, ,

Some Living Abroad Advice I've Never Received Before

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Unless you have Daddy Warbucks as your father, you're probably not traveling every single day. I for one waited tables and interned all summer just to be able to live in Bordeaux as a student. I'm kind of on the exchange rate struggle bus here. So today after a long phone call to America my friend said he wants to see what I'm doing everyday even if it's not "blog worthy." You know, what my apartment looks like, how I get to school, where I go after school, the simple things. Sometimes we forget those things are what matters most.

Before I came to Bordeaux I was given great advice: "Find somewhere you can go frequently, somewhere that your comfortable. Search for a good coffee shop, a place you can have alone time, or go with friends, just something that you feel a part of." It makes perfect sense. When you come to a country not knowing the language, and nothing truly feels comfortable, this is the best thing you can do. Whenever I came to Europe Mcdonalds felt like a sort of safe haven, because it was familiar. Sad, but true. Believe it or not familiarity is the best form of comfort.
Nicole, Kerri, and I have a new safe haven: Pain et Cie. I don't always go with them, sometimes I go alone but it's like having a secret fort when you're a kid, you have a place to hide out. Nicole and I met up today at 9:30 before she took off for London for the weekend and I headed to the gym. Aint nothin' like a hearty baguette covered in 6 variations of diabetes before a good workout. Of course I vowed to hop back on the healthy wagon yesterday...too late.
The place is fairly cheap and it's French breakfast at its finest. Every carbohydrate you can think of is available here. However, they are fairly organic, so it makes me feel a little better. They make all their spreads: chocolate, praline, hazelnut, white chocolate, apricot, and strawberry and you can buy them for home. Not to mention all of their juices are freshly squeezed as well. So it's possible to steer of the calories somewhat but come on look at this masterpiece of food. A basket of fresh bread plus every spread you want? Sorry I'm not sorry.
I don't know what it is about Europe that made me fall in love with tea, but I did. Maybe it's the part of me wanting to be some kind of sophisticated European, even though I'm 100% a loud quirky American. This is the main reason I come here. It's so relaxing and they have so many gourmet teas like "A weekend in Rome," which somehow tastes like chocolate (living in Rome did not taste like chocolate, more like exhaust fumes). Not to mention they serve it in a little nugget tea pot, I'm in love.
This has, more than anything taught me to do something different: relax. You can't chug tea, nor would you want to. So I go here a couple times a week just to take my time, write in my journal, and enjoy the moment. Sometimes I even bring the French boy along too :)

Update 8/21/14: Pain et Cie permanently closed down.

You Might Also Like