Cultural Differences: Screens

So screens on windows just don’t exist in France. For someone who has an irrational fear of bugs that sting, this is a big problem. I don’t like to keep the windows open even when it’s warm outside because I hate how many bugs get in the apartment, and also because I’m afraid the cat will jump out and die (we live on the 4th floor / 3ème étage). So imagine my excitement when I found a moustiquaire at Gifi for only 4 €. However, the French definition of screen is this:

Cloth netting and velcro! woohoo!

You stick the velcro on the outside of the window frame, and attach the netting to it. Easy, right? Well, not so easy when you can’t go outside and push on the netting. I had to bunch it up and fold it over to get it to stick, so I hope that it holds. We can no longer close the shutters, but at least it’s keeping the bugs out!


I know it won’t hold if Canaille decides to jump since he’s kinda heavy (he’s not fat, he just has a big belly!) but at least it gives him something to watch at night when the bugs are clinging to the netting and trying to get in.

He doesn’t look too fat, does he?

Books for 2 €

For those who like to read, but are dirt poor like me, Librio publishes books for 1-3 € each. You can find several famous French works, as well as English works translated into French. (But check Project Gutenberg first if you want to download non-copyright protected works for free.) Their collections include literature, poetry, theatre, […]

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Nobody studies French Literature in High School

I recently found out that College Board is going to cancel the AP exam in French Literature as of 2009. Also gone are Latin Literature and Italian Language & Culture. German Literature has been gone for 10 years, so that leaves us with Chinese Language & Culture, French Language, German Language, Japanese Language & Culture, […]

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What I did on my 26th birthday

On Sunday, I went to bed at 2 am. Got up at 5:30 am. Took Jessica to the airport in Geneva (David drove). Came home and went back to bed. Got up again at 11 am. Headed to the medieval festival in Andilly with David and Lucy. Watched 1) the French beat the English during […]

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Annecy Events this Summer

May 17: Fête des Arts du Cirque, quartier du Parmelan, 2pm to midnight. May 31: Nordic Walking Découverte, le Pâquier, 10am to 5pm. June 9-14: International Animated Film Festival, everywhere. June 15: Championnat Rhône-Alpes de VTT, les Puisots on the Massif du Semnoz. June 21: Musical Festival, downtown. June 21: Saint Jean bonfire, La Visitation, […]

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Translations

Here are the translations from the real French post. I can honestly say I never learned these expressions from my high school or university books/classes. I only learned them when I moved to France. Elle tire le diable par la queue. = She barely gets by (financially). C’est pas vraiment le Pérou. = It’s nothing […]

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Real French.

If you only learned textbook French in school, could you understand these sentences? All of them are from one page of a thread that I found on a random forum. This is why idioms and slang are an essential part of any language course! Elle tire le diable par la queue. C’est pas vraiment le […]

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Learning languages for free with the internet.

Tip of the day: Use the internet to take advantage of the public domain. Foreign Service Institute Language Courses: Designed and written by the US government but with no copyright protection. You can download the texts (PDF format) and audio files (mp3s) for free. Not all languages are available for download as the site depends […]

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Les Grandes Médiévales d’Andilly

Haute-Savoiers? Haute-Savoiens? People in Haute-Savoie! (And anyone else who is interested…) The annual medieval festival in Andilly will be held May 17 & 18 and May 24 & 25 this year. Price is 17 € a day for adults; 10 € for kids. Andilly is located halfway between Annecy and Geneva. Open 10 am until […]

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Why I love Germany

A German with a sense of humor does exist. I was watching Deutsche Welle last night and it was actually in German instead of English. I swear every time I turn on that channel, people are talking in English… Anyway, there was a report on Moritz Volz (he’s a Fulham footballer/soccer player) and how he […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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