“What is an Ashley?”

What is an Ashley

Do you ever mean to take juste one artsy photo by committing early, like before-you’re-ready-to-double-filter-on-Instagram-early, to a pre-determined iPhone filter like transfer? And after that one artsy shot, you always mean to turn off the filter so that you don’t end up with a ridiculous amount of artsy shots that look terrible in that filter, right? You know where I’m going with this. I now have a full day of photos via the transfer filter. The photography struggle is real here, folks.

Today marks nearly the end of one week of French classes, and I’ve managed to settle into a lovely little routine. Tout d’abord, I walk three minutes to the Bastille metro station where I shuffle like a penguin into a steamy, packed car that always seems to arrive two seconds before me, meaning I always need to do a swift trot to ensure I catch it feeling overheated. Ensuite, I transfer trains at the Châtelet metro station where I like to throw my arms out à la Rose from Titantic to catch a brief gust of cool wind that whips straight through my clothes for approximately five seconds during my transfer to the number four line. Approaching the four line means swimming upstream against the most determined Parisians in Paris. En fin, I arrive at the Saint-Placide metro. I manage to scrape together 1.10€ on my walk into school while mindlessly opening my bag for the half-hearted look from the security guard. After only three days of class, the café attendant remembers my normal café au lait order and we are able to work in harmony. He shoots me a look from across the cafeteria as I arrive two minutes before class and turns to make my coffee while carrying on another conversation. In turn, I hand over my 1.10€ and say, “Merci, bonne journee!”

There are many things I could say about class this week, but I think I’ll hit on the most universally entertaining examples about indirect objects and the French element of surprise (!):

Indirect Objects: While learning about indirect objects (you know, “My Parisian boyfriend gives roses to me every day,” – me being the indirect object), la professeur used my classmate and me as an example. She said, “Lara a acheté un chapeau à Ashley,” which is to say that Lara bought a hat for me. A particularly confused classmate eventually blurted out, “But professor, what is an Ashley?!” to much enjoyment of the class. Bless her heart. I have a feeling Ashleys weren’t so plentiful in Korea that they went by Ashley J., Ashley S., Ashley M., and Ashley M. #2, until high school. But this is school, and we’re here to learn. I am an Ashley.

The French Element of Surprise: While learning to be more expressive like true Parisians, la professeur presented us with a table of ways to express surprise at something in French, such as “C’est pas vrai!” “Ah bon!!” and my favorite, “Oh lá lá!”  To tie in other elements from the week, she asked us to say a simple sentence to our partner, who was supposed to respond in surprise and then reword that sentence using indirect objects. And so her two examples, as translated into English, went like this:

1) “Your husband smiles at the bakery woman every morning…” EXPRESSIVE SURPRISE: “Ahhhhhh….no! That’s not true….!”

2) “Your sister’s boyfriend bought flowers for someone else…” EXPRESSIVE SURPRISE/PARANOIA: “Are you kidding?! That’s not possible…!”

So, to wrap up this week at school: things are going well and we’re learning a lot about trust issues.




One Response to ““What is an Ashley?”

  • Robin Jenkins
    2 years ago

    So many firsts! Reminds me of my little preschoolers starting their first week of school where it’s a whole new world – so much to learn and new friends to meet. Enjoy!

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