Languages@Muhlenberg.edu
Newsletter 2002
 
Daily Life from Senegal to France:
Bonding over Baguettes

One of my most memorable experiences in Aix-en-Provence, France was my daily walk to school. This thirty-minute walk gave me the opportunity to listen to the sounds of the city. The teenagers hanging out before the start of school, the singing of birds, and the voices of Frenchmen and women greeting one another in the streets, all allowed me to ready myself for the day ahead full of classes and activities. One specific stop along this route was a small boulangerie where I would buy my baguettes.

From the first day I went to this bakery, I felt welcomed by the owner. This older woman always wore a smile and greeted each customer personally, with politeness and warmth. Throughout that semester, I could see the importance of such relationships within the context of French society. By the end of the five months, she knew exactly what time I would come in and what I would buy. I still think about this customer-owner relationship that I formed with this woman. This daily reminder of how special that study abroad experience was gave me the inspiration needed to integrate as much as I could into the communauté aixoise.

Adam Pollack, '02