A visit with former Nanty Glo exchange teacher Nicole Massot
Letter No. 166 | March 12 2000
I recently visited France and was able to find Nicole Massot, an exchange teacher [from France] who taught at Nanty Glo 1964-65 school year. I have a photo and info I would like to share with others in Nanty Glo who may have known her.
I had an old address for the school where she taught in Arles and I stopped by one day during my trip. I was fortunate to catch the Director of the school still correcting papers. With my limited French, I was able to communicate to him who I was and who Nicole was.
Unfortunately, she had retired and he did not know her. He used her husband's name and found it in a school system directory and called him. Jean Claude remembered me and gave the director his home phone number to call Nicole. After a few moments, I was on the phone with Nicole. We had a brief visit that day and made a date for lunch the following Monday.
I was relieved at the lunch idea because the French are notorious for their throwing a feast for visitors. I welcomed the lighter fare and especially did not want to put her out any. When I arrived, however, I found apperatifs, h'orderves, two types of wine, Coq St Jacques, all the trimmings and a fabulous apple tart (12" in diameter) for the meal. This was topped off with the typical French bagette and cheese tray afterwards. I should have known better!
We did do a little sighteeing to an ancient castle in the area afterward. The attached photo was taken in Nicole's home near Arles, France. In the photo are her husband Jean Claude Guigue (sp?) on her right and myself on her left. Jean Claude is currently equivalent of a Superintendent of Schools, as best I can understand the translation.
She is retired and enjoying life. Her son, 21 yrs old, is still in college and ifinding himself. Sound familiar? She sends her regards to everyone in Nanty Glo who befriended her and made her year in the States so memorable. She mentioned the Smuziaks (sp?) on Second Street, with whom she lived, and the Monbornes who took her to Niagra Falls for a visit. She does regret having lost contact with the families she befriended and with whom she corresponded so long. I have her new address, but I hesitate to broadcast it. However, I feel certain she would welcome any correspondence from her old friends. If anyone is sincerely interested in contacting her, email me or call me at (703) 339-2070.
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