Fashion & Food – Sarao Restaurant

While waiting on the Promenade des Anglais for a friend to have a quick lunch at Sarao, I pondered about how the French Riviera has a stereotypical image: chic and fashionable people strolling along the seafront, others drinking champagne on yachts, and sunbathers frolicking in the sand (or rocks). I people watched, as one does while waiting but not exactly as the fashion police (RIP Joan Rivers), and noticed a variety of fashion statements.

September is a great time to visit Nice, both temperature-wise and noise pollution level-wise. Even so, trying to chat was difficult with the reduced level of traffic whizzing by the restaurant terrace. The apero & tapas menu was only for the evening, but I did try the “aperol spritz” – a refreshing mixture of Prosecco and Perrier – reported by the server to be very popular in Italy. Buon Appetito!

What’s your fashion style?

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Fashion:

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Travel Makes You Richer

When I moved to Nice seven years ago, I was overwhelmed with the dichotomy of its hustle/bustle city feeling and laidback vacation-type ambiance.  The city is second to Paris as a top tourist destination, but there are many beautiful places to visit and see in the world.  Travel opens our eyes and minds to other peoples and cultures and expands our vision of the world – Bon Voyage!

See NY TIMES video HERE 

Body Language in the 17th Century

Body language refers to various forms of nonverbal communication, wherein a person may reveal clues as to some unspoken intention or feeling through their physical behavior. These behaviors can include body posture, gestures, facial expressions, and eye movements; the meanings varies depending on the culture.

In 17th century France, MOUCHE (applied beauty marks) were used in fashion to convey body language, as well as to physically cover pock marks. They could take the shape of hearts and/or be made of lace, but their facial placement was key to the intended body language message.
mouche
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Women also carried FANS — not just to cool themselves or for mere decor, but to communicate when it wasn’t appropriate to verbalize something. The fan had to be carried, opened, closed and fluttered with precision and reason. A woman held it in front of her, not covering her face, with the painted side facing out. Every movement had a meaning.

 

Carrying Open fan: come speak with me

Twirling the fan in the right hand: I love another

Twirling the fan in the left hand: We are being watched

Placing the fan near your heart: I love you

A half-closed fan pressed to the lips: You may kiss me

Letting the fan rest on the right cheek: Yes

Letting the fan rest on the left cheek: No

Dropping the fan: We will be friends

Other sources decoding fan language offer some pretty specific statements:

Placing fan on left ear: I wish to be rid of you

Carrying fan in right hand in front of face: Follow me

Drawing fan across the forehead: You have changed

Drawing fan through the hand: I hate you

Threaten with shut fan: You are imprudent

Gazing at shut fan: Why do you misunderstand me?

most commonly understood fan gestures.

A fan placed near the heart: “You have won my love.”
A closed fan touching the right eye: “When may I be allowed to see you?”
The number of sticks shown answered the question: “At what hour?”
Threatening gestures with a closed fan: “Do not be so imprudent”
Half-opened fan pressed to the lips: “You may kiss me.”
Hands clasped together holding an open fan: “Forgive me.”
Covering the left ear with an open fan: “Do not betray our secret.”
Hiding the eyes behind an open fan: “I love you.”
Shutting a fully-opened fan slowly: “I promise to marry you.”
Drawing the fan across the eyes: “I am sorry.”

Touching the finger to the tip of the fan:“I wish to speak with you.”
Letting the fan rest on the right cheek:“Yes.”
Letting the fan rest on the left cheek:“No.”
Opening and closing the fan several times: “You are cruel”
Dropping the fan: “We will be friends.”
Fanning slowly: “I am married.”
Fanning quickly: “I am engaged.”
Putting the fan handle to the lips: “Kiss me.”
Opening a fan wide: “Wait for me.”
Placing the fan behind the head: “Do not forget me”
Placing the fan behind the head with finger extended: “Goodbye.”
Fan in right hand in front of face: “Follow me.”
Fan in left hand in front of face: “I am desirous of your acquaintance.”
Fan held over left ear: “I wish to get rid of you.”

Drawing the fan across the forehead:“You have changed.”
Twirling the fan in the left hand: “We are being watched.”
Twirling the fan in the right hand: “I love another.”
Carrying the open fan in the right hand:“You are too willing.”

Carrying the open fan in the left hand: “Come and talk to me.”
Drawing the fan through the hand: “I hate you!”
Drawing the fan across the cheek: “I love you!”
Presenting the fan shut: “Do you love me?”

~From All About Fans

Photo/Source: Wikipedia

JOURNÉES EUROPÉENNES DU PATRIMOINE

Affiche JEP-2014logo-ministere-de-la-culture-et-de-la-communication

 

 

 

 

 

 SEPTEMBER 20-21, 2014

Le week-end du 20 et 21 septembre 2014, les Journées du Patrimoine reviennent avec pour thème “Patrimoine culturel, patrimoine naturel”. Comme chaque année environ 16 000 sites publics ou privés seront ouverts au public.

This annual event is a unique opportunity to discover local heritage in all its splendour and variety by visiting sites and architectural features. A wide range of activities is organised throughout the department.

2014 Schedule:

Program in NICE 

Search in other Regions

France 3 Video HERE

 

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9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

Want to astound native speakers with your French?

Then along with your French slang and French idioms, you must learn some French proverbs!

These beauties are filled with both imagery and wisdom, and can be used in everyday situations.

Here are nine French proverbs (brief sayings encompassing advice and general truths) and their meanings, which will give sel (salt/savor) to your use of the language, and a certain poésie (poetic flair) in the way you communicate.

9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

1. “Qui vivra verra”

“Qui vivra verra”  is a widely used and understood proverb that literally means, “He/she who lives, shall see.” This phrase is usually used when an outcome is unpredictable or uncertain, like in the English “the future will tell.” Although it is a very short phrase, it still rolls smoothly off the tongue with elegance.

2. “L’habit ne fait pas le moine”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress1 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

“L’habit ne fait pas le moine” translates to “The vestment does not make the monk.” Its significance, though, is that just because a monk is wearing a renunciate’s robe, it doesn’t mean that the monk is sincere in his intentions. The English equivalent would be, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” The sense of the phrase implies that appearances can sometimes mislead one’s better judgement. The philosopher Plutarch came up with his own rendition of this phrase. It goes, “A beard does not make a philosopher,” which in French is translated as “La barbe ne fait pas le philosophe.”

3. “Chacun voit midi à sa porte”

Chacun voit midi à sa porte” is a beautiful expression which, while being somewhat unfortunate, is nevertheless quite true. The literal translation goes, “Everyone sees noon at his doorstep.” It means that every individual is occupied, first and foremost, with his or her own personal interests, and each feels their subjective opinions as objective truths. When such tenacity occurs, the French would say, “Inutile de discuter,” it is “useless to argue,” since every man feels he is right. Innumerable are the contexts in which this phrase may be used, and it would impress a French person to hear it from a foreigner.

4. “Mieux vaut prévenir que guérir”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress3 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

Mieux vaut prévenir que guérir” is another widely used proverb, understood by all French natives. It literally means, “It is better to prevent than to heal,” and interestingly, it’s the first principle of traditional Chinese healing practices. The French are very attached to this saying, dearly using it on a regular basis. It is not surprising, however, since health is first priority – “Et d’abord, ne pas nuire!” (First, do no harm!), they say. The sense of the proverb is such that it is better to take the necessary precautions to prevent a sickness, than to have to treat and heal this sickness. It is sens commun (common sense) in France, undoing the dictum, “Ignorance is bliss,” for the bliss in this case is to not be ignorant, but preventive.

5. “Petit a petit, l’oiseau fait son nid”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress4 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

“Petit a petit, l’oiseau fait son nid” is a charming little phrase that’s widely applied, and translated as, “Little by little, the bird makes its nest.” This proverb designates patience and perseverance. It can be used in many situations, particularly in the process of something not yet accomplished, as opposed to something that has been accomplished. And only then, after much time and effort, one might also say (with a pronounced sense of triumph and achievement), “Paris ne s’est pas fait en un jour!” (“Paris was not made in a day!”)

6. “Qui court deux lievres a la fois, n’en prend aucun”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress5 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

“Qui court deux lievres a la fois, n’en prend aucun” is a marvel not only in its implication, but in its wonderful imagery. It is translated as, “Who runs after two hares at the same time, catches none.” The meaning is that an individual ought to concentrate on one task at a time with optimal attention, if that task is to be well done. If a person does two things at once, the likelihood is that the end result will be anchored in mediocrity, due to a half-hearted effort. Something well done is something done with total concentration. This proverb offers an important reminder, so it can be wisely applied to many various situations.

7. “Qui n’avance pas, recule”

“Qui n’avance pas, recule” is a truth that none can counter. It is translated as, “Who does not move forward, recedes”. There can be no standstill in life, only evolution or devolution. Either one evolves, or one devolves. To be stagnant is the same as to recede. “Expect poison from stagnant water,” the English poet William Wordsworth once wrote. This proverb can be used as encouragement in the need to persevere. It may be persistently employed, given its truth content.

8. “Quand on a pas ce que l’on aime, il faut aimer ce que l’on a”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress7 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

“Quand on a pas ce que l’on aime, il faut aimer ce que l’on a” is a beautifully worded proverb that’s full of good sense. Its translation is, “When one doesn’t have the things that one loves, one must love what one has.” It reflects the saying, “Want what you have and you’ll have what you want,” which is to say that you must be content with what you currently hold, however little it may be. In this way, we avoid the burden of wanting things out of reach, and become grateful for the things that are before us now. If you say this proverb at the appropriate time, the French will surely be intrigued by such wisdom, and perhaps commend you for it with a “perrier” or a glass of wine.

9. “Il n’y a pas plus sourd que celui qui ne veut pas entendre”

commonly applied french proverbs flair beauty impress8 9 Beautiful French Proverbs That Will Impress

Il n’y a pas plus sourd que celui qui ne veut pas entendre” is a proverb “qui court les rues” (that runs the streets, meaning it’s widely used). It translates as, “No one is as deaf as the one who does not want to listen.” This would be the case for very stubborn people, or those so caught up in their own self-assertions that they pay no heed to the advice or opinions of others. The French, especially Parisians, are intellectual ringleaders. You might say that in Paris, debating is almost a sport. When a debate leads nowhere because of the tenacity on both sides, this proverb is likely to be used by either one or both of the parties (if each believe they are right).

So there you have it – nine proverbs to refine and give flair to your use of the French language. If you keep these sayings in your repertoire intellectuel (intellectual repertoire), you will find your ability to impress the French significantly increased.

Do not forget that these are “widely applied” French proverbs, and their usage is very flexible. Within the space of a day, many occurrences would arise in which you could slip one or more of these in your day-to-day conversations. They will have instantaneous chameleon effect, because French people would (usually) only expect a French native to say these. You saying one will either amaze the French person, or give off the impression that you have refined mastery of the language. It is a cunning way to gain a foothold in French conversational territory, which is why rehearsing and applying them will only bring greater eloquence, clarity and cordial magnetism in your meetings with the French.

SOURCE:  FluentU
French Immersion Online HERE

How to be Parisian? Move to Paris

Reblog: Written by Hadley Freeman for the Guardian:

Real French women don’t resemble the stereotype peddled by endless guides to looking chic, having lovers, eating baguettes and staying thin

Parisian woman near the Eiffel Tower
Your GCSE French teacher probably didn’t look like this … Photograph: Alija/Getty Images

I’ve noticed that yet another book has come out telling us that we should all be more like Parisian women. To save me reading this book, can you tell me how to be more Parisian?

Pas de problème, mon petit chou-fleur! After French Women Don’t Get Fat, French Women Don’t Get Facelifts, French Children Don’t Throw Food, Like a French Woman and French Women Are Just Better Than You So Shut Up About the War Already Because They’re Thinner and Sexier and We All Know What’s Really Important So Nyahhh!, yet another crucial addition to this delightful genre arrives called How To Be Parisian Wherever You are.

I’m afraid I haven’t read the whole thing due to a severe allergy to books that are predicated on national stereotypes so tired they would make the producers of ’Allo ’Allo! balk, but I did read an extract (hard-working journalist, me), and I can tell you, this book looks pretty spectacular. It was written, we are told, by “four stunning and accomplished French women … [who are] talented bohemian iconoclasts”. Coo! Stunning andiconoclastic? That is so Frrrrench, n’est-ce pas? So let’s see how this “iconoclastic” book shatters some French stereotypes. Well, we are told that French women “take their scooter to buy a baguette”. Take their scooter to buy a baguette? I’m sorry, is this a book about how to be French or a GCSE Tricolore text book? What next, “Monsieur Dupont habite à la Rochelle et il aime aller a la piscine”? Anyway, carry on. What else do we clueless non-Frenchies have to do to be more like French women, please?

“Smoke like a chimney on the way to the countryside to get some fresh air.”

“Don’t feel guilty [about infidelity].”

“Cheat on your lover with your boyfriend.”

Wow, this book really blows the lid on French stereotypes, doesn’t it? Totally doesn’t rehash them at all. Mon Dieu! Ooh la la! Nicole Papa! Du vin, du pain, du Boursin!

Admittedly, I am not Parisian. However, half my family is, I lived in Paris for a while after university “studying very hard” (dossing about with my cousins) and my parents still live there, so I have some experience of the place. But the funny thing is, in all my life of being related to Parisians, visiting Parisians and eating baguettes with Parisians on their scooters, I have never once come across a single woman who fits the stereotype peddled by these books. These idiotic guides present an image that is about as representative of Parisians as Four Weddings and a Funeral is of the average Brit. Are there skinny, scary women in Paris who have lots of lovers and always look fabulous? Yes, probably, and I’m guessing they all live in the same tiny square mile off the Boulevard Saint-Germain. But I have never come across any of them, and I used to cover Paris fashion week. It is perhaps the greatest trick France has ever pulled, constantly telling the world how innately chic its people are, while actually not being especially different from any other country. After all, there are rich, skinny, scary women in all major cities. But it is only Paris where we’re led to believe that this tiny demographic is representative of the entire populace.

Seriously, who buys these books? Have they never seen a French person? Do they just forget that their French GCSE teacher didn’t look and dress like Catherine Deneuve? Or are they so filled with self-loathing that they’re willing to cling on to whatever ridiculous lie is peddled by the publishing industry as long as it comes with a promise of self-improvement? Je ne sais pas, c’est très bizarre (see? This “being French” lark is un morceau de gâteau.) We all know that national stereotypes exist, but whoever would have thought that an entire publishing genre could be built upon them? But I appreciate that the publishing industry is struggling, so to help them on their way, here are some other titles that might be worth pursuing:

1. How to Get the Best Sunlounger Round the Hotel Pool Like a German.

2. How to Say ‘I’m WAWKIN’ here, I’m WAWKIN’!’ Like a New Yorker.

3. How to Throw a Shrimp on the Barbie like an Australian.

I’m going to stop now because each of these ideas is gold and I can’t just give them away, you know. The point is, there is nothing inherently chic about Parisians – they just happen to speak French, which is a very chic-sounding language, and they live in a stonkingly beautiful city (which they only saved by being cheese-eating surrender monkeys to the Nazis – I wonder if any of these “How to be Parisian” guides give any tips about how to acquiesce most stylishly to invading fascists? Yeah. I went there.) But as there seems to be some sort of appetite for this nonsense, here – EXCLUSIVELY!!!! – is my guide to being Parisian:

Move to Paris.

Speak French.

The End.

Au revoir, mes petits! Je vous embrasse, ooh la la!