Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pouvez-Vous le Lire?



Well to be honest, I really can't either. Oh I can pick out some words and perhaps get a sense of what it says, but I have to admit, I've not made much progress even with frequent travels to Paris over the last 3 years. It 's not from a lack of desire or numerous books on how to speak French better and in a record number of days. I have a number of excuses. Want to hear them?
1. Most people in Paris speak English and it's just easier to let them.
2. My friends speak French better than I do, so it's easier to let them.
3. My southern accent plus my poor French pronunciation skills are a deadly combination, and I'm frankly embarassed to even try most of the time.

Hopefully I've turned a corner of sorts. Yesterday was my first lesson with my new French tutor Mme. Dupree. I think she's just what I need. She's not going to let me slide by with my "southern French" and she's going to converse with me in French and insist that I do so as well.
Wish me bonne chance! I'll keep you posted.

Today's photographs are from a delightful day last summer spent at the Jardin d'Acclimatation in the Bois de Bologne. I shared some photos of the children last summer right here. It's a great little amusement park and the perfect spot to take children when you travel to Paris. The mural and all the signage were done by the same artist. I would love to purchase some prints if anyone knows a source.



29 comments:

MadAboutParis said...

JB - mind your manners now...

Keith Eckstein said...

Virginia - all you need to do is roll your Rs, wave your arms around and make some weird facial gestures!

That's all there is to speaking French!

The few words you need can be found here...

http://www.bretondiary.com/downloads/swearwords.pdf

All the best

Keith

Starman said...

Is this a theme day? Laurent had a picture of a painting aussi.

alice said...

Keith makes me laugh! But one thing more: you need to practise the "u" (in a French way of course). The "u" is difficult but important!
Vive Virginia et vive Mme Dupré!

Shell Sherree said...

I can relate, V. And it's the practice that will make the difference ~ a tutor who will be merciless is a wonderful idea! I'm sure you'll be off and running in no time now.

Those illos are great! I had a little search around and it could be Hippolyte Romain, the artistic director of Le Jardin. And they've opened a store and an online store. Here's the link to the papergoods ~ can't see prints yet, but there's a 2010 calendar!

Brenda said...

I totally agree with you! I have lived here now a year and honestly am not very good at French. I do want to learn but really it seems to slow going for me! Please let us all know how it goes with your tutor.
I have been to Jardin dÀcclimation with my daughter and she had a fantastic time there. There is so much to see and do and spend the entire day there!
I hope you enjoy yourself! Can`t wait to see your pictures!

Brenda

ParisBreakfasts said...

But it's a little poem on the origin of the cooking term "Julienne" which I have never figured out how to do...
I have a funny book (Revoir Paris Rever Paname)by this quite famous French illustrator,Hippolyte Romaine.
merci
carolg

Randy said...

Love your site, can't wait for you to come back to Paris so I can show you the least visited side of Paris to photograph. In fact, in summer, they have a free canal ride from Parc de Villette going towards the burbs, it's lined with graffiti all the way, and some are pretty artistic, but some is total crap as well.

A trés, trés bientôt
Randy the non-francophile

Ron @ DubaiFunHolidays said...

its ok, no need to learn the lingo if you can get past without it, paris is a beautiful and fascinating place and i wish i could also visit it every year,

Virginia said...

Ron,
now don't be giving me an out!

Carol,
Thanks for the tip. I"ll see if I can find the book!

Randy,
I can't wait for you to show me some Paris sites. I"m not high on graffiti but I'll think about that canal ride.

Brenda,
The cute little gardens are so pretty as well. It's a great place to spend the day in Paris.

Thanks Shell, I knew you'd like the illos!

Alice,
Oui, the "u" was one I had trouble with yesterday, as you can imagine. I think I have it now. We'll see. :)
Keep helping me.

Keith,
Well I have the facial expressions and the waving hands down pat and I already knew one of the words on your list! shhhhhhh

Starman,
I'll have to go see what Laurent has for us today.

Mary,
Oh dear!

Virginia said...

Mes amis français, s'il vous plaît laisser vos commentaires en français! Il faut que j'apprenne!!
V

Alexa said...

Tiens, ma chere—your use of the subjunctive just now tells me that you are tres sérieuse, and will be amazing the Parisians before you know it! Just learn the lingo and don't sweat the accent too much, because it will come (and if it doesn't, tant pis—you'll charm them with your 'Bama French).
And these illos are wonderful!

claudine said...

C'est très bien d'apprendre le français! Vous allez faire des progrès, c'est sûr!
Etes-vous la seule élève de Mme Dupree ou êtes-vous dans une classe avec plusieurs élèves?

Virginia said...

Claudine,
Je suis son seul élève. Elle vient chez moi.

Alexa,
Merci Google translator! :) Je suis encore à apprendre.

claudine said...

Virginia, vous devez dire: je suis sa seule élève (féminin car vous êtes une femme!).
En français, il faut faire la différence entre le féminin et le masculin! C'est un peu difficile!

Virginia said...

Claudine,
Oui, je comprend mais c'est très difficile le féminin et le masculin! Merci de m'aider!
(actually I just copied your comment wrong,, but I still have a LOT to learn.)

Daryl said...

For some reason I have always been better at reading French than writing or speaking it .. idiot savant with the emphasis on the idiot

Daryl said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
♥ E.T. Suzy ♥ said...

I hear ya. I know my French, it just doesn't come out of my mouth very well.

I love these illustrations. Esp the chef.

Virginia said...

Aidez-moi svp!!! I want to purchase the calendar that Shell gave the link to. I'm afraid to trust my French /Google translator here! I can't decide how to pay and I fear they will not ship out of the US. :(
V

TheChieftess said...

You go girl!!

Virginia said...

Merci. I appreciate all of my readers that comment. I'm trying to learn to speak French better so I hope if you can, you will leave your comments in French. Make me work for your wonderful words!!! I know that I won't be be fluent, but my hope is that I will be able to return to Paris and at least converse and be understood. I think the French language is so beautiful! Maybe one day.......

Virginia said...

Merci. I appreciate all of my readers that comment. I'm trying to learn to speak French better so I hope if you can, you will leave your comments in French. Make me work for your wonderful words!!! I know that I won't be be fluent, but my hope is that I will be able to return to Paris and at least converse and be understood. I think the French language is so beautiful! Maybe one day.......

Randy said...

Comme tu veux! Mais, Je parle un peu mieux alors que j'écris, je ponce c'est normal! nest-ce pas?

Quand tu veins à Paris, on ne parle que français.

Gros bisous et embrasse
randy

Laurent said...

OK pour mettre les commentaires en français maintenant !
Le texte de la photo est difficile à traduire car il s'agit d'une poésie.
Au fait, avez-vous reçu la photo ?

the Shutter said...

love the illustrations and the colours.

Virginia said...

Nous ne parlent pas anglais?? OHHHHHHHHH Non!
Bises,
V

Virginia said...

Laurent,
Oui, j'ai reçu la belle photo!! Meci beaucoup mille fois.
J'adore!!!
V

Thérèse said...

C'était le 12ème anniversaire du "Printemps des Poètes." Le thème 2010: Couleur femme.

Julienne de légumes = "fine or thick strips of vegetable cooked"

This is part of a poem with an allusion to a lady named "Julienne"

Vive Madame Duprée!