Skip to main content

Twenty Things…that I love about France

Twenty Things…that I love about France

1.     The streets. Growing up here in the states, you never really see anything old. I loved walking through the village where I lived and watching the cobblestones as I walked. They are beautiful.
2.     Pastries. Oh my goodness, I never passed up an opportunity to discover a new mouth watering pastry when I lived there. I am gluten free now, but I imagine that the patissiers are managing to whip up some amazing confections without gluten as well.
3.     Meals with friends. When families get together to eat, the courses stretch out over three hours, easily, sometimes even longer. Everyone sits, and eats slowly, and catches up. It is wonderful.
4.     The beaches. It shocked me when I first visited at fifteen. Beaches are topless in the country. I used to walk the cliffs above the beach in the morning, and while their parents clammed in the water, the little children would chase each other around in their suit bottoms. It was absolutely adorable, and so picturesque.
5.     Sundays. Aside from in the larger cities, the only thing that is open on a Sunday is the bakery in the early morning (because everyone needs fresh bread every day, of course). Sundays are exceedingly quiet, and a lovey time to spend exploring the quiet towns.
6.     Silverware. Americans just don’t eat correctly. The knife goes in the left hand and the fork in the right. All of the picking up and putting down that we do in the US is noisy and annoying. Eating like the French do allows people to slow down, create the perfect bite, and enjoy the food more. Additionally, if a desert has been prepared, you will find a spoon resting at the top of the dinner setting when you arrive at the table. There is nothing better than looking at that little spoon, anticipating what will come for dessert.
7.     Sieste. Like almost everywhere in Europe the French take at least a two-hour lunch break. Shops close and people actually go home from their jobs to have lunch with their families.
8.     The young people. At a very young age children are held to a much higher level of responsibility than children here in the US are. As a result they are more focused, harder working, and polite.
9.     Flowers. Flowers are very important to the French. If guests are coming over, it is unthinkable not to have an arrangement of fresh flowers in the house.
10. Bisous. Yes, the greeting really is the way that you see it on television. I love it. The best part is that everyone gives a different number of kisses and it is hilarious to try and figure out how many times you need to bob your head back and forth.
11. The elderly. The elderly Frenchman is fierce. Not only do they expect respect from young people at their elevated age; they demand it, and they are never quiet about not being respected. My French grandmother was not a sweet little old lady. I loved her like crazy.
12. The style. People in France know how to dress, and they make it a priority. People do not go out in public looking sloppy. I love to sit outside and people watch, the outfits are outstanding.
13. The cheese. There are hundred of delicious cheeses available any place that you go in the country. I love cheese. I love trying new cheeses. I love that unpasteurized cheese is legal!
14. The responsibility. Socially, responsibility for one-self is highly valued. This is the reason that if you do something stupid, like trying to ski down a mountain where there are no marked runs, no one will come to rescue you. You are on your own with your stupidity. Also, it is considered ridiculous to sue someone else for an accident that you had. You fall in a slippery spot; it is your fault, period.
15. The museums…well just, duh. The Louver is my least favorite, actually. I think that it is over-hyped. I am also on the nay side of the pyramid dispute…nay, nay, nay.
16. The downtime. The average Frenchman gets three to four weeks of vacation time in the summer.
17. Higher education. In most cases students study through high school to pass a test to find out whether or not they are eligible for college. If they pass the test, the government will pay for their education.
18. Transportation. A driver’s license is extremely expensive to finance in France. Anyone caught driving under the influence loses the privilege to drive immediately and forever. As a result there are very few drunk-driving incidents. There are not many places in the country that you cannot get to by bus or train.
19. The wine. Of course. The French are serious about it. My history teacher taught us a section on the country’s wines and the first thing she warned us about was not to bring up white zin…because it isn’t wine.
20. My family is still there; the family that took me in at fifteen as an exchange student. They are wonderful giving people. I miss them very much, and can’t wait to take my children to meet them someday.




Popular posts from this blog

20 Things…you learn after moving to Florida.

20 Things…you learn after moving to Florida.
1.There is a big difference between a roach and a palmetto bug. Real roaches are the guys from New York. They infest, they are spooky smart, they are dirty and nasty, and you have to work really hard to get rid of them. Palmetto bugs however, are big and creepy and dumb. You usually see them outside at night and they will fly right at your face. They don’t infest because they are native and they can’t survive in our AC temps. 2.Every public indoor place will always be frigid. Most of your friend’s houses will be as well. I take a sweater with me almost everywhere that I go, and if I forget to I regret it. 3.Outside of weather emergencies, weathermen are superfluous. In the rainy season, which is most of the time, there is an eighty percent chance of rain, every single day. The weather man has no idea what time it will rain, how hard, or for how long, and there is no way for him to predict it. You just have to go out there with your fingers cr…

The Power Of Willful Ignorance

I watched a woman say these words in a speech a few moments ago and nothing could be more true...willful ignorance is insanely powerful. Willful ignorance is the reason that good German people allowed their neighbors to be dragged off by the Nazis in the middle of the night. It is the reason that American people choose to believe our homeless are lazy and irresponsible instead of facing the reality that their situations have arisen because of widespread mental illness and cooperate greed. It is the reason that you will pick up a steak on your way home from work tonight, not bothering to find out where it came from, because you just don’t want to know. The truth is too disgusting.
I have gone on about the meat industry quite a bit and my goal here is not to do that. I love to eat meat, I will state that again, but the example that comes from our consumption of factory meat is so powerful when it comes to explaining willful ignorance that I want to use it. Out of ALL of the many, many,…

Resolve to be Happy

1. Stay In

2. Read Books

3. Let it go to Voice Mail

4. Write a Letter

5. Dance

6. Invest in Mood Lighting

7. Have Dinner with Friends 

8. Take Walks

9. Bake

10. Breathe Deeply

11. Enjoy your Morning Coffee

12. Play Board Games

13. Hug your Pillows

14. Adopt a New Ritual

15. Look Around

16. Give a Gift

17. Happy Cry

18. Smile at Strangers

19. Cuddle

20. Savor Small Portions

21. Stretch

22. Take Pictures

23. Use Profanity Freely

24. Give Hugs

25. Listen Carefully

26. Beautify your Space

27. Share your Favorite Movie 

28. Laugh Generously

29. Accept Gifts Gratefully 

30. Give Thanks