"Where's my chocolate bone?" Smokey, a day or two after Easter. I post pictures daily at Instagram. Follow me, here, to see what's next...
: rabbit, bunny
Improve your French pronunciation with Exercises in French phonetics. Click here.
le coup du lapin = whiplash
le civet de lapin = rabbit stew
le lapin nain = dwarf rabbit
poser un lapin = to stand somebody up, to not show up for a date.
avoir des dents de lapin = to have buck teeth
En France, les oeufs en chocolat sont apportés par les cloches de Pâques et non pas un lapin. In France, chocolate eggs are brought by the Easter Bells and not a bunny.
Lapin is also featured in this long list of French Terms of Endearment.
A DAY IN A FRENCH LIFE... by Kristin Espinasse
Our neighbor stopped by yesterday with un petit colis for our family. But when she handed me the freezer bag I saw an eye staring back at me!
"C'est le lapin que je t'ai promis," Annie explained.
Well, the day had come! It had been easy, last fall, to accept Annie's offer as we strolled arm in arm. Walking past her rabbit hutch, we were delivering les plantes sauvages we had just collected from the field that joins our properties. Her rabbits feed on the wild fennel, the plantain, and the luzerne, or alfalfa, that thrives at the foot of the giant fig tree. After 6 months of feasting, they are ready, themselves, to eat....
Standing on my front porch, this many months later, holding the chilled bag (which sunk right into my hands, molding into them as the bag's contents settled), I cleared my throat. "Thank you, Annie... I'll be right back!"
Hurrying to the kitchen I set the skinned rabbit gently in the frigo... eyes facing the back wall. Next, after a one minute composure pause, I returned with a cup of coffee for my guest.
Annie was sitting on the concrete bench that runs the length of our front porch. She is familiar with the cozy spot, having watched over this property for decades. The tenderness that she shared with Maggie and Michael, who sold us their home in late summer of 2012, was transferred to us like an Easter basket: brimming with treasures and sweetness, yet discreet and shining in the background, waiting to be found.
Unsure how to broach the rabbit topic, I pushed a small tray of Easter chocolates across the picnic table towards Annie. There were symbolic eggs and fish, turtles and the famous bells (in France, it is les cloches that deliver the eggs, and not the Easter bunny.... if only they could deliver me from this next chore...).
Chewing anxiously on a chocolate bell, my mind hopped through the fields of French history, as I tried to come to grips with the task at hand. After all, French countrywomen have kept rabbits from time immemorial! Most families had clapiers, or cage aux lapins and were skilled in animal husbandry. Even my aunt-in-law raises rabbits and turkeys for Christmas dinner!
...Others of us, habituated by the sight of chicken legs or hamburger patties, feel uneasy when presented with meat in its entirety...
Perhaps Annie sensed the thoughts burbling through my head like a pot of rabbit stew. And there, she offered her own wisdom ... in an industrialized world where chicken legs are shrinkwrapped and sold by the dozen:
"Au moin on sait d'où ça viens et dans quelle conditions." At least we know where it comes from and under which conditions.
un colis = package
C'est le lapin que je t'ai promis = it's the rabbit I promised you
une plante sauvage = wild plant
le frigo = fridge
une cloche = bell
Most of us love most French culture, but is there anything the French do that doesn't appeal to you? Thanks for sharing here in the comments box.
Thank you for the time you've spent reading my column. If you have learned more than a little vocabulary here and find yourself looking forward to the next story, please know that ongoing support from readers like you helps me continue doing what I love most: sharing these missives from France. Your support is vivement apprécié! Donating via PayPal is fast and easy when you use the links below. Merci infiniment! Kristi