Day 174: Wedding

This summer is officially wedding season for me. With 2 weddings already passed, I have 5 more to attend from now until November.

The main aim for my trip to Strasbourg last weekend was for the wedding of two of my friends. They are the most unconventional “wing it” people I know and I love them dearly. Being part of their special day was so amazing because I was there when they first met, and I was there when they started dating, there for the wedding dress shopping, there for the wedding and I can’t wait to be there for all the other wonderful adventures that they’ll have. So to commemorate my love for the happy couple, I thought that I should dedicate a blog post to them. This is for you Jin and Martijn (Dutch spelling).

Nothing could top the magnificent church where the wedding took place, St Paul’s Church, Jin’s favourite Church.

Jin you looked so beautiful in your dress! I know you were unsure about it because you’d changed your mind 3 times but like I said, you looked perfect!!

It was so beautiful seeing the two of you walk out of the church after making your vows up on the spot. That’s why I love you both so much, you do things your way, and you do it together.

You not only wore a dress with pockets, but you wore trainers with them. You are by far the coolest bride I’ve ever seen!

To top it all off, you both decided to get married in France and to have the reception in Germany overlooking France. What a day it was!

Thank you for reading.

Day 173: Strasbourg

The last few days I was able to spend some time in the beautiful city of Strasbourg. Almost 4 years ago, I moved to Strasbourg and lived there for a year. This city has a special place in my heart, despite me constantly saying that I’ll never visit again, I find myself always missing it and itching to go back.

Strasbourg is a city in the East of France, less than 5 minutes drive from Germany. With German supermarkets being cheaper, we used to take the bus to Germany to do our grocery shopping before returning to France. It was the best of both worlds.

With Strasbourg once belonging to Germany, it has a lot of Germanic architecture (as well as French) which adds to the beauty of the city.

Walking around the city is an absolute delight because you’re met with beauty wherever you look.

The best part about Strasbourg is the easy transport routes. Whether that’s bus or tram or walking, the city is very accessible and easy to navigate.

There is also the canal that runs through the city. I remember my first week in Strasbourg after I moved there, we all met up at the canal with baguettes and bottles of wine and drank through the night. It was the best way to start off in a new place and it became a habit. Every time I walk by the canal I always remember that first week.

Look how beautiful it is!!! Absolutely stunning! I already miss it.

This is Strasbourg’s very own Notre Dame Cathedral. It is over 1,000 years old and you can climb all the way to the top. It is such a beautiful site, situated in the centre of the city.

This is Place Kleber, my favourite place in Strasbourg, (mainly because it’s the only place with a Starbucks). Last weekend there was the fête de la musique (festival of musique). This meant that on every corner in the city centre there was a band with loud speakers playing. And there was a stage in Place Kleber being set up when I took this picture.

Strasbourg is a beautiful city that I would recommend to everyone. It is known as the Capital of Christmas, which makes visiting around Christmas time the most magical experience.

Thank you for reading.

Day 12: Greetings

Greetings are more rooted in our culture than we realise. Every culture has their own greetings, both in speech and body language. For example, when I lived in France, we would lean in, allowing our cheeks to touch, whilst making kissing noises. I mean what a strange and obscure thing, to make kissing noises whilst 2 cheeks are touching as a form of greeting. And then we would repeat with the other cheeks. I remember the first time I was greeted by a Frenchman and he leaned in and proceeded to carry out the actions. I felt so awkward and uncomfortable, because I did not remember giving him permission to enter my personal space, let alone touch my cheek with his own. I knew it was harmless, and that it was just the way the French greeted each other, yet it felt so strange. And this was not only the case for saying hello, but they would do this again when saying goodbye. That meant 4 cheek touching sessions and 4 kissing noises with complete strangers every time you wanted to greet them. There was a brief moment where I would avoid eye contact with people just so they wouldn’t greet me.

After about a month of living in France I got used to it and when I would come home to England to see my family and friends, greetings felt so empty without the French gestures. I always had to stop myself from leaning in to greet people the French way. After moving back to England, I returned to my old ways, saying hello with my words, and the occasional wave, the English way.

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