Saturday, April 23, 2011

So This is Where I am, World

Alright, so my time in France is coming to a close.

What can I say? I will surely miss it.  I've had a great year, I have met awesome people, I have decided that this will not be the last time that I live in France.

I was reading through my little yellow journal of this year and I have realized that this year, I have grown and incredible amount.  I love the improvements I have made to myself and they were completely not expected.  When I first arrived, I was scared as hell.  I thought I had made the wrong decision in my life.  I hardly could understand anything being as it was the first time that I had heard French spoken from real French people instead of professors.  Let me tell you something, they speak quickly!  I had no idea what was going on half the time.  My first day in Limoges, I met some random guy and girl (turned out to be a Spanish professor and the Spanish assistant) and he took me to some random place, told me to fill out a form, and told me to pay the lady 30€.  I had no idea what I was doing, 'look there' surprise picture, and that is how I got my bus pass. 

I hardly understood anything for about the first month.  I was so scared, walking to the post office freaked the living shit out of me.  But one day, something just started to click.  I understood pretty much everything and could form complete phrases without much difficulty.  I made real French friends.  I made English friends.  I met people, I went to plays and understood what was going on.  I have no problems anymore, with the language.  I am constantly learning, but it's awesome.  I have learned so much since I first arrived.

But even more than just the language, I have learned so much about myself.  I am not that little scaredy cat who showed up at CDG airport jet-lagged beyond belief.  I am not scared to speak to someone if I have a problem, I am not scared to speak my mind, I don't care what other people think anymore.  I think that is one of the best things.  I don't care if you think I'm weird.  I know I am weird.  I have a funny accent and I am loud and I smile.  Get used to it.  And if you don't, that is seriously your problem and not mine.  Oh yeah, and don't pretend you can't understand me and squint your eyes in confusion.  I know what I said! It was just said with an accent!

I've travelled on my own. I've couchsurfed on my own.  I really feel like I have become a more independent person during my time over here.  I like the Callie that I am.  I guess that is all I can ask for.

But let's go a little deeper.

I think I know what my future holds.

Intrigued? So am I.

I truly feel like I can't stop moving.  I have this desire, but it is more than a desire, it is more like I feel like I am being called to do this.  I am being called to live in other parts of the world.  I am being called to work in other parts of the world.  I am being called to experience, to live, to work, to be scared, and to adapt, to love, to be loved, to help others, to discover myself, to discover others' cultures.  I feel like the worst thing that I could do right now is go home and have this year be 'the year I lived in France.'  And I don't mean that I want to travel like the majority of people travel.  I need to live in a place for an extended amount of time.  I need to learn the language, culture, the people, etc.  I don't want the tourism, I want the life.  The world is full of life, I want and need to discover it and live it.

Right now, I am researching ways to live in Vietnam, Morocco, Brazil, Argentina, Spain, and a few other places.  And I am determined to make it work.

So, I guess that is where I am, world.  Bouger, bouger! Move, Move!

UPDATE! Just discovered a quote that would go perfectly here.

"To live in the rarest thing in the world.  Most people exist, that is all."
--Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Some Memorable Quotes from My Time Here

So, I have a little yellow journal and I have written down some memorable quotes from many different sources.  Enjoy!

And sorry, sometimes I don't remember where I got them from.

"With my eyes closed, I would touch a familiar book and draw its fragrance deep inside me.  This was enough to make me happy."

"A monk awoke from a dream that he was a butterfly, then wondered whether he was a butterfly dreaming that he was a man."--Buddhist Parable

"Waiting for the perfect love?"
"No, even I know better than that.  I'm looking for selfishness.  Perfect selfishness. Like, say I tell zou I want to eat strawberry shortcake.  And you stop everything you're doing and run out and buy it for me.  And you come back out of breath and get down on your knees and hold this strawberry shortcake out to me.  And I say I don't want it anymore and throw it out the window. That's what I'm looking for."
"I'm not sure that has anzthing to do with love."
"It does.  You just don't know it.  There are times in a girl's life when things like that are incredibly important."
--Norwegian Wood by Murakami

"I want to know more about you."
"I'm just an ordinary guy-ordinary family, ordinary education, ordinary face, ordinary thoughts in my head."
"You're such a big Scott Fitzgerald fan... wasn't he the one who said you shouldn't trust anybody who calls himself an ordinary man?"
"True.  But this is no affection.  I really truly believe deep down that I'm an ordinary person.  Can you find something in me that's not ordinary?"
--Norwegian Wood by Murakami

"How much do you love me?"
"Enough to melt all the tigers in the world to butter."
--Norwegian Wood by Murakami

"It is vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it.  Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot.  Nobody knows how many rebellions besides political rebellions ferment in the masses of life which people earth.  Women are supposed to be very calm gernerally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties and a field for their efforts as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged felloy creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings and knitting stockings, to plazing on the piano and embroidering bags.  It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex."
--Jane Eyre

"It is madness in all women to let a secret love kindle within them, which, if unreturned and unknown, must devour the life that feeds it; and, if discovered and responded to, must lead, ignis-fatuus-like, into miry wilds, whence there is no extraction."
--Jane Eyre

"We are all Federalists.  We are all Republicans."
--Thomas Jefferson

"Peut-etre c'est cette nuit seule."
--a friend

"I will have one mistress here and no master."
--Elizabeth the film

"You're free to leave me but just don't deceive me and please believe me when I say... I love you."
--Moulin Rouge