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La Treille (c) Kristin Espinasse
Trellised vine in the town of Sarrians.  Never miss a word or photo, subscribe to French Word-A-Day

la treille (treye) noun, feminine

    : trellised, climbing vines, vine arbor

le jus de la treille = wine, lit. "the juice of the vine"
treillage =lattice work

Audio File: (the francophones are absent... so you are stuck with my pronunciation of the word of the day... listen at your own risk!) Download MP3 or Download Wav

Les vendangeurs doivent cueillir les grappes qui pendent à la treille.
The grape-harvesters must pick the grapes that hang from the trellised vines. 


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A Day in a French Life... by Kristin Espinasse

A storm is brewing outside my window and the vines just below are whip-roaring. Stirred up by the southern wind, they will soon lose their leaves to autumn.

My mind moves back to a smooth summer day. I am watching my husband train his vines. No commands are needed (as with the dogs): no sit (assis!), lie down (couché!) or gimme a paw! (donne la patte!). Iron and string are all that is required to get the vine branches to follow the wire.

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(Jean-Marc took this photo yesterday morning... on a Sunday drive to Rognonas for Max's first basketball game of the season.)

I love watching Jean-Marc tend to his vines, especially the unfruitful ones. It takes a lot of love to care for something that produces nothing... except good shade! The vines on our back deck, therefore, give ombre offerings, shady splendor on a hot summer day. 

Now in their third year, the vine branches are spreading out into a great, leafy parasol with the help of the off-duty vigneron (grape vines are his day job, climbing vines are his leisure).

I watch Jean-Marc reach up, up, up to the pergola above. Nothin' doin'. He must come into the kitchen for a chair and step up to these vines in the air. Next, he begins tucking in and weaving so many vagabond vine tendrils, which then continue on track to the end of la treille.

What satisfaction on the vine tender's face after helping so many errant ones 'step' back into place.


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Jean-Marc's latest article! When not writing for his Rouge-Bleu blog, Jean-Marc is penning posts over at Bonjour Paris. Read the first here!


French Vocabulary

 assis! (asseoir) = sit

couché! (coucher) = lie down

donne la patte! = give (me) your paw
l'ombre (f) = shade

le parasol = umbrella

le vigneron (la vigneronne) = wine grower 

la treille = vine arbor

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And finally...

The grape crush goes on....

Daniel (above and below, left) and Alexis (far right) returned last night to help with the crush. They were out there, knee-deep in grapes, until their dinner turned cold on the table.... Thanks for all your hard work!



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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety