Tuesday, October 31, 2017

A French Holiday

I didn't have a crazy cool summer internship doing research or playing with fish in Florida but I did get to experience the Atlantic Ocean from above for the first time. In July I flew to Paris, France to live with a relative for a month and it was the most amazing experience.
 I started off my journey in two states I had never visited, New York and New Jersey. I flew into Ithaca, NY to visit Cornell University where I got to talk to REU students and get a feel for the program while exploring the gorgeous campus. Afterwards I drove to Belmar, NJ, a beach town with lots of personality and fun and friendly locals. A quick flight to Boston, MA to visit some relatives and then I was Paris bound. My journey had a rough start as day 3 in France brought with it a 3am trip to the ER to have my appendix removed but I was out of the hospital by day 4 and ready to explore the city. I saw some amazing monuments and museums with some of my favorites being the Musee Marmottan, Arc de Triomphe, Tour Eiffel, and the Jardin des Plantes.

On the weekends we traveled out of the city to Giverny, Chartres, and the Loire Valley. In Giverny I got to see the famous water lily garden of Claude Monet and it was every bit as beautiful as I imagined.

Chartres brought with it a gorgeous cathedral and a French history lesson while the Loire Valley took me to the center of wine country.

Between touring immense chateaus and vineyards, we managed to sneak in a hot air balloon ride, one of my absolute favorite experiences of the trip.

It was an unforgettable experience and I loved every minute of it (except maybe being stuck in a French ER with no knowledge of French). I hope to make more incredible memories this summer which hopefully involve a trip to the field to do some research!

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