Skip to content

No. 88: French People Who Speak French Slowly

IMG_2804Oh, how I love when the French speak French slowly. Every time I leave Paris and travel around France my confidence gets a boost when I realize I actually know more French than the hard knock Parisians have led me to believe.

It is such a relief to be on the Island of Martinique, the French territory off the coast of Venezuela.  Obviously it’s a relief for many of the normal reasons: work stress, school stress, family dysfunction, etc. The whole tropical-island-paradise-thing certainly helps out with that. But the real relief is being removed from cranky French people, who definitely don’t count patience as a virtue, and wouldn’t dare crack a smile if their life depended on it.

It is a welcome respite to be in a part of France where French isn’t the chosen language, but the colonial language, and where the people are quite happy to have you stumble along in French, so pleased that you are trying.

The Martiniquais don’t seem to give a rat’s patootie if you make a mistake. Their patience is immense, their smiles are large and they seem to have all the time in the world to let you mangle their not so precious language.

Most importantly they speak S-L-O-W-L-Y. And slow is so very appreciated by us not so fluent speakers.



5 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sarah Larson #

    Martinique is sounding better all the time! Joyeux Noel to all of the family!

    December 22, 2013
  2. Be assured that the Parisians are no more typical of the French in general than Londoners represent the British!
    Come down our way, folk are lovely in the Languedoc!
    And we paint our houses in bright colours

    December 27, 2013
    • Sounds nice. We made a short trip to the Languedoc a few summers back. Unfortunately it rained the whole time. The people were very friendly indeed. There are quite a few Brits who have bought houses there, non?

      December 28, 2013
      • Not too many yet! We chose our village because it is still la France profonde and hasn’t been commercialised & is too quiet for most of the Dutch,Brits and Germans who are househunting here.

        As for raining, you were very unlucky, it is usually 45 degrees on our terrace in August! Usually it rains only at night, which keeps things green but doesn’t affect your plans for the day

        Haven’t decided what colour to paint the house yet, need to address external pipework first, and one or two other little matters…….
        If you like wild beaches the top end of the 7km beach at Argeles is pretty fab

        December 28, 2013
      • Sounds like an ideal spot you’ve found. 45 degrees is crazy hot!

        How exciting for you and your family to have this opportunity. It seems like you have the right attitude for a huge renovation like this. The journey is as important as the finished project.

        December 30, 2013

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: