French Affairs

French Affairs

There’s a scandal on the street in our quiet little corner of french suburbia - our neighbour, Chantal has been cought red handed having an affair with a co-worker. Chantal and Pierre have been married for over 25 years and are the vertiable pillars of society. Worst of all, Chantal and Pierre and new lover all work together in the Town Hall and the gendarmes have been called in to keep the peace as lives have been threatened!! Yikes!

So , are the French all having secret affairs hither thither or do they just appear to be swashbuckingly sexy? I must say that French men are the most flirtatious I have ever met. A French man will greet you for the first time with “enchanté” ( enchanted to met you!) and looking you directly in the eye, will compliment you in his deliciously sexy voice. Cue me going weak at the knees! They will openly check you out and shower you with flattery on your new hairstyle/ loss of weight/ new boots while Irish hubby remains completely oblivious!

Compared to the Irish scene, the French do seem to be more “up” for it, it’s almost an inbred sensibility : male and female alike, they can be quite predatory and intimidating when you are used to the Irish shy boys. I find it difficult to distinguish whether they are flirting or just being, well, friendly, especially with all that kissing going on!

A grandfather I used to work with has several “cinq à septs” , ladies he would meet between 5 and 7 for a bit of hows yer father. We knew never to ring him during these hours as his mobile would be off!! He’s been "happily " married for over 40 years and everybody knows about his philandering, apart from the glamourous wife, I suppose.

It seems like there are no age barriers to this flirting game : playing tennis recently, I was approached by an old geezer of about 80 - he was the ex president of the club and he wanted to know would I like to play with him ( Silly me, I thought he meant tennis). For about three weeks after that, he continually rang me until I dropped unsubtle hints about being busy with the Kids, the Hubby etc. He’s really miffed now and won’t even salute me in the club!!!

It is quite flattering on one hand and when I go back to éire , I feel completely invisible as the lads in the pub stare at the tv or their pints and daren’t make eye contact … there’s a happy medium there somewhere I think?!

hahaha, they're taller on the southern cone except in the Amazon... and Brazil is full of people with European Latin blood who still believe they are all irresistible. I am pure het and believe me the gay guys were as bad and drove me mad half the time....

@Brian. Never been to Brazil but did spend many years in central America - couldn't tell you if they were deliberately being flirty but as the average male height is 1.50m (and me being tall) their eye level was my chest level. Even so I tended to give them the benefit of the doubt.........

None of it is just, but also we cannot lead other people's lives for them and have to live in the middle of it irrespective of our own values. I think we have exhausted the original question and beyond now, so really will not respond again. Take care...

Brian, I also ask myself how can someone live with themselves after forcing someone else to have sex with them. I wonder how an someone live with oneself after using another person in any way, but, where relationships, and sex comes in, it seems to be more and more accepted.

i know women who KNOW men are in love with them, and use them "for a screw", leading the guy on, till the day they find a real boyfriend. I know men knowing full well they are not wanted, or loved, and never will be, who continue to sleep with some woman. There are people who sleep with anyone who is providing a service, in order to have "premium service", people who will have a quickie with the boss,in order to get the undesirable work dumped on someone else, or to climb the ladder.

All sorts goes on, as my mother puts it. It means that sex is demeaned, devalued, and so,certain people think it means nothing. The problem is, certain others take it very seriously.

It's not just in France that it's almost a given that a married man will come on to a woman, or a married woman will try to get her way with a man for whatever fringe benefits.

I agree we've drifted and are covering many topics so lightly its open for mis-understanding -) so I too will make this my last post on this subject. I think we are fishing around as how best to guide our children - not dictate to them Brian - my son nows lives in the USA and did have access to TV (as did my daughter) when they were children and both of them have no difficulty communicating with their peers, judging by the amount of people that used to come through the house when they were at home - i simply asked them to question it and not be dictated by hours spend in front of a square box when the sun was shining - that's all (it is my personal choice not to watch it now and I am astonished at how shocked people can seem when you say you do not watch TV almost as if it's a threat to their personal freedom and you are somehow odd - its an indication of just what a stranglehold TV has ) anyway..... we all watched Avatar last Christ-mass at my sisters so I am not so hard line as won't watch something that is beautifully crafted - just do not routinely or habitually watch cheap TV or commercials that just fill airtime and our heads with rot.

Oh and Brian I have great respect for my children would never seek to deny them there right to choose (hence no resistence when my son wanted to go study in the USA or my daughter Bristol positively encouraged them infact). And for me, it goes without saying that my children and I are close (my son back now for a month with his girlfriend and we go to pick Liv up from bristol tomorrow) - but like I said earlier - these posts are general, we can easily be mis-understood and we are not sat in a cafe having a relaxed conversation in the sun over a drink debating issues which would be far pleasanter and less open for mis-interpretation.

Read UN, not Un, meaning United Nations...

elaine and celeste, I think we have drifted and this will be my last visit here. Because of things that have happened for the good we have the notion children having rights which is also supported by the Un Convention on the Rights of the Child ratified by all but two nations in the world. Conceptually, for some people (myself included) they are individuals, citizens, etc with exactly the same rights as we have but in need of some guidance at times, no more. Perhaps they are our starting point, but shaping their lives for them is a great way of making them rebel, we lose them, etc. Elaine, your way is so prescriptive you run the risk of them truning their back on you and at best laughing at you. They must have choices too. You may not want to see TV, hear radio, etc but why shouldn't they in order to be in the same world as their friends? It is a dilemma but not insurmountable. I share some sentiments but do not practice them because my children are also my friends and that I do not want to lose by making them what I think they should be. To be able to talk WITH them as equals is how I find it works best. We all have our own way, so far our one works for us. So in many respects I agree with celeste but frame it slightly differently.

a return to a time of innocence?? why not!

Celeste i agree with you about parenting skills - my children are now 22 and 19 and both experienced some lessons in life I would rather they hadn't of.. .but' I have always been there - never judgemental, always loving and re-assuring them that nothing they told me would ever shock or cause my love for them to change.....this is to me is basic parenting ....... my problem with TV is the 5th member of the family attitude - when it never seems to go off, always present (i know its a choice thing and that's fine - this is simply my view) and young minds are influenced by commercials, soapy stuffs, 'reality' TV - i know that some soap shows can raise issue up for discussion which otherwise may be difficult for parents to raise (i particularly remember one years ago that touched on sexual peer pressure 'to do it', daughter was around 11 at the time and i remember being horrified that such things went on and though OMG have I this to face? my daughter was still climbing trees and playing with ponies at the time ...... i just wonder if we really need to know all that goes on or whether ignorance can be bliss?

perhaps we should turn our attention to how to connect with one another - in an honourable, respectful and tolerant way highlighting what is 'right' behaviour and not behaviour that is influenced by supposed cultural penchants/alcohol/lust/bets/dares and 'what-have-you's....... How we can show one another love without it being mis-read as a sexual come-on - I know as a single women, who genuinely is fascinated by people from any culture, race, age etc there have been occasions when i have had to defend myself when accused of 'liking' someones husband, who I regarded as a brother and the wife as a 'sister' - it soon became apparent that it really was little to do with me and all to do with an open wound in their relationship (i'm glad to report it appears to have healed now) but it does demonstrate how things can get a little tricky and mis-read so I am not blind to these happenings...... I say start off by chucking out your telly, turn off your radio, explain marketing to children and start to fill them with values WE want them to embody - i stopped watching telly over 7 years ago now preferring to select what influences my reality - a lot of the stuff out there is a pollutant..... now sorry if i sound a bit puritanical - i'm not at all - believing in 'do what you will but harm none' and fun. life is about having fun..... but i also believe in good old fashioned manners....(my dad's influence!) opening doors for people, please, thank you, showing respect, no swearing basic stuff r

What are wualities, meant qualities... gone...........................

You ain't had a good cool one - and I mean an ale. Most match your description sadly - quite aposite when comparing the wualities of human beings in fact. Yep, LOL, time for school run...

celeste, no I do not take these things as personally as that but sometimes oneself (your profession and my profession know too well) is a useful example. No, my point is really more succinct but if we could put it more bluntly a ba**ard is just that whether male or female and I do not mean their birth status. I disagree on north and south, finding Scandinavian both sexes very flirtatious, they are less verbose with it perhaps. I agree on the age thing, I have daughters 8 and 10 and see what is thrown at them by the marketing world alone. As for all British eat terrible food, I won't agree but the majority do! Why drink lager when the ales are worthy of legend? No, don't worry, I am not as serious as I sometimes appear as my daughters groaningly complain very, very often.

No violence is justifiable as a means to any end and even is a society where karmatic beliefs and practices are the norm there are sanctions. Sadly, to forgive and forget is often tolerance beyond redemption that allows those who break rules, taboos, laws and so on to give the signal that such behaviour will be tolerated and thus allow it to be repeated. In the west we have a completely idealised take on eastern beliefs and practices which I have learned from working in them is not the case in real life. There must always be sanctions in order to cope with such situations, here we are looking at France and in reality there are both social and legal ones that must be applied as required but, one would hope, humanely for all involved.

i think a massive dose of forgiveness is required - forgiving of oneself and others..... i believe in karma and draw comfort in that - i also hold some other rather radical beliefs but will not share here as do not wish to offend. I will say however, flirting is not a good game to play and should not (in my view) be used to spark up a dull dinner party or to feed one's ego. I love and adore ALL people believing us ALL to be sparks of the divine - some wallow in denser energies and live from base chakra's and get obsessed with sex, power, status others aspire to other qualities - forgiveness, unconditional love, brother/sisterhood, compassion.... I know where most of you peeps are coming from.... heart and above i believe -))

Yes Zoe, but NEVER nice or justifiable. I still have guilt feelings about the Indian student and I was neither member of that college nor knew the 'chaps'. But if it has a positive spin off, I have never wanted to or tried to rape anybody since that experience. I was as shy as a mouse then and fancied her rotten and never even had the courage to speak more than a short paraphrase to her and then she was effectively destroyed by a couple of rich clowns. Other blokes who also had an eye for her and I talked about it and yet we never wanted to do violence on them, simply get them sent down in which we never succeeded. I guess that is why guilt, but I do not know how men can live with the knowledge having done that.

well, look at it this way, Gerard Depardieu has joked about how whzen he was a college boy, him and his mates would rape girls for fun. In saying that.... happens all over the world.

Zoe, oh yes. I worked a summer in Butlins Minehead whilst studying and saw, so as to speak, all there could ever be to see and that was probably about 1970. Sarah, try South America if you think the French men are flirty. Brazilians must hold all gold medals. But then the women scared the ess aitch one tee out of me too there, so there are levels and levels. Thanks Andrew, you reminded me about some of my fellow students in one of the posher Cambridge colleges who had just admitted female students. One of my fellow students, a stunningly beautiful Indian woman who had already had all kinds of cultural trauma coming to England was raped by two guys. They came from very 'renowned' backgrounds so that the university authorities put it down to 'high jinks', the police were asked not to pursue the matter and the lads were not sent down. She was packed off home for her 'well-being' after suffering a nervous breakdown and trying to kill herself a couple of days later. It might have been 1966 but it still sticks in my gullet. I also know it still happens occasionally today and a couple of ex-Bullingdon Club laddos from Oxford who are in the present Cabinet took part in precisely the same 'high jinks' in their time. It takes all types to make our world and sometimes the truth is very unsavoury when one realises such cretins eventually govern us!

I forgot you worked in the hotel industry Zoe - you must see it all :-O