A Travellerspoint blog

Final Days

My exchange year is coming to an end, but I will always be an exchange student. Maybe this is just the current, incessant feeling that I can't leave France, but I hope to always keep the mentality that this year gave me. I know in not too long that I will have to leave this life that I made.
"Well, you can always visit"
Yes, I can always visit, but I won't live with my families or go to my school. I won't see my friends from 10+ countries at the same time at the same place.

As upset as I feel about all of that, I wouldn't change any of it and I'd do it all over again.

I've grown a lot in my time here (and not in the usual gain 10 lbs for exchange students). In fact, I've actually lost around 6 kgs. I guess that's a good transition to physical change. My hair is a lot longer, although my mom made me get a haircut while she was here. I wear jeans almost everyday as opposed to twice a month. I'm fairly certain that I have 1.5 broken fingers. My Rotary blazer also went from 20 pins to 150 and counting ;)
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Other changes are a bit more difficult to describe. I'm bilingual now which I will happily call my greatest accomplishment. I struggle with the word fluent, though. The line is not all that clear. My pronunciation is still horrible, but that's beside the point.
My friend group has grown from a couple people in a couple states to people in several countries. I got to hear the opinions of the Brexit from people all over Europe... extremely eye-opening. The weigh-in from an Italian girl from my bustrip was especially hilarious with her colorful vocabulary.
One thing that has really changed is the amount of times I will say in my head, "well when will I get another chance." New food? Taste it. New person? Talk to them. Have a question? Ask it.
The food is gross, the person rude, and the person you asked the question to laughs at you. To me, that's a lot better than wondering.

I have had to say goodbye to a lot of people already and there's still a lot left. They did make it a lot easier by dumping water on me beforehand, but I would not recommend that anyone else try that. (If French people blindfold you on your birthday. run.)

My flight is in 6 days, my suitcase is halfway packed, and my room is a mess. Wow, I'm really going to miss the croissants.

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That was a real hodgepodge wasn't it?
Euro Cup Final is tonight!!! ALLEZ LES BLEUS!!!

Posted by rachelkronk 02:28 Archived in France

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Rachel,
This year will never leave you and the friends and family you have will never forget you, I'm sure. We are so glad to have you back home but we do truly understand what an amazing year you have had and don't envy how you'll feel to be leaving. We are so grateful to your families and to the Rotarians that have made this all possible for you. Love you babe. ❤️

by Mom

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