La Rochelle Log (1)

La Rochelle Log (1)

I won’t post this all in one go as you’ll be here all night, since I’ve written an entry every day. When I’m home (I’m currently in a random pub in France) I’ll post a bunch of my favourite photos. Right now, I’m going to copy and paste my log from the time I’ve spent with my french pen-friend’s family.

Day One


Going all right but I suck at French. Flight was fine, hardly felt sick at all, did manage to get a window seat (speedy boarding, woohoo!). The airport at this end is absolutely tiny though, only, like, one loo! Don’t know what it’s going to be like on the way home, hope to get a window seat but might not manage it.

Got here, walked around La Rochelle, had pizza for dinner and then there were lots of street entertainers – street dancers (literally) and a circus. Only thing is, for both we had to keep getting out of the way for the buses to get past, ha ha. It was even more of a bother while the guy was unicycling.

I’m thinking in French, partly, but I can’t understand what is said to me so I look like I know less than I do.

I’ll have my own room here – it’s huge with a double bed! – but the ceiling is leaking so they’ve moved my bed into Alison’s room. It’s being fixed in the morning so I can go there tomorrow night. It’s a beautiful room, and I think they might have given me the nicest one, although Alison’s has the ensuite.

I haven’t seen the outside of the house yet, because it was dark when I arrived, having been in the town at dusk, but it’s nice inside and I think it’s quite sweet.

Must go now, I’ll write more when I can :)


Day Two


Didn’t do a huge amount today, although spoke quite a bit of French. Henri is very sweet about it and sits there literally teaching me, going through what I know (not much, the colours, the days of the week, the months etc…) and writing out the French words for things. He is determined that I should learn a lot of French, but he also speaks English some of the time and gets me to help him with that.

I slept most of the afternoon, embarrassingly. Went to bed around three pm, read for a while, probably fell asleep about half four and although I woke up a couple of times, I got at least three hours of sleep. Didn’t eat dinner till five to ten, so late! My room is fixed and it’s beautiful, it really is. I’ve unpacked and no longer feel like I’m living out of a suitcase.

It’s weird because I find myself composing sentences in my head in French, the way I normally do in English, but if I’ve been reading or writing in English I do it in English. Organised all my photos on the computer to make things easier when I get home, if I do that every couple of days that’ll keep my camera from filling up and also serves to charge it, which his nice.

Went to Quick today, a fast-food restaurant, had chicken and chips, then had chicken and rice for dinner so a reasonable amount of protein. They’ve got me to write down what I like which takes a weight off my shoulders, don’t have to worry about having weird food. Oh, and I had some amazing strawberry tart at dinner!

Had a conversation with Henri about music, English music from the sixties and seventies mostly, he can’t believe I haven’t heard of a lot of it. “But you’re English! It’s English!”

“J’ecoute de la musique bizarre…”

However managed to get around to Queen so I could feel less ignorant. And I said my brother liked that sort of thing and managed to explain records, which I didn’t know the french for, mimed a big CD and he demonstrated putting the needle on so I knew he’d understood. Said that Ben had one, ha ha :) He also likes Irish music, like the Chieftains (which I’ve got on my mp3 player) so I sang Siuil a Ruin. Then we talked about our musical family which was nice.

The dictionary is completely invaluable, but also with Alison’s knowledge of English, Henri manages to work out how to say things. They had trouble with ‘repaired’ though, but have manged it now (about the ceiling).

Did a bit of dance in the living room, there’s a lovely big mirror and I did some stretches as well. Apparently, while I was asleep there was a repeat of Doctor Who on TV … damn, missed it!

Tomorrow is Torchwood but I will have to watch it when I get home.

Okay, it’s quarter to twelve and though I was going to do more novelling (and I already slept for ages) I should probably go to bed. How did I write so much about a day when I didn’t do much? I guess it’s all the stuff I forgot to say yesterday lol. I’m kind of missing the internet, and my phone, which doesn’t work abroad (Emergency Calls only!).

Will write more tomorrow…


Day Three


I am so tired! I must have walked about ten miles today. We went to the supermarket in the morning and I discovered that French people and English people really don’t eat the same food, ha ha – cheddar cheese is an absolute rarity. But we managed to find some stuff that I like eventually.

In the afternoon we went to the aquarium. We parked what must have been literally two or three miles away, since it took us a long time to walk there and back. Then of course we walked around the aquarium itself and it was absolutely packed, and we were all exhausted by the end. I got some nice photos, about 200 of them…ha ha, now I have to name them and everything.

I tidied and reorganised my room, and managed to get the wardrobe to shut. The floor here is literally one layer. The floorboards are held up by joists going across the ceiling in the living room … so if it falls down that’s where I’ll end up! The whole time I was moving things around, I was worried that someone was going to come up and ask me what the heck I was doing, but fortunately no one did. So yeah, my Narnia wardrobe now closes. Oh, and that reminds me, I bought some post cards, need to write those. (Have now written one for the parentals. Bit long though, almost couldn’t fit it in.)

Henri was reading me ‘le petit prince’ earlier, which of course made me feel like a total child. I’m sitting there next to him on the sofa, he’s reading it and I’m following along, and it’s a book for children, for goodness’ sake, it’s got pictures. But it’s got some difficult tenses, which he commented on, so perhaps it’s not just me being rubbish at French. But he has decided that I’m not allowed to speak English any more so at dinner I was using the dictionary quite a bit. They’re shocked that I don’t take geography, ha ha. In French schools, it would appear, both geography and history are compulsory.

We’re having chicken and chips tonight, Henri just came in to tell me. More chicken! I know I told them I only eat chicken, but they don’t seem to understand that we could have a meal without any meat at all, you know, like a vegetarian one, or pasta with tomato sauce, or pizza or something? But that’s French people for you. Actually, a lot of English folk are like that. “Where is the meat?”

Have been organising, renaming and deleting documents in my computer. I’ve also put on here all my photos from yesterday, named them all, and deleted a lot of the bad ones. It’ll take a little longer with today’s. Yesterday, I had 42 or something. Today I have about 220 (Correction – almost 300! I just checked)… fun! I reckon I should do that soon, but I’m not sure how long it is until dinner.

It was pretty cloudy today and I was a little chilly in my pink dress, but my jumper doesn’t really go with it. Oh, and I forgot to bring black shoes, so I look ridiculous when it’s cold because my warm clothes are black. Damn it! Blue converse and black tracksuit bottoms, great look, ha ha.

Right, picture organising time. And later, I will write. I promise. I promise, dearest characters, so get out of my head for now! We spent a lot of time travelling today and the whole car journey I was working on the plot of the end of my book. Ridiculous, honestly….

3 thoughts on “La Rochelle Log (1)

  1. It’s the Meat and Potatoes generation really. The same sort ofthing happens over here in the states. People want to know where the meet is! It’s begining to die down a bit, especially in Claifornia where the levels of vergitinarianism are well defined…

    But it sounds like you were having a blast. So cool that you got to go visit with a pen pal. Reminds me of a story I started wrting once… *grin*

    :} Cathryn Leigh

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