Highs and lows

8 Sep

Friday started with an email from my (no longer) future housemates with the news that the agency had done very little in the way of finding us somewhere liveable, which put me in a bit of a stressed out mood for the rest of the day. I did finally manage to activate my uni account and get onto the poor excuse for a timetabling site offered by Bordeaux 3. None of the classes I’ve managed to find seem to match up to the ones I’ve written down, and there doesn’t appear to be a way to compare different unit timetables to check for clashes. Another problem to add to the list which I’ll be taking to the uni on Monday.  Later on I was cheered up by the mini-road-train tour of the city I took with Lucy, Helena and Charli. Some fun facts about Bordeaux: the Pont de Pierre has 17 arches because of the number of letters in the name Napoleon Bonaparte, and one of the buildings in the centre has the oldest wisteria in France. Or something like that.

After our tour we had a little wander down Rue Ste Catherine, a 1.2km pedestrian street where most shops in Bordeaux can be found. Ranging progressively from scummy kebab shops at one end to designers at the other, you can get pretty much everything you need there. At this point in the day I was having major amounts of stress about my housing situation, since Anna and Anouk wanted to go to another agency and pay even more, when there was no guarantee we’d be living anywhere near the town centre. I ended up bailing from the group as I didn’t really want to end up paying upwards of 200€ in agency fees when I’m only here for a few months. Thankfully the girls were very understanding and said I didn’t even have to pay the original agency fee. All this happened on my journey home and I realised that I was essentially back to square one, causing me to almost break down in tears walking down Quai du Paludate. Pas très chic. Once I got back to Chynna’s I skyped my parents for the first time since being here, which calmed me down a bit and made me feel a bit more optimistic about things. I sent out more messages and made more calls and managed to book another visit for today.

That evening we headed out to me our new friends from Leicester uni, Aaron and Abbie. They had managed to find a great reggae/ska mini festival right near the church in Chynna’s quartier, which had its own internal currency called ‘grattons’. Everything had to be drunk out of the recyclable 250ml cups that came with the grattons, which could be filled up for a mere 2€. Unfortunately this was my downfall, as 3 cups in (after already having a couple of glasses at the restaurant Aaron and Abbie ate at) I realised I had drunk about a bottle of wine and was definitely feeling it. Needless to say I wasn’t feeling on top form this morning. Overall though it was a great night, the live music was fantastic, even the German band who sung pirate songs in a west country accent.

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