With regards to the town, what I have seen so far has really impressed me. It is quite a small city, but big enough to offer everything I need. I saw three markets selling fresh produce, plenty of interesting clothes shops, restaurants, parks, coffee shops, boulangeries and salons. The tram service seems very frequent and efficient, and the mountains are almost always within eye shot. There seems to be a really international scene, yet with that classy French vibe which I love. There is a big couchsurfing community and many free events are organized in town, including free Summer yoga in the park. The supermarkets are very exciting, full of delicious and creative flavours of chocolate such as wasabi and organic products seem to be in high demand over here. Ignoring the services available, it's a very pretty and clean city which has a lot of charm.
Tomorrow I am moving into student accommodation, which is a little far from the centre, but well connected via the tram and very close to campus. I hope to find a cheap bike so as to easily travel between Résidence Ouest and the centre. The next 48 hours, and indeed two weeks will be pretty intense, here's a brief look at what needs to be done:
Checklist (in order of urgency)
-Get French sim card
-open bank account (preferably with household insurance)
-Move into student accommodation (tomorrow)
-Print and sign certificate of arrival, send to Edinburgh international office
-Buy a frying pan, a regular pan, a fridge freezer, perhaps a mini oven/rings to cook with, a bike, cutlery, a few staples (olive oil, vinegar, miso, soya milk, cereal etc).
-Meet Erasmus coordinator and redo learning agreement
-Email Edinburgh uni DELC office with confirmation that I have done everything necessary to get started.
-Find calendar dates and book fight home
Things I must do when in Grenoble
-visit la bastille
-a weekend away in Lyon
-a day trip to Annecy
-visit the local museum
-get a hair cut and waxing treatment
-Go clothes shopping (LOVE all those ethnic prints which are currently in fashion)
-meet regularly with tandem partners
-Eat Vietnamese food and churros
-weekend in Paris
-Regularly read online newspapers and magazine articles
-sign up to the local library
-go hand gliding or sky diving...?