Saturday, November 29, 2008

Beautiful "souvenirs"

There is a person who means a lot to me: my maternal grandmother. I spent much time with her during my childhood. She lived in the South of France, with chickens, a rooster, pigeons, rabbits, cats and a dog. She settled in a beautiful house built of old stones in the middle of the Provencal countryside. It had neither running water nor electricity. At night, we lighted up at the candle. I bathed in a basin of hot water, heated on a wood heater. She red stories that warmed my heart. The day we used to go together to walk in the forest to pick mushrooms, cut wood or fetch water at source.

My best memories date from this miraculous era. I will never forget that she taught me respect for nature, and has reinforced my love of animals. I remember one phrase she repeated often to me when I was on the whims: "A good war, and you would be better." Of course, we should not take these words in the first degree, but what she was meaning is that we should never complain too much, and think of those who have suffered much more than us, because she knew what is war.
Whenever I feel sad or that I lost motivation, I think of her and I say: "There is worse."
Today my grandmother, left for 9 years. And I think about her very often. I wanted her to see me grow. I hope she would be proud of what I became.

"I love you from the depths of my soul, Titi, I miss you so much."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

My liberty

Do we have enough time to live ? Ah! such a good question !
We work, take care of our family, have to buy something to eat, pay the bills, clean the house ... what else ?
So much people claim they have no time to take a nap or watch a movie. And they are right. This is modern life. Too much things to do, and no time to waste.

That's why I take my time all days. Each day God accords to me, I take a few minutes, or one hour to take care of myself. This is very important for me. What ever I do, the most important is : according time to be in peace with my own spirit. I can go on Internet, playing poker or watch the news. I can go in the forest and look at wild animals. I can read the newspapers and improve a bit more my english skills. Or I can sleep.
Maybe sometimes, I take too much time ... but the more I take my time, the best I feel good. And this is the only way I found to stay in peace with myself.

Life is short. And I take it easy.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Beauty of the World

Who can pretend : "I have no fear" ? Everybody has some! or if not, they are liars or they try to protect themselves saying that.
If we talk about traveling, there are some normal or common fears a lot of people can feel. And one of the most terrible : talking another language with people we don't know. It's, in the same time, terribly exiting, and terribly scaring. This is one of the moment we can improve ourself and know how we can manage. Maybe one of the most important moment in our life.

That's why I think it is very important to travel, especially when we are young. It's a unique experience that can help us to grow up. We need it.
Do you know some people who has never left their country ? even sometimes their city ? I know some. And they are very selfish and not very open-minded.

When I decide to come to USA, here there are my fears : Do I have enough money to live there ? Could I easily talk to new people ? Will I disappoint my parents if I leave my country ? Will I loose my girlfriend ? Will I be equal to the task ?
I had two options : be paralyzed and let my fears impose me to stay in France, or be risky and try to learn more about myself.

I did the choice you know ... and I have no regret. I met so many people coming from so many places around the world ... I can now easily go everywhere and continue to feel fears because of traveling ... but I will know how extraordinary will be the experience, even if I'm scared!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween : Tradition or Commercial Feast ?

I had my first real Halloween party last Friday night. It was the first time I wear a costume to celebrate this day ... the day of the deaths.
I had a lot of pleasure to disguise myself, cut my hair, put some paintings on my face, and wear special clothes. I enjoyed a lot to do that.
I think I didn't celebrate the feast as people did hundred years ago. But to wear a costume and to have fun with disguised friends was a way to celebrate it by our own.

In France, Halloween has not the same signification than in USA. Even if my country is Christian and a lot of people celebrate the day of the dead relatives. We call it "La Toussaint". Actually, Halloween is only a commercial feast when Big companies can make more money selling costumes, candies and decorations. I don't really know how much they own, but a lot for sure. And this is one of the reason why I don't really like to celebrate Halloween.

I made an exception this year ... and maybe ... because I loved my costume ... I will do it again.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Relationship and his consequences

It's very difficult to talk about love. First because it is very personal. Second because we can easily think we have found love but in fact we have not. And at the end, we can be very disappointed. I had always been a "fleur bleue". This French expression means that I fall in love very easily. I was in a relationship during seven years with the same girl, from my 18 years old until my 25 years old. And during these 7 years, I grew up very quickly, in my mind, in my body, in my heart. I have always thought when we are in love, we should sacrifice ourself for the other. Means we should do all we can to make our partner more happy and feeling better. So I did my best to improve my behavior and my thoughts everyday. But you know, we make mistakes every times. And the more we want to ameliorate our behavior, the more we can make mistakes, it makes sense.

We shared so much things that I can't count how many. I had the opportunity to go to USA 3 years ago, but I have preferred leave my country and follow my girlfriend in Belgium, to support her in her studies. I spent all my time over there, working hard to make our life better and better. And I forgot to follow my own choices. I understood rather quickly that I had to act according to my willpower and not that of my partner. But I cannot blam her because I chose to live with her. In fact, when we are in love, we make decisions which can damage us, or blossom us.

Today, I am proud of what I began in the USA, and I have planed to let the loving feelings away, to stay concentrated on my studies. But I will not stop to think very hardly to a girl I met 4 months before my leaving, and that I estimate so much. I hope to find her in France, when my American studies will be over.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


My name is Ben. I am 25 years old. I come from south of France, in a little city between Nice and Saint Tropez.
I actually work in a reserve to protect wild animals.

I decided in August to travel over Atlantic ocean to USA to learn specific scientific english.
But before integrate University, I should know how to speak better English commun language.
I've suscribed in an English intensive program named CESL. It has a very good reputation around the world. Many people from a lot of countries are studying here.

I met so many people coming from all around the world that I happy to be here only for that point.
I know I could travel a lot and find somewhere, a friend a met in USA. And I will take my time to do that.