Mother Fluker

A Migrant Mother's Musings

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

La Provence

France, France, France. What a wonderful country you are. I lived in France as a student a mere, erm, twenty years ago now, and it is just as irritating and bewitching in equal measures as I remember. Dogshit everywhere, graffiti partout, astonishingly cavalier and rude drivers, together with intensely delightful food and drink, charming towns and villages, and that certain je ne sais quoi of style and personality that gives the country such a grown-up appeal compared to so many other places.

It was the first time I had been to Provence, however, and it was somewhat gratifying to find that despite the large numbers of English residents and visitors, there was comparatively little in the way of English signs or concessions to non-French speakers in general. Which is a good thing. It forced me to resurrect my rusty skills on a daily basis, and I even managed to teach H a few words and phrases. He quickly got the hang of "Bonjour", "Merci" and "Au revoir", but seemed to absorb a whole raft of other stuff which is still emerging now, a couple of months after our return. Seeing a car park payment booth in town the other day he cried excitedly "Mummy! It's a peage!"

It's just a pity that while his brain seems to be a sponge, mine has turned into a loofah. A loofah that can't even work out how to type an acute accent.