Cheese, wine and football


In short, my name is Daniel, I’m 19 years old and I’m going to spend the next 11 months here, in Nevers, France.

I think there is a general desire for people to get in touch with the French culture, and for sure I’m not an exception. This year was, for me, one full of questions, and France proved to be the perfect answer. My story can be very resumed very easly: I just finished high school, I wasn’t sure about what I want to do next and then I had the luck to be selected for an EVS project in France. I’m here for a month already and I enjoyed every second. Nevers gave me reasons for it.

I could start with the fact that people are always nice and smiling (the saleswoman at LIDL and the lady from the library make no exception) but it’s difficult to put cheese and wine on the second place. I’ve never been a “cheese lover”, but everything changed since I came in France. Yes, I found some of the cheese assortments disgusting, but most of them are simply delicious. On a more serious note, everything is good as it could be. I spend around 3 hours in an office and the atmosphere is always nice. My project is related to children activities, and, because of that, I always feel the time is flying.

One interesting aspect that I noticed was the strange weather at the beginning of the month, like raining now, being sunny again for 2 hours and then raining again. Also, for me, in October everything changed dramatically in terms of temperature. Yesterday I was wearing a t-shirt and a sweater and today I need my winter-coat, because there is wind, rain and low temperature.

Regarding my social life here, in France, things are as natural as it could be for someone who comes in touch with an entire new culture. One of the key aspects that helps me with developing my French speaking and understanding ability is given by the fact that I started to play football. Yes, I joined a football club, here, and now I’m able to spend 4 hours each week around people that have the same passion as I do.

Other than that, the médiqthèque represents another point of interest for me. I’m lecture passioned, and even though it’s a little bit difficult to read in French, I use books that I borrow to improve my language skills –and not only.

I think, for now, those are the most important aspects to mention. My time here has been, until now,a beautiful experience, and there are many factors to think about. The support that I received for everything, from my tutor, people in mairie and my colleague was a very important part and helped me a lot.

For the following months I’m planning to travel around France. Being an European volunteer gives me this opportunity. I will make sure I wil let you know about all my impressions regarding the place I’m going to visit and the people I’m going to meet.

But, until then, I suggest you all to enjoy the cheese and the wine. I will certainly do it!

Matei-Pantiloiu Daniel

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