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Entries from August 2008

"Gateaux Basques" (Summer 2008): on the west coast of France, not far from Bayonne, in the hills of Briscous. un sourire (soo-reer) noun, masculine : a smile Rides, des sourires gravés. Wrinkles are engraved smiles. --Jules Renard Hear today's word and the above quote, in French (compliments of Son Max): Download sourire.wav . Download sourire.mp3 One way... Read more →


Bowls or "bols" from Pornic (a village in the Loire-Atlantique, north-western France). empiler (om-pee-lay) verb : to pile (up), to stack (up); to do . Never miss a word: get yourself a French Word Widget : installs in Google, Yahoo, Facebook, MySpace, Typepad, Blogger, LiveJournal... Quote / Example sentence: L'argent est plat pour être empilé. Money is... Read more →


Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes Pyrénées. My husband with his two favorite things: grapevines and a stubborn side-kick. More about her in today's story. têtu(e) (tay-tew) adjective : obstinate, headstrong, stubborn Listen to the French word têtu, and hear this expression "têtu comme un mulet" (thank you, Bastien--my son Max's friend--for today's recording!): Download tetu.wav... Read more →


A lampshade boutique in the town of Saint-Jean-de-Luz. Did you see the leopard one (left and center)? My mom, Jules, (...and my daughter, who inherited that gene) would buy two of those, at least). P.S.: notice the typical Basque design, painted red (or green...) shutters and woodwork, just above the shop. . If you woke up this... Read more →


on the road to Saint-Jean-Pied-du-Port ("Saint John at the foot of the pass"). Never miss a word: Get yourself a French Word Widget! Works in Facebook, MySpace, Blogger... *** Did you know that the French word "basque" just so happens to be related to the Italian "basta" (which means "That's enough!" "Stop!"... or simply "Whoa boy!"--something the... Read more →


Le marais salant: salt marsh in the Camargue. chômer (sho-may) verb : to lie idle; to be idle, inactive : to be unemployed, out of work [from the Latin "caumare": "to rest during the heat"] Listen to the French definition* of chômer (that's my daughter speaking): "Célébrer une fête par le repos, en ne travaillant pas." (To... Read more →


A neighboring IRM... read on in today's story, below. prise de bec (preez-deuh-bek) noun, feminine : an altercation, a spat, an argument "Le bec" ("beak") also means mouth. In the chic town of Saint-Jean-de-Luz there were plenty of BMWs and so you might say we fit right in with our own deluxe IRM.... After watching the French... Read more →


The self-serve candle machine at Lourdes. Audio File: The sign in the photo, above, says "Un cierge c'est une prière qui se prolonge." (A candle is a prolonged prayer.) Hear today's word and the above quote: Download cierge.mp3 .Download cierge.wav le cierge (see-airzh) noun, masculine : candle (votive); cereus (a kind of cactus) Do you know the... Read more →


Snapshots of France: the Basque town of Bidarray. lecteur (lek-tuur) noun, masculine : reader The feminine of "lecteur" is "une lectrice" Listen to today's word and the following quote: Download lecteur.wav. Download lecteur.mp3 En réalité, chaque lecteur est, quand il lit, le propre lecteur de soi-même. In reality, each reader is, when he reads, the own reader... Read more →


Woman in cart waiting to collect curative water at Lourdes Many thanks to those who are translating the word of the day into other languages -- over at the new comments section! The latest translation, of yesterday's word "pancarte," is in Danish (thank you, Jens!). You'll find translations in Tagalog, Dutch, Pig Latin... and more. See the... Read more →