La Rentrée – ‘Back to School’

So the Parisian experience is going well so far, despite nearly getting lost on the way to ISC (Institut Supérieur du Commerce) yesterday morning. The college, or grande école, itself reminds me of DIT as it is relatively small (like the ‘Brugha!) and consists of three different buildings in various locations. The highlight so far has to be getting to write on boxed paper which I got ridiculously excited about 🙂 I can’t be the only person who wished she went to school on mainland Europe simply for this reason!! And in true Char fashion, I got possibly a little too enthusiastic about the 4 colour pen I bought. But come on, it’s bright orange instead of blue! The life of the eternal student, eh?!

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Yesterday, we had a brief introduction to the wine industry . Nothing says welcome to France like a bit of wine education! So naturally, we all headed to a trendy local cafe-bar after class to try a verre du vin or two in preparation for the wine tasting taking place this afternoon. Roll on 2 o’clock!

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After our ‘pre wine-tasting’ wine tasting, a couple of us headed to Saint-Michel in the 5th for a bite to eat. We ended up in a small French restaurant and got a 3 course meal for €10 – cheap and cheerful! Who says living Paris has to be expensive? I had to take a picture of it when I saw what it was called. I felt like I stumbled across a little piece of Kinsale.. I have to say, the mussels were not as good as you get at Chez Frawley though 😉

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While I probably won’t go back to the French White House, I definitely have to return to le 5ème arrondissement and spend some time in the Quartier Latin. I have also discovered that many of the sites/attractions in Paris are free to under 25s (just made it – phew!) if you show your passport  so while I’m in the 5th, Notre Dame, the Panthéon and La Sorbonne are top of my list. I’m a sucker for history and beautiful architecture! There’s also a pretty second hand bookshop that was just closing as I got off the metro that I could probably spend hours in.

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I felt like a real Parisian this morning as I got the metro home on my own after my 8am class. You will never understand how complicated the metro/RER/train system is in Paris until you actually live here. My trusty Paris Metro app is the best €1.89 I have ever spent and is literally my best friend at the moment. My French friends have promised me that it does get easier though. In another two weeks, I’ll probably be laughing at les touristes gazing with confusion at the giant maps wondering which sortie to exit through!!

Alors, I’m off to get my wine on.. in the most civilised manner bien sûr!

À bientòt,

Charlene

xoxo

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