First Impressions of France

I left Canada nearly a week ago, my trip was, to my relief, quite uneventful. I drugged myself for most of it. Jet lag has done its best to have the better of me, but at the end of my first week, more drugs and a timezone head cold later, I feel I’ve come out on the other side.

Here are a few of the things I’ve noticed about France so far; the french do have ugly buildings sometimes (I did not know before that this was even possible); there is an ESSO station right across from where I live; the banks have point programs just like Canadian ones; English music dominates much of the popular radio stations, and for the most part, French drivers are very civilized (at least here where I am). These are the things that make me feel like I’m not so far from home. A bit disappointingly so. However, there are a few things I have noticed that are different,  and they are; the cheese course is a real thing, even at public BBQs!!!!!; real, mind blowing food is readily available at every corner. the french seem to understand this as normal – I feel happy at last! – ; the French iron their clothes. I mentioned to Sarah (the lady I work for) that I hoped I was doing a good job because we didn’t iron much in Canada, and she was all like “what? then what do you do? go around in wrinkled clothes?” and I was like “uuhhhh, yes”. Now I find myself wondering “Why on earth don’t we iron? who would walk around in un-ironed corduroy pants?” By the way there’s a skill there, so you don’t get the line of the pocket showing through on the corduroy. basically you just move the pocket.

Another thing that caught me off guard, was the first French men I set eyes on. I had been warned innumerable (literally) times about French men. Every time someone wanted to give me good advice (or bad advice) they’d say something ominous about the men in France. I thought I was warned. I told myself i was steeled. “What’s the big deal?” I thought, “How could I possibly be interested in a nation full of men who are shorter than me??” As life would have it, all of the very first men I saw standing on French soil were very, very tall……wasn’t expecting that!

Otherwise my life so far has been lovely, uneventful – but still very interesting – emotional, and funny. As life usually seems to be, whether you fly across the world or not. Today I went with the family to a large sporting/bbq even put on for local businesses. It was called “BUSINESS COOL FESTIVAL” literally, in English, because apparently English is cool that people just throw it in randomly. We were watching one of the foot-ball matches (a great lot of rather robust looking gentlemen galloping about the field) and I was wondering down the sideline, under the impression my party was going somewhere, and coolly ignoring all that was being shouted about me, when it turns out everyone was shouting at me. At least, the man with the loudspeaker was, everyone else was just sort of staring. It seems i was walking strait on towards him and totally blocking his view of the final goal play, which he was supposed to be announcing…What fun!


P.S. I even detected iron creases in the trouser legs of the clown at the bbq.


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