Thought I’d take a quick break before starting on the Italian portion of the trip report by posting some of our plans for our trip to France this year. Part of my French homework is to write a weekly diary so I have written this post in French as well.

I began French lessons a little under a year ago with a private tutor. My tutor is French, with a degree from Sorbonne, which is great ‘coz my spoken French (when I can manage it) is with a Parisian accent 🙂 I’m loving the lessons as it has always been my dream to learn the language but I never had the opportunity to. Progress has been great. I managed to keep us out of trouble when we were in the country in France last year, with only 3 months of lessons. Right now though, I’m finding it difficult to improve on my speaking. My reading skills have seen great improvement. I’m finding that I can even translate the news from French to English, with some help from the dictionary on words I don’t know. My tutor is happy with my work on the dreaded conjugations. My listening isn’t too bad. I can understand about 80% of my listening exercises. BUT my conversation skills leaves much to be desired. I think it is b’coz I don’t have anyone to practice it with. The only time I get to speak French is during my weekly lesson. So, my tutor and I have come up with the idea of a weekly journal. The hope is that with constant writing, the speaking will come with it in the end. That, and I’ve also started watching lots of French movies and listening to French songs. So fingers crossed…

En anglais (I apologize if the English portion sounds extremely stilted. I wrote the French portion first and then translated it to English as it would defeat the whole purpose of the exercise if I did it the other way round):

This week, I did lots of research in preparation for our trip to France. Also, I wanted to make reservations for our accomodation. We are heading to France in September with my parents.

In September, there will still be lots of tourists in the South of France, especially near the Côte d’Azur, as the weather is usually still quite lovely at that time of the year. We are headed to Cannes on the 10th of September for 3 nights. This is followed by Western Provence for 4 nights. After that, we will return to Paris for one week.

For our stay in Cannes, I managed to find us an fully furnished two-bedroom apartment near the beach that wasn’t too pricey. It is only a short stroll to the beach… yay! From our base in Cannes, we plan to visit St. Paul de Vence, Biot, Antibes, Monaco, Éze, Villefranche-sur-mer et Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat. I don’t think we will have go to Nice. We’re planning to avoid the larger cities.

After that, we will drive down to a beautiful little village called Maussanne-les-Alpilles. It has a population of 2,000. Tiny! Enroute, we plan to stop by at Aix-en-Provence. If we have time, we plan to visit the fountains, cafés, churches and street in the town.

At Maussanne-les-Alpilles, we will be staying at a B&B. In Provence, the plan is to visit the villages of Luberon, Arles, St.Remy-de-Provence, Vaison-la-Romaine and Chateuneuf du Pape. I really looking forward to visiting the provincial markets and tasting the wine of Chateauneuf du Pape. I want to compare it to the Burgundian wines.

En français:

Cette semaine, j’ai fait beaucoup de recherche pour obtenir des informations pour mes vacances en France cette année. En plus, j’ai voulu faire les réservations pour notre séjour. Je vais aller en France en Septembre avec mon mari et mes parents.
En septembre, il y a encore beaucoup des tourists dans le Midi, près de la Côte d’Azur en particulier, et il devrait faire très beau encore. Nous allons aller à Cannes le dix septembre cette année. Nous allons rester à Cannes pour trois nuits. Ensuite, nous allons aller dans l’ouest de la Provence pour quatre nuits. Puis, nous allons retourner à Paris pour une semaine.
Pour notre séjour à Cannes, j’ai trouvé un bon appartement pas cher à côté de la plage. Il y a deux chambres, la cuisine équipée et il n’y a qu’une petite promenade pour aller à la plage. Je vais organiser les petits voyages pour aller à St. Paul de Vence, Biot, Antibes, Monaco, Éze, Villefranche-sur-mer et Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat. Je pense que nous n’allons pas aller à Nice. C’est une trop grande ville pour nous.
Après la Côte d’Azur, nous allons conduire dans un petit village. Il s’appelle Maussanne-les-Alpilles. Il n’y a que deux mille personnes dans ce village. Très petit! En cours de route, nous allons nous arrêter à Aix-en-Provence. Si nous avons du temps, nous irons y visiter les fontaines, cafés, églises et les petites rues de la ville.
À Maussane-les-Alpilles, nous allons rester dans une chambre d’hôte. En Provence, je voudrais faire les petits voyages pour aller dans les petite villages du Luberon, Arles, St. Remy-de-Provence, Vaison-la-Romaine et Chateauneuf du Pape. Je veux visiter les marchés provençaux et goûter le vin du Chateauneuf du Pape. Je veux le comparer aux vins de Bourgogne.