Learning and Exploring: Canadians in France

Vimy Ridge.JPG

(Photo of Vimy Ridge Memorial taken on Feb. 11, 2017)

A brief write-up in English, French, Japanese, and Kwak’wala follows about the past week in Paris.

English  Anglais  英語  Mamałak’ ala

This week in France was filled with juxtapositions of new and old, easy and difficult, and of reflections on war and peace.  I started my French classes this week. To my surprise I am in a newer, satellite school associated with the original Sorbonne University.  I have to admit that I am a bit sad not to be studying at the original Sorbonne, old and grand with statues of Victor Hugo and the likes. My new school, however,  has many modern technologies including the latest in Smart Boards and aural labs. I am in a class with 17 students from a variety of countries. I am the only Canadian in the class. The classes are lead by a very enthusiastic and humorous, but strict professor. It is definitely the most difficult French course I have ever taken with the sheer rate of the spoken word of the professor along with the daily assigned work. Some students have opted out for an easier class, but I have decided to stay as I feel it will be the best way to elevate my level of French in the 5 months that I am here.


(Photo at the Sorbonne)

Besides studies, I have spent some time exploring. Places that I visited this week included: Place de la Concord, le Petit Palais, Assagio (an amazing Italian restaurant), le Musée Militaire and Vimy Ridge. The highlight was spending all of yesterday at Vimy Ridge. Michael and I were given a tour by an engaging student guide named Mariam from Canada. Mariam, a current Bachelor of Education student from SFU, was bilingual and had knowledge of both Japanese and Kwak’wala (to my surprise) from her days working at the Our Living Languages Exhibit at the Royal BC Museum. Being at Vimy Ridge and walking in the trenches, where exactly 100 years ago Canadian soldiers prepared and fought to liberate France, was very moving. In fact after spending the day at Vimy Ridge and the day prior at the WWI and WWII sections of the Army Museum in Paris, it was impossible not to reflect on the devastations of war. I am  thankful for the peaceful lives so many of us are able to enjoy.

Français  French  フランスご

Cette semaine était pleine de choses contraires: nouveau et vieux, facile et difficile, et des réflexions de la guerre et de la paix. J’ai commencé mes études et c’était très intensif avec un prof enthousiaste et comique, mais stricte. L’école où j’étudie n’est pas la Sorbonne originale, mais elle a des technologies très modernes. J’ai voulu être à la Sorbonne originale. C’est dommage.

En plus de mes études, j’ai fait du tourisme. Je suis allée à la Place de la Concorde, au Petit Palais, Assiago (un restaurant italien splendide), au Musée de l’Armée et au Vimy Ridge. Un étudiant canadienne, Mariam, qui sait des langues variés (même le japonais et le Kwak’wala) nous a donné un bon tour. Après avoir regardé les dévastations de guerre au musée et au Vimy Ridge, il est difficile de ne pas réfléchir sur nos vies et la paix qui existe.


(Photo of Michael and Stacia at Vimy Ridge Memorial)

日本語  Japanese  Japonais

今週、私は学校でフランス語を勉強しました。大変難しかったです。でもいいです。たくさん習いました。。そのあとで、いろいろな旅行をしました。 Vimy Ridge はすごく面白かったです。カナダ人とフランス人の大事な歴史です。


(Photo of the trenches at Vimy Ridge)


Hexda̱n leda sku’lat̓si. Hexdan leda humu’wilas. Hexdan leda Vimy Ridge. Tłuma mu’lanoḵw hase’yus.

3 thoughts on “Learning and Exploring: Canadians in France

  1. Stacey you look fantastic. Love the haircut, very chic looking. Hope you remember me, we met on your first cruise on the Princess. Diane and Bob Hague. I am so glad that you and Mike are still together and enjoying traveling together. What a great experience this seems. I just started reading your blog and looking forward to reading more about your time in Paris. We are still traveling doing cruises, in fact we are going to Hawaii with Lynn and Dave the other people at our table.
    You take care and say to Mike for us. Cant wait to read more about your adventure.


    1. Hi Diane,

      Of course I remember you all. Glad to hear you are seeing in touch with Dave and Lynn. Say “hi” for me. I will never forget Dave’s “in the services on the tank” story. And enjoy your cruising and travelling!


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