1. Language: I have probably learnt equal amounts of English vocab from the Irish and English as I have French! For example:
- Jokes – ‘she is so jokes’ UK version of crack up
- Your man – ‘your man was saying…’ Irish version of that guy, I think?
- So – ‘It was a great night so’ Irish version of aye
- Peng – ‘that shirt is so peng’ UK version of cool
2. Made in Chelsea: At first I thought it was terrible – so many silent, awkward moments – but suddenly I am addicted. Bloody English! Credit to Grace, Molly and Serena for getting me into this one
3. Speculoos: Ok so not exactly a new concept to me, I discovered this in Japan but it deserved a mention. Best. Thing. Ever. It is a caramel kind of biscuit flavour made into a paste, think Nutella like. A spoon and a jar of this will brighten any day, no matter how bad!
4. Dogs: By this I mean how ridiculously small dogs can be to the point where their little tiny legs actually struggle to walk. More like rats that dogs if you ask me.
5. Food: Oh, where do I start? Baked Camembert drizzled with honey and topped with baked apple. Camembert cheese naan bread. Foie gras. First proper French ratatouille. Chartreuse (a very strong digestive liqueur). Milka chocolate. Christmas flavoured tea. Citrus tarts with raspberries. Fresh, fresh bread.
6. Economics: So I decided I had to take one challenging paper and considering I had never studied economics before I thought 4th year Development Economics was the one for me. I am pleasantly surprised at how interesting it is, despite being 4 hours long.
7. Paul: The best patisserie/boulangerie chain ever. They offer such a great combo deal of sandwich/salad, drink and dessert!
8. Sweating: Sorry this is gross but literally walking at a snail’s pace here and you still arrive at your destination ridiculously frazzled and sweaty!
9. My French bank account: Took a long time to set up but I officially have an overseas bank account with debit card included!
10. Last but not least…learning to appreciate the journey: Becoming accustomed to the slow pace of French life means I have had to take a step back and actually enjoy each moment and experience rather than thinking and planning ahead.