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8 days to go, and I’m reading

Short write-ups, an American perspective, family activities, and French vocabulary and culture. This is what Kristin Espinasse from Arizona offers in her blog essays at <> . If I were a Francophile, I’d be eating this up. If I were a French teacher, I’d be assigning this. If I were planning a trip to France, I’d be studying it. Since I am going to France, I’m thrilled to have found this resource.

Today’s word is la vendange (“von-donzh”)–the harvest. Espinasse’s husband Jean-Marc owns a vineyard, the grapes have just started dropping, and the harvest crews are arriving. Kristin herself works parttime at the vineyard.

I’m just finishing her blog collection in book form, Words in a French Life: Lessons in Love and Language from the South of France (Touchstone, 2007). I also subscribe to her daily newsletter online. Her lifelong Francophile perspective is refreshing, countering some dismissive American attitudes (see yesterday’s post). The writing is approachable, she loves her husband and children, is a devoted daughter, and doesn’t seem to drink a lot. If you want the angst and excess of Hemingway, go elsewere.

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