So here it is, this is Christmas... Maybe not.
Anyway, just a quick post - this is moving day, hard to believe 7 months have gone by so quickly! I think everything bar the final pack is done. I teach one last class this afternoon, and while I've learned to never say never, hopefully that's it for me and teaching! One of my teachers is running me to the station for my 8 pm train (and the start of a 17, yes, 17 hour journey to Tours), so that's super nice. Yesterday we had a little afternoon tea to say goodbye to some of the teachers, they gave me & Ibi bookmarks and a bracelet, which I thought was really sweet. I had some drinks and tapas with my friend Klara and her boyfriend last night, which was great. Turns out I really like the flavour of artichokes! After the artichoke soup I had dining with my parents when they were here in January, the artichoke tapanade of last night has confirmed it!
I keep catching myself feeling like I'm leaving not just Nice, but France - like, oh I should go grab a pain au chocolat, who knows when I'll have one of those again (if anyone starts up a pool, I suggest betting heavily on 'tomorrow'). Whereas in reality, it's more like I'm moving TO France. That may sound like a silly comment from someone who's spent the last 7 months here, making a grand total of 14 months of my life in the Hexagon, but what with speaking English 90% of the time, at home and at work, my English-speaking friends (although I have French-speaking friends too), the tourists (more and more as the weather improves) and just the general atmosphere - touristy, cosmopolitan, close to Italy, full of expats, only part of France for the last 150 years - I feel more like I've been living in the People's Republic of Nice than in France per se. (Although I've never lived in Paris, I feel the same way about that - one reason why I've never seen living there as a priority.) To misquote what some blog assures me are the words of Marshal Pierre Bosquet, 'c'est magnifique, mais c'est pas la France'.
So wish me luck in my new life in France, and spare a thought for me in the course of the 17 hours from 8 pm!