Frappadingue - and our French-infused story
Stationner + we surprise our daughter at her new job

Boulot: Guess who found a job in Bandol?

classic wooden fishing boat pointu in the port of Bandol France Provence Cotes d'Azur
The port of Bandol where our story takes place, among the old wooden fishing boats, or "les pointus"....

TODAY'S WORD: boulot

        1.  job, work
        2.  chubby, plump

metro, boulot, dodo = the daily grind, all work and no play


Hear Jean-Marc read the following sentence in French

Notre fille, Jackie, a trouvé un boulot en tant que "runner." Le runneur est un serveur qui est en phase d'apprentissage il se tient en retrait du service, observe, apprend et exécute des tâches simples de soutien au service. Il va par exemple dresser et débarasser les tables, faire les aller retour entre la cuisine et la salle, ou encore nettoyer les sols entre chaque service. (definition from

Our daughter, Jackie, found a job as runner. The runner is a waiter who is in the learning phase, he stands in the wings of service, observes, learns and performs simple tasks that help the service. He will, for example, set and clear tables, go back and forth between the kitchen and the dining room, or clean the floors between each service.

Improve your spoken French with Pronounce it Perfectly in French or  Exercises in French Phonetics


    by Kristi Espinasse

Students in France begin looking for summer jobs as early as March - and our daughter was no exception. So when April came around and she still hadn't secured a petit boulot de vacances, she pounded the pavement--handing out CVs up and down the coast between Bandol and Les Lecques. (If she could not pursue the job selling ice cream at the port of Cassis, it was because parking would be trop cher!)

Our 19-year-old was so relieved when she got the call from a restaurant in Bandol that she offered to work gratuitement.

"Jackie!" her father and I protested.

"I only offered to work for free the first day. I have no restaurant experience and I need to learn!" And with that, she cleared the table where we were eating lunch, out on our front porch. She was clearly motivated and had gone as far as to get training tips from her petit ami, who works tables in Sanary-sur-Mer. "Jeremy taught me to stack the plates like this..." Jackie said, balancing a tottering tray....

I was unsure about our cadette working in such a fast-paced environment. Jackie is very much like me--dans les nuages. I work at my own pace, do not like to be rushed, and tend to fade off, or rêvasser. Having said that, it is unfair to cast a blanket statement over one's child! Maybe she really isn't like me in that way at all?

Well, we would soon see for ourselves! On Monday, le Lundi de Pâques, Jean-Marc made a reservation at Le Jérome restaurant for Monsieur et Madame Blanc --a faux nom as our visit would be a surprise....

(Don't miss Part II of this story. Click here)

Le Jerome restaurant at the port in Bandol France

Increase your vocabulary with this list of useful words

un petit boulot de vacances = seasonal or summer job
CV (le curriculum vitae) = resume
trop cher = too expensive
gratuitement = for free
un petit-ami = boyfriend
le cadet/la cadette = youngest, youngest child
dans les nuages = (head) in the clouds
le faux nom = alias
rêvasser = daydream
le lundi de Pâques = Easter Monday

A peek at vocabulary from part two of our story
comme un marseillais = Like a native from Marseilles (bending the rules, not heeding the laws)

Flowers at the port of Bandol France
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A Message from Kristi on this blog's 19th anniversary
Thank you for reading this 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 writing. My wish is to continue creating 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.

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