• Europe,  France,  Travel

    An Afternoon in Honfleur, France

    When I visited Étretat last month, we rented an Airbnb in Le Havre.  Apparently, my landlady grew up in that town! During an afternoon apéritif with my family at their home next door, she recommended that we stop in Honfleur! She said it was a beautiful and historic french town.  It turned out to be great advice, as Honfleur is only ten minutes out of the way driving from Le Havre to Paris.  We decided to spend a quick afternoon there, before heading to Paris for the weekend. Honfleur is in the French Department of Calvados.  It sits right at the estuary that connects the Seine to the English Channel, just…

  • Europe,  France,  Travel

    Returning to Étretat

    When I was 16 years old, I had an opportunity to go on a ten day trip to Northern France through my high school! Though I feel like I wasn’t old/mature enough to truly appreciate it, the trip was amazing.  We went to Paris (of course!) and then proceeded to other areas in the north.  There are bits that I remember more vividly than others. The one town that absolutely stuck out to me was Étretat! In this town we had a lot of free time.  I broke off from the group with a couple friends and we climbed up to the top of one of the falaises and explored!…

  • France,  Travel

    Only Lyon, France

    What I love most about France is that each region of the country is so different from the next.  There are so many different cultures and traditions within this country alone!  Lyon is the third largest city in France, behind Paris and Marseille.  Situated in the middle of the Rhône-Alpes region, this city is a UNESCO World Heritage site.  It used to be an important site for silk production.  Lyon sits right where the Rhône and Saône rivers meet.  The Fête des Lumières takes place in Lyon every winter.  Another interesting tidbit involving the term Lumière – Lyon was home of the Lumière brothers!  They were some of the first filmmakers…

  • Europe,  France,  Travel

    Fête des Lumières – Lyon

    Every year, Lyon hosts the amazing Fête des Lumières (Festival of Lights).  It takes place over a three day period on a long weekend.  About a month ago, I headed south to Lyon with a friend to explore the city by day and the lights by night! The Fête des Lumières website provides an idea of the different installations there will be ahead of time.  Before arriving, my friend went through the info on the website to make a list of the installations she wanted to see.  I didn’t have time to check out the website beforehand, but luckily all the hostels in Lyon are prepared with tons of pamphlets for the festival.…

  • France,  TAPIF

    Finding a Residence in Lille

    I wrote in my last post how my friend very graciously allowed me to stay with him in his Paris apartment for ten (yes ten!) whole days before I moved to a residence in Lille.  Honestly, I’m shocked he is still speaking to me!  I’m not sure if I could even live with myself after sharing a bedroom like that!  Anyways, I gave myself a 24-hour period upon arrival to not stress out about the fact that I still didn’t know where I was going to live.  Immediately following that 24-hour period, I entered near-meltdown-mode! Shakka patiently helped me draft a 2-3 sentence message that I could send to potential leasors.…

  • France,  TAPIF

    Paris is always a good idea.

    That Paris exists and anyone could choose to live anywhere else in the world will always be a mystery to me. I may not have given myself very much spare time off of work in the US, to prepare for my big move (spoiler alert: I packed the day before my flight) BUT I made sure that I flew into France early enough to give myself some time in my favorite city before moving to Lille.  I still had no idea where I was going to live in Lille when I arrived in France.  However, arriving early really played to my benefit! During my time studying abroad in Paris between…