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I decided to stay with Nathalie because it was simply immersion- in the fall I will be a senior in high school taking my sixth year of French, so I thought it would be beneficial to learn and practice the language in a different method than lessons.

Right away, Nathalie was able to adjust to my level of French very well. She helped me to verbalize my thoughts in French and discuss everything from 1970s folk music to Henry Clay Frick– which was quite a break from the verb conjugations and grammar exercises in school. It was nice to hear the vocabulary spoken by the French compared to what I learn in the classroom, as well– it turns out the word “mobylette” isn’t really used much anymore :).

Nathalie’s home was very lovely and welcoming, and although jet lag often got the better of me with daily naps, I really enjoyed spending time in the courtyard and the back yard. I loved the history of her house, as well as in the region. We visited three castles– Chamerolles, Sully-sur-Loire, and Fontainebleau– all wonderful in their own ways, and all unlike anything in the United States.

I’m fond of painting, and so Nathalie suggested we visit Barbizon. It was fantastic and definitely a highlight for me.

Nathalie is an excellent cook, and I enjoyed the meals we shared with her friends. It really helped to characterize the country in a way only a homestay can.

I definitely recommend a stay with Nathalie, and I would repeat my time there without a second thought.

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