01 October 2012

And the weekend has arrived...

My first weekend in France has been a weekend of 2 major discoveries! Firstly, there exists another English person in Melle, and secondly, I am incredibly unfit.

Prior to Saturday I’d come to the depressing conclusion that I was the only foreigner in this oh so French town. Add to this the fact that my French ‘housemates’ are the most boring and unsociable people that I’ve come across, and I was feeling pretty lonely on Saturday. A sudden brain wave reminded me of list I’d been sent a couple of months ago of all the assistants in France, and their whereabouts. A quick look down the list told me that there is indeed another assistant placed in Melle. One email later, and I now know another Englishman in Melle. Phew.

My second discovery came about through a 9.15 Sunday morning cycle ride. My supervisor had texted me the night before asking me if I wanted to go with her, so I thought why not, should be a nice fun way to see some of the Mellois countryside. What I didn’t realise was her husband was coming along as well, and the two of them go cycling every Sunday morning through hilly terrain, meaning their bodies were slightly more in form than mine. 3 hours later and I couldn’t feel anything waist-down. Ironically, the majority of the route we took was along the Chemin de la Découverte (for any non-French speakers, that literally means ‘Road of discovery’)! Needless to say I won’t be taking up her invitation for a repeat next Sunday if I should get one…

The one and only plus side to the morning was that I got to see another nearby town called Celles-sur-Belle. And in the morning sunshine with its ‘Royal abbey’, it was rather glorious! I also got to watch a bit of honey extracting by a local bee-keeper, which was nice and culturally enriching.

L'abbaye Royale in Celles-sur-Belle

Followed by an afternoon and evening of skyping family and friends and the boyfriend back home because my poor overworked legs wouldn’t take me very far, it ended up all in all not a bad first weekend in my new country of residence!

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