Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Happy New Year!

Hi, all.

I hope everyone had a great holiday season and I wish everyone good health, happiness, etc. in 2008 (only a year and a half until I graduate!! Oh, goodness.)

It's been quite a while since I last wrote. I've been really busy with school work and vacation and everything. :) At the end of November, I felt a little weird about things, since there's no Thanksgiving here. I ended up making a small Thanksgiving dinner to share with my host family anyway, thanks to a care package from my aunt. Then I realized that, since there isn't Thanksgiving here, there isn't a holiday to mark the beginning of the Christmas season (decoration- and commercial-wise). I barely heard anything about Christmas throughout all of the month of December, which was a little odd, as in the US, I hear about it non-stop starting on Thanksgiving (and sometimes even before). In the middle of December, I recieved my report card for the first trimester. I'm in the 2nd quartile of the class! I won't lie: I'm really proud of myself for pulling that off, especially since I didn't understand what was going on in some of my classes at the beginning of the year. My two whole uninterrupted weeks of Christmas vacation (that was really nice!) were split into two parts: the first week, we were in the south of France with the grand-parents, eating way too much, and the second week, we relaxed at the house and had guests a few of the afternoons. Overall, it was a very enjoyable vacation. :)

For my last DS before vacation, we had a "Bac Blanc" in French, which is a practice test for the Bac. When my teacher handed them back to us earlier this week, she said that she had graded them like they would be graded for the Bac, including the tests of the AFS students. Guess my grade. 7/20. Yup, that's right. I almost have 10, which is what you have to have to pass. Plus, I took that before vacation and the real Bac isn't until the end of June!

Coming up next for school is the oral portion of the Bac Blanc, which I'm not expecting to do as well on. We're given a page of a book that we've read in class and have 30 minutes to put together a presentation on it that will explain all of the little details and will last up to 20 minutes. The deal with the oral is that you're in a room with the examinor for 20 minutes, and if you finish your presentation in 10 minutes, they get to ask you questions for 10 minutes, which can be a bit difficult. I'm really glad that I have no problem reading slowly in French! So we'll see how that goes.

Other than that, nothing new is really going on. I'm still working really hard in school, trying to improve my average (which was a 12.9/20, where the class average was 12) and all of that. I also just realized that I'm almost to the half-way point of my trip. Wow. The first couple of months went rather slowly, but the rest of the time has flown by.

My next entry will be dedicated to talking about Annonay and Roiffieux.

à plus tard!