Immobilier, My Sister Heidi and Word of Mouth in French
Armistice or Veterans Day & France's Wartime vegetable

Lovers Quarrel and Accidental Revenge, in French

Several olive trees have now been moved to make way for our 2016 vine planting. My husband and I don't agree on the uprooting of some of these trees, so this has been a rough week! How ironic to squabble over an olive tree when its very branches symbolize la paix. Read about prise de bec, in today's story column.

TODAY'S EXPRESSION: la vengeance est douce

    : revenge is sweet

Hear Jean-Marc pronounce today's phrase. (Update: I have been working on these soundfiles. Let me know, in the comments box, if you still cannot hear the phrase when clicking on one of these: Download MP3 or Wav file

by Kristin Espinasse

"Monsieur Sticky Pits"

After Wednesday's lovers spat, when each of us had stormed off to a random boudoir (literally: a room where one boudes, or pouts), I realized my husband had scored by getting our spacious and cozy bedroom whilst I was left to sulk beside the bidet in the bathroom!  

There in my étroit chamber of self-righteousness, anger soon turned to ennui, and boredom, for me, often leads to an attack of the munchies. I remembered the fresh-baked French yogurt cake still cooling in the oven, and suddenly gluttony overcame pride. 

Only, what if Jean-Marc were to come out of hiding, too? How now to cross the war zone in dignity? Now that my stone face had turned into a dopey pie face I was losing credibility as Mrs Mad-at-You. Leave the room now and risk not being able to keep a straight face. More close to laughing, now, than to crying, all I wanted at this point was to let this whole thing blow over in time for cake! 

And yet, sitting there on the closed toilet seat, the hunger for righteousness was still slightly stronger than the hunger for gâteau, so I waited things out a while longer, amusing myself with a visual tour of our bathroom.

There was the fresh garden rosemary I had piled against the wall, to hide the unpainted pipes from our visitors. And there was the empty laundry basket (harrumph! look who is on top of the chores around here!). And there, on the edge of the sink, was my small can of hairspray. That's odd. Why was the hairspray out? I don't remember using it.... 

And then it dawned on me:  my husband had mistaken my hairspray for his aerosol deodorant.  Ah là là!  Revenge is sweet!

I mentioned the subject of our quarrel in the opening photo of this post. Update: Jean-Marc managed to keep most of the olive trees. We lost a few, but he did spare one - and had the giant tractor gently set the old tree in my permaculture garden! To comment on this post, click here.

la paix = peace
la prise de bec = argument
le boudoir = woman's room, little office (also a "ladyfinger" or finger-shaped cookie)
le bidet = sink for washing your bottom
étroit = confined
l'ennui (m) = lack of interest, boredom
le gâteau = cake

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