Andy Warhol piece in the biggest contemporary art museum in Germany!
So after Germany we got on a train to Prague - my favorite of the three cities! Prague is like Paris minus all of the French people and the really good food! the city is so small and medieval and the people were so friendly. Although it was absolutely freezing we walked around the entire city, the castle town, old town, the jewish quarter and the new town. even though we didnt speak a word of the language everyone was so nice and we somehow managed to communicate. of course all of the sights were amazing, i didn't know anything about Prague before i got, but the best part was our hostel was across the street from a restaurant called bohemian bagel. yes they served american bagels!! i haven't had a real breakfast in 2 months so could not resist being american and eating there every morning. the night scene is prague is really cool too, with a club that is 5 stories with each floor being a different theme and tons of cool bars. one of the bars we went to was a competitive drinking bar where you had a tap at each table and it calculated how much each individual person at your table drank and then how much your table as a whole had drank and then compared you with the entire bar, but then you were also competing with other pubs around the city and around the czech republic. it was so much fun and my competitive nature kicked in say the least it was a lot of fun. anndddd i even met another kid from st. louis one night while we were there! - funny story about prague i got there with a black long down north face coat. i went to the bar was talking to this random st. louis boy and his group from BC and went home. the next day while we were at the castle i realize my coat is brown, naturally i start yelling "THIS ISN'T MY COAT! WHO'S COAT IS THIS?" all around teh castle while my friends laugh hysterically at me realizing that one of the BC girls had the exact same coat in brown and we had swapped...everyone likes the brown better anyways but it was pretty embarrassing at the time!
the fashion in prague was questionable....

taking absinthe shots...from a straw...never again.

Playing dress up in the castle...

The astronomical clock! it measures time as well as 12 other things..which i dont remember

Our friend Caroline, who is also studying in Paris, was in Prague and met us one night for drinks

Finally we got to Vienna! This picture was at the opera house. We decided to be intellectual and sophisticated and go to the opera to see Figaro which was amazing, but we were in teh standing section and after the first act, which was an hour and a half, we left and walked around Vienna which was so much fun. Vienna was a lot like paris as well and our hostel was great again. We were all so exhausted by the time we got there that we didn't do much sight seeing but we walked around and definitely got a good feel for the city and hopefully will be going back again eventually!
So now i've been back to paris for almost 2 weeks...i've been really bad at blogging haha but this past couple weeks has been amazing! the weather has been so nice and i have been going to different gardens around the city everyday. i even started running again which has been so nice! School has been getting super intense, this week is midterms but naturally i find this blog and the people back at home muchhhhh more important! so back in paris...i have done a bunch of stuff including visiting the Musee Cluny, the Tuileries (its Paris Fashion Week for Ready to Wear), gone to the Gobelins Tapestry Manufactory where the kings tapestries are made and now they furnish all national buildings in France and around the world,  the Madeleine Church, i even went to the American hospital! the hospital wasn't for me friend rolled into the wall in her sleep and broke her nose hahahah

This past two weeks have been busy but some pretty crazy and entertaining things have happened that have lightened the mood. First of all while i was having lunch with a friend outside a sort of marching band called the Plaies Mobiles came through the square. this is not a school marching band but one of those street bands who starts at one point around teh city and dresses in crazy outfits. they walk around the entire city and people just join them and sing and dance around in the streets its hysterical and so much fun to watch! then the next day i went to hang out at the tuileries gardens outside of teh louvre with sarah and realized it was fashion week. literally hundreds of beautiful people surrounding us with the coolest clothes i've ever seen we got so jealous and stayed for awhile hoping to see someone famous haha! then as we were leaving i see this woman blowing up an enormous balloon. i figured it was just a street act where she has massive lungs or something but that wasn't the end of it! she continued to put her head inside and then the rest of her body! it was so bizarre and you couldn't help but stop and laugh out loud...only in France 

 Some of the cool people waiting to go into a fashion show

ooook so i think i wrote an excessive amount but its been a long time! i hope you dont get bored reading all of this! i will hopefully write sooner next time! xoxo Magpie