Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Termite problems

When I arrived in France my French was limited to the vocabulary I’d picked up at GCSE. And so to express surprise I confidently said: “Oh la la”, fully expecting the response to be as appreciative as the school examiners.

Instead people started giggling. It appeared “Oh la la” was as comic and as dated as Hugh Grant saying “whoopsadaisies (sp?)” to Julia Roberts in Notting Hill.

In response I jettisoned everything I’d learnt and concentrated on going “street“, punctuating every sentence with an array of “doncs,” and “quois”.

People still laughed, but not quite as much.

Then last week, on a hot sunny day (actually quite rare in Provence this summer), I was out with Elodie in the village. There she was kicking her little chubby baby legs in the air and attracting her usual crowd of admirers, when a young mother approached.

Pinching Elodie’s copious thigh, she exclaimed “Ooh la la, les cuisses.”

I was delighted and ever since I‘ve been listening out with surprising results. In fact I’ve heard so many “ooh la las” that I am going to roll out my old favourite - “Zut Alors!”

Regular readers will remember that a few weeks ago, I wrote about us possibly buying a house. Well we’re going ahead…..eventually that is, when the French government lets us, because even though we are going to demolish the existing building (yes it’s that bad) and start again, according to law a termite investigation has to be conducted.

I am not quite sure what happens if termites are discovered…..should I be worried - can termites survive a demolition, or will they just leave and eat someone else’s house. Answers please?