It was a calm, relaxing day yesterday. After a sweet service at church, I returned to Grenoble to find people out walking everywhere. The cafés were filled with people sitting outside visiting over their little cups of coffee. The street I live on was similarly filled with people exploring an outdoor market that filled almost the entirety of the street. Most businesses other than a few are closed on Sundays here as everyone takes a collective breath and relaxes before another week begins. This is one thing about living here that I so often miss when I’m back in the States. I miss seeing people out and about enjoying a beautiful day. I also love seeing the café atmosphere that’s just not quite the same anywhere else outside of France that I’ve been. I do not fault my own culture for working hard as that is something I do admire about the American culture, but I do believe we lose something in not also taking a step back to just enjoy a beautiful day. Work is an important part of life for sure, but life is not only about work.
I spent my afternoon in a likewise relaxed manner. I met a friend at the local art museum which had free admission yesterday, and we walked around gazing at various works and making comments on some we found humorous or especially breath-taking. Afterwards, we strolled by the river and came upon a small café at the base of one of the mountains and decided to have a coffee. After I ordered a coffee and she ordered a limonade (sort of like the French version of Sprite), we sat and chatted to get to know one another a little better. She is also teaching English at the university, so I’m glad to have someone to be able to share some of the struggles of paperwork with. On our way back, we walked down a few streets noting some of the shops and giving each other tips on the best places we’ve found for finding various items. As she is from England, I so much enjoyed getting to know more about her culture and regional differences as compared to my own. Of course, her accent is also delightful too! 🙂
I’m thankful for this sweet time to set aside all of the worries of filing out various forms and going to various meetings to just step back and enjoy being here.