I live in the most beautiful region I’ve ever traveled to. This might not be saying much since I haven’t traveled too many places, but I have a feeling I might never find somewhere as peaceful and breathtakingly beautiful as the Ain region of France. To the West, I have the beautiful Jura mountains of France. And to the East, the gorgeous and still snow-capped, Swiss Alps. Every day I drive in the valley next to Lac Leman between these two mountain ranges. It is not easy to explain the beauty and the sense of calm and good fortune that overcomes me when I stop to take a look at my surroundings. Such as I did this morning when I took Griffin for a walk on a beautiful spring morning.
I have been here for just two weeks – but I have seemed to have done a considerable amount in that short time. I have explored many towns; visited beautiful Geneva; made two good friends and planned a few excursions; met approximately 40 other au pairs in the area; eaten way too much cheese, bread, and chocolate; drank my fair share of wine; successfully spoken french to open a bank account, finish some visa paperwork and send mail at the post office; I’ve grocery shopped; I’ve driven many kms; been pulled over by the police; bonded with the kids and had some great after-dinner conversations with my host parents. It has been a great start to my year in France.
I am trying to take in everything I can, appreciate all that is new and different, be open to new people, experiences and ideas, and also remember where I come from, and hold true to my values. I miss my family very much, but I know they love and support me in this journey.
Below are some pictures of my afternoon in Geneva and some hiking in the Jura mountains with Griffin this past week. Tomorrow we have a trip to Nyon and Yvoire (France) planned, and maybe a trek to Dijon, France next weekend! Stay tuned for more pictures.