Bonjour d’Aix-en-Provence! I have now arrived and began to settle into my life in the south of France. For those that don’t know, Aix was founded around 122 BC and is 30 km above Marseille, one of the largest cities in France. Aix is famous for it’s open air markets (le marché en plein air) and le Cours Mirabeau, a street in the city center that is lined with trees. The impressionist painter Paul Cezanne, whose beloved Mont Saint-Victoire looms over the city, lived and painted in Aix for many years. Aix-en-Provence is also known as “la ville de mille fontaines” – the city of one thousand fountains. As you walk through Aix, fountains of many different styles lay waiting around every corner for you to find.
While here, I’ll be attending classes in the SUFLE at Aix-Marseille Université. I’ve taken a placement exam for my courses, and I’ll receive my schedule for the semester after an orientation tomorrow. I am studying abroad through ISEP, which allows me to continue using my scholarships from ETSU (yay). This being so, I am planning on doing a lot of travelling and exploring during my time abroad. I’ve already met some great friends (also here with ISEP) and have several friends from ETSU scattered across Europe. I am also planning to visit all of my Latvian friends and cannot wait to see everyone! The next few months are certainly going to be an adventure.
We’ve already spent some time wandering around the city; the architecture is simply breath taking, and even in the winter, the food at the open air market is to die for. Aix has all of the charm that I imagined I would find in the south of France; I am so so excited to spend the next four months exploring here and to improve my French while doing so.