I can be such a recluse sometimes. Fortunately tonight was not one of those nights. After quite the busy weekend (wonderful but a tad chaotic day trip in Mulhouse- more on that to come), I was not feeling entirely enthused to take my precious time to my professor’s house to deliriously stumble through a dinner filled with French. But I decided when in France…suck it up and get involved. And boy am I glad that I did.
Not only did I have succulent sweet wine, and a delicious raclette dinner (originally from Switzerland, consisting of savory melted cheese poured over potatoes and onions), but I managed to talk entirely in French…for the most part. And I was surprised. I talked about the death penalty in Texas, how to say hello in Turkish, my opinions on Romney, why I chose to be vegetarian, how capitalism is hurting our nation, how my father is a conspiracy theorist, how I’m trying to learn the ukulele, our cliches of the French (eat frogs and snails, don’t shower, are semi pretentious, smoke and complain all the time…) and many other things that I never thought I’d be able to do. I held my own in a French conversation! Of course it was not as articulate as I would’ve liked, maybe even verged on a spastic 8 year old’s interpretation of politics, but it’s a start!
And moments like these remind me of why I got that first tatoo 3 years ago. I wanted to always remember to thrive, to flourish. And as weird as it might sound, tonight I experienced my own personal eudaimonia.
And ultimately I left the night feeling full- not just of raclette, but of life. I felt invigorated by my own small personal accomplishments in French, but also by the people. I loved hearing their stories, getting little snipets of their lives. One man, who most certainly belongs in the organic food movement in Austin, kept saying that I had “good energy”. Normally I would’ve smirked at such a thing, but tonight I smiled.