Bienvenue à Californie!

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Bienvenue à Californie!

Monica Boss '15 is all smiles with her French exchange student Elise Nguyen

Monica Boss '15 is all smiles with her French exchange student Elise Nguyen

Johanna Lazar

Monica Boss '15 is all smiles with her French exchange student Elise Nguyen

Johanna Lazar

Johanna Lazar

Monica Boss '15 is all smiles with her French exchange student Elise Nguyen

Johanna Lazar, Reporter

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The arrival of the French exchange students is one of the many events Pres girls look forward to when spring semester rolls around. Intriguing, different, and a bit mysterious, they definitely give Pres girls something to wonder about–do they know any English? Do French people really eat frogs and snails for lunch? The Voice sat down with two French exchange students, Remi Brias and Elise Nguyen, and one host, Monica Boss ‘15, to find out what America is like through a French student’s eyes and what hosting is really like.

For Monica, who is hosting for a second time, the experience is like having a sibling. “I’m an only child, so it’s kind of like having a sister for two weeks. You get to go to new places you haven’t really fully gone to and go and see it through another person’s eyes instead of someone that’s already been there. It’s cool seeing America through her eyes.” A typical evening after school for the duo includes them having dinner together and doing fun activities. “We made candles one day, and the other day we played Just Dance,” Boss said.

For the Frenchies, who are experiencing America and California for the first time, a highlight of the trip is seeing the different famous monuments in California. “I love the Golden Gate bridge and Coit tower because the view is magnificent,” Elise said. Remi’s favorite monument was also the Golden Gate bridge.

A surprising aspect of the trip for both has been the school, as it’s all girls, but they don’t note any glaring differences between French teenagers and American teenagers. “Just the accent,” said Remi.

Americans have certain stereotypes about the French- they eat tons of cheese, snails and frogs, and are maybe a bit snobby. But do the Frenchies have any stereotypes about us Americans? “Before, I thought they were all fat and eat all the time,” said Elise. “But she [host Monica Boss] told me that it depends on the region or place.”

Pres girls can be heard talking about how difficult it is to conjugate irregular Spanish verbs or to say those tough to pronounce French words, but is English difficult for the Frenchies? For Elise, not so much. “I read books in English, which helps me, and I listen to music, so it’s fine,” she said. Remi agreed, saying learning it was mostly fine, but that the hardest part of learning English is the complicated grammar.

What else would the Frenchies like to do on their trip? “Take pictures and go to museums,” said Remi. For Elise, “Visit the monuments and go to the beach!”

 

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