Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The architecture is inspiring, but I still miss Mexican food!

Last Wednesday we hit the halfway mark. I am holding onto every moment in this beautiful country and embracing every experience so that these next few weeks do not fly by. Yesterday I went with a group of girls to Chatres, an hour south of France, where I got to see one of the most famous Cathedrals and Crypts, known for its perfection of stained glass art. This was a beautiful small town and the Cathedral was breathtakingly gorgeous. Until then, I had never in my life lost feeling in my toes because of the overwhelming details of gothic architecture and stained glass. This only broadened my interest in France, as up until now I have only spent my time in Paris.

Tomorrow I am going on a field trip with my photography class to the Palais Garnier, an opera house that inspired Gaston Leroux in 1909 to write the Phantom of the Opera. This story is very dear to my heart so this field trip will be truly inspirational. The best part about this photography class is that the places I have been make it really easy to capture beauty. The true challenge is to capture the beauty that you see beyond what is right in front of you. I am forced to look deeper and find and record what stands out to me, not just what I see first hand. What is great about this is that I see more in a building than I would just passing by; I get to sit there and study it for a few minutes.

Professor Desmal Purcell is an amazing photography professor and I would highly recommend him and to check out his photography at http://desmundo.com/ . I purchased a photo from him the other day. He held a small exhibition at the Cite Universitaire and I fell in love with one that captured the history of Shakespeare and the famous bookstore here called Shakespeare Co. I have learned more than I even realize on this trip about art history, French history, English history, and so on. I feel like a limitless sponge soaking up knowledge that I never want to release.

This past weekend I also went to see the Moulin Rouge up close, which was fun. I also got to go on a mini trip with Prof. Purcell where we practiced night photography and I took a lot of photos that were lomography inspired. Last week I got to visit the Louvre. Here I got to see world famous paintings such as the Mona Lisa, The Raft of Medusa, and Consecration of the Emperor Napoleon I and Coronation of the Empress Josephine in the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris on 2 December 1804. It was funny trying to see the Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Lisa because it was behind glass, surrounded by security, blocked by rope about 10-15 ft away from the painting and with hundreds of onlookers trying to get their snapshot the most celebrated and widely reproduced work of all time.

I’ve recently come to a few starling revelations about my time here. First, it's now strange to hear English in public… I was on the metro a few nights ago and I heard a group of people speaking in English and I turned my head back real quick — shocked to be able to understand the noise surrounding me! Another is, I miss Mexican food. I spent over an hour last night with some friends trying to find a Mexican restaurant and to our luck, the one we found was closed. Almost everything is closed on Sundays in France, so I should have known. Anyway, as much as I love it here, I sure do miss having a Mexican restaurant readily accessible! I wonder what I’ll miss next week!


Patricia said...

In the future you will be so glad you took the time to record your experiences. I wish I had done the same in 1963, when I went to Monterrey, Mexico, for summer school. I want to write about it now, but so many details will be missing. I enjoyed your blog. Of course, there was no such thing back then.

Patricia said...

In 1963 VSC had no Study Abroad. My Spanish teacher had come from FSU and still had contacts that allowed two of her students to join the FSU group. I was one of the lucky ones.

Victoryperfect said...

I actually enjoyed reading through this posting.Many thanks.

Study Abroad