Come to our winetasting Apr. 20th + Smokey's lump
Get well soon, in French + photos from our winetasting!

Droit au but: Smokey update


Come to our home, this Monday, April 20th at 3p.m. for snacks and a winetasting. (We live near Bandol) To reserve your seat, email (p.s if the fava beans are ready, we'll try some :-)

Nov2014Mas de Perdrix. A home in France that artists and writers love to rent.  Work on your creative project in this inspiring environment.

droit au but (dwaht-oh-bewt)

  • to go straight to the goal, directly to the goal
  • to get right to the point

AUDIO FILE: Listen to Jean-Marc read the French words (BTW: Did you hear the train whistle? My husband recorded this soundfile while laboring his vinefields! Today he is removing giant rocks, making room for more grapevines. You can hear his strained breathing as he speaks!) Download MP3 or Wav

Smokey est allé doit au but. Il a couru vers le monstre jusqu'à ce que ce dernier fasse demi-tour pour fuir dans la forêt pour toujours ! Smokey went straight to the goal: he ran toward the monster until the latter turned to flee into the forest forever.

This morning I turned to Facebook for help translating the English (above). Thank you, Dominique and Laurence, who offered helpful translations! 

A DAY IN A FRENCH LIFE... by Kristin Espinasse

Yesterday morning, while putting the finishing touches on my feature story for France Today (Ça y est! C'est fini!) Max popped his head into the bedroom. Reaching down, he patted our youngest dog, who was resting on the floor beside me, after Tuesday's biopsy.

"Ah, do I have a story about Smokey!" Max perked up, his eyes travelling from Smokey to the window, beyond which a great field meets the forest.

"See over there? That is where we saw the wild boar! Mathilde and I were playing fetch with Smokey, when I threw the stick... and a giant sanglier charged out of the forest to collect it!

"Oh mon Dieu! Where was Mathilde?" I asked, worried about Max's girlfriend.

"She stood frozen, tétanisée, between those two olive trees as the boar bolted towards her, the ground thundering beneath its feet!" 

Max threw out his arms, trying to describe the beast, which was thrice the size of our golden retriever. "I screamed for Smokey to come back, but he ran in front of Mathilde and charged on towards that boar!"

Max knew what everyone in these parts knows: a dog is no match for a wild boar! Screaming in vain, my son could not stop our dog from pursuing the threat, and so prepared for the worst as Smokey disappeared into the dark forest.

Then suddenly our golden reappeared! Rushing up to the beautiful demoiselle en détresse, he never once stopped to consider his weakness.

*    *    *

I hope you enjoyed Max's story about Smokey The Wonderdog. I shared several others with you, Tuesday, when I told you about that méchant lump. Bad news is the lab report came back positive for cancer. The vet was not able to operate, as planned, owing to excessive infammation. More info, below, in these posts shared on Instagram, and here's an uplifting comment we received on Facebook, this one by Vayia M:

He will be fine! Yes, he will!!! Only positive thinking, he deserves it!

 Yes, yes! Smokey, you deserve it :-)


(Yesterday's update, on Instagram) The lump could not be removed today. The surgery is in one week, when the swelling subsides. "It is unfair that dogs get cancer," the vet said, agreeing with Jackie, who tried to make sense of the diagnosis. Looking to the bright side, Smokey has hopeful options--this, in addition to the Super Giant Lucky Star that shines down on him.


His upside down umbrella did not shield him from the deluge of kisses he just received from Jackie. He's now planning on bringing this prop to the beach this summer. And the summer after that. Or, as Karen said, on FacebookAnd seven or eight summers after that!

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Smokey, when he was a pup. What makes you think he's French? ;-)

If you are new to this French journal, you might consider picking up a copy of my Words in a French Life: Lessons in Love and Language from the South of France. Thanks for reading!

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