Photo Essay: A Birthday Abroad (Part One)

All of my new friends (French, American, and Chinese) gathered around the table.

Birthdays can evoke a wide variety of emotions, which are seldom of neutral nature.  Some adore celebrating the beginning of  new age and the joys that will go along with it. Whereas others may passionately try to hide/forget the fact that they are another year older.  Some enjoy big celebrations with many friends and family.  Others enjoy a small dinner with their loved ones. I was extremely fortunate to have a double celebration this year.  On the actual day of my birthday, I went skiing with two French friends.  It was a beautiful day in the mountains and we ate lunch together near the summit.  A week later, my host family graciously invited 10 of my friends over for an exceptional party.  We ate delicious food (coutrtesy of my host mother), bantered in franglais (a sophisticated hybrid of French and English), and danced the night away.  This warm celebration is the highpoint of my time in France.  I cannot be appreciative enough for my host-family, who went completely out of their way.  Thank you.

My tiramisu birthday cake. A special thank you to my host mother!

My best friend and the wonderful gift she gave me.

These are the people whom I will remember for the rest of my life.

You can’t always be too serious…


This post was contributed by Jacob, an Aspire by API student who is currently taking part in a gap year program in Grenoble, France.  He will be updating the blog periodically throughout his time abroad.

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