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Voici Le Soleil

Ania is bringing a year of American sunshine & sass to Lyon, France

Twas the night before leaving…

Well, here we are. Or rather here I am. Alone. On my kitchen floor with my computer on my lap, a jar of JIF Crunchy Peanut Butter in one hand, and a large spoon in the other. Eating a sample of everything in the Sullivan family’s two fridges, three freezers, and our large pantry seems like the perfect way to bid adieu to my favorite spot in the house.

The fact that I leave home tomorrow to study abroad for a year in Lyon, France hasn’t really hit me yet (except for using it as an excuse to find the answer to life at the bottom of this jar of pb). I know I will feel a large part of my heart stay behind with my parents and Goldendoodle as I board the plane tomorrow morning, but right now I am just so exhausted from packing and driving around the desert (aka where I live: Albuquerque - “kerke” for short) searching for everything from low top white Converse to a luggage scale, that it seems surreal that it’s finally the “last night”.

Earlier this summer I happened upon this bible verse and it has continued to resonate with me, bringing me a certain sense of peace:

"Therefore I tell you do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you, by being anxious, can add a single hour to his span of life?" (Matthew 6:25-27)

The last line struck me as I thought about the visa I hadn’t gotten, the friends I hadn’t spent enough time with, and the constant checking of my bank account. Yes I could worry - I mean, I think I could find a few topics to occupy my mind about going to a foreign country by myself where I will navigate by speaking a foreign language. But that would not add extra time and would only have taken away from one of the best summers I have ever had.

So yes, I am feeling curious, overwhelmingly fortunate, and I am trying to rapidly think of as much French as I can as I sit here on the floor. But whether or not I worry, it’s happening. Tomorrow I will fly to Chicago, spend a night with a dear friend, hop on a plane Tuesday afternoon to Philly and then catch a flight to Paris. Via train, I will cruise over to the magical land of Lyon and meet my host family at the train station - from there, I know just as much as you do!

If you want to tag along for the ride, I promise to blog about embarassing moments, include some pictures and write Ania-style descriptions of everything from my daily life in Lyon (still feels weird saying that) to my adventures across Europe!