Friday, September 13, 2013

Yearbook Photos: Bordeaux, France

Nadia Compagnon, 27, Bordeaux

Quote: "Nikka! Nikka!"
Most likely to make your wishes come true.
Voted best Couchsurfing host.
What makes you happy?

"I'm not that picky about happiness. Everything makes me happy. Little things. Being with you makes me happy. Having the perfect sun to wake up in the morning, new flavors, clouds, when the sun shines golden light on Bordeaux, finding new stone faces on buildings, the smell after rain, wind at the beach... so many things."

Nadia is the absolute worst. She was constantly making us do things. One day she forced us to eat delicious pizza in a garden and others days she forced us to drink amazing japanese whiskey. She was constantly forcing us try new things like camping in Black Perigord or driving vintage cars to Granges. How rude.
Then she had the nerve to introduce us to all of her friends and act as if she has known us for years. Even her friends immediately treated us as if we'd been friends for a while. Jeez. She even introduced us to her parents and made us have a lovely dinner with them.
Within one week Nadia just HAD to make sure we fell in love with Bordeaux. She was always jibber jabbering on about the magical history of the city and the beautiful buildings. She would even make us go to concerts and museums and long, romantic walks around the city. Ugh.
The worst part was how she would never let us be bored. As soon as she would get off work she was ready to start another adventure, or eat some more delicious food. Obviously, meeting Nadia was terrible and Bordeaux was awful.

Detailed backstory: Nadia reached out to Jerrad and I back in June when she saw our wedding/European honeymoon story on a blog. Even though she had never met us, she felt the urge to email us and invite us to couch surf in her home in Bordeaux. Jerrad and I had not planned on traveling to Bordeaux, but we decided we couldn't pass on the opportunity. In the few months that followed the invite, we sent a few emails back and forth with Nadia to work out details for our two night visit. Just within those few emails we could tell Nadia was lovely lady.
As our visit with Nadia approached, we realized we had more free traveling time that previously arranged - no other couch surfers had responded to us and we had not made any accommodations (so much for trying out the "spontaneous" thing). We figured we would have to resort to getting another Airbnb or maybe a hostel. We wrote to Nadia one last time to solidify our plans with her and mentioned our plans (or lack thereof) before and after our stay with her. She immediately suggested we just stay with her the whole time. For 16 days. That's right, Nadia is the best Couchsurfing host ever.
Eventually 16 days turned into 19 because we just didn't want to leave, and Nadia didn't want us to leave (or maybe we just didn't know how to take a hint and overstayed our welcome... either way it was the best 19 days ever).

Nadia's last name, Compagnon, translates to "companion" or "friend" in english. This is probably the most fitting translation of a last name ever. Unless her last name translated to "most generous, welcoming, coolest, stylish, fantastic, friendly lady ever". Then the latter translation would be more fitting. Nadia was born in Bordeaux, moved around a bit (England, Australia) and is currently back in Bordeaux. Nadia works at Café Andrée Putman, the cafe above CAPC, Bordeaux's contemporary art museum. She doesn't know what "free time" or "boredom" means because when she's not working she's either hanging out with friends or going out of town. Nadia is an avid traveler (she caught the travel bug from her parents). She has been to the Rockies, Alaska, New Mexico, California, Iceland, Laos, Thailand, Bangkok, Scotland and all over Western Europe. She's thinking about visiting the states soon, where she will visit with her new American friends.

Nadia's version of our visit: "Wanted them. Got them. Loved them." and she also described us as "mail-order friends".

1 comment:

  1. That is the sweetest story ever. I know I'm a bit behind here, and I was already aware of Nadia's gracious offer, but hearing the whole story made me get a little teary. How amazing of her to open her home to strangers. These adventures are just plain rad.