Friday, September 26, 2008

Back in France

Although I'm still having trouble adjusting to the time change, I have safely arrived back in France! It's a little weird to be starting the same routine over again, only slightly different, if you know what I mean. I blame the time change.

I went to the sous prefecture today to get the list of documents for my carte de sejour and was not pleased to find that our super nice prefecture lady has been replaced by a nazi! In addition to my birth certificate, passport, arreté, attestation de logement (proof that I have housing) I also have to give them my last three pay slips, last year's tax return, and proof of having sécurité sociale. What is up with that? I didn't tell her that I was renewing or that I had been here last year, she just threw all this stuff at me. I guess if I were a newbie I could have told her I don't have any of those things, but isn't that weird? And I have to bring originals and a gazillion copies. I know that the foot-high stack of documents and ridiculous fonctionnaires aren't news to most assistants/anyone who lives in France, but since it was so easy last year it's a little bit of a shock now. At least it happened this year and not last year!

I went to visit my four schools yesterday with my conseillere pedagogique and I've set my teaching schedule. It was really nice to see my coworkers and some of the kids again! I'm excited for this year. I have four classes of CE1, the second graders, my favorite class because they're just starting off in English and all you have to do is play games and sing fun songs. They're cute. I have a class of CE2 for the first time (last year I had my monster class of CE2/CM1 and since I only taught the CE2 about half the time it didn't seem like a real class). And I have two CM1/CM2 split classes, which will also be new for me (last year they were all separate). And one of the CM1/CM2 is my monster class from last year. Oy. That class will be exhausting and frustrating. I have all three of my schools from last year plus I was given a new one. At one of my schools from last year though I only have the CE1 now, they gave the older kids to the Crazy Intervenant. At least I still have one class there and can see my old students.

Other than that I spend a lot of my time waiting for Ben to stop working so that we can see each other. He's very busy and very important, and apparently also very popular with lots and lots of friends. It's really nice to be together again after two months apart. He gets one day off during the work week so he came to pick me up at the airport and then we spent the day together (which means that he pushed a shopping cart around after me as I slowly made my way through the Cora). It was kind of weird that first day to all of a sudden be together after being apart for so long and having spent not much time face to face before I left, but now it feels very normal and comfortable.

This week is the Festival of the White Bean in my town. Can't wait!


Andromeda said...

Welcome back! Good luck with the new school, and have fun with your Ben ;-)

Zhu said...

Last time I went to the Préfecture to help a friend sort out her immigration paper, I was told I spoke good French.

I am French. :D

I don't know how it works in France but I have heard it's not exactly straightforward... I appreciate that Canada isn't as bureaucratique.

Au Soleil Levant said...

Thanks Andromeda! And Zhu, that comment made my day. I can just imagine the fonctionnaire when she told you that...