First of all: the Mass-Bay Area Pre-Departure Orientation was great. I met a bunch of the other people going to France (there were 5 others there who are going to leave at the same time as me, 4 of whom are staying for the year). I also got a lot of information about culture, other people's AFS experiences, and personal safety (so don't worry - now I know what to say if a guy I don't know asks me to go on a private walk... haha). It was so good to just talk about the different things that we're all worried about and excited about.
A few days before the orientation (May 2), I got the contact information about my family. As in, I got their mailing address and their phone number. I didn't know anything about them - not even if they had any kids or not. I was really nervous about contacting them before I knew anything more about them, but a week or so later I finally got up the courage to send them a letter. They e-mailed me back a week ago, and we've been e-mailing back and forth ever since!
They live in a small town of about 2500 people (that's only 1000 more than there are in my high school!) about 35 miles south of Lyon.
In the family, there are two parents and five kids : two boys, 15 and 13, and 3 girls, 10, 6, and 3. I'm going to be the oldest of six!
As everything is coming together, it's really starting to become more of a reality to me. I'm still pretty nervous, but I'm so much more confident and, if possible, even more excited than I was about my decision now that I've talked with my host family and I know a little bit about them!
That's all for now!