April 17, 2014, by Guest blog
Making all sort of connections in France
So I’ll start with the connections I’ve made in terms of friendships with my fellow English speakers. Before I arrived in Montpellier I had the intention of only becoming friends with French people to really emerge myself into the language. However that didn’t really go to plan. When I met the other assistants, I really got on with a lot of them and in my opinion when you click with someone; you click with them because you ‘connect’. I’m glad I stayed friends with the other assistants, as its great to have others going through the same experience and find it comforting to have English-speaking friends when the French gets too much. After 7 months with the other assistants, we’ve become so close and will be sad to say good-bye once our contract ends.
Although I have made many English friends on my year abroad, I have also made very close French friends. As my language skills have flourished, my connections in terms of friendships and relationships have flourished with the French too. After nearly a year in France, there is now no issue of a language barrier. Although there is a difference of mother tongue and culture between my French friends and myself, we still connect on many levels as we do with our friends from home. Such as work, love lives, our studies, our future and interests. So I’ve realized from my experience that once you connect with those in another language you realize that we aren’t so different and can click just like we do with those from home. I have made life long friends from all over the world and will be truly sad to leave them all soon.
Another sense of connections I have made in France is work opportunities for the near future. During my time in France, I have met many people. From doing ‘covoiturage’ (blabla car-sort of like an organized hitch hike) from time to time I have met many people from different backgrounds, who many have offered work opportunities for this year. From travelling by myself in Europe during the school holidays, I was more open to meeting new people. On my way to Switzerland I met a very nice woman on the train, we got speaking and by the end of our journey she offered me the chance to work with her in her school next year. Furthermore, as I’ve become closer with my colleagues they have also offered me opportunities to stay in France.
Overall this year abroad has opened up many possibilities for the future through the connections I have made here.
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