Our new stagiaire even helps with the dishes! Alexis is helping Jean-Marc here at the vineyard. 

stage (stazh) noun, masculine

    : internship, training period

faire un stage = to do an internship
le/la stagiaire = trainee, intern

Speaking Bettery French  Speaking Better French: The Key Words and Expressions that You'll Need Every Day. Order here.


A Day in a (French) Life...  by Kristin Espinasse

While our son, Max, is making meringues and scrubbing saucepans at a local restaurant, another young man is interning at our farm! Twenty-year-old Alexis (Alex-ee) began un stage here at Domaine Rouge-Bleu on Monday....

While Jean-Marc can ease up a bit now that he is receiving extra help on the vineyard, I am back in first gear, climbing up a steep mountain of ménage. The souci isn't the extra laundry to do or the extra beds to make (Alexis is living independently, in his own garçonnière), no, the worry that I am referring to has to do with "le menu".

When it's just us folks to feed, the living is easy--and often cheesy! Indeed, a plate of fromage and homemade bread, yesterday's casserole (or Monday's instead?) will suffice. When you set aside pride there's suddenly a motley potley of possibilities just waiting to be tried!

But when an elegant young Frenchman issued from a family of fine taste arrives—here—to what might otherwise be known as a kitchen dive, who could blame the hillbilly hostess for wanting to run and hide?


Hélas, hiding in a closet won't get the noonday meal on the table: but a little effort will. I leave you now with this week's menu... before I dash off to roast some potatoes.

Les Petits Pois Cassés avec Jambonneau dans son Bain de Bouillon à Gogo

Split Peas with Ham Hocks in a Bath of (vegetable) Stock à Go-go

Les Pâtes au Roquefort accompagnés de "Wraps Laitue Fanée"
Roquefort Pasta with Wilted Lettuce Wraps

Le Poulet "Thierry Yaké" avec du Riz Collant Accidentelle
("Teri Yake" Chicken With Accidental Gluey Rice)

La Bolognaise, Assortiment du fromages... suivi d'une Tarte Aux Pommes-Peanut Butter

Bolognese (Hamburger) Pasta, an Assortment of Cheeses... followed by a Peanut Butter and Apple Tart.

Les Côtelettes de Porc Endormies dans Leur Sauce de Soja servi avec Pommes de Terre Provençal.
Pork cutlets Put to Sleep in Soja Sauce and Served with Provencal Potatoes. (Whoops! No time for fancy pancy potatoes. These may get wrapped in foil and baked!)

Voilà. A little bit gastro and a little bit goofy. Just the kind of comfort food that this accidental stagiaire—and mère—can share.

Here's Alexis talking to his Mom. Aww. On second thought, maybe he is telling her he has a stomachache from the motley potley peanut butter cake?

Le Coin Commentaires
Have your say about today's French Word of the day. Would you like to comment on the story? (Would you like to leave Alexis a message? Just click here. He'll enjoy that!)


Next Meetup: PARIS! On March 1st at Shakespeare & Company bookshop I will be talking about writing, publishing, and--bien sûr--blogging!  (Begins at 7 p.m.) See an excerpt from the talk, on video here.

French Vocabulary and Sound File
Hear my daughter pronounce the following French words: Download Stage

Alexis fait un stage dans notre domaine viticole.
Alexis is doing an internship at our winery

le stage = internship
le/la stagiaire = intern, trainee
le ménage = housework
le souci = worry
la garçonnière = bachelor pad
le fromage = cheese
la demoiselle = the young lady
la gastro (gastronomie) = gastronomy
hélas = alas
une mère = mother (note: this word is missing from the sound file)

Exercises in French Phonics Exercises in French Phonics, bestseller by Francis W. Nachtman, on French pronunciation and how to pronouce French words correctly!

French Demystified: A Self-Teaching Guide

I'll Never Be French (no matter what I do): Living in a Small Village in Brittany

Learn French In A Hurry: Grasp the Basics of Français Tout de Suite


A Message from Kristi
Thank you for reading my language journal. In 2002 I left my job at a vineyard and became self-employed in France. "French Word-A-Day" has been my full-time occupation ever since. Ongoing support from readers like you helps keep this site ad-free and allows me to focus on the creative process of writing. My wish is to continue offering posts that are educational, insightful, and heart-warming. If my work has touched you in any way, please consider supporting it via a blog donation of any amount.

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