Sweet - what a nuts day. Christophe & his mother drove me into Paris around 1400 to the Hotel Citadines where API is putting us up until Thursday when we move into our dorms/studettes/home stays. So we're supposed to meet here at 1530 and what happens ten minutes prior? We get stopped by the Police, of course. And for the record, French police are A-holes. So that takes a bunch of time and now I'm late, and the schedule says that they will wait no more than 5 minutes for anybody. Just great! Turns out these other girls were like half an hour late so I was pretty safe, got my stuff in my room (which is a single, nice) and went with the group to the API offices in the 1er (1st) Arrondissement, which is right in the heart of Paris. We did a little orientation there, then the other girl from Oregon State (Cara) and I decided to be adventurous and navigate the Metro by ourselves back to the hotel to change before dinner. Turns out the Metro is really hard to navigate, and always smells like pee. We made it to dinner only about 10 minutes late, ate some really good food and came back to the Hotel Citadines.
I didn't even think to take pictures today (stupid me), but also didn't see a whole lot as it turns out, so oops. The food at L'Amazonial (the restaurant we went to) was really good, and our waiter was even kinda cute (or perhaps I am projecting the notion that all Frenchmen are attractive on, well, all Frenchmen). I had this weird/delicious smoked salmon salad type dish, couldn't even finish half of it, but somehow made room for dessert... panna cotta with red berries, probably the most delicious thing I've had in months. Left so full I wanted to barf - pretty sure that was the general consensus.
I think the other people on the program are pretty nice, they're all really reserved but that's okay. Some are experienced in French culture and language, like this one ah-mazing gay kid named Frank has been here before and plans on living here later, he's great, he's taking me to a gay club soon. He says he has "the in" with gay Parisian clubs. I bet he does. He is the epitome of gay, I love it.
This hotel only allows WiFi in their lobby, so I'm sitting here in my sweats and sandals lookin' like crap to update, so I'm going to go now in case my future ex husband comes through the door. Update later, with pictures, promise.