Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Oh La La La

Je ne peux parle pas francais. But I tried! I had originally planned to just go to the South of France for two and a half weeks, just to toodle around and see what there was to see. Then I thought "Why not do a little language course while I'm there..." just to help me manage a bit better. It's always better to know a few words of the local language when you travel.

I did a wee bit of research on the school and decided on this one:


The housing options were myriad and, while I wanted to learn some French, I would still be en vacances and therefore chose to stay in a hotel (rather than a homestay or shared apartment). There was also a rooftop pool with this view:


I'm all about immersion.

Get it? See what I did there? Immersion - like language immersion, and immersion - like when you immerse yourself in the swimming pool? Oh la vache!

Everything is different in French, including their exclamations of surprise/admiration "Oh la vache", or horror "Zut alors!", or something that could either be "tsk tsk" or "ohhhhhhhhh my goodness", which is "Oh la la la".


I would attend French lessons every morning from 8:45-12:00, then grab a baguette (usually avec chevre et jambon), then go to the rooftop pool for an hour or so. One afternoon I was climbing down into the pool via the pool's ladder, when I noticed some random guy opposite me, on a deck chair, was holding out his iPhone at an angle that indicated I was being photographed.

OH LA VACHE! ZUT ALORS! OH LA LA LA!

I was like "I think that guy just took a picture of me!" and proceeded to be silently offended and outraged for the next few hours. Silently offended and outraged because I wasn't actually 100% certain he had taken a photo, otherwise I probably would have started yelling (in English). However, judging from the way he had held the iPhone out as I was climbing into the pool, and then pulled the iPhone back in under the umbrella to view the contents was just too suspicious. So silently offended and outraged I was.

Until I reminded myself that I had just turned 40 in July.

Yeahhhh, so maybe having some stranger take a picture of me, in a bikini at age 40, should be something a little closer to flattering than offending... As "Oh la la la" can be either negative or positive, I will stick with that as my official reaction.