I had my end-of-the-year language evaluation yesterday, and I have to say that I think it confirmed what I've been feeling. Sure, I made a number of fautes [mistakes], but I could feel the change in my tone of voice, my gestures and my rhythm. I felt completely comfortable speaking French.
And that's how I've come to feel about my year here. It's only just recently that I've become fully comfortable with my surroundings: Paris, France, French, etc. This makes it all the more unfortunate that I have to leave so soon. I am increasingly jealous of my friends who are staying for the summer or even for just a month - anything to extend the experience and delay the inevitable.
But one day, we'll come back. It will never be the same...we'll never have the same liberty, the same naivete, the freetime, but we'll find a way. Several months ago, I would have said that my abroad experience had satisified my desire to explore Paris; I probably would even have said that I didn't feel a strong urge to come back in the future. But, oh so suddenly, something has changed. Perhaps it's the inevitablity of my return, but I am now hoping and dreaming that I can find someway to live in Paris again, no matter how briefly.