Tourisdent? Toural? Residourist? Who knows…
The most peculiar thing I have found so far about my experience of the summer school is that I haven’t quite found my place in Paris. As a summer school student you lie somewhere in between a resident and a tourist. People ask me for directions, but I don’t know the answers, I have a metro card but still haven’t quite figured out how to navigate said metro, oh, and I don’t speak a word of French (a slight flaw when aiming for the Parisian aesthetic).
In paris it is pretty easy to pick out the locals from the tourists but we lie somewhere in between; not wanting to be seen as tourist but probably equally despised by locals for pretending to do so!
I suggest we have a little bit of both in us which is what makes spending a long period of time abroad both challenging, but so much more fun! If I was only here for a week I wouldn’t have found the amazing markets in the Marais, the dancing pits behind the Notre Dame and the best views of Paris from beautiful rooftop bars. However when you see something everyday it is easy to lose sight of how magnificent it is. How many times have you blindly walked past Cardiff Castle? Or even ignored the sunsetting behind the main building on campus? We become so used to it, we become blind to it. So I think wherever you are, for however long, keep that little bit of ‘tourist’ in you. Appreciate the sights as well as finding the hidden treasures.