Tuesday, May 8, 2012

1 Month to Go!

As of today I have 7 days until my summer traveling begins-- this time next week I will be in Paris and ending my first day of touring with Kevin. Also this time next week, I will only have 25 days left to explore until I come home to Chicago in June. Yikes. The last two weeks have gone by very quickly and it's hard to believe that in less than a month my study abroad experience will be over! I have finished the majority of my finals, except for one this week, and will have to begin saying goodbye to many of my friends here soon. Some are headed back home right away, while others have decided to explore more of Europe as well. In the spirit of wanting to live it up our final weeks and weekends a group of us decided to make one last trip together this past weekend. Destination: Collioure, France.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Presque Fini...

These last couple weeks have been moving way too quickly! I am sad that the time for me to leave is getting closer, but thankfully I have quite a bit of traveling left before I leave. The last couple of weeks with my friends have been pretty incredible and I know we have enough time left to still make some more lasting memories.

St. Louis statue
Speaking of memories, I definitely have an unforgettable one to add to the ever-growing list. Last weekend we had our last exchange program outing. It was nice to be able to look forward to one each month and this one had most people incredibly excited. The trip? Visit the city of Aigues Mortes followed by horseback riding throughout the Camargue. I have been wanting to visit Aigues Mortes since I learned about it briefly in my Civi du Sud class. If you know of the walled city of Carcassonne, Aigues Mortes is also an incredibly well preserved walled city. The name "Aigues Mortes" actually means "Dead Water" and the area was sought after by King Louis IX, aka Saint Louis, to be the location of the only Mediterranean ports during the 13th century. Why? For the crusades, of course. The walled city itself was built over a number of years, but the main goal was to ensure it was incredibly secure. If my memory serves, this resulted in them creating walls that were 6 meters thick! Standing inside one of the towers you could see this thickness in the few windows that were allowed. We walked around most of the city by way of the fortress walls, and it was great to be able to see the city inside it on one side and the outside fields and water on the other.