A View with A Room (c) Kristin Espinasse

A good place to glander... in a cozy room, flowers on the windowsill. Photo taken in Villedieu sometime last fall. 

glander (glahn day)

    : to loaf about, to do nothing (especially when you should be working)

Example Sentence
  On se sent un peu coupable quand on glande, n'est-ce pas?
  We feel a little guilty when we loaf about, don't we?

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

Verbs in a 16-year-old Boy's Life

The following words will help catch us up on a few goings-on in a young Frenchman's life. I'm jotting them down now, via these verbs, in case my future mind conjugates the memories into fleeting units.  


Conduire, or "to drive". Though I haven't written about it, Max is learning to drive via la conduite accompagnée. Living in the country has never had more perks than this: the ubiquitous wide-open country roads - perfect for practicing behind the wheel! But no matter how empty the roads are around here, a mother's heart still flutters like a country butterfly at every road bend. 


Rêvasser, or "to daydream" - Max is dreaming about the future and yesterday morning he mentioned joining the Air Force! I had to speed-dial his grandfather on Father's Day to tell him the latest -- and to mention that his Air Force captain's shirt now fits Max to a T. (Now, will he choose the French Armée de l'Air or the American Air Force, should he follow his latest dream?) Update: Max would like to join the American Air Force....


Piocher, or "to pickax" - Mr. Max planted seven willow trees (gifts from Dirt Diva Malou, who, along with Dirt Diva Doreen, is helping us camouflage an eyesore of a concrete fence).  Max still has cloques, or blisters, to show for his work driving that pickax, or pioche, into the cementlike ground. (That ought to teach the poor guy to wear a pair of gants!)


Glander, or "to loaf about" - (I think this is on Max's list of things to do, or "choses à faire"...) meantime...


Bosser, or "to work" - Our son is helping a lot with farm work... pulling weeds within the vine rows, helping to tidy up the cave, or cellar, and, his favorite, tasting some of the wines! He tells me his dad is paying him le SMIC (or was that le SMIG, with a "g": minimum wage, or what he would call, the minimum of minimum wage or le bas de SMIC/G!). ...And who wouldn't mind earning minimum wage for wine tasting?! Seriously, giving credit to Max, there is very little dégustation going on around here - and a lot of grueling weeding instead!

Speaking of work, this is our chance to share some very good news. Jean-Marc (alias "Chief Grape") has received another mention for his wines!!! Click on the image, below, to read the fine print and thanks again for all of your support in getting the word out on his Domaine Rouge-Bleu reds and rosés!

Le Coin Commentaires The Comments Corner

What are some of the verbs in this season of your own life? Here are a few of mine: jardiner or "to garden", adorer, or "to love" (just watched and loved this film!), souhaiter, to wish (a very Happy Father's Day to all the pères out there!), and, finally, poireauter, or "to wait around a long time", patiently, for the fruits of daily effort to appear after all these years. There are little glimmers here and there, and doesn't this keep us following our dreams? Click here to comment.

Wine spectator
French Vocabulary

la coinduite accompagnée = driving as a learner, assisted by an experienced driver

le gant = glove

la dégustation = tasting (wine), sampling (cheese)

le SMIC = Salaire Minimum Inter-Professionel de Croissance

    => also: le smicard (la smicarde) = minimum wage earner

le SMIG = Salaire Minimum Inter-Professionel Garanti

I forgot to make Mom these red peppers! Ever since Jean-Marc made them for her (in Marseilles, so many summers ago), they have been one of her favorites. 

Chief Grape's Roasted Peppers:

Take 3 or 4 red peppers (or mix, using green and yellow peppers). Put them in a baking dish, then into a piping hot oven. When peppers begin to blister or the skin blackens, shut off the oven and let the poivrons sweat. (Tip, cook them in the evening, then leave them to sweat overnight). When the peppers are cool, cut them open, scoop out the seeds, and reserve the juices in a bowl (adding half a cupful of olive oil). Chop up the peppers and add to the olive oil mixture. Add more oil, if needed, to cover the peppers. Add salt, pepper, pressed garlic, and herbs. Add fresh basil, if you like, or parsley. Delicious on crackers and bread, and a tasty accompaniment to grilled fish and barbecue. Leftovers are good in quiche, in this Provençal tomato tart, or in this olive cake!

Serve with a glass of Domaine Rouge-Bleu rosé :-) 


"Love ya, Baby!" (Je t'aime bébé). In my day we celebrated the last days of school by signing each others yearbook (or we might sign a T-shirt, if we felt risky). How times have changed! (Pictured, our 13-year-old daughter, Jackie). And, yes, bra straps are still "in".

And now for the best photo tip in the whole wide world (and it's no secret so let this be a reminder): Always, always have a camera on hand! For this reason, pocket cameras are ideal! Here is the one I use daily.


                    La sauge, or sage, from the garden. Thanks, Dirt Divas!

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