The Second Half of March

We are more than halfway through March, thank goodness. I’ve always hated this month and can’t wait for it to be over. Last year, my car broke down in March and I had to pay 1200 € to fix it. That was nothing compared to the awful tragedy that happened this March though. I lost a friend on Monday and the anniversary of David’s and my PACS will become the anniversary of his death.

Mid-March also means it’s the end of the trêve hivernale. Now landlords are able to evict tenants if they haven’t paid rent.  With a few exceptions, there are no evictions between November 1st and March 15th, or between 9pm and 6 am, or even on Sundays or federal holidays in France.

Today is, of course, another national strike all over France to complain about Sarko and the government, rising unemployment, the high cost of living, education reforms, etc. etc. etc. Luckily I don’t work on Thursdays anyway, plus I’m staying in bed all day with a cold, so it doesn’t really affect me.

Tomorrow France reactivates its border checks for all land and air crossings because of the NATO summit that will take place the first weekend of April. (France is rejoining NATO as a full member since De Gaulle withdrew membership in 1966.) Between March 20 and April 5, you will have to show your passport and/or carte de séjour to get back into the country. Sarko, Merkel and “Barak Obama” (as the immigration.gouv.fr’s website says) will be in Strasbourg for the summit, so security is really tight.

This week is la Semaine de la Langue Française in France. The 10 mots pour demain are: ailleurs, capteur, claire de terre, clic, compatible, désirer, genome, perenne, transformer, and vision. March 20 is the Journée internationale de la Francophonie which is celebrated by French-speakers on 5 continents. Remember in the French-speaking world, there are only 6 continents total as North America and South America are just l’Amérique.

March 29 begins l’heure d’été in most of Europe. I was liking only being a mere 5 hours difference from Michigan, but I guess I’ll have to get used to 6 hours again.

And then it will be April! Sweet, glorious, not March, maybe rainy but hopefully sunny, warmer than now April.

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  • http://davidsswamp.blogspot.com/ David

    5 continents, not 6… ;-)
    By the way, I never understood what was the 7th continent according to the US… Atlantis?

    Davids last blog post..I haven’t done this in a while I think.

  • http://davidsswamp.blogspot.com David

    5 continents, not 6… ;-)
    By the way, I never understood what was the 7th continent according to the US… Atlantis?

    Davids last blog post..I haven’t done this in a while I think.

  • http://www.ielanguages.com Jennie Wagner

    I’ve always seen it in French publications as Amérique, Afrique, Asie, Europe, Océanie, and Antarctique. Do they not count Antarctica anymore? Or are Europe and Asia considered one like N & S America?

    The 7 continents are North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia (some people say Oceania), and Antarctica.

  • http://www.ielanguages.com Jennie

    I’ve always seen it in French publications as Amérique, Afrique, Asie, Europe, Océanie, and Antarctique. Do they not count Antarctica anymore? Or are Europe and Asia considered one like N & S America?

    The 7 continents are North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia (some people say Oceania), and Antarctica.

  • http://unautrejp.blogspot.com/ Justin

    Hey Jennie, sorry to hear about the lose of your professor. Instead of thinking of your PACS anniversary as the anniversary of his death, instead use it as a day to celebrate his life. Matt did help enhance your love of all things French, so celebrate that fact with your wonderful French PACSé, David. (what is the word for someone you are PACSed to…?)

    Thanks for the info on the border checks… I will need to make sure I keep my IDs close for a while.

    Oh, and I too cannot wait for April to come!

    Take care,
    Justin

    Justins last blog post..Some websites I use in France…

  • http://unautrejp.blogspot.com Justin

    Hey Jennie, sorry to hear about the lose of your professor. Instead of thinking of your PACS anniversary as the anniversary of his death, instead use it as a day to celebrate his life. Matt did help enhance your love of all things French, so celebrate that fact with your wonderful French PACSé, David. (what is the word for someone you are PACSed to…?)

    Thanks for the info on the border checks… I will need to make sure I keep my IDs close for a while.

    Oh, and I too cannot wait for April to come!

    Take care,
    Justin

    Justins last blog post..Some websites I use in France…

  • http://unautrejp.blogspot.com/ Justin

    ick… lose = loss
    My English is slowly fading as the weeks go on… too much FRENCH!

    Justins last blog post..Some websites I use in France…

  • http://unautrejp.blogspot.com Justin

    ick… lose = loss
    My English is slowly fading as the weeks go on… too much FRENCH!

    Justins last blog post..Some websites I use in France…

  • http://ausoleillevant.blogspot.com/ Soleil

    Hey Jennie, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your friend and mentor. I agree with Justin that you should try to think of your PACS day/anniversary of his passing as a celebration of his life and work and everything he gave to you and his other students.

    I definitely get what you mean about not liking some months. Bad things happen in July for me. Too bad that’s when my birthday is too…. I feel like it should just be wiped off the calendar and then I wouldn’t have to worry about it anymore.

    Soleils last blog post..

  • http://ausoleillevant.blogspot.com Soleil

    Hey Jennie, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your friend and mentor. I agree with Justin that you should try to think of your PACS day/anniversary of his passing as a celebration of his life and work and everything he gave to you and his other students.

    I definitely get what you mean about not liking some months. Bad things happen in July for me. Too bad that’s when my birthday is too…. I feel like it should just be wiped off the calendar and then I wouldn’t have to worry about it anymore.

    Soleils last blog post..

  • http://davidsswamp.blogspot.com/ David

    Jennie,

    In France, we don’t consider Antarctica as a continent, at least we didn’t when I learned about continents when I grew up.

    Davids last blog post..I haven’t done this in a while I think.

  • http://davidsswamp.blogspot.com David

    Jennie,

    In France, we don’t consider Antarctica as a continent, at least we didn’t when I learned about continents when I grew up.

    Davids last blog post..I haven’t done this in a while I think.

  • http://www.franceprofonde.blogspot.com/ Betty C.

    I pretty much hate February and March, so this is a tough time of year. I have the first week of April off (my only school holiday other than Christmas) so I can’t wait for that month to start.

    I’m adding you to Google Reader to better keep up, BTW. I really like your comment about smiling, and I’m interested in keeping in touch with more teachers.

    Betty C.s last blog post..What’s so funny ’bout peace, smiles and understanding?

  • http://www.franceprofonde.blogspot.com Betty C.

    I pretty much hate February and March, so this is a tough time of year. I have the first week of April off (my only school holiday other than Christmas) so I can’t wait for that month to start.

    I’m adding you to Google Reader to better keep up, BTW. I really like your comment about smiling, and I’m interested in keeping in touch with more teachers.

    Betty C.s last blog post..What’s so funny ’bout peace, smiles and understanding?

  • http://www.correresmidestino.com/ Zhu

    Oh great, we are flying to France on the 2nd… hope it won’t be too difficult. See, I’m still French, I’m complaining! :lol:

    Isn’t March a bit too early for the beginning of the demonstration season?

    Zhus last blog post..The Best & The Worst

  • http://www.correresmidestino.com Zhu

    Oh great, we are flying to France on the 2nd… hope it won’t be too difficult. See, I’m still French, I’m complaining! :lol:

    Isn’t March a bit too early for the beginning of the demonstration season?

    Zhus last blog post..The Best & The Worst

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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 January 2010, I started focusing more on teaching and learning languages in general. 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 the university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling (though now my trips are usually in Australia) and being an American abroad.

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