view from the summit
The weekend of Friday 30th to Sunday 2nd, Cyntia and I went with Christine to Saint Lupicin for one last visit!
Friday night, we ate with Joachim, Fannie, and the Netto boys and then we headed to a concert in a tiny village nestled in the mountains. It was a choir concert with Rejane and Delphine's parents--they sang French classics, mass standards, and some older American songs, too. My favorite was "Hit to Road Jack", which, with an adorable French accent becomes: " 'it zee rohd Jaques". Cyntia and I tried not to giggle too loudly. It was just too cute.
Saturday it rained. I tried to be productive and work on my medieval art paper and study for my exam. We hung out at the house, and then took a drive to a nearby village called Saint Romain with Graziella. The village is population 20-30 I would estimate. There's one main road, and no stores, just little houses nestled into the mountain with smoking chimneys. The chilly drizzle made a fog that settled into the elbows of the mountains, and I found it quite lovely. After a short hike up a dirt road to one of the mountain
summits, we came to a church that had been built in the 5th century. It was small and humble, with stones that seemed as old as the mountains themselves.
Inside, Graziella started singing a mass hymn. The excellent acoustics of the church made her voice resonate in the stones and in our bodies, and it created a very ethereal mood. Later, walking through the village I went to say hi to a goose. I should have remembered that geese are foul-tempered creature, but I tried to feed it and it bit me. Guess I deserved it.
After we returned from Saint Romain, it was time for my driving lesson! The funny thing about Christine is that she's kind of crazy sometimes--she let Cyntia drive us for part of the way in her car, and then she let Cyntia teach me how to drive a stick with her car. I definitely do not have an international drivers license or insurance.
So without really explaining anything to me, I was thrown into the driver's seat in a deserted parking lot. I turned the car on. Held down the clutch, put it in 1st gear, let off the brake, and
tried to accelerate. The car died. I did this about five times, each time with the other three people in the car saying "Aw!" each time the car died, and trying to explain how to let off the clutch while accelerating. The first time I actually got the car to go I was elated! But then I went to brake and the car died. No one had told me that you have to hold the clutch down when you brake. Christine and Fannie got out and left to fix dinner, and Cyntia and I continued. I'm very proud to say that I eventually DID get the feel for accelerating while letting off the clutch AND I got up to 3rd gear! Driving a stick makes driving automatic look like child's play. For having my driver's license for 3 years, I felt like suddenly I didn't know how to drive at all. I'm still not ready for Nascar, but at least now I know more than I did!
That night, Joachim and Fannie came over for dinner and we ate well! (like usual!)
Sunday we drove to Saint Claude to Rejane's house for lunch. Jonathon came, too. We ate
for about three leisurely hours and chatted. Then I called my MOM to wish her happy birthday! And I called Dad to say hello. Then C. and I piled our stuff into Rejane's car and went to pick up Hocine. We drove back to Besancon just as the weather was clearing up in the west.
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