So bright and early at 9:00AM, we meet to head over to school for the first time. We attended a welcome meeting where they introduce everyone and go over the program and we get a brief tour of the campus. We eat lunch, which was interesting. Not bad, but most of was cold. I noticed that they drink their beverages room temperature. I really like some ice, but that’s just me. After our one hour lunch break, we go to our first class: International Luxury Brand Marketing. The lecturer is so nice, funny and wants us to enjoy our time here. She went over the the course materials. All really exciting and fun stuff. In France, their grading scale is 0-20, you need a 10 to pass. Wow, sound great. 2 absences are automatically equals in failure. Being 5 or more minutes tardy is equivalent to an absence. She continues to explain how we’re graded. You come to class, you get a grade. If you don’t, you don’t get a grade. We have a few case studies, field visits, a presentation and a group project. We were placed into groups of 5-6 for a research project. My group got Hermès. I’m so excited to learn more about it. So classes are typically set in two-3 hour blocks each day. After class at 4PM, we immediately head to our evening activity.
We walk to the Park of Saint Cloud and hang out. We start talking and our program student helpers use WhatsApp to communicate with everyone. But some of us aren’t able to use What’sApp because we can’t receive SMS Text Messages (Green Bubbles for iPhone users) with only WiFi. So, all us no SIM card folks, make a 40 min walk to the SIM card place. We get there and it’s a small machine in a convenience store type shop. The woman there doesn’t speak English. Our student helper talks to her briefly and lets us know that he has to head back to the other group. So, there we are left to get our SIM cards and find our way back in our own. I get my SIM card and used a girls earring to open the SIM card port. Just when I think everything goes smoothly. SIM not supported. It was currently 6:00PM, which means it’s 6:00AM back home. I call my mom for help. I need to get in touch with AT&T to figure out how to unlock my phone. & of course, my mother saves the day and my phone works. She was able to add the AT&T passport to my plan for the next 30 days. So, now I can get What’sApp.
I drop by the grocery store to pick up a case of water. I purchased six- 1 liter bottles of Evian (because it’s the only brand I recognize) for about €3,50. If you see my IG story, you’ll know that one of my classmates paid €9 for a small bottle of water from the vending machine on campus.
Later, in the night, my roommate and I head over to room a few floors up to where some students were making burgers. So delicious. We just left at around 11:30PM. Which is crazy because we all have no sense of time with the sun setting at 9:30PM