Colmar: Straight Out of a Fairy Tale

Bonjour, mes amis!  The above pictures are from Colmar, France.

So, it’s my last week in Strasbourg!  Since my last post in Bordeaux, I’ve been wrapping up my research, including writing myfinal report.  I’ve also taken the time to revisit my favorite places in Strasbourg.  Including, but not limited to: that ice cream place that scoops ice cream into a flower design, the Jardin de l’Orangerie, Place Kléber, the square around the cathedral, the Galaries Lafayette, and of course the lovely cobblestone streets of Petite France.  I even went in one of the fancy jewelry shops and pretended to be wealthy and tried some of it on.

Today, I figured I would try to see a little more of Alsace, and so I headed to Colmar, which I’m pretty sure I saw on a list of “fairy tale towns in Europe” once.  And I can see why!  From the train station, you walk through a beautiful park with statues and fountains to get to the centre ville.  I spent most of my day wandering, although I had a few memorable interactions with the French…

1. Since I didn’t have a map, I asked the lady in a Guess store where the “plus belles endroits” are, and she told me how to get to the area by the canals.  She also told me about her children and how she considers talking on the phone in a store to be rude.  She was probably disappointed I didn’t buy anything.

2. At a bookstore, a woman asked me to find a psychology book for her on this one shelf (at least I think that’s what she was asking?  I had a hard time understanding her) and so I picked out one on psychiatry.  Hopefully she’s satisfied with that……  I’m still confused about that exchange.

3. And at another store, I was searching for Christmas gifts (get excited, family) when two salespeople came over to ask if I needed help finding anything and if I’d been there before and if I was satisfied with their service.  Considering I still have a stress reaction when people unexpectedly speak to me in French, the encounter was a bit overwhelming, but I answered all their questions and (I think) they even complimented my speaking ability!

Colmar is charming and beautiful, and I’m glad I took the time to do a day trip there before I left.  Everyone I interacted with was incredibly nice, and I definitely recommend it if you’re in the area.  Tomorrow, I’m packing up for the summer, because Thursday I’m off to Paris!  I have three days by myself and then my friend Christine is joining me for my last couple days before I return to the US.  If you told me a few years ago that I would be spending my 21st birthday in Paris, I would never have believed it!  It feels like a dream come true.

À bientôt.

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