French Wine: Everyone Loves A Good Wine From France

By Claire Benoit

Anyone who likes to buy wine is always looking for the best wine there is. When you buy anything, why settle for less than the best quality you can obtain? For this reason, many people are curious about which wines in the world are absolutely the finest. French wine is certainly one of the best wines in the world. France has led the wine industry in production for many years now too.

There are a variety of reasons why French wine is the best. French wine is produced in larger quantities than the amount of wine produced in any other country. France also maintains some of the most knowledgeable grape growers and wine producers in the world.

To make this wine even better, the climate in France is one of the best climates on the planet for grape growing and wine making. The French have also been making wine for centuries. Over time, they have developed many unique wine secrets that allow them to make wine that has to no equal.

The vineyards that produce the grapes for French wines are among the oldest vineyards in the world. For this reason, you can be sure that when you buy wine from a French winery that you are getting some of the most refined wine in the world.

If you buy your wine from other parts of the world, there will not be that many different choices for you to choose from. The sheer amount of different wine producers in the French region make it possible for you to compare many different wines in order to find the absolute best wine in the world.

If you want to buy the best wine in the world, you are going to want to buy French wine. When you buy France's wine, you can be sure that you are purchasing a product that will give you enjoyment until the last drop. - 32380

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Joyful History Of French Life

By Hazel Wig

There are many differences in the French life holidays than in some of our own. The holidays to the French mean a lot and are a true time to give to your loved ones and friends, not just gifts but time and love.

France has Strong religious Catholic beliefs and Easter is a important holiday for everyone. The bells stop ringing within a three day period up until Easter's when all let out their glorious chimes. Everyone hugs and kisses one another once the chimes are heard all over to show peace and love as well as joy for this special day.

Children in France do not believe in the Easter bunny. The Flying Bells return on Easter morning and leave a trail of chocolate covered eggs in their wake. They are hidden among the houses and the gardens of children's homes for them to search out and find.

Christmas is a joyous time of year no matter where you live, but France hold its traditions from the past dear to their hearts and places them within their Christmas celebrations and customs. The children place, not stockings but their shoes by the hearth for not Santa but Pere Noel to fill full of goodies and toys. They also are puppet shows done on Christmas eve for the children and has been a tradition for centuries.

The Christmas trees in France have additional decoration of delightful candies and nuts on them. Sometimes candles are lit in all the windows as well on Christmas eve night. Most everyone goes to mass for Christmas eve and then all settle in to a delicious menu of turkey, chicken, French desserts, puddings and sides to bring in the joy of the season on Christmas Eve.

Bastille Day is celebrated throughout France on the fourteenth of July with parades in the streets and fireworks that go on until the night is well on its way. Townspeople gather to commemorate the mobs of angry people who stormed through this once famous Paris prison and freed the prisoners and towns from the awful things being done there.

There are more such days if you delve further into the history of the French lifestyle.

French wedding customs are mostly like ours in other countries. One exception is the bottle beheading of a poor little champagne bottle by the groom using a saber specially created for just such an event. This is said to have started with Napoleon's troops playing a game and beheading bottles of booze with their sabers.

They would let the ladies hold bottles with spirits in them high above their heads in the air and then the soldiers on their steeds would gallop toward them sabers held high and take the bottles head off in one fell swoop.

French life holds traditions steadfast in all of their celebrations and also incorporate the importance of spending quality time with loved ones and friends to share in the seasons meaning and joy. The french employers allow each person a total of 5 weeks during a one year period off for specifically celebrating the holiday seasons. This gives them time throughout the year to enjoy their families and especially the ones who visit maybe only once every season. - 32380

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Life In France - Why Not Take The Plunge?

By Hazel Wig

France is the world leader in tourism and lots of people would agree that it is a most attractive country. But vacations can be very different from actually residing somewhere. However, although money is still a difficult area for many of us, it doesn't seem to have stopped people leaving the U.K. to experience living in France.

It may be because France is our closest foreign country and so we believe we know it quite well. It's a popular British holiday destination and certainly it's easy to be charmed by the various beautiful regions, the great food and wine and that "joie de vivre".

What about the French language? It's true that many of us learned it at school ("la plume de ma tante" etc), and that modern teaching offers an emphasis on real communication. That doesn't stop many British people from being shy and unconfident to the extent that they refuse to try using the language when in France.

Others believe that they will be visited by an ability to speak French once they live amongst the French. In fact some French people also believe it and this can give rise to many difficulties for English speaking ex-patriots in France. I find it very frustrating that some French people quite clearly believe that I'm rather stupid in every aspect of life because I don't speak perfect French! Of course, these are usually people who have never had to learn any foreign language.

It's daunting to come to live in a foreign country where your knowledge of the language is very limited, but a positive attitude will work wonders. Most French citizens are genuinely pleased to encounter British who are trying to learn their language so that they can live successfully in France. They don't mind mistakes, and indeed will probably be pleased to help with them, but do respond to good intentions and efforts.

Successful living in France should be certain if you make positive efforts to gain the language.

It's difficult to let go of inhibitions and to try really using French, but it is an important factor in improving your skills. So think about this when planning your language work.

Of course, some of us are naturally theatrical and can communicate with gestures and facial expressions when words fail. Rewards will probably be the French providing the necessary words and much can be gained from such exchanges.

For those who don't have this self-confidence, it may be a case of forcing yourself on one occasion and then afterwards reflecting on the situation and what you learned from it. You then know whether to repeat the method next time or to slightly change it. It helps if you have an important reason for an exchange in French. When I arrived here my two children had to go to collge and I knew I (who previously on holidays in France had got the children to ask for things in shops) had to force myself for their sakes, to prepare for parents' nights.

Since the French are only human, there will be times when the response is less than friendly. Just remind yourself that it's their problem, not yours. You're the one making great effort which is to your credit, so carry on to the next situation where you'll hopefully get your just reward.

Apart from your attitude and effort, how else can you make progress in French language?

There are a growing variety of methods; there are numerous tapes and CDs available with written support; there are some good free on-line courses, e.g. the BBC, Radio France Internationale; there are distance learning courses that you pay for; there are telephone teachers who may also use e-mail; there are traditional books.

It's quite usual to employ a personal teacher to come to your home to help with a subject like French - a good option if you prefer not to start in group classes which are also available in many places.

Don't forget to consider how you learn best when deciding on ways to make progress. Methods that suit your individual personality are likely to be more successful.

In the end however, it's your interest and impetus that will ensure you learn and thus make the very most of living in France. - 32380

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