Greetings from Lyon!

So my Disney experience finished at the end of August, it was hard to say goodbye to some of the new friends i’d made but i am now in Lyon and i LOVE IT.
I’m currently say on a bench outside my residence because for some reason i can’t get internet in my room untill October, but a very kind person gave me codesto be able to access the free wifi outside, it’ll have to do! to be honest i can’t complain, the weather is glorious, at least i’m getting a tan while catching up with friends on facebook. Plus it means that i’m not on my comuter all the time and that can only be a good thing as it leaves more time to explore and meet friends

I arrived in Lyon on the 7th September and was met at the airport by Michae and Marie, two lovely french peopl from the erasmus group who had taken it upon themselves to help me and another italian girl nmed Flavia settle in on our first day. Michael even carried our suitcases for us, what a gent! Meeting french people straight away was brilliant because it meant that i was forced to speak nothing but french all day. I’m so glad i went to Paris for two months before being here because it was just so much easier to slip in to speaking french without worrying that i didn’t know enough words. I can manage fine now – a good confidence boost!

For our first night we stayed in the youth hostel in vieux lyon, the old part of town which is really pretty, lots of little cafes and bars…one thing i noticed which was super cool was that there is a pirate sweet shop. Yes you read that right…there is a sweet shop with a pirate statue outside, and all the sweets are in barrels and treasure chests

The main part of lyon lies between two rivers, the Rhone and the Saone making it a “presque isle” – an almost island. There is a big square in the centre called Place Bellecour which is so beautiul, the main shopping area leads off from the square and you can access pretty much every metro line from there as its one of the main stops.

It really remindss me of Paris here, except a smaller, cleaner, prettier and better Paris. I know that everybody seems to love Paris but i’ve made no secret over the years of the fact that it really doesn’t impress me that much… take the metro here for example, the stations are clean, i’d even go as far as saying they look NICE, smart..modern.. The metros themselves aare spacious, comfy. It’s so different to Paris, but with the same system
Whatsmore, there is even a big cathedral here called fourviere, which is basically Lyon’s own version of the Notre Dame, and next to that is a structure that looks exactly like a miniature eiffel tower. I went to fourviere today and the view across the city is incredible since it’s on the top of a big hil. You can see everything for miles. I think i might go there quite a lot when i just want to go and sit and relax i the sunshine away from the world.

Speaking of sunshine, the weather here is immense. I’ know it is going to get very cold in the winter, but for now the weather is still warm. It is probably the start of their autum but nevertheless it is still sunnier and warmer than any british summer.

I visited my university for a welcome talk and got given a load of paper work. As expected really, the french love their paperwork as i said in a previous post Over the next few days i hope to sort everything out, sign everything i need to and get all my student cards/transport cards etc. Can’t do anything right now though since it’s the weekend, perfect excuse to just kick back and do nothing!

I can tell that the Erasmus life is going to suit me, it’s lively, sociable and fun. Last night i went to a party on a boat on the river with friends fro my residence, and the night before that i went to a party organised speicifically for erasmus students. I love how multicultural this city is, i have met people from aamerica, peru, columbi, spain, france… all over. My residence is great – i was a bit worried to begin with because when i first moved in there werent many people around, and it’s uni hlls so you’re just on a big long corridor. but then a girl moved in opposite me, and someone i saw at the welcome talk moved in down the corridor. We then realised that the floor/kitchen above us was the place to be, so we went and said hello and instantly made friends with loads of like minded people, thats all it takes – a “bonjour” or a knock and the door and voila…everybody is in the saame boat so it isnt hard to make friends.

I’ll post some pictures of my room when i can, i’ve made it look more homely with my pictures etc, its great.
tonight i think i’m going to watch a football match with a friend in vieux lyon, should be good!

I’ll update again soon and let you know how i’m getting on / my thoughts about french life in general – its so different here, i’ll have to save it for the next post

Before i go, let me point you n the direction of my friend Alanna’s blog. She’s just left for France to start her year abroad too, she is in Strasbourg and her blog is great to read. http://alannalintin.wordpress.com/2011/09/10/more-from-france/

Ciao, Pippa 🙂 xx

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