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Entries from October 2007


Chrysanthemums in Camaret-sur-Aigues, France (Vaucluse) French Demystified: simple enough for a beginner, challenging enough for a more advanced student la bévue (bay-vew) noun, feminine blunder, mistake La mort, c'est ce qui nous échappe. L'ultime bévue. Death, it is that which escapes us. The ultimate blunder. --Francine Noël . Autumn leaves in the valley of the Rhone make... Read more →


Not far from the Fairmont Hotel in Monte Carlo: reserve your room with a view here. Say It Right In French (Say farewell to language faux pas forever!) . un égout (ay-goo) noun, masculine sewer Le rêve est un tunnel qui passe sous la réalité. C'est un égout d'eau claire, mais c'est un égout. The dream is... Read more →


Italian cats are the best skirt, I mean--"souris"--chasers. (la souris = mouse) The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry (A delightful true story of food, Paris, and the fulfillment of a lifelong dream) rongeur (ron-zhay) noun, masculine rodent, gnawer O temps rongeur, et toi, envieuse vieillesse, vous détruisez tout! O Time, thou great devourer, and thou,... Read more →

To Spill Your Guts in French

The original Rouge-Bleu (a.k.a. "Susan") in Orange, France. boyaux (bwa-yo) masculine noun (plural) guts, entrails La voix de la conscience et de l'honneur est bien faible quand les boyaux crient. The voice of conscience and honor are really feeble when one's guts are crying out. --Denis Diderot . When one's heart is stuffed with dusty parcels, packages... Read more →


Fall colors in the town of Seguret. Learn to speak French with Rosetta Stone French. Proven effective by NASA astronauts, Peace Corps volunteers and millions of students worldwide une emplette (om-plet) noun, feminine : purchase, shopping, acquisition Un turfiste n'est jamais aussi anxieux de connaître le résultat des courses qu'en l'attente de sa femme partie faire des... Read more →


Fishing boats, or "pointus", at the end of Marseilles... These vessels have almost as much character as the man in today's story. Read on and enjoy. une âme (am) noun, feminine 1. soul; spirit; heart; essence La patience est le sourire de l'âme. Patience is the soul's smile. --Philippe Obrecht . A Day in a French Life...... Read more →


Click here for a closer look at the individual labels. More than eighty of the loveliest, most tranquil, and sometimes hidden places in Paris are celebrated in the charming guidebook "Quiet Corners of Paris". un embarras (om-bah-rah) noun, masculin 1. a difficulty, worry; a predicament; an uncertainty 2. an embarrassment La nécessité nous délivre de l'embarras du... Read more →


Why post a photo of bugs when we can look at this escapist image instead? Far from the plague... read on in today's story, below. Photo taken in Collioures, France. Retiring in France: A Survival Handbook Wine label update: check out Jean-Marc's blog to see all of the wine labels for Monday's Wine Label Poll le moucheron... Read more →


Swiped my mom's hat (while she swiped my camera for this photo). Le Nouveau Petit Robert 2008 : it's worth the wait essouffler (eh-soo-flay) verb to make breathless, to wind My son Max's example sentence (hear sentence in "Audio file" section): J'ai couru et maintenant je suis essoufflé. I ran and now I am out of breath.... Read more →


My mom (in hat) swishing, scrubbing, and "swiping" a moment with strangers along a country road. (October 5th 2007) Just a story for you today, on the eve of my mother's departure. Today's word, and the theme of the following chronique,* is "piquer" (pronounced "pee-kay"). While the verb means many things, it mostly means "to sting" (like... Read more →