I never posted about the parents' visit, other than the croissant news. Oops. So they came for a few days and we had fun. They rented a car, which was great, since we were flexible and could go places I can't get with public transportation! They only wanted to spend a day in Montpellier, which was fine with me! We wandered around town a bit and then headed out to the beach (only a few km from town, but it was only my second time there--I need to get out more)! We checked out Aigues Mortes, a cool medieval fortified city in the marsh, whose ramparts (walls) you can walk around.
We then left town and hit a ton of places. First was Nimes, where I'd been before, but on the day we went they were having a feria, which is a huge Spanish-style celebration with bull fighting, flamenco dancing in the streets, etc. It was very cool once we managed to park the car (biggest festival of the year and major construction=navigator hell). Then it was on to Arles, a nice town in Provence with an arena (like Nimes) and where Cezanne painted some of his famous works. It was a really pretty town, but we didn't spend long there, so I'm definitely going back next semester. My parents are power sightseers, so two towns in one day wasn't enough and we headed on the Les Baux de Provence, a hilltop fortified town. And hilltop doesn't do it justice. This castle was perched like a champ. It was crazy to see. Beautiful, both the castle and the associated village.
|On the ramparts at Aigues Mortes|
|Arles (the arches are the arena)|
|View from the corniche|
|Aww, the parents in front of the castle in Carcassonne|
Then, during my last week in France, my sister came to France to compete in the World Championships for shotput (yeah, she's totally awesome). The timing was crazy (I turned in my final paper Monday, took a train to where she was competing on Tuesday, she threw Wednesday, and on Thursday I took a train from one end of France to the other, went straight from the train to the room where I had to give a final presentation, did so, attended the end-of-semester party for a few minutes, took an overnight bus to Barcelona, arrived at 3:30 am and waited for the train station to open, took a train to the airport, then took two flights to get home), but it all actually worked out! And I got to see my sister compete in her first international meet and get 5th! Awesome. But whoa. When I finally got home Friday night, I was a complete and utter zombie!
But it's ok! I am home, relaxed, sleeping way too much, seeing friends and family, and having a wonderful time. It's so nice being back! And now even my blog is caught up :)