2 May 2014

Iconic Cows & other ramblings

Hello! Ca va? ♥
It seems to me that a lot of french expressions include cows - such as:

Oh ! La vache = my oh my/ Oh my God!
Être une vache à lait = to be easily exploited (a cow easily milked)
Bouffer/Manger de la vache enragée = to live in poverty (eat an enraged cow)
Période de vaches maigres = times of need (a time in which cows are rare)
Une vraie peau de vache = a cow/bitch/mean person (a true cow's hide)
Parler français comme une vache espagnole = to speak gibberish (speak french like a spanish cow) ... seriously???
Le plancher des vaches = solid ground/earth/floor
Pleuvoir comme vache qui pisse = to be pissing down/rain heavily (to rain like a cow...urinating. (¬‿¬)

Grosse vache = fat cow. literally.
Mort aux vaches ! = Death to the cops (Death to Cows - originates in Franco-Prussian war and relates to german cops = the cows)

 Are there any more? - it sure is funny. I know as a matter of fact that through history   
 there have been a lot of farmers in France - as I have been prying at the old actes de naissances et  
 marriages = birth and marriage certificates in the town hall I am working at ✰ hee hee

 There still is a lot of agriculture going on, with apple orchards, vineyards, lavender fields, dairy farms etc.
 So it is not that surprising. 

 A lot of names seem really weird to me too, I write them down to make my german friends chuckle:

 such as Tinkerbell aka Clochette, the Smurfs aka Les Shtroumpfs (which is the original title by the way)
 and most importantly Bilbo Baggins, who goes by the name of Bilbon Saquet. This is most amusing for 
 people who speak german, as a "Sack" means something...entirely different... \ (•◡•) /  Yay!

I tried to explain to a collegue, Hélène, that there was going to be a new film about Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton on telly. She tilted her head slightly and went: "Hein?" (pronounced Hahnnn) which is the equivalent to "What?". I mulled it over and repeated: "Il y aura un film sur Eelisabett Teillorr et Rishart Beurton sur le Télé ce soir." She looked at me and went "Ahhhh!". Is it really that difficult to understand   
the english pronunciation? :-D

The funny thing is - when you travel around Europe, people understand you when you speak english. Well, most of them. But not so in France. It is for this reason that fellow Europeans think of them as arrogant, when they are not. They just don't need it. There are enough francophone countries around the world to get around. And if they do learn a language for working abroad, its mostly spanish. Because the french love Spain. Or german, for finding work. Or even japanese. But english? Nope.


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