There we all were, at Laroque Chorale last week, singing away, when our Director begged us to sing with ‘plus de feeling’. I tried not to laugh, then realised everyone else was taking her words to heart, and agreeing a bit more ‘feeling’ wouldn’t come amiss.
It sometimes feels as if there really is no need to learn French – so many English words are an everyday part of life here now.
So let’s just imagine……what if, instead of being a retired Englishwoman of a certain age, I were instead a thrusting young 30-something French business woman? What if, instead of being curled up with a gardening magazine, I preferred something more like ‘OK’, with stories of some C list celeb. – ‘un people’? Perhaps my life might be more like this……
‘I always struggle to get up in the morning from the comfort of my kingsize. But it has to be done. I dress quickly, pulling on my teeshirt, my shorts, and my pull, to take the 5 dogs out. Didn’t you know I like dogs? I’ve got a fox terrier, a labrador, a pointer, a setter, a york shire (sic) and a border colley (sic), all pedigree, of course. We go jogging every day, with me plugged into my walkman. At the week-end, when we have more time, I do a bit of cross country.
After a shower, there’s only time for a quick bite: toast, corn flakes, something like that. Just occasionally, for a treat, I’ll have a cooked breakfast, like the English do.
Then I have to get to work. I’m a businesswoman, specialising in marketing, and first thing every morning, I have a briefing with the boss. We’re not doing so well in the recession, and we’re no longer a blue chip company.
I’ve got a very short deadline for an interesting new deal, but we’ve got awful IT problems. E-mail, the internet, we can’t log in or download properly- you name it. IT support’s always here trying to debug things.
We’ve just done a publicity drive via a mailing, but the feedback was awful, and my manager’s not pleased. She’s the one stuck with the cash-flow problems. We all had a meeting, a real brainstorming session, and we’re working on a new business plan with a view to downsizing. I find it hard to offer leadership: I’ve no killer instinct. Frankly, I think I’m a bit of a has-been…..
Towards 12.00, I really need to relax. So off to the gym for a spot of fitness training: stretching, and a bit of a work-out with a punching ball.
I’m starving after that. I ring my manager to ask her to join me at a snack bar, but she’s a snob, and won’t come. But I love fast food! Hamburgers, hot dogs, nuggets – even a sandwich – bring them on! And after that, an ice cream or a banana split, all washed down with a milk-shake. No diet for me!
I hardly have time to get to the shopping centre. But I prefer self service and luckily the shops here don’t shut at lunchtime – they do non-stop shopping. Sometimes I go to the hard discount stores too, like Aldi, but not today.
Back to work for more of the same, then home for a well-earned break. A cup of tea, some cake, and half an hour with my book, the new science fiction, a best seller.
Then my mobile rings. It’s Marianne! She’s got tickets for the new one man show this evening: she must have been making eyes at the man in the box office. Me, I’d prefer a film, a thriller, or something with a happy end. Or even a night club with a spot of dancing…… Still, a night out’s a night out.
Marianne’ll be looking gorgeous as usual, with her look designer. I get out my vanity case, and put my make-up on, the blush, the eye liner, the lipstick. What to wear with my blue-jean? And I’m not even clean yet. Too much to think about! I can’t stay here to chat to you any longer. Bye-bye’