Our group gathered for a delicious breakfast at 7:00 am at the hotel in Paris. We then walked to Gare de Lyon to take the TGV to Montpellier. The TGV is the high speed train that runs throughout France. It travels up to 200mph making it one of the fastest conventional train services in the world. It took about 3 hours to get to Montpellier with a few stops along the way.
We arrived in Montpellier around 3:00 pm where we were greeted by our French “godparents”. We were paired with some of the UM2 students to help guide us through our 8 week program. They took us back to the dorms where we were assigned rooms and chatted with the French students for a while. After everyone got keys we put our luggage in our rooms and the French students took us to the supermarket to buy food for the weekend.
When we arrived in Montpellier they were having a gay pride festival. The first gay marriage in France was in Montpellier three days before our arrival.If we were to compare Montpellier to a city in the USA it would have to be Austin, Texas. The city is so diverse and laid back. It has a really fun atmosphere and we feel a bit more comfortable in Montpellier than Paris. The streets are a lot cleaner and the weather is fantastic. It is about 75 degrees during the day and it gets fairly chilly at night.
Á bientôt! ( See you soon!)