Living France - - LANGUAGE -

Mean­ing ‘car­pet’, ‘rug’ or ‘mat’, tapis is used in a range of French ex­pres­sions. Met­tre qch sur le tapis means ‘to put on the ta­ble’/‘to bring some­thing up’. Aller au tapis means ‘to fall apart’/‘go to pot’ and is of­ten used in sport when a team/player loses.


Fans of the French lan­guage will en­joy Les Fran­co­phonies in the city of Li­mo­ges, Li­mousin from 21 Septem­ber to 1 Oc­to­ber. The an­nual fes­ti­val cel­e­brates the French-speak­ing world, with a par­tic­u­lar fo­cus on Africa, through all forms of ex­pres­sion from dance and the­atre to mu­sic and read­ings. The line-up favours a blend of gen­res; an ap­proach that ap­plies to the en­tire fes­ti­val pro­gramme of street per­for­mances, con­certs and the­atre plus food and drink stalls that all im­bue the city with a lively at­mos­phere. les­fran­co­phonies.fr One of my favourite French words is la chauve-souris (a bat that flies at dusk). I first learned this word from Monique, a farmer’s wife when we used to stay with them in Char­ente from 1990. Our el­dest daugh­ter was mar­ried in 1995 and she sent us a bot­tle of cham­pagne to bury in the gar­den on the wed­ding day. The old Charentaise cus­tom was to dig it up when the first child was born, which we duly did and still have the photo to prove it!

Glenys Alice El­lis from Bolton, Lan­cashire

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