Finally at the end of summer the warm weather has arrived in Provence, driving everyone either inside or to the beach.
Luckily, for us our maison du village (house in the village) has stone walls that are over three feet thick. Our maison's wall butts up against the neighbor's maison's wall creating a six foot thick stone wall. Insulation at its finest: Cool interior in the summer, holds heat in during the winter.
Our home is a mere four hundred years old... and yes most French household keys do look like this.
The bakeries and pastries shop gift wrap their goods. Each item bought, whether a baguette, pain au chocolate, crossiant which is wrapped in light paper then the ends on the paper or twisted or, if you buy a cake or other pastries the light paper is used but instead of the ends twisted they tie a box up with a ribbon or string. Then you can carry the package of baked goods from the loop that the shopkeepers make when they tie up the packages.
When in France do what the French do... your bread never goes on your plate, unless a small plate is offered. Otherwise, and in more cases than not, your bread goes on the table, on the left corner of your plate above the fork.
Also instead of biting into a piece of bread, the French tear a bitesize piece of bread and eat it that way. It is consider rude otherwise.
At a restaurant tips are included in the bill.
You do not need to leave a tip. But you can leave a coin to be nice, but it is not consider bad if you do not.
Recently, at the brocante, my friend Linda from Willow Nest remarked how impress she was at the variety of French linens and lace one could find. She asked if it was always like this, or just the luck of the draw at this particular brocante?
I have said it many times and I'll keep on saying it... If France took out every piece of old linen, lace, dishtowel, bedsheet, and spread them out one by one, they could cover all of France, and have a massive slumber party.
Linens are plentiful.
If you want a thousand old nightshirts, or monogrammed bed sheets, or dish towels, or napkins, or lace, or nightgowns, or pantaloons, or table-clothes let me know and I'll have them to you within a week.
I would love to fulfill that bet, as long as I didn't have to pay for it.
The French say babies come from cabbages, just like the Americans say babies come from the stork. I say that when Chelsea came she was as big as a cabbage (ten pounds), and I wish the stork had delivered her to me.
In France, the French celebrate their 'name-day.' Every day of the year, a saint is remembered. If your name, or middle name is the same name as a saint (or a name that has something to do with a saint) then your family and friends give you a gift and / or say happy feast day to you. It is as if each French person has two birthdays. The word for the 'name-day' is: "Le jour de fête".
We do not do this is our Franco/American household as I can barely keep track of the day of the week. Numbers and I are not dancing partners. Plus the fact that Chelsea and Corey are not on the saints day list.
When I first arrived in France I asked my French Husband if I could have October 2nd as my feast day as it is the feast day of the Guardian Angels and I like angels, and Corey wasn't on the list. He siad, "No it doesn't work like this." That was the begining of what I call French Husband getting, "French in my face."
And if that is not enough, the keyboard is not at all the same as the American keyboard. For instances the A is where the Q is.
The scarf / shawl thing...
Yes a French woman does do it best.
Even if it isn't tied at all.
They just got it, like Americans got big smiles. It is what it is and that is that.
Some Facts About France:
- Favorite sport: Soccer which is called football.
- Team sports are not played in school, nor are there cheerleaders, nor school proms.
- Did you know that Cinderella, and Sleeping Beauty were penned by a French author?
- The Eiffel Tower is as tall as a seventy floor building. My brothers Zane and Mat climbed to the top when they came to visit me years ago when I lived in Paris. I didn't climb to the top that day as I was seven months pregnant with the ten pound sweet cabbage.
Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa is owned by the French government and is said to be the most valuable painting in the world. It was bought by French King Francis I in 1519.
In France, the Mona Lisa is called La Joconde.
Did you know that the Mona Lisa painting hung in King Francis I's bathroom?
And did you know that Mona Lisa has no eyebrows? The reason she does not isn't because Leonardo forgot, or ran out of paint. It is because it was fashionable in Florence to shave your eyebrows off. Beats plunking them!
There are some 40,000 châteaux in France.
Nîmes is the birthplace of blue jeans. The famous fabric was imported to California by Levi Strauss in order to make tough work trousers for gold diggers. Denim is another way of saying: “de Nîmes”.
The French consume wine with most meals.
The end..... unless you have something you really want to know about France or the French. I'll try to answer your questions in the comment section.
Interesting articles and blogs about the French:
Helpful Blogs about France:
AND are you ready for this, found in Provence Post: