Saturday, January 19, 2013

Obligatory Post on the 19th: 19th blog post!

I love French boys outbounds
Not just one, not just two, but FOUR good-looking French boys all in the same beauteous compilation of pixels! Oh, I'm there too, aren't I lucky. ;)
You're probably wondering where I found such a high concentration of sharp individuals. Is it even legal for there to be that many in one space? Just think of all the cardiac arrests on the poor ladies! Well, the answer to that question is one can find all these marvelous men in no other gathering than at a Rotary event.

This wasn't an inbound weekend; rather, it was a Sunday for all the outbounds in the district to gather together for an orientation. All their parents came as well. There were also a few of my inbound friends, who I was very happy to see!

Aarohi and me with the lovely outbounds Marie, Nina, and Manon
I love the outbounds so much. It might just be because I so clearly remember being in their place last year, excited to be going on exchange despite being uncertain of where I was going. Meeting all the inbounds from around the world was a great pleasure, and then there I was, one of those inbounds that outbounds would come up to and ask questions. I must admit, I felt pretty sage. I was more than happy to talk to the outbounds and feel their excitement with them, though at times it felt hard to believe that no, I wasn't an outbound anymore, I was really an inbound talking about my experience so far. That's probably another reason I'm very fond of these kids; sometimes I feel like I'm still an outbound. Time goes by that fast.

At some point during the day, all the inbounds each got up and introduced themselves and spoke a bit about their experience in France so far (in French of course). When I got up, I added that the best part of exchange are the people I've met and the friends I've made. I directly addressed my fellow inbounds and new outbound friends sitting in the audience, very similar to what I did when I addressed the inbounds and outbounds during my District Conference speech, and told them, "Je vous aime!" They were all touched and expressed their mutual sentiments towards me as well. Because really, no matter what country you end up in on exchange, you meet some truly great individuals who end up becoming your best friends in, quite literally, the entire world.

Here are some more pictures!

Aurélie, who hopes to go to South Korea
Gio from Indonesia and Benjamin, the inbounds' favorite outbound (he was the first one we met, at the beach orientation camp)
Me and Joey: Asians representing the USA and Canada
Leonie from Germany and me, the tallest and shortest of the district! (To be fair, she was tiptoeing, but then again I was wearing two-inch heels...)
Guillaume and Nathan, who both picked the USA as their first choice.
I want them. come to Oregon.
I failed to bring this up in earlier blog posts because I hadn't received my gift yet, but before break, my friends at school and I arranged a gift exchange between ourselves. We wrote all our names on little pieces of paper and drew out a name for who we would give a gift to. Due to the busy lycée schedule, we were set to give the presents after break. So this past week, I finally got my present from my friend Cassandre. It was wrapped so creatively...

I don't know how well you can tell, but it's made to look like a piece of candy
I opened it and found a small square box, so I assumed it was some sort of jewelry. But I opened it and found this inside:

I don't know if I should put it on my blazer or on my going-out purse!!
It took me by surprise! Cassandre had made me a keychain by hand, and I was just delighted at the thought she put into it. I found it really darling. Handmade gifts are really the best, and she did a swell job figuring out something that I would like!

Finally, the snow.
I'm not sure how I feel about it at the moment. If I had to place a word, it'd be ambivalent. It's pretty and all, but when I have to bike through it to get to school, it's rather torturous. (Luckily I only had to do that four times...) Furthermore, the Australian girl was supposed to arrive today, but due to the snow, she's stranded in London and I don't know when I'll meet her. However, when I'm relaxing inside the house as it falls down outside, it's nice to gaze outside at how it blankets the rooftops and roads. Here are some pictures I took of the snow yesterday.

The view from my window
The front yard
Out the window
The view from the third floor
Hopefully it won't snow on any more weekdays! Either way, I'm not sure how to end this entry. So I'll just say, I hope that wherever you are, 2013 is treating you well so far. I feel like it's gonna be a splendid year.
Oh yeah. In exactly a month, I'm going to be back in Paris. Words don't suffice to express my excitement, so I'll just leave it to your imagination.

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