(guest post from Dianne)
In the (near) 4 years that I've lived in France, I've never really tried to fit-in or "become French." Don't get me wrong, I love my life here but it's taken a lot of time, hard work and struggle to get to this point. So maybe my nonchalance has helped me in overcoming the hardships that often present themselves to ex-pats.
My dear husband believes that I've adjusted and "integrated" well into French society, despite my meager command of the language. Perhaps to many, having a job is the sign that you have "arrived" but paying the bills hardly bridges any sort of cultural divide, in my opinion.
"BOF.... " - Maya
Even though my road to settling in has been bumpy, I do know someone who's adjusted swimmingly to life in France and that's my dog, Maya.
Since the day we arrived, Maya has been enchanted with France. The weather suits her and the air is cleaner (than Taipei, where we moved from and where I first met Maya). The French are crazy dog friendly and she's incredibly spoiled by friends and family alike. So, comparing our experiences, I'd have to say that Maya has fared better.
Here are 5 reasons why my dog is more French than I am:
2. She takes a really long time to get to know people but she is quite polite and will always greet you when you come home or wake up, and see you off and wish you a good day when you leave. She is well-behaved at a restaurant and enjoys chillin' at the cafe. She also likes people watching, so she fits very well into the local sidewalk cafe culture here.
3. She's like most of the French when it comes to the weather. They flock to the parks, beaches and waterfronts at the first hint of sun. For Maya, from the moment the sun shows it's face, she's out to greet it.
4. She has more French friends than I do. Even if they are of the canine and feline variety, she still statistically outnumbers me in this department. Hands down.
5. She loves French cuisine (and snack foods as well) and she also loves to be in the kitchen, where I am often tripping over her because she's waiting for magical goodies to fall out of the sky. On separate occasions, she has mischeviously rewarded herself with a box of chocolatines, a tray of brownies, an endless amount of bread (from brioche to weapon-worthy baguettes to plain old sliced loaf bread), 200 g of nutella, half a liter of olive oil, leftover casoulet, not to mention the not-quite French cuisine stuff recovered from the dustbin like dirty diapers, rotted meat, dangerously brittle cooked bones...
In fact, we've learned to stop leaving leftovers in the oven because Maya's figured out how to open the oven door and use it for what is wasn't designed for - a step stool to get onto the kitchen counter. I'm tellin' ya, "dog-proofing" is really just a professional term for "outsmarting the dog." Yes, it comes to that in my household.
Maya is part of our family and is constantly pushing the boundaries of what she can get away with. And that's why I love her. And that's why having a dog is the cat's pajamas ;)
Editor's note: No treats were used during the photos shoots. Maya is a natural born talent.
Bonjour et Bienvenue!
Thank you for stopping by for a spell!
I am a 40-something year old American woman. Born in Texas, raised in Las Vegas!
Frenchified for Life
is a fabulous little lifestyle blog about truly embracing French life!
My intent is to simply inspire you to create something unique and beautiful in your everyday life. The French have this wonderful and annoying habit of seeing the world through rose colored glasses, might as well learn something from them!
That said, I lift my glass to you!
By the way, I mention the name Cachou (or The Cash) a lot, I'm referring to her...