Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Paris, what? why? how? when?

In this very first post I will be telling a lot of things most of you already know. This post will be quite similar to the e-mail I sent around about a week ago. Here we go...

In spring this year, while still attending High School(my last year at the 'Praedinius Gymnasium' in Groningen), I was quite conviced about going to University to study Artificial Intelligence. However as the schoolyear was progressing, doubt was born. Should I really head straight into college? A lot of my friends were planning their year long travels around the globe, and this seemed attractive, but I didn't want to go all over the world, I'd prefer exploring another European city or country. It became clear quite quickly that Paris would be the choice. So I started thinking about what to do there. As I didn't fancy the thought of going right off to college anymore, studying in Paris was out of the question, besides, my French isn't nearly near the level it would have to be for such a thing. After some searching about I came into contact with the organization Activity International which helped people with temporarily working abroad. They could arrange work for me in Paris, hotel work. I liked the idea, and the choice was quickly made.

My parents luckily supported the choice(well, not completely when I first told them about the idea, but they got used to it pretty fast quickly) , so what did I have to arrange for it to happen. More than I thought, I needed two references, a CV, and a motivational letter... All in French...
I found two references which were perfectly prepared to write a letter, thanks again Mr. Boonstra and Mr. Hoogenboom. Mr. Boonstra is a teacher at my High School and would have the letter translated by another teacher(thanks Mr. Bouma). Mr. Hoogenboom is a neighbour at whose workplace I did a rather short internship. The translation of this letter was quite a bit harder, I started out trying to do it myself helped by Babelfish and Euroglot, this way I also tried to do my own letters. Of course I realized this wouldn't lead to proper french letters, so a colleague of my father, Mr. Petit, checked them, thanks. After having sent these I had to fill in a few more forms, and a long wait followed.

Then, last week, I received a phone call from Paris, I had a job, quickly after Activity International had a room in Paris for me. That's where things really start. I could start working September the 6th and my room was available from September the 5th. So that's when I will leave Groningen.

About my room... It's 6 square meter, there's a bed and a TV(I hope a closet too), so it's really small, but I won't complain till I see it. The address is 9/11 Rue de la Convention, there's a shared kitchen, toilet and bathroom. If I'm not mistaken my room is on the top floor, so that will be the 6th floor or something like that.

About my work... The hotel is the Holidag Inn Paris-Montparnasse. It's not really big(60 rooms), it has got a restaurant and a conference room. Formally I'm a General Assistant, so I might do just about everything. I was told however that my firstmost care would be the conference room, preparing it and such. Besides that I will probably end up in the Restaurant and Kitchen.

That's all I know for now.

I'm quite excited by the prospect of leaving so soon, I really like Paris, and as a lot of my friends are leaving anyway I don't mind leaving Groningen that much(of course I will miss those friends I will leave behind, don't think I don't mind leaving you). There are a few things frightening me though, mostly the fact that I won't know ANYONE in Paris when I arrive, furthermore, In my opinion my French is so disastrous, I'm afraid I might not learn it quickly enough. At this point I feel like I have to jump out of a safe plane with closed eyes into the threatening open plains of the blue sky, desperately hoping my parachute will unfold and drop me off safely in Paris.

I don't have more to say right now, so this will be the end of my first post.


At 6:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

first comment.
ik ben heeel heel benieuwd naar alle paris-adventures en naar de 6m2 waar ik met (gedeeltelijk OV) kom logeren.
A bientot, beetje flauw om in het frans te reageren natuurlijk...

At 3:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

dit is karen... het lukte tot 4 keer toe niet om op een andere manier iets te posten dus dan zo maar...
mooie log en ja je moet wel een schrijver worden als je voor langere tijd in parijs hebt gewoond:)

At 4:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

of alcoholist ;), in de nachten van Parijs.

At 6:57 PM, Blogger Ate said...

Hej Karen, je moet gewoon even op refresh drukken voor die andere dingen

oh en mensen, als je onder anonymous post, zet er dan wel ff je naam onder mieke :P


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