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Reflecting on my French Adventure

a headshot of Taylor
Taylor Quinn
May 30, 2022

Just like that, my time in Nice has come to an end. As I settle back into American life, I can’t help but reminisce on my favorite memories from France. It was truly an adventure of a lifetime, and I’m so grateful that I lived it. My cultural awareness improved exponentially, I met amazing friends, and most importantly, I stepped outside of my comfort zone. 

I fulfilled my childhood dreams of traveling and visited nine different countries during my semester. I was a busy gal, but in the best way. I tried homemade pasta in Italy, tapas in Barcelona, smørrebrød in Copenhagen, and bitterballen in Amsterdam. As you can imagine, every single dish was delicious. I can’t forget about France, of course. I quickly realized how beautiful France truly is. The countryside, mountains, city, and sea all have unique identities that deserve equal recognition. This beautiful country was my home for four months, and I will miss it dearly. Fresh baguettes every morning, sunsets along the Promenade des Anglais, and a great quality of life are among the things I’ll miss the most. Between wow-factor architecture and mouth-watering cuisine, my travels are vibrant memories that I hope everyone can experience for themselves one day. 

It’s easy to reflect on the best times, but we often forget about the hard times. I definitely had a few difficult moments during my semester abroad. My emotions varied from little annoyances to past anxieties, and mainly centered around missing my loved ones. Completely changing my routine was difficult as well, and I found it hard to accept the French lifestyle at times. While I had moments of uncertainty and moodiness, I had far more happy days and fantastic adventures. Those are the days I will never forget. 

I got so much value out of this experience. Learning a new language in a foreign country isn’t easy and it takes dedication. I realized just how difficult it really is to speak French understandably, but I’m proud of myself for improving, even if my French is still broken and haphazard. There are little things I learned about myself too, like how I thrive off of sunshine or feel so much better eating fresh organic foods. Additionally, I gained a sort of confidence I’ve never felt before. I feel competent, intelligent, and independent, which will be incredibly important when I enter post-grad life. I’m thankful that this experience shaped how I see myself and how I make decisions going forward. 

Studying abroad in Nice was the best decision I ever made for myself. I encourage anyone and everyone to take the leap and try studying abroad. I promise you won’t regret it! It may not be for everyone, but you’ll be proud of yourself for taking a risk and learning about new people and cultures. While I’m disappointed that my adventure ended, I’m certain that I will continue traveling to new places and return to Europe one day. Until then, au revoir!

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a headshot of Taylor

Taylor Quinn

Hey everyone! My name is Taylor Quinn and I'm an Economics major at UNC Charlotte. This semester I'm studying abroad in Nice, France with the Business, Sustainability, and Immigration Program. My hometown is Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and I'm a huge football fan (American style). On the weekend, you'll probably find me discovering a nearby hike, scoping out a bookstore, or studying at a local coffee shop. I love to cook, although most would say I'm only an amateur, so I can't wait to explore the Niçoise cuisine and the rest that Nice has to offer.

Destination:
Term:
2022 Spring
Home University:
University of North Carolina-Charlotte
Hometown:
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Major:
Economics
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