Saturday, April 04, 2009

Being Agreeable in French

I speak no French. It's a definite flaw when traveling in France, I know. I hate being that guy who knows absolutely zilch of the language, the one that asks for an English menu and responds with blank stares to the waiter's questions.

But I've been traveling with French speakers and I've learned a few things. I might not be able to say them, but I can hear them in conversation. The French language is quite elegant and soft, even in the most common speech. Here are a few ways to be agreeable in French:

-Voila - French people actually say this word - and really often. That surprised me. I always thought it was just something we hijacked. It usually denotes completion, just like we tend to use it in English, something like "There it is" or "It's done." It can also mean, "Here he comes," "The car has arrived," "He answered the phone," or a million different other things.

-D'accord - Interchangeable with OK, but it sounds a lot more fancy to me.

-C'est bon -It's good; we're ready; it's satisfactory.

Photo taken just a few days ago. Copyright Trevor Williams 2009.

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