This headache is pounding. I am putting words together, hoping they are right and in the end they come out as a big, jumbled mess. I can see the look of confusion on both my host parents’ eyes when I am trying to express myself in French, and I want to hide myself under a rock when I say something wrong or cannot communicate.
“I wish I was on your vacation”.
The thing is, I am not on vacation.
Yes, I met up with my family while they were on vacation and they have taken me to do some wonderful, amazing things (lunch in medieval castles, horseback riding and days spent at the beach… more on that later) and I will forever be grateful. I am so lucky to have been matched with such a wonderful family, and I realize that. I am enjoying the things that they take me on and I feel good, like some kind of weight has been lifted off of my shoulders, where I can be think freely on the things that have happened over the course of my life. I love the conversations that my family and I are having and the points of views that I am learning about and being opened to.
At the same time, I am learning and I am here to do so. My host mom at times interrupts me to correct what I am trying to say (something I am actually fond of, I do not mind when such thing happens). When we go to do things and people catch on to the fact that I am an American, they begin to speak English to me. That somewhat annoys me. I understand they are trying their best to accommodate me and make me feel welcome, but I want to speak their language. I know I eventually will, just the time and effort both play a part. I pay attention to the road signs and billboards to try to figure out the day to day language (Auto école is driving school, though that was quite easy to make out). Today, I started reading one of la petite fille’s books so I can somewhat wrap my head around the language.
By the end of the day, my head is pounding. I go to my room and my phone is full of messages from friends and family and I enjoy the few minutes I have where I can speak English and Spanish freely and be able to communicate without any questions or confusion.
I am exhausted, from everything. The change in time, language and culture. I love it all, do not get me wrong. I feel like someone should pinch me because this all just seems like a dream, and I do not ever want to wake up from it.
P.S. Want to hear another funny mix up? I could not remember the word for papillon (butterfly) so I said papoullie (or something sounding like that) and my host parents laughed, saying it meant making out but quite sexually. Yay for mix ups.