Not much has changed.

I keep spending too many hours online searching for a new place to live in the countryside and for that perfect PhD program that I can apply to in a few years. The problem is that I don’t know where we will be moving to this summer, so it’s impossible to actually find a new place. And I don’t know how long we will be in France, so there’s no point in looking at grad schools in North America when we may not go there soon. Plus it’s really hard to find a PhD program in French that will let me focus on pedagogy and linguistics instead of literature.

I’m still feeling frustrated and helpless and restless. I haven’t even bought our tickets to my sister’s wedding this summer because I don’t know where David will be working or how much vacation he will have (or even which airport we should fly out of.)  Even though I only work 3 days a week, time is going by fast in some ways and slow in other ways. It’s already time for me to write a lettre de demande de renouvellement motivée so that I can renew my lectrice contract for the 2009-10 school year. Winter vacation starts in one week, during which all I plan on doing is finishing up the vocabulary lessons for the rest of the semester and working on my website, which is what I do every weekend anyway.

The lousy weather and the fact that our electric radiator just broke is putting me in a bad mood again. I know it’s still February, but winter is dragging on too long. I want spring more than anything right now. I want a new apartment. I want David to find a new job that doesn’t pay him a ridiculously low salary. I want to have some idea of what my life will be like in 2010 instead of constantly wondering and worrying.

Maybe I’m just jealous of friends who are moving to new apartments and starting PhD programs this fall.  I want that. Right now.

P.S. What are people’s opinion of PhD programs in France? If I do manage to do an M2 next year, and we do stay in France longer than expected, I’d like to try doing my doctorate here in didactique des langues. I’ve always been told that American Master’s degrees are worth much more than French ones, but what about PhDs?

Téléfrançais – Episode 1

Hey, I have an idea! Let’s put a talking pineapple, a creepy pilot doll, skeletons playing music, and two kids together in a video to teach useful French phrases like Je suis un ananas and Ce n’est pas possible ! Brilliant, right? Thanks to Dedene for this gem.

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Exchanging French Francs for Euros is Still Possible?

I just saw an article on that mentioned today is the very last day for exchanging 100 franc bills (the “Delacroix”) for euros.  Apparently at the end of 2008, there were 12.14 million 100 franc bills still in circulation? All other franc bills can still be exchanged until February 17, 2012.  I had no […]

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Links Roundup for Learning Languages Online (Audio Version)

I’ve been slowly going through my Language Links page to delete dead links and add new ones. Some new language sites that I’ve come across since my last links post include audio prominently: SWAC Audio Collections provide pronunciations for a wide range of words in 11 languages: Bielorussian, Czech, Chinese, German, English, French, Dutch, Russian, […]

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It’s coming! The big strike of January 29!

FYI: France will be on strike this Thursday, January 29. You know it will be big because it has its own website: There’s even a Google Map of local manifestations. Wooo first major grève of the year!

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Windstorm in the Southwest of France

I don’t often associate severe or extreme weather with France, because they just don’t get the same types of storms that we have in the US. And that means I feel a little safer whenever I hear thunder or see the snow start to fall. It can’t possibly be as bad as tornadoes and blizzards […]

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Multilingual is always better than monolingual

From the New York Times: Nashville Won’t Make English Official Language By ROBBIE BROWN Published: January 22, 200 Nashville voters on Thursday rejected a proposal to make English the city’s official language and largely to prevent government workers from communicating in other languages. The proposal was introduced by Eric Crafton, a metropolitan councilman. It was […]

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It’s been one full day.

Hey, why isn’t the world fixed yet?

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Thoughts and Ramblings

I’ve only worked one day in the past thirty, and it has given me a lot of time to think, contemplate, and get bored and frustrated. My first semester as a lectrice d’anglais ended just fine, and then Christmas came and went along with my homesickness, and lately I’ve been reading and cleaning a lot […]

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Sony Reader, how did I live without you?

I spent all day Thursday playing with my Sony Reader. And I do mean ALL DAY. If anyone else is thinking about buying one, here are some helpful hints: I have a ton of scholarly journal articles in PDF format that I wanted to read on the Sony Reader. It is possible to read them, […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.


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French Today - Master the Modern French Language

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