MIS in France: Avant le Voyage

Hello everyone! This is my very first post of my very first blog, so bear with me as I try and figure this whole blogging thing out!I decided to start a blog because I am about to leave (6 days from now ahh!) to go study in Paris for a semester! I am getting more and more excited and nervous all at the same time.

So why hop the ocean and leave everyone for 3 whole months? That’s a question I have been asking myself a lot lately. But really, I started taking French freshman year of high school and found that I really enjoyed it, so I took all 6 of the French classes my high school offered and even one more at UAH. So I guess that’s when my obsession with all things French really started to take root. If you’ve ever been to my apartment/room/dorm it’s kind of hard to miss! So yes, I admit it! I am a French nerd. I was even the French Club President in high school.

So with all of this French knowledge I gained in high school, I didn’t want to just let that go when I went to college, but I also knew that I didn’t want to teach French. I decided I wanted to combine French with business, and the technology part(MIS = where business meets technology) fell in place after I started the Computer Based Honors Program. So yes, some people look at me funny when I tell them I am a MIS and French major, but it seems to really capture all sides of me, so I’m happy with it!

So with all this French studying I have done these past 6 years, I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve really HAD to use it (except for once at Cracker Barrel when a bus full of French speakers from Africa came in!). So that’s why I decided to take the plunge and sign up for a semester abroad. I could finally put my studies to use, and also hopefully learn how to go beyond the textbook and really learn to communicate and have every day interactions in French. Plus, I needed the study abroad for the International Honors Program, and it’s knocking out a bunch of classes I need for my French major. So win, win, win all around!

That was my thinking months ago when I signed up, but now that it’s actually here, I’m realizing that it’s going to be a little more difficult than I imagined. I hadn’t thought of the full implication of what it would be like leaving my family, friends, and school to go off to a country where I know absolutely no one.

That’s the nervous part, but the other half of me is so excited! I mean finally, I am going to get to go see all the monuments, chateaux, and art( I still remember that scary Impressionism test from high school) that I have studied all these years! I am also really excited for some French food!! As you probably know, I really love to bake! Cooking is ok, but baking for others is really where I find joy. I’m hoping, if every thing works out, that I am going to get to go take a couple mini classes at Le Cordon Bleu (aka the most famous culinary school in the world!) while I am there! They have all sorts of classes on main dishes and sauces, but I am shooting for the baking one of course, as well as one on Julia Child. Just as a preface, food and especially desserts will probably be a reoccurring feature of this blog 🙂

I leave for Paris on Saturday and would definitely appreciate your prayers as I have never flown alone before! Thank you for deciding to follow me as I embark on this journey of a life time.

-Callie Smith


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