One day, after school, Sabine was bragging to me about the grade she received on her most recent Spanish dictée. For those who aren't familiar with the French education system, a dictée tests orthography and grammar. A teacher reads a short exercise, and students have to write down what they hear. Many grammatical aspects of the French language are found in writing only, so it can be difficult. However, Sabine and I are good at dictées matter the language. Sabine likes to show off her Spanish skills to me since I am a huge hispanophile, so I just let her. It's kind-of cute.
In France, grades are on a 20 point scale. Normally, it is difficult to get an 18, 19, and especially difficult to get a 20! The equivalence to the American "C" would be an 8-9! However, Sabine somehow managed an 18 on her dictée. She always somehow manages to get high grades, even in subjects she hates like math and science.
Sabine then began talking to me about how she hopes to study in Spain next summer. She would stay with a host family and vow to only speak Spanish during her visit. I instantly got jealous. Sabine's family is definitely more well-off than mine is, and they can afford to do these things. Even though Spain is below France, I haven't been. I've been to what seems like most countries in Europe, but Spain wasn't one of them. I would love to do a summer study program like that! I told Sabine to at least send me a postcard. She laughed and said, "Maybe you can come with me? That would be even better!"
I sighed. Maybe someday. Someday. Just not next summer...
Then, Sabine changed the subject to Aurélie. She has this weird thing built up in her mind in which she thinks I want to date Aurélie. I swear she gets these ideas from the Americans she meets when she goes to that summer program in the US. Dating in France and dating in the US are totally different. Of course, considering American movies are the most popular among us French teens, Sabine could get ideas from those, too.
I told her that I didn't want to date anyone. I have too much to think about for that. She seemed relived.
Sabine moved closer to me and said that I looked good in the shirt she had given me. She then asked if I spent the birthday money that Aurélie had given me. I said that I'm saving it to possibly go to Spain.
"C'est bon," Sabine smiled. "Tu peux voyage en Espagne avec moi!"
I laughed. "Cela serait une bonne idée."
I really hope that Sabine stops the nonsense with Aurélie now that I told her I had no interest in dating at the moment. I'm not about to lose my best friends...especially if it has to do with me.