Saturday, February 26, 2011

Caught in the Rain

It is pouring down rain outside right now, which is typical of Paris in the spring... or really any time of year. And yes, I know its not really spring yet. But the last couple weeks have been so great. You can just feel spring coming in Paris. There are birds everywhere, the weather has warmed up a bit, and all of the stores just got in their spring collections... which means its time for shopping :) But because I got caught in the rain, and I mean a down pouring, I ran into Starbucks and I'm sitting here now waiting for it to pass with some peppermint tea and overly priced WIFI. So, I thought I'd write a little bit.

Things have been going very well this past month. Really, I'm just loving life lately. I went with my host sister, Reanna, to the top of Montparnasse yesterday (the tallest building in Paris), and we sat in the restaurant that overlooks the city eating creme brulee and staring out the window at the most incredible view I have ever seen. And I thought to myself how lucky I am to be here. It's terrible, but I forget it a lot. And I know my host sister totally takes it for granted, like most Parisians I'm sure, having lived here her whole life.

Last Thursday I got to go to Cologne, Germany for the weekend to visit some friends who live there. It was so easy... just a three hour train ride, and I was in a totally different country. I actually love taking the train because it is so much easier than flying. But growing up in Idaho, I didn't really get a lot of experience with it :) I decided I'm going to try to do a lot more traveling in the next three months I am here, because there are so many places I want to experience! And I live so close to everything now, I might as well take advantage of it! 

Cologne has a really cool vibe. I loved the city, the German people (everyone speaks English), and the atmosphere of it all. It has one of the most famous cathedrals in Germany right in the center of the city, which I got to go to the top of (over 500 steps, baby!) and a great night life. I was only there for four days but I did so much and had so many amazing experiences. And tasted so many new foods too... I can't say I'm too big a fan of German food though. I laughed sooo hard when I saw a hamburger that had sausages instead of hamburger meat at McDonald's. Typical.

Last night I went to a Hillsong Powerhouse service (Powerhouse is the name for Hillsong's young adult group). I have just in the last couple of months started getting involved with Hillsong, and I am so glad that I have. Because it is such an international church with campuses in over ten countries (I don't know the exact number really) there are students from all around the world that come together. Probably sixty percent of the conversations are in English, and all of the messages are translated. I have met so many great people through it already from Australia, Indonesia, the UK, Sweden, and of course the states. I'm really excited to get more involved. There is just such a passion and a fire for God there that reminds me of GC Downtown back home (for those of you who don't know, that's the name of my youth group in Boise). And I miss that a lot. 

This week I'm planning on FINALLY going to Versailles. I cannot believe that I have lived here for this long and not gone there yet. When you live here, you lose track of all of the touristy things a bit. But since that was probably the thing I was most excited about seeing in Paris, I'm really looking forward to going :)

And, weirdly enough, I only have about three months left here! I can barely believe it. I don't really know how I feel about it... I know I am probably going to fall in love with Paris in the spring time, and then have to leave. But for now I'm just going to make every moment count. And try my best to learn more French. :)

I miss you all! Thanks so much for your thoughts and support and prayers :) 

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