December 17, 2017

FdSTL Fourth Day of Christmas: Four Chatty Cows

Bon dimanche! It's time for day four where I will extend on yesterday's theme of language. This French cow is probably more interested in his lunch than having a chat, but he's in luck because today we will do all of the talking. Butter, cheese, cream... cows are a very important part of la cuisine française and thus an integral part of the French culture and way of life. It's no wonder that cows often slip into French conversations. Here are four French cow idioms that are sure to make you sound all the more French! 

(really, really)

The Earful Tower with Oliver Gee has become one of my most listened to podcasts. Oliver Gee is an Australian expat in Paris looking to better understand France. Some of my favorite episodes are those that center around language, like this episode where guests share 24 favorite French words. Vachement was the favorite word of Lisa Anselmo, author of My (Part-Time) Paris Life. Note: I haven't had a chance to read this one but is high on my list! ThoughtCo offers a lot more information on this cow inspired word (here). Here is one example they provide of how one might use vachement: Il est vachement bien, ce bouquin. This book is really, really great. 

(click the image for a link to the book)

La vache!
(Holy cow!)

This is another cow phrase I heard on the Earful Tower, and once again ThoughtCo does an amazing job of going more in depth (here). La vache, les français parlent beaucoup de vaches! Holy cow, the French talk a lot about cows! 

Aller à quelqu'un comme un tablier à une vache
(fitting someone like an apron fits a cow)

I just finished Clotilde Dusoulier's book, Edible French. This is a lovely book for lovers of the French language full of food related French idioms and beautiful illustrations by Mélina Josserand. If you need a last minute holiday gift for a francophile in your life, this book would be perfect! Of course she included a cow expression. This was the first time I'd seen this one and I really enjoyed it. J'ai commandé un chemisier sur Internet, mais il me va comme un tablier à une vache. I ordered a blouse online, but it fits me like an apron fits a cow... not so good. :/ 

(click the image for a link to the book)

Parler français comme une vache espagnole
(to speak French like a Spanish cow)

If someone says tu parle français comme une vache espagnole it is definitely less than a compliment. However, with these four French cow idioms in your arsenal I'm sure you'll sound French, even to the French (as Géraldine of Comme Une Française always says!). 

And last but not least, a bonus! If your a fan of La Vache Qui Rit, Laughing Cow Cheese, I think you'll find the story of why the cow is laughing très intéressant. Read the story here

Je suis vachement contente que vous êtes ici.
I am really, really glad that you are here.
Warm wishes from me to you,

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