Search found 2075 matches

by martyn94
Thu 06 Sep 2018 14:03
Forum: Language Matters
Topic: Preceding direct object
Replies: 11
Views: 1276

[quote=but it really isn't actually all that difficult as long as you understand the basic rules of agreement. [/quote] The Le Monde story quoted two teachers (admittedly Belgian, but francophone) as saying that it took 80 hours of school time: not just the exceptions, but the exceptions to the exce...
by martyn94
Thu 06 Sep 2018 13:58
Forum: Language Matters
Topic: Preceding direct object
Replies: 11
Views: 1276

polremy wrote:I remember being told that if it was good enough to be understood by a "sympathetic Frenchman" then it was good enough for a GCSE pass.
As Mrs Beeton might have said, first catch your sympathetic Frenchman. Though of course they almost all are, and often almost too keen to practice their English.
by martyn94
Wed 05 Sep 2018 11:05
Forum: Language Matters
Topic: Preceding direct object
Replies: 11
Views: 1276

Re: Preceding direct object

martyn94 wrote:There was a quiz in Le Monde today about when past tenses formed with “avoir “ do and don’t agree with their objects. The rules are arbitrary and pointless and have tortured millions of schoolchildren, but much to my surprise I got them all right. It was inspired by proposals in Belgium to scrap them. I am already mourning the hours of my childhood spent learning them, just as I already mourn the hours I spent learning the passé simple.
Though I imagine anyone younger than me just ignores the issue: apparently you can’t be marked down in exams for getting it “wrongâ€￾.
by martyn94
Wed 05 Sep 2018 10:54
Forum: Language Matters
Topic: Preceding direct object
Replies: 11
Views: 1276

Preceding direct object

There was a quiz in Le Monde today about when past tenses formed with “avoir “ do and don’t agree with their objects. The rules are arbitrary and pointless and have tortured millions of schoolchildren, but much to my surprise I got them all right. It was inspired by proposals in Belgium to scr...
by martyn94
Mon 03 Sep 2018 20:31
Forum: Pets
Topic: home for a donkey?
Replies: 15
Views: 1972

And answers from Facebook. LAFERMEDUBONHEUR.ORG La Ferme du Bonheur/about us Heehaws - For the Love of Donkeys find them on FB I would recommend having him castrated. It will be very difficult to find a good home for him otherwise. http://lafermeauxgrandesoreilles.fr/tarifs.html A friend has sugges...
by martyn94
Mon 03 Sep 2018 17:15
Forum: Places to visit/Info about the area
Topic: Things to do in & around Collioure Sep '18
Replies: 11
Views: 1556

Isn’t it annoying when you lose a reply before you’ve sent it for no obvious reason?

The French have fixed ideas about the length of the holiday season, so the “animationsâ€￾ will have thinned out by the time you get here. There is griff in the local paid-for paper (“L’Indépendentâ€￾) which has a website and apps

https://www.lindependant.fr

There is a tourist office here

http://www.collioure.com

and they might even answer the phone if you try.

They can surely give you griff about nice walks and probably bike hire. Once you get here, you will probably find that there are still free papers with adds for discos and gigs.

You could go for long lunches in Spain. Or buy a guidebook. Or get the “bus à 1 Euroâ€￾ and consider yourself invited to buy me a beer in Port-Vendres.

I’ve found that the last people who know about the coming events are those who live here full time: if we miss it this year, it will come around next year (crossed fingers).
by martyn94
Mon 03 Sep 2018 16:17
Forum: Health
Topic: Worrying news
Replies: 3
Views: 799

Just the usual SNAFU, for the moment, I think, and the sort of free-lancing that remote provincial corners of the French public services seem to be notorious for. I don’t see why the French would want to deny health-care that the UK already pays for, as I understand it. But no doubt it would need ...
by martyn94
Sun 02 Sep 2018 13:44
Forum: Hi Tech/Geek
Topic: The Forum is Back!
Replies: 4
Views: 1062

I suppose I shouldn’t feed the troll. But as a promotion for essay-writing services, it is wonderfully off-putting.
by martyn94
Sat 01 Sep 2018 15:41
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

Re: I’m not sure that the language matters

We had a Rottweiler move into our pool house while we were away, he ended up being adopted by our gardener. He (the dog that is) would respond to commands in English just as well as commands in French. I think that it is as much the tone of your voice and any associated gestures as any spoken words...
by martyn94
Sat 01 Sep 2018 14:08
Forum: Discussions
Topic: travelling to the UK
Replies: 4
Views: 2534

I'm going on the 25th Nov. Not sure why you can't post letters from here. I know La Poste are slow but .... A few years ago I was in the Maison de la Presse behind an American woman buying postcards (perhaps off a cruise ship). She was astounded to find that US postage stamps don’t work here. Tho...
by martyn94
Fri 31 Aug 2018 21:10
Forum: Hi Tech/Geek
Topic: Free Mobiles Web Site
Replies: 6
Views: 806

[quote="Gus Morris"

Needless to say I'm not with Free.

Gus[/quote]

Oh Gus, you’re such a tease.
by martyn94
Thu 30 Aug 2018 13:52
Forum: Hi Tech/Geek
Topic: Free Mobiles Web Site
Replies: 6
Views: 806

Re: Free Mobiles Web Site

Allan wrote:I have a fairly complicated setup at home, my internet uses 2 4G routers with sim cards from Free.

I have a Freebox router which I make very little use of but subscribed to it because it gives me unlimited 4G and a discount on our mobile phones.

The Freebox provides ADSL through an ancient France Telecom line which when I was with Orange was hideously unreliable. I therefore kept my Orange phone line.

Despite the fact that I am connected using the same phone line, the connection has been thoroughly reliable for at least 6 months. I have therefore decided to bite the bullet and run my phone line through the Freebox.

I know that there are a whole host of options that Free offer to control the answering service, call waiting etc but either I am completely brain dead or Free's website was designed by a lunatic.

On their main web site I can find absolutely no links to anywhere that explains how to use their services.

If I Google 'Free Fixe Messagerie' then it takes me to a page that looks like it should explain things but all the links just repeat the same page.

So, does anybody know if Free publish any user instructions or just keep them a secret?
They did when I set mine up, years ago. You can get to most things at “mafreebox.free.frâ€￾ if you connect through your free router. It seems reasonably intuitive, as these things go (ie pretty ropey, but not impossible). You may need to click on the “advancedâ€￾ tab, at the top. There is also a substantial community of “freenautesâ€￾ and third-party sites serving them. I have found that google searches for free go bad because google thinks I want English results (ie “freeâ€￾ in the sense of not paid for). Try “free.fr messagerieâ€￾
by martyn94
Mon 27 Aug 2018 12:33
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

dsd wrote:'They'? I thought you were only adopting one dog; how many have you ended up with?

For the commands, I have never heard a French person say 'au lit', to their dog, at least! They would say 'dans ton panier/file dans ton panier/à ta place'. The last one implies that the dog knows his 'place' is his bed.
I don’t know how many I’ve got: currently I’m looking after two. One of them is the mongrel bitch I’ve mentioned, and the other an older male dog which looks like the one in Magic Roundabout (any ideas as to the breed? It seems rather less of a bitsa than the bitch).

They get on well, and work off a lot of energy together, which is good. Currently the male is persistently trying to “make lurvâ€￾ which presents challenges in terms of their respective sizes: god knows what the offspring would look like if he ever had his way.
by martyn94
Sat 25 Aug 2018 18:05
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

bits of cheese or bits of carrot. no chocolate or raisins both are poisonous.for commands au lit and laisse (anything you dont want her to touch) can also be useful. Good luck! Just coming downstairs in the morning produces ecstasies. It must be Noel Coward dressing gown. They’ve never gone upsta...
by martyn94
Fri 24 Aug 2018 12:20
Forum: Services & Trades
Topic: La Poste
Replies: 6
Views: 971

russell wrote:Perhaps easier to print directly onto the envelope?

Russell
I find it hard enough to get cheap printers to work with plain paper.
by martyn94
Fri 24 Aug 2018 12:19
Forum: Services & Trades
Topic: La Poste
Replies: 6
Views: 971

sue and paul wrote:Haha Martyn94. Yes they are quite large now you mention it. Hint....stick the stamp on first, and write the address second :roll:
D’oh as Homer Simpson would say.
by martyn94
Wed 22 Aug 2018 16:38
Forum: Services & Trades
Topic: La Poste
Replies: 6
Views: 971

I did that a while ago. How big are they now? I dimly remember having to scrap my first envelope because I had written the address too big.
by martyn94
Mon 20 Aug 2018 14:29
Forum: Property & Accommodation
Topic: Photovoltaic / solar panels
Replies: 8
Views: 1170

Pighunter wrote:I can enlighten you with my experiences but this will take some time to put together.

I have some other things that need to be addressed first and of course the hunting season has now started, so please bear with me and I will let you have chapter and verse shortly.
Surely that should have been “please boar with meâ€￾?
by martyn94
Sun 19 Aug 2018 11:22
Forum: Anything about Anything
Topic: National Joke Day
Replies: 4
Views: 689

An American couple are on a driving holiday through Wales, and pass through the town named Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch. They were obviously having trouble trying to say the word and neither really knew the correct Welsh pronunciation. So, they decided to stop for lunc...
by martyn94
Wed 15 Aug 2018 22:50
Forum: Property & Accommodation
Topic: Photovoltaic / solar panels
Replies: 8
Views: 1170

None whatsoever. But get at least three quotes. It seems like scam central,, pretty much anywhere. I assume your orientation is right: it seems like a big roof.
by martyn94
Wed 15 Aug 2018 20:49
Forum: Hi Tech/Geek
Topic: Free fixed line phone chirping during dial tone
Replies: 2
Views: 549

Incidentally, you can set it up to send you an email if you have missed calls or voicemail messages (and then listen to them if your device has sound). I’ve found it helpful.
by martyn94
Wed 15 Aug 2018 20:41
Forum: Hi Tech/Geek
Topic: Free fixed line phone chirping during dial tone
Replies: 2
Views: 549

So far as I can gather from a bit of googling, it’s just saying “please dial your numberâ€￾. You can connect DECT phones directly to your freebox with a bit of nerding. I’ve never noticed any funny noises with that.
by martyn94
Sat 11 Aug 2018 12:44
Forum: P-O. Life Café
Topic: CANICULE
Replies: 6
Views: 1043

Snap.

Du jamais lu.
by martyn94
Fri 10 Aug 2018 12:53
Forum: P-O. Life Café
Topic: The Chinese are coming!
Replies: 6
Views: 1107

russell wrote:
martyn94 wrote:My sister used to live in the 15e arrondissement in Paris, just down from the horse abattoir. It had recently shut down, but there were lots of restaurants around who made no secret of their speciality: “Au Pur-Sangâ€￾, Aux Trotteursâ€￾ etc. You don’t have to go to Canton to find grub you might not necessarily want.
there are much worse things eaten in Canton

Russell
Worse to who? Nihil humanum a me alienum puto, as the man said.

Except for incest and folk-dancing, obviously, as Sir T Beecham is alleged to have said.
by martyn94
Fri 10 Aug 2018 12:18
Forum: Services & Trades
Topic: English speaking notaire recomendations
Replies: 5
Views: 882

It depends very much on the business you want done, but I suggest that you might want to check the important bits of the final document yourself (which does not necessarily require much French). Especially as the real work is mostly done by paralegals, rather than the notaires.

The “acte authentiqueâ€￾ for my house purchase here was a nightmare. The ostensibly final draft (of many) simply left off (for the first time) a small but crucial part of the site: for some reason, my small plot is divided into about six “lotsâ€￾ on the official map. It didn’t need any French to correct it, just ticking off the lot numbers.
by martyn94
Fri 10 Aug 2018 12:00
Forum: P-O. Life Café
Topic: CANICULE
Replies: 6
Views: 1043

Gus Morris wrote:It's been a roller-coaster ride for anybody who drove down here last weekend for the summer break. They travelled in the middle of a full on heat wave. Since then there have been two storms with the risk of hail stones, localised flooding and some loss of life. Especially worrying for anybody on a campsite. With a hoax bomb alert at Argeles thrown in for good measure!

On top of all this there has been a rise in bathing incidents. Fatal and non-fatal.

The temperature range for the past week, as recorded on our patio, was 21.1 to 37 degrees C.

Quite a summer. And it's not over yet!

Gus
“It’s being so cheerful that keeps me goingâ€￾, as Mona Lott said on ITMA.

But the fortitude of the “aoutiensâ€￾ is indeed a perennial miracle. I remember, decades ago, helping a friend near Paris pack his Peugeot estate to join his family at Manosque on the Friday evening of the big weekend. Apart from everything else it was crammed with, it had about a dozen pet rabbits in makeshift cages, plus their “clapiersâ€￾, knocked down. The air must have been quite thick by the time he got there, ca 0900 on Saturday.

The rented flat a few metres across the ramp from me has had a floating population of (mostly young) Germans for a few weeks. They don’t play their music very loud (but loud enough to tell that German rap is no better than anyone else’s) and turn it off at a considerate hour. And of course speak decent English.

Then yesterday one of them offered to carry my shopping up the ramp. I felt like asking “who won the Warâ€￾, but decided against it.
by martyn94
Wed 08 Aug 2018 12:59
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

One last question. What treats do dog’s like as reinforcement? All I can remember is doggy chocolate drops at Xmas
by martyn94
Wed 08 Aug 2018 12:51
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

dsd wrote:It's one of those useful, depends on context expressions. Basically it can mean: get out of the way/off you go/go away
Thanks again. I’ve used it when I’ve had French dogs “en pensionâ€￾, but never quite knew where the meanings stopped.
by martyn94
Tue 07 Aug 2018 21:33
Forum: Pets
Topic: Words of command in French
Replies: 15
Views: 2193

Thanks, that’s helpful. Her current owner seems to have made a good start. She seems to obey “à ta placeâ€￾. So we just need to agree where her place is going to be, without her tripping us up.

Where does “fileâ€￾ come into it (if I’ve spelt it right)?
by martyn94
Tue 07 Aug 2018 17:42
Forum: Restaurant reviews and food matters
Topic: Lunch and dinner around Prades and Vernet
Replies: 6
Views: 1374

I didn’t get to Le Cortal, having not read their website I found them booked solid.

But I can’t say I regret it, given the menus I read on their website. They are obviously keen foodies (with “une certaine idéeâ€￾ of French food, as De Gaulle might have said). But there was nothing crying out to be eaten, and a lot to avoid, on a warm evening in August. Nice in April or October, but why would I go to Vernet then?

In the event, I had two bad dinners in Prades (for the sake of our company, who introduced us to the Casals festival, and has always gone there) and a mediocre lunch in Vernet, but with the bonus of seeing the returning runners in the “round-the-Canigouâ€￾ race.

And a very decent Indian dinner (of all things) in Vernet at Les Jardins de Jasmin. But be warned: the dishes are absurdly copious, so order accordingly.