Day 3: French Polymer Class

Wednesday, March 15th 2017


Attending a French polymer lecture

Today, we attended a French lecture on polymers. We had some trouble finding the lecture hall (we almost went to the wrong lecture… 😳 ) The fifteen of us filled in about two rows of seats in the lecture hall. The students there seemed confused by our presence and were busy talking among themselves. It took a bit of time for them to quiet down when the professor arrived. I found it a little disturbing that they continued to talk to each other even when the professor was lecturing, and he didn’t do much besides lightly scolding them.

The professor’s lecture was about the basic structure of polymers and their spacial orientations. Since we were there, he even went out of his way to translate everything he talked about in English. I don’t think any of us really expected for him to do that!

After his lecture, we felt it was appropriate to thank him not only for allowing us into his class, but also taking the time to translate in English as he was lecturing. He seemed pleased that we enjoyed his lecture and wished us a great stay in Bordeaux.

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Lab Presentations at ICMCB

Right after our polymer lecture, we attended Dr. Zhang’s seminar on nanoparticle-based photosensitizers for potential treatment against cancer. After that, we got lunch at one of the cafeterias. The food here was slightly better than what I had at the cafeteria on Tuesday. A pizza with chicken, salad, and pancakes served with a blueberry sauce for dessert. It was here that I noticed that the French always keep drinking water in pitchers on the table during meals. I found that to be quite interesting.

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Lunch!

It was time for the research group to present their work. A variety of topics were covered including bromine nano particles and other material sciences. Even some French masters students presented their work. At the end, one of the French professors mentioned opportunities to pursue a Masters degree at UB, and it got me thinking about my future. I could be living somewhere far away from home in a few years… 😮


Le supermarché

I wanted to check out the supermarket near out apartment before meeting our French students again for the evening. They told us they would be showcasing some authentic French foods for us, and I was definitely looking forward to all of that.

The supermarket was pretty busy when we went inside. It was called Casino supermarché even though there was no casino haha. Everyone in our group had pretty much the same thought in mind: Heeey, Let’s check out the alcohol! And yeah, there was a pretty impressive display of wines in the back of the store. The prices ranged from about 5 euros all the way to 50 euros for a bottle of wine. 5 euros for a bottle of wine was extremely cheap! I didn’t really know what wine to buy, so I didn’t get any thinking that we’d have a chance to come back (but we didn’t sadly 😦 ) Instead, I was distracted by the mountain of Kinder eggs on the shelves. There was even this huuuge Kinder egg for Easter! I long for the day Kinder eggs will be sold in America.

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