Another misunderstanding

Yesterday I went to pick up the girls from school and at the gate I thought I was told that my middle one had hit her teacher because she couldn’t get her shoes on properly and had been punished. I was shocked and queried what I’d heard yes she has hit her many times I heard. I was flabbergasted…

I went over to the teacher who is also the headteacher and asked what had happened - had she really hit her? The teacher seemed unsurprised to see me and said I’ve been trying to call you all afternoon, I thought oh goodness this really is bad.

Elle Tapper la maitresse
Elle T’appeller la maitresse

With the strong southern accent of the assistant on the school gate I’d heard that Izzy had hit her teacher when in fact her teacher had been trying to call me as Izzys shoes weren’t the right size and she’d been unable to get them on properly so spent the afternoon in socks!

Well I laughed, hugely relieved that it was my mistake and that my second born hadn’t suddenly turned violent after losing her first tooth on Thurs (which she’d swallowed!)

So what have you done this week? Any misunderstandings? This one will go down in the memory books for a very long time! Even after being here for years and now speaking more French than English on a daily basis I still managed to misunderstand this one. Pure gold!

Come on share!


Years ago I had a polecat in our loft and asked a farmer for a trap. He looked surprised and asked why I needed a trap. I explained in my (then) best French that the polecat was sneaking into my loft during the night, doing enormous poos, making a noise and waking us up. I wanted to trap the polecat and take it into the forest and release it to its natural habitat. Much hilarity ensued and other neighbours came along. Of course I’d looked up the word for polecat, as ‘putois’ but between my front door and the farmer, I’d somehow replaced it with ‘putain’ (er, lady of the night). Which of course made it an ENTIRELY different conversation! For years after that people in the village would ask me how the putain in my loft was, whether I’d managed to trap her and was she happy living in the forest.!!


Great post @suz :smile:

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Could have been me!

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You know how many French words sound like English words , well I was struggling to find a word that meant I had just painted my shed in preservative paint and said I’d covered it in “preservatif” - everyone at the dinner table (all French) fell about the table laughing - apparently “preservatif” is a condom !

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My French neighbour was telling me all her woes (husband drinks too much, she needs an op on her knee, feels depressed…) and I was doing my best to sympathise. I intended to say I was sorry she had so many “soucis”. Even as the word fell from my lips I knew I’d boobed because I told her how so sorry I was she had so many “souris”. At least I cheered her up!

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I was at an end of year after spectacle “do” this year after 13 years of trying to get it right, and remarked to another mother there, that she was looking quite chilly and maybe she should fetch a jumper. In my head it sounded like I had said une pull. But coupled with my lack of maculine/feminine articles and my accent they of course heard une poule to which she rolled around laughing and I tried a quick cover up by suggesting the feathers would make great insulation. My 2 daughters who were both present collapsed in fits of giggles…not very helpful, and to their great delight have never let me forget that it is UN pull and UNE poule…In fact is that even the right way round???