Tag: France

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France Paris

just a traffic sign in Paris …

I am sincerely proud to hold French nationality as well as American citizenship. But of course, having a French passport does not make you French.

Parisians are very smart. They can understand this traffic sign as they pass it while driving at the city speed limit of 50km/hour in their approach to the stoplight.  I wonder if it’s on the test for the good-for-a-lifetime “permis de conduire” (permission to drive)?

(at Denfert …)

((Laughing … at ourselves ???))

Related Images:

Posted in Newsletters Cross Cultural Comments France

Newsletter: 21 September 2010

By now you probably know that I, like you and most other domesticated animals, am sensitive to the weather: clear, sunny days are the ones I like best but the cloudier and cooler, I’d say brisky, ones give us the opportunity to put on our warmer jackets and scarves and hats and crunch leaves under our shoes as we walk down the streets, too.

Springtime is bye-bye to the winter everywhere; in France, summer is … oh! just take it all off! … and winter, well, according to where you are … in the winter, we appreciate being warm and dry at home and there are very nice winter days … if you’ve got warm socks and shoes and gloves and all that … but we’re not there yet. Today is September 21st.

Today is the first day of autumn. Fall.  We must all have memories attached to a season. It’s the air, the colors, the sounds, the light of day, of dawn, of dusk. It’s the moderate speed of the season. And among my fondest autumn memories is going mushroom hunting in the Limousin. The Massif Central. Les Monts d’Ambazac. For my American readers, this is the countryside around Limoges. A landscape of briar-covered hills and old stones; stone-lined Roman paths coming from who knows where crossing forests, deep dark green-forests where the ferns grow tall and the oak trees grow high. These are hills and woods you wouldn’t want to explore without a guide.

I had the best guides anyone could ever have: Maurice, my father-in-law, knew where the cèpes would be … if there were any to be found… and IF we could spot them just beneath the golden, brown leaves where they blended with the terrain just OUT of the ground  … he knew when the girolles might break through the moist earth … he knew that after the rain a day or two earlier IF the sun were to warm the earth just as the moon was in phase, well, maybe we’d come back with a few … maybe with a basketful. I remember so well wearing high boots so as to be protected against snakes, stepping hard so they’d slither away with the vibrations – and I remember so well, joyously bringing our treasure back to the little stone house, that thick stone house, cool inside no matter what the weather was like outdoors, with a big oak table, a fireplace and a wood-burning stove … where, after we’d meticulously scraped the earth off the stems and cleaned off the caps of OUR mushrooms… with a moistened cloth or tissue,  my mother-in-law would then cook up those only-in-the-autumn cèpes with garlic and parsley … and, because it was Sunday, an autumn Sunday, a special autumn Sunday because we were all together … serve them with a leg of lamb …

Lucky Days in France.

They sure made me feel welcome. More than welcome. Loved.

There’s nothing like a little emotion to help you remember an autumn day.

Related Images:

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France Online Language Resources for English Reading

Cheese – by ANDROUET

Here is a link to one of the best and most famous cheese sellers in France. Savour.

In English … and other languages!


Related Images:

Posted in Photos Cross Cultural Comments France

street signs

Creating signs must be one of the most challenging occupations a person could have!

Related Images:

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France

Travel & Tourism, France: Reims rhymes with France

For Michel D. .. but not only!

Reims rhymes with France  Travel & Tourism Expatica France.

Related Images:

Posted in Photos Cross Cultural Comments France street signs Paris

It’s obvious.

évident, n’est-ce pas ?

Related Images:

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France Popular sayings, proverbs & quotes

French expressions: “au four et au moulin”

The French love bread. And to make bread, you need flour. To make the flour, you need wheat. To grind the wheat into flour, you need a mill. The French word for mill is “moulin.” You probably have heard this before as in “Le Moulin Rouge”  – or a “Moulin à Poivre” (Pepper mill)

But to make bread, you need to mix the flour with water, add salt, yeast and make dough. The dough needs to be kneaded and then finally when it has risen after a few hours … you need to bake it in an oven. Oven is the English word for what in French is named “le four.”

There’s a French expression, still used today that says you can’t be both at the mill and watching the oven at the same time.

Ne pas pouvoir être au four et au moulin (en même temps).

No matter how independant we might want to be … we can’t be everywhere, doing everything … and certainly not simultaneously.

What’s the opposite of independence: “dependence” or … “interdependence” ?

Happy July … Four (th) !

… When France lent America a hand …

Related Images:

Posted in Photos Cross Cultural Comments France Paris Paris Favoritz

one sign, good intentions

The sign seems simple enough to understand:

On the right, the big (buses) and the small (bicycles) must proceed forward through the intersection.

On the left, everything else turns right. Is this what has happened to French politics?

and …

the reality :

Fortunately, it wasn’t raining. Like that, I could take these 2 pix  through the windshield.

Isn’t there a proverb that says … something about roads paved with good intentions ?

Related Images:

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France Video

At the Musée des Beaux Arts, Rouen


Related Images:

Posted in Cross Cultural Comments France Paris Paris Favoritz

Tao … not Zen

There is an impressive exhibit at the Grand Palais entitled “La Voie du Tao” which draws a very contemplative, respectful and rather silent public. No crowds, no noise. As though the exhibit itself was what we imagine as Zen.

The entrance ticket. Tao?

Related Images: