Note: This was one of my very first blog posts, written last June before I left to go study abroad in Paris, France. I hadn’t planned on sharing this particular post, but reading it brought back such good memories (all those pre-departure butterflies) that I decided to share it anyways. Enjoy!
With less than 3 days to pack, memorize my lines for my final skit, and take my final French exam, to say that I’m on a time crunch is the understatement of the century.
Okay, maybe not, but it is the understatement of my week.
So, what have I been up to while I’m not cramming French into my brain and trying to sort my life out? Well, for much of the time, I’ve been trying to find the perfect gifts for my host family. Our professors recommended that we bring something that is either culturally significant to us or “signature” to our hometowns/states.
So the mission begins.
Now, I called my mom to brainstorm some ideas, and since I was born and raised in California, my mom immediately noted, of course, that the ever-so-popular “avocado” was as “signature-Californian” as you could get. I agreed, but alas, bringing an avocado would be a difficult task to say the least.
First, plants, fruits, and produce (anything perishable really) are strictly prohibited and would not be allowed through customs, so there’s a legal barrier to my avocado-mission. However, the larger problem lies in the fact that avocados are tempestuous and feisty little beings. I guarantee you that even if I buy prepubescent avocados and pack them securely in my suitcase between cashmere, silk, and goose feathers, by the time I get to France they will all look like avocados-of-Christmas-past, and I have an inkling that my host family won’t appreciate my avocado rendition of A Christmas Carol.
Also, they already have avocados in Paris.
So, what have I decided on? Well, I’ve flipped 180 degrees on the West Coast (forgive me California) and decided to gift my host family something New England-y, since it’s where I go to school. Time to go hunt for Cape Cod chips, cider doughnuts, maple syrup, and other things of a similar nature.
Also, since my host family has fairly young children, I’m going to look for some stuffed animals. You can’t go wrong there (at least I hope not).
I’m not quite sure why I have so much to say about my gift-determining process, but I hope you enjoyed a peek into my brain, or should I say, mon cerveau? (No Google translate needed, by the way. *hair flip*)
Stay tuned, and salut!
(Side note: For those of you who get the reference, the fact that I will actually be an American in Paris makes me really excited for some reason.)