So, I definitely have my two-and-half hour in class essay writing thing tomorrow in Louis XV (except that I don't know if it's a dissertation or a commentaire compose, so I guess I'll find out when I get there. Eeeeeeee).
But the more exciting information is that this past Saturday, I was at the largest sand dune in Europe! It's called the Dune du Pilat (or Pyla), located in Arcachon (less than an hour train ride away from Bordeaux). It was a perfect day trip.
This dune is LARGE. It is 107m high (above sea level), 500m wide, and 3km long. The weather was PERFECT, I don't know how to describe how perfect it was.
Our group at the top. Because the dune is solid sand, it definitely took some energy to get up to the top. Eventually, we decided to move farther down, though we didn't even go all the way to the bottom. When we decided to leave, that meant that we had to climb back up to the top, and then back down to the bottom where we had started from, and surprisingly the climb down was pretty painful too, but worth it, obviously.
The dune is really amazing because it's completely surrounded by forest on side....
And by water on the other!
There was lots of jumping going on.
Us in the town of Arachon afterward.
The town itself was really nice -- it was a lot like walking around Balboa Island. And I got really good gelato for really cheap, and an amazing cafe au lait for no money either, so I would say the trip was a success. On on the train there, one of my friends happened to run into a Swedish friend, who was in turn with her German friends, so now I know some Germans and a Swede, YAY. It was a really good day, and I would HIGHLY recommend this to anyone who will be in this part of the world.
Speaking of meeting foreigners, I've come to believe that all non-English speaking people are actually born with the English language stored in their brains in case of an emergency. LITERALLY. Our new friends didn't have a first language in common, so they had to speak English out of necessity to each other, and their English was AMAZING. Even though they spoke it with accents, it was incredible that they were able to speak it so colloquially. And this weekend I got together with a new Chinese friend, and even though we decided to only speak French to each other, she definitely switched over to English when she couldn't think of the right word in French. And this happens ALL the time. The other day when I was at the grocery store, the cashier said something to me, but I didn't understand, so I mumbled "Pardon?" without saying any other words. But that was all he needed to start speaking English! Everything just rolled right off of his tongue, even that my total was "One Euro and sixty five cents", which gets extra points because the numbers are formed differently in French. I find stuff like this to be both incredible and ridiculous.