A portion of my grade (everyone in Premier S, which is one of 3 streams students choose in Lycee because in France you specialize before you actually graduate... so in other words approximately one third of my grade) went on a "Sortie" organized by teachers so students can get to know eachother at the beginning of the year to a kind of park that had a bunch of different activities we were going to do throughout the day. I was with about half of my classmates as we'd been divided in two to make a team.
The first thing we did was stand-up paddle boarding which was so much fun. I know lots of people back home do it but I'd never tried and it was beyond cool (I plan on buying one of those when I get back to Canada). We did this orientation course thing where we had to run around finding posts with stamps attached so we could fill up all the blank spots on our sheet; there was a potato sack race (I got so close to eating dirt on that one, whew); we did some archery; lunch; paintball (not actual paintball like running around in the woods shooting each other paintball, but trying to knock over a pyramid of metal cans paintball. I had absolutely not a clue what I was doing and I was the first person to knock over some metal cans so yay! It's funny because right after my turn I got asked if we had firearms in Canada... ha); we played a game I don't know the name of but you had to throw a ball through a hoop (vigorously entertaining); there was a french "quiz" on the Lycee during which I watched a wasp encircle the heads of my fellow classmates (put the word French and quiz in the same sentence and Siobhan's out); canoeing; and finally a slip'n'slide! And now after the longest sentence ever I will explain the slip'n'slide. It was kind of intimidating because it was probably about 20metres long and there were kids lined up along either side of it that weren't doing it but just watching. I was also just afraid of doing something supremely embarrassing like I dunno forgetting the sliding method and falling onto my face and breaking my nose (daily Siobhan thoughts). But it looked like actually a lot of fun! You had to put on a wetsuit, it rained and therefore wasn't really bikini weather, and then you ran and slid headfirst into an oncoming whirl of water, plastic, wetness, and soap. Only me, one girl, and one boy from my team tried it. I wouldn't say I really wanted to do it initially, but Sixtine (the other girl!) convinced me to join her, and I don't want to be saying no to any opportunities during my exchange so I went for it, and I'm so glad I did! It isn't every day you get to slip'n'slide in France.
Overall the activities were crazy, and bizarre, and not your typical day of school but it was such a blast. I got to know my classmates a bit better and I've decided I'm pretty pumped about the class I'm in. Everyone is so nice and awesome not only to me but to each other which is pretty cool to see in high school. I also met a teacher I haven't met yet who I'll be having sometime this week who's pretty young, and from Scotland! So we were able to speak in English it was awesome. It was also a little weird being able to speak English at the normal speed, I kept finding myself preparing French responses in my head just out of habit. And the crazy teacher who likes to make me suffer was nice today! So hopefully some of that's still left over for tomorrow when I have to take his class again...
I left feeling awesome after the bus dropped us off back in Roubaix. There was a little bit of rainy mist that was thick enough to start to make your clothes pretty wet, but I was warm and dry with my raincoat and sweater and scarf. I was walking home by myself down a busy street in France, I had my music playing on my iPod, I had just had a fabulous day, and I felt probably the most awesome and excited about my exchange that I've felt since getting here. No word of a lie, the song changed, one of my favourite songs started playing (Dolly by Fruit Bats) and I had to fight to keep myself from dancing around like that one scene from 500 Days of Summer when Joseph Gordon-Levitt is having the time of his life and running around the city dancing with random strangers. I had an almost levitational spring in my step and my fingers started snapping I am not joking. Then I passed some French person and got a dirty look so I stopped..... But the happiness lives on!!