I have been out of high school for 11 years this month. When I was a freshman, I had the choice of two languages: Spanish or French. Living in Southern California, Spanish would have been a good choice. But, I had some friends that were already in high school and they told me that I should take French. The school had only one french teacher, and she was great. OK, I can take french. Way cooler than Spanish (at least in my head).
Well, turns out that I not only love French, but I am good at it! OK, she really was an amazing teacher, so part of it could have been her. She would tell us the craziest stories en français and would have crazy assignments that we had to do, but do them in French. one of my favorites was taking American songs and writing French words to them. She had me come back about 6 years later to teach them to her 7-8 class. We read things like Candide, by Voltaire (which the songs were about), stories from Petit Nikolas (I now own about 5 of those books. They still make me laugh), and many other things.
I have stayed in contact with her ever since. She has taught all but one of my siblings, has been to my house, I've been over to hers for dinner. While I was on my mission she took a train from St. Nazaire (which is on the west coast of France, but it is north of Bordeaux) all the way to Orléans just to spend P-day with me and my companion. She took us out for lunch, and we shopped and had the best time!! My mom had even given her stuff to bring to me.
My love of France and all things french started in that classroom. So, if you want someone to blame, there she is!! I love her and we still talk to this day. The last time I was in California, my brothers and my sister and I went to say hello. We spoke French, and the only one who didn't understand was my sister, who just stared at us when Kristina was asking her if "elle a conduit ou si elle a vollé" (if she had driven or flown).
I just talked to her tonight, and I just love it. Since I was 14 years old (I'm 29 now, yikes that's a long time) and hopefully for a lot longer we will be friends. And then maybe someday I'll get to go with her to her house on the coast of France.
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