Last Saturday we took a day trip to Montpellier, which is an hour and a half away on the train from Perpignan.
Porte du Peyrou: beautiful monument and very impressive. Just a little further along are the city gardens and the Aquadukt Saint-Clement. It’s such a great area to walk around. The funniest thing was that due to the nice weather, there were people sunbathing on the grass in November – I cannot get my head around that.
The Cathedrale St-Pierre is so impressive, although the interior was a bit of a disappointment as it was closed-off ue to falling stones from the roof (oh dear!). It is right next door to the Medical School for the university. It is such a cool location, I would love to study somewhere like that! We tried to get in, but the security guard wouldn’t let us enter. There were some other tourists behind us and they somehow managed to get a sneek-peek inside – I wonder how they managed that…
I was surprised by just how compact the city was and just how easy it was to walk to everywhere we wanted to go. Although it is November, we were so lucky with the weather. It was a beautiful sunny day and quite warm – it looked like it was just the beginning of autumn with the turning colour of the trees:
Montpellier is a beautiful city. It’s a great place to walk around and there are plenty of cultural things to do. We were only there for the afternoon, so we just walked around, did some shopping and had a great lunch in a small square crammed with lots of different restaurants:
Today the university ‘a fait le pont.’ When I heard this expression for the first time last week, I was very confused – it literally means ‘to make the bridge.’ However, in context, it means ‘to have an extended weekend,’ and many classes were cancelled (although mine still went ahead). This was due to the fact that tomorrow (Tuesday 11th Nov) is a jour ferié (National Holiday), Rememberance Day (yes, this is a National Holiday in France and so there are no classes at schools/universities and many businesses and shops are closed). When a National Holiday lands on a Tuesday in France, people can choose to ‘faire le pont’ so that they can have a 4-day weekend – well, more like a 5-day weekend because the university purposely avoids having any classes on Fridays… smooth France, smooth…
As I have no classes tomorrow, I get to catch up on work by doing a speaking presentation and a Spanish translation.
Exams are in December but we have been told that it is unlikely we will be told the confirmed dates for our exams until 2 weeks before (i.e. we will find out the first week of December – talk about late notice!). Exams are so casual here; we can choose whether we do them in December or January, it is such a different atmosphere to that of Sheffield. I have chosen to do all of mine in December, so I can officially finish my semester here before Christmas. Lucky me, a revision-free Christmas break!
Four days until I go to Barcelona again!
Bonne semaine 🙂