Today, I'd like to say "bienvenue" to our Penpal of the Week: Olivia from France!
1. Please tell us about you!
Thank you soooo much Julie for letting me be the penpal of the week!! You rock and your blog rocks too but just not as much as you do ;)
My name is Olivia and I am a 23 year old girl from France. I am now living in Paris but I am far from being from here; I actually just moved here about a month ago so that's all new. I was born in Brittany, a beautiful region of the West of France just accross the Channel coming from England ;) During my studies of International Business Management, I had the chance to live during 2 amazing years in the UK (both London and Newcastle) and well I had a great great time... It was so great that I want to go back there next year and live there for a while again.
I am now studying Marketing at La Sorbonne University in Paris and not enjoying much my happy moments in the Parisian underground but getting used to it.
I used to live in Luxembourg, well I did live there during a year just before coming to Paris and my boyfriend still lives there but we get to see each other every week end so that's not bad at all :)
In my free time I love writing letters to my pals and reading them, it's always a pleasure to find a letter in my mailbox when I get back from work or school :) I also love reading but don't usually take the time to do it even if I buy lots of books every time I go into a bookshop, I think I'd need like a year holiday to be able to read all the books I have bought in the past 5 years ;) I am a huge TV shows fan and won't list here all the ones that I love ;)
I love cooking, travelling, being with my friends, having a caffe latte at Starbucks, watching DVDs, being online, photography, sports, watching rugby and tons more...
If you want to know more about me or contact me, you can still visit my page on Interpals: Lil_Miss_Rose
2. Describe your personality in 10 words!
Ok, that's the hardest question ever!! I feel like being on a job interview with an HR person asking you "In your opinion what are your strengths? And what about your weaknesses?" haha I hate it... So, 10 words, that shouldn't be hard... or maybe it will!! *hehe*
Let's start with...
OPEN-MINDED... I guess you have to be when being that much in love with penpalling, don't you think?
STUBBORN... That's what all French people say about people from Brittany and they are totally right, a real Breton is a total stubborn and proud to be :D
MOODY, should I explain this one?! haha No, I am sure you don't want to know; you want to keep thinking about how great I am!
SARCASTIC and FUNNY, those 2 belong together... Sometimes I might be a little too sarcastic and people think I am arrogant, if I wasn't French I am sure they wouldn't even think I am being arrogant... or would they?! :) and I love to make the audience laugh *haha*
Well, that's already half of it... Missing the other half now...
KIND and BITCHY... Maybe those 2 do not belong together but I want them to be together cause I can be the kindest person ever if I love you and I can be the greatest Bitch ever if you are acting like a bitch to me so be careful *haha*
So now that's said, here comes the 8th word which is SPITEFUL... Don't they say about Scorpios that we are spiteful? Well, I am Scorpio and I am spiteful, sometimes too much but when I am hurt I just can't forgive the person who hurt me, I have tried sometimes but I keep thinking about what that person did and it can never be a full forgiveness...
PASSIONATE... My life is all about passions and addictions :)
And last but not least, I think BECKY BLOOMWOOD would be the best word to describe myself but I don't want to sound too pretentious *haha* It's not just about the shopaholic thing, it's about her life in general and about who she is... She could really be my best friend if only she existed ;)
3. How long have you been penpalling? How did you first start? Tell us about your first penpal!
I think I started penpalling when I was about 13, so around 10 years ago and got my first penpals from an agency in Finland called IYS... It was a time when you had to pay to get penpals addresses and it was kind of fun to just receive a little piece of paper with just an address and all you knew about the person was name, age, sex and country!! It was even more exciting to get to know the person... But well I didn't get lots of answers of surprise pals from that so I am happy there are some great websites nowadays to find really great penpals!!
I can't remember if my first pal was Cecilia from Sweden or Chiara from Italy but I remember both of them very well but we lost contact and are not in touch anymore... I lost contact with lots of pals from before I moved to London and there are so many of them I would love to get back in touch with like Annette from the Netherlands or Katie and Katherina from Germany or Marian from Ireland... Well we never know, maybe they'll pass by here and see me and become all excited about getting back in touch with their old pallie ;)
4. How many penpals do you have now and where are they from?
I cannot really count them, not that I have too many but well you know what it is when having lots of new pals, you never know if it's going to last or not so I would say I have about 20 pals, all girls ^^ and they are from many different places : Germany, Austria, the UK, Spain, Mexico, Finland, USA, Seychelles, Italy, the Netherlands, and I am sure I am forgetting lots of them... I hope they won't be mad if they read this and don't find their country listed *oops*
5. What are your favorite topics to discuss in letters?
I love to talk about everything in my letter... It could go from "I am eating chocolate right now" to really deep conversations on love, sports, politics, litterature, cinema, traveling, etc. And well it's all about everyday life too, I love to know what my pals usually do, get to know their friends, the places they love to go...
So I guess my favorite topic to talk about in letters is LIFE... What makes it bright and shiny and sometimes what makes it less shiny.
6. What are you looking for in a penpal?
My penpals are my friend so I am basically looking for Friendship ;) I want them to share everything with me so that we can really get to know each other... I don't care if they take time to answer my letters because I prefer a long, chatty and fat letter which is a bit late (well, after 3 months it's kind of becoming TOO LATE ^^ *haha*) than a short letter which is answered straight away after reading my letter which just says "Oh I am sorry this letter is so short but nothing has happened lately"... What's the point in writing a letter if you don't have anything to say?!
I don't need my pal to be the exact copy of me and like the same things and have the same kind of life... I love meeting people with different interests, who have studied different subjects and who just don't see the world the same way I do ;)
So I am just looking for a friend with whom I can share everything and who shares everything with me... That's what Friendship is all about, isn't it?
7. What do you like the most about penpalling?
I like everything about penpalling.
I love the feeling you have when receiving a letter from a new pal and you really don't know what to expect; I love the feeling when receiving a letter from a pal you've been writing to for a long time and you know what to expect :D I love when I receive more than one letter on the same day and my mailbox is full; I love the idea of having friends all around the world... And the idea of meeting them all someday!
I even love the crappy letters I used to received when I was younger... Now it makes me laugh a lot!! With one of my friends, Aleksia, we used to exchange those crappy letters we received from weird guys or strange people and we called them "the weakest link" ;) haha That's part of my love for penpalling ^^
8. In what language(s) do you correspond?
Well, I write to my pals in English mainly but also in Spanish and French and I am starting to write part of my letters in Italian to my Italian pals (*thanks girls for helping me out with your beautiful language*)
9. What are some of your habits in regards to letter writing?
As I have been moving from one flat to another every 6 months for the last 4 years, it's kind of hard to have habits regarding my letter writing process *haha* So, I'd say that now, I usually write my letters on my desk in my studioflat cause that's where all my writing materials are and all my stickers and notecards and all that cuteness bought on Janetstore :) I love having all that stuff around me when writing so I don't have to look for them all around the flat! But when I was in Luxembourg, I often wrote my letters in front of the TV on my boyfriend's couch and I liked it too...
I usually take more than 2 weeks to answer my letters but it all depends... Sometimes I can take less than a week and sometimes a month; but I cannot really set an average cause the last months have been pretty busy (and my pals know!! *hehe* sorry for that guys) and now I have lots of free time to write letters and I am making my pals all happy... But we never know, life can get busy when we less expect it so I am not going to say it's gonna take me a week to answer when I don't know :D So well, between 2 and 4 weeks, depending on the busy aspect of my life :D
10. Has anything strange/funny ever happened to you since you've been penpalling?
Well, as I wrote before... This "weakest link" thing was kind of funny and weird at the same time cause we really received strange letters. One guy from Ghana once asked me for a Game Boy Color but well I guess we all received that kind of letters or guys telling you they want to marry a woman from Europe, etc. Apart from that, I don't think anything weird or unusual has happened to me since I have been penpalling... Well, at least, nothing I can remember.
11. Have you met any of your penpals?
Ok, I won't share all the stories with you cause 2 of them are kind of sad but I have met 4 of my pals... 2 Spanish girls and 2 French girls...
I met the first one in 2003, Elena from Spain, we had been pals for 3 years and had been planning that trip for a year, that was really exciting to plan the trip through letters; so she came to my house in Brittany during about 2 weeks and then I came back to Barcelona with her and stayed there during a bit more than 2 weeks, we basically spent the whole month of August together and we became like best friends!! I loved her so much! And we met again in 2005 but everything was different then :'( I stayed in Barcelona during 2 weeks and those weeks were nearly the longest of all my life... She wasn't the same anymore and I guess I wasn't either; our letters were still the greatest ever but I guess it was because we were really thinking about the other one when writing the letter but then when we met all she wanted to do was being with her boyfriend which I totally understand but I was young and sad to have lost the attention of my friend so well it was not the best holiday ever and we haven't talked to each other since then :( She added me on Facebook last year and I was so happy, but she never answered my message and she deleted my wall posts on her wall so I decided to delete her from my friends list... So that's the first story, I really miss her sometimes, she was an amazing friend !
I have also met another pal from Spain, once when I was living in London, she came with some friends so I spent part of the afternoon with them... And we met again last April in Belgium and I realized we were too different so end of the story *LOL*
And my 2 frenchiiies :) I met Clarisse in 2004 for the first time and then in 2005 and she's like one of my greatest friends in my heart... We haven't talked much lately cause she is now a mum and started studying again but she's always in my heart and I know I am in hers too :)
And there's Aleksia (yes the one from the weakest link joke), who came to visit me in Brittany for my 18th birthday and she's like Clarisse, an amazing friend who I love deeply and she has always been like a little sister for me and I hope our friendship lasts forever...
12. Are you currently looking for more penpals?
I can never say no to someone I feel like we could be the greatest friends ever so I guess that YES I am still looking for more pals. People who love sharing experiences, write long letters and be there for each other :) What more can I say?! You have the link to my profile on Interpals at the beginning of the interview so you can come and see me and drop me a line if you feel like we are meant to write letters to each other and be friends :D
Merci ma chère Olivia!
If any of you would like to be featured on my blog as the Penpal of the Week, just reply to this post with your email address!