Hello tlm! (Tout le monde or everyone in French!)
It so happened that my last few weeks in Montpellier I couldn’t use my iPhone. Basically, it decided to stop charging altogether one day and on a whim I lost all my photos and contacts from approximately a year in France. It was definitely a loss of efficient communication in those final weeks but it did make the French phone I purchased for French administration purposes a worthy investment after all. It even turns out there was an upside to my approximately 11 Euro Alcatel gem of a phone. I got to playing around with the impeccably modern features of this device (yes, exaggerating here) like testing out the radio which turned out to be rather bad quality (big surprise) but a good motivator to listen to French on a run- and its low-quality camera. For who would I be without snapping photos in my picturesque French town, especially right before I left?
This all being said, let these blurry and crappy photos commemorate how I spent my time in Mtp up until the long haul flight back to America. I hope you enjoy their allure and perhaps let you see a more vintage, raw, and pure sense of my neck of the woods in France.
I invite you to my timeless collection of France in Vintage…
***DISCLOSURE: Many thanks to the lovely Alexa for helping me transfer these photos from my dinosaur phone to her computer and then shared with me on Google Drive. She is a GEM and thanks for giving these babies a chance***
These photos above are some of my favorites because they actually did turn out fairly nice and crisp. They show a street I frequented the most often in Montpellier because it was home to the tram stop which stopped in front of the Gare (or train station) where I would take the tram home or to my job. I often waited here patiently while taking in the lovely French architecture and palm trees panorama. Apparently it was a beautiful, sunny day in Mtp that day with grand blue skies, surprisingly captured on my crap French phone!
Here I snapped a quick photo of one of the churches in the center of Mtp. I was biking home and wanted to capture the elegance of the building along with the ambiance at night.
This was one of my top cherished nights in Mtp. During my year as an Au Pair, I had gotten closely acquainted with another mom at school and weekly we’d walk the kids together to the nearby park after school. She had been an Au Pair in the UK and was fluent in English so 95% of the time we spoke in English. She talked very fast and loved the language so I think she enjoyed our time together a lot and I appreciated how friendly and easy-going she was. Her daughter was good friends with one of my host kids, Alice. They’d all play and we’d sit talking on a bench where I listened to her unending drama about her recent divorce and complications with raising her daughter between herself and her apparently difficult ex-husband. I honestly loved every minute of this and actively listened to her every word. She was a robust, kind, and generous woman of true French nature.
To continue, somewhere in the middle of the gossiping, it came up that my favorite French dish was quiche and she told me she made a most delightful quiche. She said it wasn’t typical because she put courgette or zucchini in it. We then planned for me and Alice to come over one night for a quiche dinner with her and her daughter at their apartment. Their apartment was quaint and homey with a cute little balcony where we dined during sundown. Before I had even arrived she had one quiche made which was for dinner, but as I was told we were going to make a second quiche so I’d have the recipe shown to me. I thought this was the sweetest gesture in the world! You better believe I wrote that recipe down the moment I got home that night (HMU if you would like an authentic French quiche recipe!)
It was such a treat to see where this lady and her daughter lived and be part of such a kindred and simple dinner gathering. I’ll never forget it. That’s definitely a lesson of hospitality and merely being welcoming toward a foreigner in your home country.
Le Trois Grace fountain and centre ville a la nuit! (Center of town at night)
Snapping some quick shots while waiting for the tram.
Alas, one of my favorite bars in Mtp- Le Rebuffy. I snapped these award-winning shots while waiting for my friend Alexa to show up for a chill winevening. The atmosphere and vibes here were what I loved most about the pub and desired to capture precisely this.
A tribute to the FAF! One of my dear friends in Montpellier, the legendary Farah who is the epitome of ‘live life to the fullest’ and TM ‘seek discomfort.’ We were having a small get together at her place that night.
One melancholy look down an old road in Montpellier from the tramway.
And lastly, the last photo. Look at all those mega-pixels! Anyways, here I was having just boarded the train saying a bittersweet goodbye to two friends I became close with during my last month in France. Omar helped me pull an all-nighter the night before my long journey back home which at the time seemed like a fun idea and was definitely memorable. He even helped me piece together a handwritten note I wanted to leave my host family along with a string of post-it notes up the stairs as a fun memento of my departure. In the morning he helped me transport all my luggage to the gare where we met up with Alexa (my running/workout buddy, going-out wing-woman, wine drinking pal, and adventurous spirit like me!) who came to wish me bon voyage! What a lovely way to wrap up this post-college, year in my twenties, fantastic chapter of my life.
END CAMERA ROLL. Perhaps the high-quality of these memories justifies the low-quality pixels. I hope you enjoyed this #art. XOXO<3