Sunday, August 12, 2018

Kissing Continues

There's a French man in our village who truly fits the idea of a Frenchman, perhaps even of Pepé le Pew from the Loony Tunes cartoon.
At every city event, he is there proudly.
No, he's not in this picture, but just to give you an idea of a gathering where he would appear.

He helps set up the wine tents, he carries a steaming pan of moules (mussels) from the kitchen luring prospective buyers to the stand.
We gathered in front of the mayor's office Saturday to receive "foulards de Quillan" scarves from Quillan.
What a crowd! 
But mostly the French man greets everyone there -- men with a hearty handshake and women with a kiss on both cheeks.
He goes throughout the crowd, 200, 300, it doesn't matter.
Do they speak French or English? Doesn't matter.
Here we are posing for a selfie with our new scarves; again, the French man is not in the photo.. 
Exchanging kisses with proper British women and men, or French friends, is not the same as receiving the traditional bisous from this guy.
With a British man, I might occasionally clink my sunglasses' frame against his glasses, or I might move forward too hard and bump cheeks.
This Frenchman goes in with a firm grasp on both upper arms. Other times he places one forearm at the back of a woman's head as if holding her captive. I've seen this from other Frenchman too, and it makes me feel a little claustrophobic. Luckily, I haven't been held in a headlock by any of the French men who do greet me.
Earl and I find the man's greetings amusing, but some women in the crowd draw more attention from him, and their husbands don't find it quite as funny.
The French would never hug, but the cheek kisses are a necessity, a little opening of politeness, so there's no refusing the man's hello kisses.
An English-speaking man who has lived here a few years, shared that he'd heard the French man might be a womanizer.
"No!" I acted shocked. Yeah, I had figured that out.
But as long as I'm not the black cat with the stripe being chased by Pepé le Pew, I find it pretty humorous to observe.



2 comments:

Jeanne Washburn said...

Fascinating. I had no idea. Our travels through France should be quite interesting. :)

Paulita said...

Jeanne, Hope you have an amazing trip

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