Even in a city of millions of people, it's still possible to feel pretty lonely. I mean, not all the time, and I'm not whining for your pity, or anything. I was just making an observation.
Today I was extremely exhausted. I'm not sure why, I didn't go to the Integration Party for Sciences Po last night, even though I bought a ticket. 11pm-5am on a school night? My, my. However, one of the French students told me there will be a "mariniere" party on a boat on the Seine in early October. As you can see in my profile photo, I am big on sailor stripes. They are kind of my thing.
My lame-ness (or not?) paid off in the end, as I was able to answer my professor's question that she uses to trick Americans. (Q: Where did the idea for seperation of powers in government come from? American Answer: The American Constitution, Correct Answer: Montisquieu) Wow wow wow, this makes me sound like a terrible snobby uptight person who hates all fun times and only prides herself on answering obscure questions about philosophers. Maybe this is who I am. I might as well embrace it. But, no! No, it isn't. I like to have fun just as much as anyone else. I just think my definition of fun is a little different.
Now, the Onion just wrote an article about study abroad that pretty much accurately describes most student experiences. This program is probably one of, if not the most, rigorous that Northwestern offers, and carries quite a bit of prestige, so working is not optional. So, I'm not really looking for that kind of study abroad. I don't want to travel around every weekend, or drink until I'm drunk as a skunk. I DO want to know Paris like the back of my hand, I want to learn, and I want to make good friends, American and Parisian.
Sometimes I do feel a bit lonely all the way out here in the 16eme arrondisment. It takes a while by metro for me to get anywhere, I have dinner at home at 7:30, and then the metro closes again at 1:30 or so. I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for Sonia's hospitality, and her insistance for me to use French at all times, but sometimes I'm a bit jealous that a lot of our group is in a more centralized location. And at the same time, as much as I love my fellow Americans, I'm itching to meet some French friends too. Plus, I have a lot of time on my hands, with no job or extracurriculars (yet, I think I might check out the SciencesPo choir/orchestra tomorrow) to keep me constantly busy. It's still early, but I'm waiting for the pace of things to really pick up! And filling my free time with shopping is a terrible idea for my bank account, so let's hope something comes along quickly.
My cell phone is in working order now, and I can call anyone I want to, so I really shouldn't be complaining. I just think I spend too many Parisian nights in my room studying, when I could be in some café studying, perhaps with another human being.
I'm going to definitely make more of an effort to organize meetings outside of school, starting this weekend. Sunday I'm meeting up with Justine and some of her friends to visit President Sarkozy's palace/residence.
I've had a good week so far, it's just lonely when you're tired, alone, a bit sad and worried about family at home. But this too shall pass!