_It’s Guest Post Central here at Blog in France at the moment! It’s great to have visiting writers, and particularly welcome at the moment when things are even more hectic than usual at Les Fragnes.


Anyway, here is our Caitlin, the Bordeaux Bumpkin herself, with the latest news from of her student life in that beautiful city.

Hello! Sorry for the lack of blogs on my own website but life happened! Been either busy at uni, busy sleeping after uni, or busy trying to catch up on things that I should have been doing instead of sleeping! I’m not very good at keeping up to date with my blog so I thought it might work better if I just did occasional ‘guest’ posts on Mum’s blog.

This last week was even more hectic than usual, as we had 3 days of tests, in Chemistry, Scientific Methodology, Optics, Mechanics, Electronics & Automatisms, Basic Analysis, and Fundamentals for Mathematics and Informatics. Only the latter two are in English, so I’m not entirely sure if I’ve translated the subject titles correctly…

This Saturday, as much as I wanted to sleep in all day, I hauled myself out of bed at the crack of dawn (well, half eight…) to eat breakfast and shower in preparation for the ‘Journée Bordeaux accueille ses étudiants’. Although this ‘welcoming’ came a month and a half after school had started, it was nice that the city was organising something.

I left home at half 9, realised my t-shirt and shirt were not appropriate for the weather, also realised I would be very late if I went back to change, and so soldiered on. As it turned out, I probably would have had time, and should have gone back to change…

The city was offering 3 (free) ‘circuits découvertes’ – “Bordeaux patrimonial: d’églises en cathédrale”, “Bordeaux, ville nature : de fontaines en jardins”, and “Bordeaux insolite : de l’ombre a la lumière”. I chose ‘Bordeaux patrimonial’, which started from the National Theatre of Bordeaux and Aquitaine, so I got the tram to Victoire, where I promptly, you guessed it, got lost. Getting lost is one skill I have definitely perfected (the other more essential skills like ‘getting to class on time’, ‘eating healthily’, or ‘cleaning up after myself’ are sadly much harder to master). As I was wandering the streets of Bordeaux (passing many interesting shops and markets) it -of course- started lashing. I pottered dejectedly along a vaguely promising-looking street, telling myself if I didn’t find the Theatre in the next 5 minutes, I’d head home, put on something warm and go back to bed.

Fortunately (or unfortuately, as it seemed at the time), I finally happened on a sign indicating the direction of the very well-hidden theatre. I got there a few minutes past ten, and stood around being confused, at that seemed to be the expected thing. After a few minutes, another (confused) girl wandered in through the doors and asked if this was where the tour started. I replied that I hoped so, and we started talking. Her name was Bumi, and she’d come here to study French Literature all the way from South Korea (why anyone would want to study french literature, let alone come that far to study it, I have no idea…). I ended up spending most of the day with her, as well as a czechslovakian girl name Marie.

Creepy statue in Bordeaux

After half an hour (on the website, and in the emails the start time had been 10, but I should have remembered that this was France, and therefore there was no chance of anything happened less than half an hour after the stated time), we were herded into one of the ‘salles de théâtre’, where the director of public relations of the theatre (a very nice and friendly guy, obviously perfect for the job), the adjoint to the department of something-or-rather that had ‘sports’, ‘students’ and ‘youth’ in its title, and another high-up, this time from the Conservatoire de Bordeaux, gave a few short welcome speeches. When they were done, we headed outside where it had luckily stopped raining, were given biscuits and distributed into groups of 8-10, each with 3 guides wearing pink rainjackets with ‘Bordeaux, ma ville’ printed on them.

Each group had the same overall circuit, but the groups were staggered to avoid any overcrowding. Our first stop was just a few streets away – l’église Saint André, which I’ll write about in an upcoming blog post because it’s nearly 11 PM and I have class tomorrow!

See you soon :)