The Diary of Marie Claire's French Intern

My name is Barbara and I'm 25 years old. I just finished studying French literature in La Sorbonne, a university in France. I knew everything about my city and my friends, and now I live on the Upper East Side near Central Park and work as an intern at Marie Claire magazine. It's a big change! And so much to discover! My editor asked if I would share this adventure with you. Of course! So for the next three months you can see how a French girl lives in New York, a city huge and incredible compared to Paris. I'll be in the first row to understand my new environment, which is really exciting.

Last week I didn't realize how quickly my life was going to change. My first impression was that New York is so punchy and the people are so open-minded! I started to understand how New York can be crazier than Paris. For example, last weekend, I was walking down the street exploring the shops at Union Square when suddenly I saw people without pants. Then, I saw others on the subway and again near Greenwich Village — men and women without pants. Yes, in their underwear! When I asked what was going on, someone told me that it was "Wear your underwear day." Nobody but me seemed to pay attention to these people, pantless in the snow. I can't imagine what would happen if something like that had been organized in Paris. I think everybody would have been taken to the police station for an "attack on decency." That's what I like about New York — people do what they want, wear what they want, and nobody judges them.

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