We finally got off our bottoms and decided it was time to get back to our French lessons.
Part of the problem of living out in the middle of nowhere is, there's no one to talk to.
If we lived in town we'd have neighbors. We'd have people to talk to. We'd be able, or rather forced, to practice our French.
But we can't live in town with our big dogs.
So, the only people we have to talk to are our British neighbors.
That doesn't help our French – although we'd probably be able to understand their French…..
We joined a conversation group.
So far there is us, (American), a British couple, two French women, a French man and a French high school girl.
We are all supposed to talk to each other, in the 'other' language.
I speak to Marie in French; she corrects and helps me.
Then she continues the conversation in English; I help and correct her.
Amazingly enough, it seems to work. And it's a lot more fun than doing verb conjugations.
It gets really confusing, when we have to translate American into British. Most English taught here is British English. Our struggling new French friends were about ready to give up when they realized that, not only are there different American and British words for things, when the words are the same, they're most often pronounced differently.
After the first evening, there is one universal truth that we all agreed on:
It's much easier to pronounce another language correctly in your own mind than it is to make your mouth do it properly out loud.
That's why I talk to myself. I understand me. In all languages.
On to the food….
I thought one last butternut squash recipe for the season – in honor of American Thanksgiving tomorrow.
Butternut squash, onions and sage, fried to a golden brown… A simple preparation for this savory fall vegetable. Finish with a bit of fresh pepper and sea salt.
Fried Butternut Squash
12oz (350gr) butternut squash 2 – 3 cups small chunks
10 – 12 fresh sage leaves
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp butter
Slice butternut squash, (.5", 1.25cm) then cut into bite-size cubes. Roughly chop onions. Heat butter and oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add squash, onions and sauté 10 – 15 minutes, until squash is nicely browned. Snip the sage leaves into large pieces if using fresh. Sprinkle squash with sage, paprika and sauté 5 minutes longer. Serve.
Happy Turkey Day!