Recently, I’ve been thinking that there are certain things that always happen when you return home from study abroad…
If I had it my way, I’d have been born in Paris and never left. Well, as it turns out, this wasn’t the case. I was born near Andover… After choosing a university that meant I could study abroad and then beating off the competition with a flaming torch like a zombie hunter (totally kidding), I finally arrived in Paris for my study abroad! So after my first semester abroad, I have returned to England for the first time and my entire outlook on life has changed.
No, of course it hasn’t! But the following things have occurred. (Some are silly, others more serious. Who am I kidding? They’re all silly):
Things that Happen When You Return Home From Study Abroad:
1.As soon as you step off the plane/ train, being greeted with a familiar ‘Good afternoon, I hope your flight was pleasant’, sounds like the gods from freaking mount olympus are not only personally greeting you but gifting you with a lifetime supply of milka.
2. This ‘honeymoon’ phase is quickly replaced by the five stages of grief.
Denial: What, it’s not acceptable to have a glass of wine with my lunch?
Anger: How much will this metro ticket cost?!
Bargaining: Convince me that this croissant was freshly baked this morning, PLEASE.
Depression: I miss my friends. I miss my French boyfriend. I miss the museums.
Acceptance: I guess if I put my travel photos on the TV, it will almost seem as if I’m there!
3. Currency. WHY IS THIS FIVE PENCE PIECE SILVER: HOW UTTERLY CONFUSING. WHY DON’T WE USE THE EURO. WHAT IS THIS?
4. You find yourself wanting to drive on the wrong side road. Thank goodness you can always tell by making sure the steering wheel is in the centre of the road!
5. No bread will ever taste like bread again. The ‘freshly baked’ section in your local supermarket doesn’t seem half as appealing as your local boulangerie and is at least double the price.
6. When you return home from study abroad, going out for drinks suddenly seems prohibitively expensive. And that £4 bottle of wine? It tastes like dishwater compared with that €1.99 prosecco from your local monoprix.
7. Ordering things in English becomes an actual challenge. As does apologising for things: ‘Pardon‘. ‘Why are you saying pardon, I demand a sorry right now‘.
Sophie Nadeau currently resides in the beautiful British countryside. With a love of history, photography, and all things France related, she runs www.solosophie.com when she's not chasing after the next sunset shot or consuming her weight in sweet food.
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