Thursday, August 6, 2009

le surprise

I have the worst case of cabin fever. And the crazy thing is that I should be fine; I was supposed to go to the movies last night with the boy... then everything started hurting so we just stayed in :(. But alas, this post is no pity party. I'd like to take you with me on a mental vacation.

A few months ago, I told you about Marie, the French exchange student I hosted in high school (above is her empty part of my room). This story is about the first time I went to visit her, with Chrissie, from December 26, 2006 - January 14, 2007. Yes, it was a long trip and we did and saw a lot... but first I should let you in on a little secret: it was all one big surprise for Miss Marie, and my favorite trip of all time.

After she left, we missed her so much that Chrissie and I decided to plan our visit for our college winter break rather than the following summer. We quickly found great prices on roundtrip tickets and booked them before ever speaking with Marie. Then brilliance struck. I hacked into her mail account, emailed her mother, and all three of us spent the next six months making Marie think that we had no idea when and if we could come. Her mother did tell her, however, that the'd be hosting American exchange students at the end of the year, a story of which she actually told me about, and I pretended to be excited for her...
As I'm sure you could tell from all the breathing, Chrissie and I were ridiculously nervous and excited. It turned out to be even better than we could have hoped for! Marie started crying and shaking she was so surprised. It was all so wonderful and to this day I can't believe that we pulled it off :). After our cafés aux laits at the airport we left CDG for her hometown, Melun.
In the days that followed we toured her small city, made frequent day trips into Paris, and spent a weekend with her grandparents in Fontainebleau. It was all so amazing to be reunited again, until she had to study for her midterm exams. Luckily, her aunt invited us to stay with her in the South.
Her mom, Chrissie, and myself, left my studious soeur behind and took an overnight train into Cannes. During our time there we made stops in Nice, and explored the Provence region, but the highlight in my mind was our day trip into Monaco, the world's smallest French-speaking country. On average, it takes only 56 minutes to walk through, but I'm sure you could beat that, with this photo tour...

Ahh, that was lovely :). And in addition to all of those beautiful sights above, we also had our share of delicious Italian pasta and southern French pastries. Oh, yum. Enjoy the rest of your Thursday, my dears!

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