Friday, 27 June 2014

MANON: I LIVE IN FRANCE!

Another in our fab series of readers around the world... Manon describes what it's like to live in the Normandy region of France!

Manon says:
I think my name must appear strange to you, but it is very common in France! I am thirteen and I live in a small village in the countryside in Normandy, about two hours from Paris. My home is a typical Normandy house, peaceful and surrounded by trees. The weather here is undecided, like the French! One day it is sunny, one day rainy, then sunny again! My school is right next to the village, and the hours are long - some days I am not home until 6pm. I would love to finish school at 2pm or 3pm as some students in UK do!
There are no uniforms, which is good, as we can show our style. It is not strict, or rather it depends on the teachers! My favourite subject is French - my teacher is so nice! As a hobby, I go horse-riding. I can't describe how much I love this sport! I do not compete as this might be too stressful… but I love the freedom of a good, headlong gallop! Horse riding for me, is synonymous with freedom. I like Coco from the Cathy Cassidy books because of this! I also love reading, of course!

The French are known for perfume, haute couture, wine... and food! We have many specialities, like cheese - Camembert, Brie, Saint-Paulain, Roquefort - pastries - macarons, apple turnovers, strawberry tarts - and main dishes such as pot-au-feu, ratatouille and rilettes - yum! And yes, we eat frogs too - I know, original, isn't it? If there is something that everyone loves here, it is the bread. Bread is sacred! Everyone has their preferences: crunchy, soft, traditional, sweet... and there is also pain-au chocolat, croissants and chocolatines! The bread is made freshly every morning and sold throughout the day.

I would say that the French often express themselves with facial expressions and with their hands. We are known to be 'warm blooded' - that is to say, impulsive! Concerning clothes, French style is characterised by its simplicity. A polo top, a Breton top (we call this a mariniere - a striped sailor top)  and of course the very stylish  beret are favourite French accessories. Paris is known worldwide as a capital of fashion and luxury with prestigious fashion and designers like Chanel, Christian Dior and Jean-Paul Gaultier.

France is very patriotic! We have a national holiday on July 14th for Bastille Day, and we celebrate the Festival De Cannes with all its stars and red carpet moments... glamorous! It is true that I envy especially the self-control and calm of the British, but the French are proud of their history and have a strong personality. I am very proud to be French!

Cathy says:
Wow... I love Manon's account of life in France and really admire her brilliant English! I love France too, and I'm thrilled to be returning in November for the Montreuil Book Festival. My French readers are AWESOME! Have you been to France, or would you like to write about YOUR country for DREAMCATCHER? COMMENT BELOW to tell us!

13 comments:

  1. Most European people I've met have brilliant English. We had German exchange students once and their English was amazing. I mean, us Brits rarely become fluent in French or German but it seems the norm to be multilingual for them. French weather sounds a lot like British weather which is probably why a lot of people emigrate to France (I certainly wouldn't mind moving to France with the delicious cuisine they offer and Belgium - with its famous chocolate - being so close by!) I thought the cheese was called Camembert, not Camenbert. Is it a different type of cheese? I really want a croissant or 4 now! July 14th is my birthday. Not really pertinent, I just thought I'd mention it. Don't worry Manon - self control and calm is not something us Brits excel at! From things like binge drinking to stuff like the riots in England a few years back...I would not say that shows any self control or calmness. The days of "stiff upper lip" are pretty much gone.
    Blue. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Spelling mistake is mine, not Manon's… corrected now. Thanks Blue! xxx

      Delete
  2. It's funny because I just got summer holidays yesterday ( I FINALLY finished national school ) and I am still learning!!! Emma :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am half french so i have been to France many times (to my grandparents in normandy too) however i live in the uk in Aberford. I am also half russian but have never been to Russia and only know a few words. Blondie

    ReplyDelete
  4. I actually went to France on holiday during Easter. It really is amazing! Especially the Eiffel Tower. I never actually knew Eiffel was a person till I saw the statue below it. I really like the french language and the accent. My spanish teacher is from a french speaking country in the caribbean so I am very familiar with the accent and a little bit of the language. I do like the sun in France too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  5. I've had frog's legs before in a French restaurant in Canada... it surprisingly tasted quite nice :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, Starry : you're very nice, but if I would be lucky to return to Canada (I lived there for 3 years when I was young), I would go in a typical Canadian restaurant for stuffing me of canadian poutine !!!! I LOVE this dish. I want to live in Canada later ! :D

      Delete
  6. I would really love to visit France if I had the chance. The country sounds amazing and actually no uniforms? Who would have imagined that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Chloe, no uniforms in France, but the debate is still relevant : one side is good, but not the other, because the uniform erases social inequalities, and place students at the same level. So personally, it wouldn't be a problem for me to wear an uniform ^^

      Delete
  7. I´ve been in France twice and I have to say that Manon´s right to be a proud Frenchwoman... France is such a beautiful country!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Cinka !
      I prefer the south of France north, because the change is radically different, and for all : the houses, the landscapes, the habits...
      And the sun is more present in the south !

      Delete
  8. I would really like to go to Paris and learn more about the history of france and of course, eat MILLIONS of croissants!!! xoxo

    ReplyDelete