Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Rural France. You know you're a local when.......

Rural France. You know you're a local when.......

We have now lived in Rural France for over four years and this morning as I went to the town square to buy some bread and was given the fresh bread rather than the bread on the shelf (admittedly the bread on the shelf was only a couple of hours old!)  The realisation hit me,

I am now a local!

I thought about this on the way back to the house and all the other things that make you realise you are a local and no longer a visitor and decided to come up with a check list.

You know you're a local when

1.   At the boulangerie you are given the fresh baguette before they are put on the shelf.

2.   The sun is shining in spring you will still be wearing a sweater and scarf as the tourists         wander around in shorts and t shirts.

3.   At a restaurant you think what a cute dog rather than why is there a dog in the restaurant.

4.   At the market you will think what a big dog rather than why is there a big dog tied up next to the butchers van.

5.   You stop noticing the dog poo on the street.

6.   You no longer practice what you are going to say before you go into the shop.

7.   You know the difference between a boulangerie and a patisserie.

8.   You stop noticing that the street lights get turned off and walking home in the pitch black becomes normal.

9.   You never make the mistake of going to the post office/shop/bank at lunch time.

10.  Everywhere being shut on a Monday becomes normal.

11.  You make sure you know when all the bank holidays are and never run out of milk on those days.

12.  Strangers talking to you and being polite becomes normal and expected and you get upset if a stranger does not say hello as they walk past and think there is something wrong.

13.  In a supermarket, you join the rush to the front of the queue when a new till opens instead of letting the person in front go first.

14.  You know never to shop in a hurry, as the cashier may just get up and go and chat to another person or start a completely different job before returning to you some time later.

15.  You can walk around without photographing everything.

16.  You learn how to drink in a bar. A tiny glass of wine is normal as is almost filling your glass with a spirit then adding a splash of mixer.

17.  You stop marvelling at the price of wine in a supermarket.

18.  You stop marvelling at the variety of cheese in a supermarket.

19. You stop laughing at Easter eggs, advent calendars and any other holiday confectionery still being sold at full price the month after the holiday.

20.  You no longer get angry when driving through a village and the car in front stops to talk to a person walking past.

21.  You are no longer surprised when driving through a village and the car in front stops to talk to a person walking past.

22.  You think nothing of stopping when driving through a village and talking to a person walking past.

23.  When you are driving in the middle of nowhere and can see for miles around, you still stop the car for 3 full seconds at a stop sign.

This is by no means an extensive list, but just a guide, what would you add to this list?

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  1. You stop comparing goods and prices to home...because home is now here

  2. Having lived in the south of Vienne for 18 years I would say your list is spot on. I would add
    The driver behind you will pull out to overtake just as you come up to a blind bend. We won't go any further down the French Drivers road!
    Helen in France

    1. Ha ha ha so true, John still curses every time it happens :)

  3. and this version describes being a local in the USA - it was very true!
    Ex-pats, you know you've gone native when....

    You no longer care that there's a store 30 miles away that stocks Marmite.
    You call shops "stores".
    Writing the month before the day no longer seems weird.
    You throw out junk mail, unopened.
    During visits to the UK to see family you secretly and guiltily start counting the days 'til the flight back.
    You've stopped playing with the garage door opener.
    You go to the UK, don't ask permission to make a local call and wonder why everyone gets mad, er, angry, when you stay on for 20 minutes.
    You mistake a roll of kitchen towels for loo paper and wonder why the UK version Of EVERYTHING is skimpier; thinner, smaller and more pathetic.
    You find yourself defending the USA against holidaying Brits who've been here for two weeks and know everything there is to know about America.
    You've started paying for a lawn service.
    You think nothing of having two unused rooms in your house: the living room and The dining room.
    You've given up asking for tea in restaurants.
    You routinely ask for a doggy bag with no embarrassment
    You have given up using irony on anyone without a college education.
    You call university "school".
    You don't think ten napkins, two plastic spoons and ten sachets of sugar is too much waste for one cup of coffee 'to go'.
    You think that the huge electrical plugs in the UK are hysterical.
    You don't think there's anything unmanly about automatic transmission.
    You no longer sleep with the bedroom window open.
    You wonder how rugby players can play without protection.
    You shower everyday.
    You ask for 7-UP not lemonade.
    It no longer defies the Laws of the Universe that light switches go up.
    You've bought a Webster's and the OED is gathering dust.
    You wouldn't dream of going for a lunchtime drink.
    You are sick of telling Americans your life story and how you came here.
    You overhear British (Briddish) being spoken and do nothing to draw attention to yourself as having anything in common with them.
    Y'all and Dude sound perfectly normal forms of address.
    You've stopped watching Prime Minister's Question Time on C-Span because there are better things to do on Sunday nights.
    You are no longer deferential. Period.
    You say "Period".
    You no longer feel like a prat putting your hand over your heart during the Star Spangled banner.
    People have stopped asking you if you're from Australia.
    You need an extra wallet for your credit cards.
    You can't imagine ever buying less than a full tank of gas.
    You think that a car loan is as necessary as a mortgage.
    You've forgotten how to use a knife.
    You're no longer surprised that your fridge is the same size as a bedroom in the UK.
    In the UK you get the feeling you're being ripped off all the time.
    You go home, leave a 15 percent tip and are accused of showing off.
    You tip.
    You contemplate plastic surgery. You envy straight, white teeth. You dry-clean everything.
    You ask if they deliver.
    Back home, a World Cup Match is being played 20 minutes walk away, but if you can't drive you won't go.
    You start to say ZEE not ZED.
    You take water pressure for granted, forget about having to jump around in the shower just to get a few sprinkles or wash your hair at record speed before the water gets cold or turns unexpectedly scalding.
    You no longer listen to the BBC on the short wave you bought soon after you arrived.
    You go to the movies, not the pictures.
    You get annoyed when the store closes before 9pm.
    You laugh uproariously at bottles of Britvic Orange juice.
    You have come to terms with the idea that the rabid, racist, ignorant, redneck nazi you've just met in a bar can also be a genuine family man.
    You don't faint when your electric bill arrives.
    You don't think it odd when a Yank says he's British like you coz his ancestors came here in 1745.