Bon Voyage

New life, new blog. Thank you to everyone who followed me on British Invasion: Andi in London when I studied abroad during the spring semester of my junior year as a student at the University of Maryland. I hope that through this blog, I can share with you my experiences as I venture into uncharted territory (at least to me).

You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.
–Christopher Columbus

I am leaving in a day and a half to begin an eight-month stint teaching English in French Guiana. For more information about French Guiana and the program I am in, please see the About Me page (and keep reading in the coming months!). If you want to follow updates to my blog by e-mail, scroll down to the bottom of this page and enter your e-mail in the box.

When I learned of my acceptance in April, I was ecstatic to have been placed in a Département d’Outre Mer (a sort of contemporary colony) and not metropolitan France. Before I chose to commit, however, I decided to research la Guyane and learn about life in one of the “forgotten” corners of South America. What I discovered was a sort of informational palimpsest, dated resources whose words were constantly overwritten by what I heard from last year’s teaching assistants. The most valuable cultural lesson I have learned (or rather, affirmed) so far is to ditch the guidebooks and listen to the locals. And that is just what I plan to do.

I have a long journey ahead, both literally and figuratively (well over 10 hours on a plane). Here’s to transitions, new faces, culture shock, languages, and life.


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