Words in a French Life: Lessons in Love and Language from the South of France, by Kristin Espinasse (New York: A Touchstone Book, 2007; first published in 2006)
Kristin Espinasse’s charming book pulls readers into the language and life of France. By book’s end, you’ll know a little more French, a little more about French culture, and have a strong desire to be there, right now. You’ll probably want to read more. Luckily, Espinasse, who was raised in the United States, but makes a home in the South of France with her French husband and two children, also writes a highly successful blog, french-word-a-day.com.
[Pavillon = Bungalow] -- Zigzagging through the voisinage, I stumbled upon a street named Pourquoi Pas? and delighted in the fanciful appellation. Just to see the street sign again, I skipped to the end of the rue and snapped a photo of it there; behind the sign I glimpsed the irresistible bungalow with green shutters. Quelle image. I stood silent, smelling fragrant vines and salty air, listening to the sea, which transported me back to my room in Arizona, to my bed where I lay listening to the sound of waves that had been programmed into my clock radio as I fell asleep. There, I would dream of France, of when I would one day call her my home. When the doubting would begin, as it always did, I’d let the white noise of the clock radio, with its whoosh of the sea and intermittent cry of the seagull, drown out the negatives. When le calme absolu found me, the thought ‘Pourquoi pas?’ would enter my mind. ‘Pourquoi pas moi?’ I’d fall asleep to that question mark, and to France – always on my mind. – from Words in a French Life, by Kristin Espinasse