Monday, October 12, 2009

tuesday: paris, day 5

this day didn't go as planned, in almost any way. woke up 2 hours late, and missed going to the musee carnavalet, the paris history museum. packed my bags, hit the metro and set out to find the area my grandma (dad's mom) grew up in. she was born in surene, now the 16th arrondissement (district), of paris and lived there with her parents until she was 18 and married my american army grandpa. with her memories, my dad's interviewing skills and the help of google maps, i found the exact apartment building she used to live in (after passing it 3 times). turns out, it is set for demolition; good thing i didn't wait to go back there later! after pictures and conversations with strangers, i took the metro to the bois du boulogne, where she used to watch rugby matches with her dad.
then i hightailed it to the train station, and got there in just enough time to miss my train to le mans. awesome. it's not possible to trade it in for a later train because it's a student card, which sucked because it meant i just lost that money and time. frustrated with recent parisian events, i start to cry in the station; i wanted to go to the bathroom for some solace and emotional release, but i couldn't because you have to pay to use train station bathrooms and they are smaller than port-o-potties. i go ot buy a later ticket, and with some grace from God in the form of pity from the lady working, she gives me a reimbursement for my train for a one that leaves in 2.5 hours, for almost no extra fees.
i leave the station to find a nice place to relax, and discover the best-cheapest-quietest chinese bistro around. i feast on my first egg rolls, sticky rice and schezuan beef in months. i used the bathroom here, which turned out to be a hole in the ground like actual china, that's how you know it's the real deal! i do my homework, conjugating 40 verbs and writing a couple paragraphs in the conditional verb tense, and then get on the train.
i arrive in le mans, then campus and then my night class with about 20 seconds to spare before it starts. i realized that my french source told me how to do every bit of my homework incorrectly, and that it was too late to visit the admin for a new key to get into my dorm. after two hour french language class, english jo comes with me to beg the security guard to let me into my room. of course i have no means to prove i live there, as its all stolen, but thankfully he let me in anyways. i stayed up until about 3am trying to get life in order, and remembered in bed i had a class 6 hours later.

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