Say "premier mai" and two thoughts will pop into the mind of a Frenchman...
Pétou - a little Provencale word (guaranteed to make a man smile!)

Draguer? At what age are you "lucky" to be noticed? (Or, by chance, hit on?)

French token or jeton
A "liste des courses" spotted at our local supermarché...where pick-up artists and good Samaritans operate. Read on.


TODAY'S WORD: se faire draguer or se faire brancher

        : to get hit on

brancher une nana = to hit on a girl

CLICK HERE to listen to the following example sentence

Ah bon? Tu t'es fait draguer au supermarché?

Oh really? You got hit on at the supermarket?

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A DAY IN A FRENCH LIFE

    by Kristi Espinasse


While putting away groceries I reached for an item my husband had requested--pleased to have brought back the right ones. "Found you some rasoirs," I shouted to the man two rooms down. "A nice man helped me...." I smiled to myself as I put away the rest of the groceries. Such plaisanterie is healthy in a marriage, n'est-ce pas?

"Ah bon? Tu t'es fait draguer au supermarché?" Mr Two-Rooms-Down called back, feigning la jalousie.

This time I snickered, remembering what a French woman told me two years ago, "At your age, you should be grateful your husband is still so attracted to you." Her comment made me feel so....unsexy, unadventurious and perhaps even undeserving? I have heard a similar statement from American women, a generalized idea that at this age, we should be grateful for a man's attention.

Earlier, back at the grocery store, such words came to mind as I stood before the men's razor display, suspicious of the stranger who'd begun talking to me. Busy wondering "is this guy hitting on me?" a more humbling and sarcastic thought startled me: "Ha! At your age!" It immediately silenced my Inner Hot Mama, who gets stuffed deeper and deeper into the psyche--the more I listen to the media and certain women.

"Vous cherchez un rasoir?" the man with curly black hair smiled.

"Oui. Pour mon mari," Yes, for my husband, I pointed out.

"Does he have soft or coarse hairs?" the man replied in English, with a thick French accent. His question set me back.

After all these years I should know whether my husband has soft or coarse whiskers! In a guilty panic I studied the stranger's stubble (a.k.a. la barbe de trois jours).

"Coarse!" I guessed.

"Here, these should be good for a man on vacation," he said, handing me a 6-pack of "Wilkinson Swords."

Vacation? He thinks I'm a tourist. I did not correct him. Instead I said Merci, c'est vraiment gentil and, as he walked off, I thought of how absurd it was to have confused a pick-up artist with a good samaritan. The ego is a funny thing. One minute it's a Hot Mama, the next it tells itself it should be so grateful, at one's age, for even being noticed at all.

***

When Mr Two-Rooms-Down came into the kitchen, I touched his stubbly face. "What kind of whiskers do you have?" I said, handing him his razors. "Soft or course?"

"Je ne sais pas," he mumbled, pulling me close and planting a kiss of my middle-aged lips. Whatever the mainstream says, I will always be a hot mama in his heart. And for that I'm grateful.

Jean-Marc and Kristi-golfing
Photo taken in 2005 or so.  Jean-Marc pausing from his game to let me try out golf.


FRENCH VOCABULARY
Increase your vocabulary with these useful terms from our story

le rasoir = razor
la plaisanterie = banter
n'est-ce pas? = isn't that true
ah, bon? = really
tu t'es fait draguer? = you got hit on?
la jalousie = jealousy
vous cherchez? = are you looking (for something)?
la barbe de trois jours = stubble (stylish stubble)
gentil = nice
je ne sais pas = I don't know

 

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A selection of Provence TABLECLOTHS, bistro tea towels, click here

EASY FRENCH Step-by-Step. purchase the book.

Provence Spices - HERBES DE PROVENCE. Click here

Selection of LE CREUSET products here.

Great dane in Giens near Hyérès Estagnole beach
We all need attention and affection--something we get so much of when we're young. In the story Dorloter, observe a mother, grandmother and child on the beach in France.

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