Wednesday, October 28, 2009

French 101

{Rocamadour, France}

After the post last week about the $40 piece of cheese I started thinking about all the delicious food and all the memories from to my trip to France. It was over ten years ago, but some of the memories are as clear as if they were yesterday.

One of those memories is of this adorable guy that worked at one of the hotels that we stayed in. The night we arrived we went down to the hotel restaurant for dinner. It's so cheesy, but throughout dinner the waiter and I kept accidentally making eye contact. We were in this tiny little town called Rocamadour... just small enough that our chaperones let us roam around without much supervision. That night after the restaurant closed, the waiter came and hung out with a few of us. He was 17 and spoke very little english but it was fun to try to communicate with him despite the language barrier.

After exploring the little town with him for several hours, our curfew came and we had to go to our hotel room. I don't think he understood our curfew or why we had to leave because he stood outside below our balcony calling my name asking me to come back down. I know this sounds like something out of romance novel, but before your mind goes there... *trust me* it was all very innocent.

The next morning at breakfast he was there again, but wasn't allowed to talk to us while he was working, so before we left I slipped him my address. About three weeks after I got home, I got the first letter. Written in very broken English. So for the next year or so we wrote back and forth to each other. I would stay after school and my french teacher would help me translate everything. You can imagine the excitement of a 15 year-old girl when those letters with "Par Avion" stamped on the front would come in the mail from the dreamy french waiter.

After awhile we kind of lost touch. I had a boyfriend and was looking forward to college and was caught up in all the excitement of senior year.

So last week after I finished writing the post about the cheese, I closed blogger and facebook was open behind it. I figured it was worth a shot and typed in his name. Only one exact match came up and it was from France.

So, I sent him this:

Salut,

Avez
-vous habité une fois en Rocamadour?
Je ne suis pas sûr si vous me rappelez, mais je pense que je vous ai rencontré en 1998.

Si non, mes excuses.

Natalie

And got this in return:

i m very happy to see you. i have miss your address i live next marseille on the cote d azur i work in restaurant i m the chef of the waiter and you where do you live what is your job. your french its perfect.

And we've probably exchanged a dozen emails since. I write him in French (thank GOD for google translator!!) and he writes back in English. It lacks the storybook charm that receiving those hand-written, "Par Avion" stamped letters had, but the turnaround time is definitely much quicker.

I know it's probably silly to be spending time writing to someone I will probably never see again, but it's just so fun to have a reason to put the hours and hours of french classes to use... and I have to admit that the 15 year-old girl in me is still stupidly giddy.

I may have to start a new weekly post about his emails. It is pretty funny how some of the things he tries to say translate. Although, I have no doubt that my french probably translates pretty roughly as well.

Check back for updates!

à la prochaine...

2 comments:

for the love said...

Oh my gosh, I love it. It's like a movie! Or a Nicholas Sparks novel. So romantic! Can't wait for the updates.

The Waspy Redhead said...

So I'm pretty sure you'll marry him. He is the chef of the waiter for goodness sakes! Honestly though, super cute. Reminds me of my wacky cousin Sarah's romance with her new husband.