<!–:en–>Going French part 4<!–:–>

In the old days you used maps to get, as they say, from A to B. Now you have electronic help to get to your destination. Up there in the sky is the satellite guiding you safely on your route. At least, that’s what you hope.

Dear [FRIEND], Now we were on our way to the hotel where we were to spend a whole week. As we had decided this trip we would avoid all motorways, our pace was leisurely and that way you see more of France. When you arrive at a small village, a sign rather like an emoticon lights  up and displays a smiling face if you are doing the right speed and a distinct frown if you exceed the speed limit.

I said that you see more of France but you don’t see much of the French as you pass through ghostlike villages. Where are they all, I wonder? The only potential moment of drama was when travelling through the city of Reims, I found myself driving along a really clear lane only to be reminded by a very large hooting sound from behind that I was on the tramway. Now, you don’t argue with trams – they’re very big.  Of course we were helped on finding our way through difficult road systems by our sat nav.

The trouble with Jane (that’s what we call her) is that she’s casino not always up to date. She’ll ask you to turn right sometimes into a no entry road, she’ll ask you to do a u turn in the middle of a dual carriageway and on another occasion direct you straight into a stretch of farmland. But she got us within spitting distance of the town we wanted.

The only problem was that she had a sort of a breakdown and started talking gibberish trying to find the entry to the narrow road that led up to our hotel. I parked in a large car park and went in search of a local. I asked (in my very best French) a little old lady, peacefully pruning the roses in her front garden for directions and she replied in the clearest French possible, even scratching a little map on a concrete post to make sure I followed. It worked.

Dear [FRIEND], if you enjoy Alan”s strories and essays you should get a copy of his English Grammar Through Stories by Alan Townend, co-founder of english-test.net

I saw then why Jane was in such a state. It was a very sharp bend leading into a track that opened up into a good road surrounded on both sides with vines dripping with grapes and there like a small oasis was the hotel in a sea of vineyards. This was the heart of Alsace where wine of course is king and food is queen.

If you’re really lost on your journey and you actually have no idea which way to turn, straight on. left or right, there is invariably help at hand. And that can be sought from a fellow human being.

Dear [FRIEND], if you enjoy Alan”s strories and essays you should get a copy of his English Grammar Through Stories by Alan Townend, co-founder of english-test.net

As always, we look forward to hearing your thoughts on Alan”s latest piece. If you any questions or comments, please post them on the forum here: Going French, Part 4


6 thoughts on “<!–:en–>Going French part 4<!–:–>

  1. Pingback: Going French part 5 | English-Team Blog

  2. Thank you for this essay. It feels as if I am actually in the midst of France sightseeing the the beauty of the country.

  3. It is a good way to learn what practices and rules are observed at different hotels but it will be more effective if everyone is actually taking part in the trip. A good story.

  4. i was just wondering if any one know a good place,website to study french ?