Mais en France

Alexandra Williams
January 15, 2013

Sitting in my room listening to my 14 year old host brother (who I am absolutely determined to make friends with by the end of this semester) play his guitar makes me wonder. After orientation today at IES I thought I was doing everything wrong. I wasn’t greeting my host family as I should, I wasn’t being either nice enough or respectful enough. Because I arrived early due to the expectation that business courses were going to start this Monday I had to figure out the mannerisms of my family. I desperately tried to remember what my overseas advisor told me during our orientation at Georgetown in combination with the advice my mother gave me before I left.

Although I can’t completely say I feel like I belong with my host family, I can say that IES picked the perfect family for me. After a terrible trip on the TGV in which someone was sitting in my seat and accidentally sitting in the seat of a father and two children, I was happy that my host family was so welcoming as soon as I stepped in the door.  To explain my TGV trip: one, I didn’t know how to say in French “You’re sitting in my seat”, two I was simply just afraid to even figure out how to say it, and three all of the stop announcements on the TGV were in French. Even if the conductor spoke English, it was French. What I mean by this is that an English speaking person with no knowledge of French wouldn’t be able to tell that the announcement was said in English.

In a sense my host family reminds me of my own. Sometimes, they go into their separate rooms and don’t talk to each other. The youngest reminds me of a combination of my older brother and myself. His relationship with his other brother reminds me of my brother and myself. The daughter reminds me of my older brother, but nicer and more on the soft side.

It has only been a few days and I’ve been trying to be conscious about how I behave around the family. I hope in the upcoming weeks I begin to fit in more and adjust to their lifestyle.

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Alexandra Williams

<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Alexandra is a junior at Georgetown University majoring in Operations and Information Management with a minor in French. After taking Spanish, Italian, and Latin in high school she decided she needed a fresh start and began French in college. Since she&rsquo;s started to learn French she&rsquo;s fallen in love with the language. She hopes to one day be fluent in French completing her life long dream of being bilingual. During her spare time she likes to read, practice her photography, and learn new baking and cooking recipes. Abroad she hopes to completely immerse herself in French cuisine, language, and culture.</span></p>

2013 Spring
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Georgetown University
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