Wednesday, 17 November 2010

NZ???? What?

Ah, those strange little occurrences each day that stick in your mind for a short time and then exit forever. I had one of those today. I went to the University cafeteria/restaurant because for 2 euros I can get a bowl of soup, a yoghurt and a microscopic salad. Good value for money. While I was trying to decide on what combination to choose at the salad bar, I was stopped by a journalist and cameraman. They wanted to interview me about sustainable food and what was on offer in the caf.

I explained I don't speak French very well but they didn't beat a hasty retreat so I gave it a go. They clearly found it entertaining because they kept filming my impromptu french. I explained I was eating less meat, eating more fruit and vegetables, used to grow my own and that the caf always had fruit and vegetables on the menu, just look around. Pretty pathetic really but it was all I could do. Bit of a laugh with all the French folks around who could explain so much better.

The day I got robbed in the metro in Paris I spent part of the evening with Camille giving a police statement in Cafeolait. We were seated by a French woman police person. We had barely got started on the statement, I handed over my passport proactively and was asked what NZ is? Camille was a bit taken aback and replied that it is a country. And what nationality was I, asked the policewoman. Camille shuffled in her seat and tried to explain I was a NZer. How do you spell that? How do you spell Auckland. Hell, what an insult. Camille and I looked at each other incredulously. That policewoman must have been kept indoors all her career.

Tomorrow I am attending my first Symposium. It's being held in Evry - an area I know nothing about and in order to get a lift there with a colleague I must meet her in the centre of Cafeolait at 6.30am. OOOh. Better than trying to make my way there via multiple train connections. We'll spend all day there and on Friday evening the plan is for me to attend a party on a Bateau Mouche on the Seine with some of Victoria's acquaintances who are into politics and human rights and stuff. Should be interesting. I'll have to brave the Metro again- cringe. I don't have a wallet to steal at present (I'm using my makeup purse instead- bit embarassing at the supermarket but it can't be helped).

2 comments: said...

Never a dull moment in the life of Frances. Love you lots mum. Hope your next week goes alright xx

Alison said...

I hope the party on the Seine went well. How could it not have?? I found that most people I met knew a lot about New Zealand, and I even had a Rainbow Warrior apology. (Unofficial of course!) But the horrible women at the Prefecture always looked at me through narrowed eyes when NZ was mentioned. I think they thought it was a country one discovered by falling through the back of a wardrobe!

Post a Comment

I welcome your comments, contributions and feedback.