Two full days of travel to arrive in Aix-en-Provence spells jetlagged!
I arrived late on Friday night after a flight from Korea where I had an overnight stay. Korean Airlines organised transport to a transit hotel 25 minutes from the airport in a city called Songdo. Ever since Japan, there is something about Asian countries that I love – the people are so kind. I didn’t realise that in Korea they drive on the right hand side of the road and there is a lot more greenery that I expected (although it does look fairly manufactured). For the first time when we were driving over a bridge into Songdo that would make the engineers at UC jealous, I felt completely excited. The sun was setting behind us and it was literally fire red. I must admit I did consider cancelling my flight to Paris and staying in Korea!
The next morning it was back to the airport for a morning flight to Paris. Flying Air France was my first taste of all things French and it was quite interesting to be addressed in their language. I actually thought maybe I looked like I was from Europe! The TGV was next, which is in the underground of the airport. Pulling out of the train station and looking back on Paris I spotted the Eiffel Tower in the distance, it definitely gave me butterflies – Paris, I would be back!
Three and a half hours later, I finally arrived at Aix-en-Provence. I was greeted by Helene, a girl I had sent a million questions to via email when I was back in New Zealand. It was so nice to put a familiar name to a face and she greeted me with a kiss on each cheek. Helene helped me find Les Gazelles (my housing) and basically organised my room as the reception man couldn’t speak English. This was my first wake-up call to the fact that I was maybe in a bit of trouble in the language department. I was so happy to finally unlock my room yet fairly nervous. My main worry
was about meeting people, it has been ages since I’ve actually had to properly make friends! I shouldn’t have worried though as my neighbour Grace opened her door upon hearing English voices. To say I was relieved to have met someone was an understatement!