Planted In Paris
You’d think that after ten years I’d be speaking French like a native. Well, I’m not…and it’s my own fault, of course. When you work in English and all your friends are fluent in English as is my case, there’s simply little motivation to do more than attend the Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group. In fact, that’s one reason I started the group to begin with and thank goodness for that — if it weren’t for the practice I get there, I wouldn’t be speaking at all.
The French complain they can’t get enough practice in English because they live in a Francophone world and we Anglophones complain of the same phenomena! For all of you who can’t come to the conversation group here in Paris, conference attendee and reader Roz Harris passed on a Web site to me that will at least inject you with a few new words a day and common phrases every French person should know to boost your vocabulary. Visit the latest version at: http://french-word-a-day.typepad.com and then subscribe to their newsletter. I enjoyed Friday’s, considering my visit after the conversation group to La Fête des Jardins:
un poireau (pwah-roh) noun, masculine
1. a leek (The plural is “poireaux”)
And from the image of a leek stuck in the ground comes the popular
verb “poireauter” = literally “to leek,” to be “planted” like a leek
(to be kept waiting; to kick, cool, one’s heels…)
As is every year, this weekend there was a public “salon” or exhibition that took place on the Place du Parvis Notre Dame (also known as Kilometer Zero, from which all points in France are measured) to celebrate La Fête des Jardins. It’s part of 600 events that took place this past weekend. Booths under pointed white tents lined both sides of the square; a garden arrangement planted dead center for affect. This year’s wasn’t as elaborate as in years past to my disappointment, but one booth displayed two large and elaborate arrangements constructed from plants I’d never seen before, worth a photo.
The city has published a complete guide to visiting Paris gardens. If you didn’t have a chance to pick one up at the exhibition, you can still obtain one at any Marie, by visiting the site at http://www.paris.fr/fr/environnement/jardins/ or calling 08.20.00.75.75 for more information.
More news from Maison de la France this week is their new and re-designed multi-color “FranceGuide for the Jewish Traveler” — a comprehensive guide that covers the history of the Jewish community in France. Written by Toni Kamins, freelance journalist for The New York Times, the Jerusalem Post, New York Magazine, and other publications and author, of the book series “Complete Jewish Guides” published by St. Martin’s Press, it’s one of the best publications we’ve seen from Maison de la France — and we were lucky enough to have them for our recent conference in Washington, DC. Toni is a longtime friend of Parler Paris, too. To order your copy, contact France-on-Call: 410-286-8310 or click here: http://franceshop.jaggedpeak.com/index.jp?edge=content.home to order online. Visit /parlerparis/books/booksaboutfrance.html to order Toni Kamin’s books.
And for those of you curious about Eric Francis’ astrological predictions for me, stay tuned…big and positive changes are on the very near horizon for both me…and you, too!
A la prochaine…
Editor, Parler Paris
E-mail: [email protected]
P.S. The toll-free phone number we have been using to reach Schuyler Hoffman is no longer in service. I now have a broadband phone with a U.S. number you can reach me on — (310) 427-7589. Please remember that you’re calling Paris time, even if the area code indicates Los Angles! If you want to learn more about how you can pay just
3 cents a minute for calls anywhere in the world (and less depending on the call plan) and how with a referral from me, you’ll get a credit for one free month of service, all you have to do is email me at [email protected] for more information.