So I did make it to London in the end. I was there three weekends ago, and it felt so weird to be lost in this giant city. When I stopped to think about it, I realized that Paris is the only city that I actually know. I lived near Boston but didn't ever learn it that well, and I know Berkeley, but San Francisco is another thing. Sure, I can get myself around, but when you actually live in a city, you understand it so much better. I don't necessarily feel comfortable giving directions in San Francisco. In Paris, I can get myself home from the opposite end of the city at night without a map. London was big and crowded. I won't go all pretensh and say that it was sooo weird to hear English la di da I'm practically French, but I have to say that it was really weird to be in an English speaking city and STILL not understand anyone. And the first Brit I talked to asked me if I was Irish! IRISH!!!!
Anyway, I had a wonderful time with my friend there, but I was surprised how much I missed Paris. I was also surprised that I have picked up some Parisian habits: I said "good day" and "sir" and "miss" and "please" way too much, I ate with my knife in my right hand. And I kept accidentally saying "pardon" (the French way) instead of "excuse me!" But the American will never disappear: I still smiled too much at everyone and ate constantly. And I practically broke my neck everytime I tried to cross the street and looked to the left instead of the right.
My semester will go on for another two weeks after the New Year, but the major stuff is all over. This is the synopsis of my exam week: Thursday morning: wake up fifteen minutes before I have to leave for class, run out the door ten minutes late, realize on the metro that I have a huge paper on a book I have not yet found due Monday, show up to class to find out that it's cancelled (which I had known about). Friday: can't find the book I need at the library, get two others for background research. Saturday: change my book to the one for background research, spend all day reading it (it was about the economics of humanitarian aid). Sunday: frantically write a nine-page paper on this book. Monday: finish up the paper, try to hand the paper in, find out that it is due in three weeks. Go to my final that I haven't studied for because I was too busy writing my paper that wasn't due. Do okay, I hope. Tuesday: sleep. Don't study for my three finals on Wednesday. Wednesday: take three finals that I haven't studied for. We'll see. Thursday: show up to my art history class ten minutes late thinking it was a review for the final. Everyone is stitting down taking the final. So I also just sit down like I'm not totally stunned and take it with them. Felt okay about it. Friday: don't make it to class because of a 3 billion hour visa crap bureaucracy thing. Saturday: vacation!
So yea, I'm a pathetic excuse for a student. Although I got my art history final back, and I did pretty well on it.
I leave tomorrow for Copenhagen, where I will spend Christmas and the New Year's with my cousins. I can't wait!!! I'm a little nervous about the flight, because so many people are stuck in Paris. But the weather's cleared up -- it was pretty snowy for a while -- so hopefully I'll leave on time.
I'll miss Paris though.