Student Blog

Read first-hand accounts from our students about their experiences on APA Paris programs.

Growing roses from bullet holes

November 15, 2015

After staying inside for the past couple days, I started to get the sense that it wasn't really real. That it must be happening somewhere else, somewhere far away that could only reach us from a news station, or that it was just a dream. Today I left my apartment and to take the metro to a stop near Bastille and walk to 92 Rue de Charonne. A huge crowd surrounds La Belle Equipe, a bar and café, and now the site of a terrorist attack. Flowers, candles, signs and notes are placed on the sidewalk while reporters take pictures and film. I join them. Dozens of people walk up to the memorial to light candles, leave flowers and bouquets, and say prayers. There are notes of outrage, confusion and upset, but mostly notes of love. There is a lot of love. People embrace and cry, many stand by themselves in silence. I take as many pictures as I can without disturbing anyone's personal space and back away from the crowd to look at the rest of the block. Cars and bikes move along the road... Read More

Le prochain jour

November 14, 2015

I haven’t done much today. I stayed inside (as per President Hollande’s recommendation), read, watched TV, bought groceries, and often refreshed the BBC Live Update report online. Yet by 7pm, I am exhausted. I slept very little last night due to the siren noise that... Read More

L’état d’urgence

November 14, 2015

At around 8pm this evening I went out to bring home dinner for a night in. Around 10pm I get a message from a friend in the US asking if I’m okay. A few seconds later I become aware of a chorus of sirens from outside my building and really in every direction I... Read More

The Spooky Pigeon

November 2, 2015

As the world well knows, this past weekend was Halloween! Halloween is my favorite holiday of all time. For me it ranks above Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day and my birthday. While our study abroad advisors were warning us about the homesickness that comes with the fall... Read More

The Traveling Pigeon, Part 3

November 2, 2015

Our final leg of touring around France ended on the beaches of Normandy. For me, this was the second time I walked along the shores where over 2,400 American men lost their lives. The first time was during the summer I studied abroad in high school, a time when Normandy becomes... Read More

The Traveling Pigeon, Part 2

November 2, 2015

Next on our journey across France, we left Lyon in the morning and rented a car to drive from the Rhône-Alps to Provence, the famous seaside region of France which I had heard about since childhood. I couldn’t have been more happy we rented a car. Instead of driving on... Read More

The Traveling Pigeon, Part 1

October 31, 2015

This past week was Fall Break for most Paris universities as well as APA, and while many students use this time to fly to a nearby European country for the week, I decided to fully indulge myself in France. After this trip and my previous time abroad, I can now say I have been... Read More

The Tragic Pigeon

October 30, 2015

This post will be short, but last week I was walking home from class and came upon a rather disturbing sight. My building is in the 12th arrondissement, next to the beautiful Parc de Bercy and La Cinématèque Française, a film museum, library, and theatre occasionally showing... Read More

The Bohemian Pigeon

October 21, 2015

In my first post, I wrote that in seeing Montmartre, I discovered the reason people write about Paris. While the entire city is beautiful in many ways, Montmartre embodies the spirit of the true Bohemian lifestyle, one filled with art, charm, wit and beauty. With its art-deco... Read More

An evening in

October 16, 2015

Initially I didn’t want to join my fellow APA girls for a weekend in Bretagne to visit the town of Saint-Malo and the world-wonder of Mont Saint-Michel since I’ve actually already been there. During the summer before my senior year in high school, I spent a month in... Read More

The Lone Pigeon of Brussels

October 10, 2015

There’s something entirely rewarding about taking pleasure in solitude. After spending a lovely weekend in The Hague with an old friend, taking in the sights, listening to great music, noticing the modern architecture coupled with an abundance of bikes, and seeing what is... Read More

Cirque de la Vie

October 2, 2015

Every week, APA provides opportunities to see a “spectacle,” or a form of entertainment  that allows us to see a little more of French art and culture. We have been to a concert, a dance performance and a vaudeville comedy show. But last night we saw something a little... Read More

The feminist pigeon

September 25, 2015

As a journalism major, I tend to pay attention to the news. It’s usually good practice for someone who intends to be a news writer. Staying up-to-date with current events is crucial, and since I am now living in France, I suppose it’s my duty to watch local French news as... Read More

Le conte de fées

September 22, 2015

As we pulled up to the Château de Corton André in Aloxe-Corton on the outskirts of Beaune, one of the girls on the bus said, “I now understand the inspiration for fairy tales.” She is absolutely right. I had been to chateaux before–those in the Loire Valley and the Anjou... Read More


September 16, 2015

I’ve been trying to catch my breath the past couple weeks. When I first landed in Paris, I guess I expected the city to suddenly lay out before me, but for any future travelers, it’s important to remember that Charles de Gaulle Airport is still just an airport.... Read More