alliance francaise – dijon

Quelque temps dernier, j’ai decide que c’etait nécessaire que je teste ma desire a apprendre le francais. Apres trois plus ans et beaucoup des conversations avec mes amis en quebec et france il est le temps que je commet.

Il y a près de dix ou douze ans, j’ai essayé l’alliance française à Vancouver. C’est une bonne école, mais les étudiants (à cette époque) parlaient anglais lorsque ils avaient des problèmes. Il n’y avait pas de pression pour apprendre le français.

Donc, ici on parle en français, si vous avez un problème, vous essayez de trouver la réponse en français. Les étudiants sont internationaux, une seule personne que je connais ici parle anglais, tous les autres sont: allemand, espagnol, mexicain, etc. Mes deux professeurs semblent avoir une grande patience 🙂 

L’école est petite et située en face d’un immense lycée que j’ai vu. Notre classes changer en taille, quelque fois nous somme deux, les autre fois nous avons six ou plus. Chaque lecons est deux heurs longe. Vendredi c’est l’enfer car j’ai trois cours, ou six heures d’écriture, de grammaire et de conversation , a le fin de jour je besoin un bier (1664 blonde).

Publicités

quelques observations

Dijon est une ville jeune, car l’université et le lycée sont presque au centre-ville. Parfois, je pense que tout le monde a moins de vingt ans. Mais ce n’est pas vrai, je suis là!

La ville est charmante, très propre et les infrastructures sont bonnes. Ici, les gens utilisent les transports publics, le centre-ville est vivant avec de magasins, de marchés et de services publics. Bien sûr, c’est touristique, mais en ce moment un peu tranquille.

Les gens sont très gentils, j’ai parlé à plus de gens ici que dans d’autres régions de France. Mais aujourd’hui, j’ai parlé en anglais avec des suisses (allemands), mais nous avons essayé de parler un peu le français.

Le pays est très hiérarchisé, mais la plupart des gens s’adaptent aux étrangers. vous essayez de parler français.

Et le meilleur! les enfants et les adolescents sont polis. Toujours ils disent: bonjour, au revoir et merci même les uns aux autres. Ils mangent aussi la nourriture que les enfants canadiens n’essayent jamais.

une promenade et une conversation

Une promenade dans le matin. Le mardi est le jour de marché, beaucoupe de les rues sont calme, mais près le marché des halles, c’est un histoire different. Il y a beacoup des tables avec les livres vielle, quelque peintures et photographie artistique, vetements, quelque vieille mais mais la plupart sont nouvelles, je pense que vous trouvez tout ce que tu veux.

Les Halles est un marché plus grande, ici vous pouvez trouve les produits de france. Je vu beaucoup de charcuterie, étals de frais légumes, fruits, olives, et fromage. Aujourd’hui j’ai acheté un peu de pâte et une quiche pour le déjeuner.   

Trop de photos de la vieille ville à poster maintenant. Cette ville pour moi est plus charmant, plus histoire ancien, plus beau, je pense que d’autres villes françaises. Je serai partage les images plus tard.

Cet après midi je vais à l’école ou j’ai un conversation française pendant deux heurs, sans anglais.  Depuis que j’arrive en france je crois que c’est possible que j’ai parle moins dix phrases en anglais.

un mois à Dijon et quelques jours à Paris

I’m not trying to impress, only to practice a little while taking an immersion course in Dijon, France.  If you speak/write french you will find many errors both with spelling and basic grammar.  I’m subscribing to a school of thought which advocates living and speaking the language as opposed to following the traditional grammatical rules, and does not require repetitive drills. The the main objective is to aquire enough skill to have an intelligent (not academic) conversation.  You can read about UCLA’s linguistic expert Stephen Krashen here Je suis désolé si vous trouvez beaucoupe des erreurs avec: l’orthographe, la conjugaison, la grammaire. C’est un exercice pour moi, Je m’essaie à apprendre le langue. Mais, vous êtes invités à suivre si vous le souhaitez. Pendant deux ou trois ans j’ai essaye a apprend la française. C’est difficile, leçons en ligne, beaucoup des livres, et nombreuse de YouTube vidéo. Mais, mon succès était minime.  Lorsque j’ai découvert les sites pour le échange de conversation chose améliore, un peu avec l’aide du mes nouveaux amis ! Maintenant je peux parler avec peuple en france et québec .  Quatre person habite en France au Paris, Lyon et La Rochelle, et un ami à Montréal (il est originate de france). Je parle avec chaque personne pendant une heure ou plus chaque semaine. 

revelstoke, b.c. – the ups and downs

spent a wonderful three days with my son, Blair, camping at martha creek campground on lake revelstoke.  really nice campground, quiet setting, a chilly ice green lake, and close to town.

the highlights for both of us was a fast ride down the side of a mountain at revelstoke mountain resort on « the pipe coaster » a small sled on a tube of steel and a joystick!  later we visited to the « giant cedars » forest boardwalk in mt. revelstoke national park before heading back to camp.  the next day we headed back to the park to climb the summit trail to miller lake, 5.5 km in each direction. it took us 2 hours up and down with a few rests along the way.  my dog, max led the way and was a real trooper until the final kilometre down, when he ran out of steam (he’s has pretty short legs 🙂   you can see some photos here.

5 on a boat

an early morning start to rendezvous with the captain at horseshoe bay.  after paying $16 to get on board and wondering why i was paying more than i was for a much longer trip home from saltspring island ($9),  i learned that it’s a roundtrip fare and includes a second ferry if you’re heading further north to powell river or lund.

five guys can be pretty chatty, so giving those around you a heads up softens the alarm when we all get going.   off we go on a morning cruise and soon arrive at  langdale where we head for gibsons and some stocking up on food stuff.  off again, only to spot a pickup full of fresh corn which couldn’t be ignored (it made a great addition to a supper).  the captain’s a good navigator but had us wondering when finding the road to the boat posed a small challenge, however, we made it to rvyc moorage in garden bay.  before heading out,  we wandered up for some of the best fish and chips at lavernes-grill  which set us into the right mood, as we prepared to load up the boat and get underway.

first day, find our nights anchorage as we got a late start in the day.  heading west and past the southern tip of texada island we sighted the first island for our an overnight stay. we threaded our way past jedediah and jervis islands before arriving at a small bay on the northern end of lasqueti island, alas, it didn’t feel very welcoming and was a bit crowded with derelict boats and a rusted sailing boat seeking a new owner.  so, off we went, rounding the northern tip of the island where we soon discovered our spot, (the oddly named) false bay where we dropped anchor for the night.  crystal skies and water, smooth as glass, made for an enjoyable night.

 

 

up bright and early to see an awesome sunrise and a hearty breakfast (cooked by moi).  then underway for a crossing of the salish sea to the southern gulf islands. it’s been a longtime since i’ve been seasick (1971 to be exact when i worked on a tramp freighter out of gibralter) but sure enough the heaving waves, one to two metres high, soon had me heaving too 😦  but not for too long as the crossing took only 3 hours or so.  our destination was another bay between thetis and penelakut (formerly kuper) islands.  cruising amongs the rocky islets and sheer sided gulf islands must rank as one of the most rewarding pastimes i know of.  sunny skies, light breezes and fantastic scenery, including a lone killer whale that swam by and several seals.  we dropped anchor in the late afternoon in clam bay and then set off in the to explore a canal between the islands in the pontoon dinghy and a  telegraph bay at the other end where we picked up some ice and a home made blackberry pie and some jam at a local outdoor market on pilkey point road (pay on the honour system).  back to the  boat

 

 

 

 

 

le jardin en juin

it’s been a while since my last post…

over the past two years i’ve been working on a new « step » garden down the north side of the drive, it’s not completed, but it has been planted and needs only the caps along the stone wall to finish it.

as you’ll see i was liberal with the poppy seeds that pop up all over my garden, front and back. i’ve spread the poppy and other seeds along forest edge adjacent to our property as well as any plants that need thinning out. june, and maybe july are the best month for colour here in Hope, i’m still trying to find late summer bloomers but not sure which will be best for our changing clime.

a few photos from the front and back flower gardens: https://flic.kr/s/aHskX2QSuH

mountain highway

the second leg of our journey took us from kaslo to golden, jasper and grande prairie.  our usual habit is to travel up highway 1, the transcanada and head north just before lake louise via the banff-jasper parkway.  it is usually a winter trip and often we feel we have the parkway to ourselves as it ices over in many areas which, no doubt, discourages many drivers. this year however we were travelling in the fall, for the first time, and are glad for it as the leaves are turning to their autumn colours and we often followed a ribbon of gold as we zipped along the road.

this is our 20th or is it 30th trip up the parkway and we never tire of its wonders. here are some random shots taken through the sunroof of the car or side window.

a bit of trivia:

the two segments of our holiday: « kootenay bound » and « mountain highway » totalled 3,300 kilometres and include some of the highest passes in canada:

Mountain Passes
Bow pass
Sunwapta pass
Kicking Horse pass
Roger’s Pass
Allison Pass
Sunday Summitt
Blueberry-Paulson Summit
Anarchist Summit
Nancy Greene Summit
Surrey Lake Summit
Coquihalla Pass
2.088m
2.035m
1.643m
1327m
1342m
1282m
1535m
1236m
1575m
1444m
1244m
Banff-Jasper Parkway
Banff-Jasper Parkway
Yoho National Park
Glacier National Park
Manning Provincial Park
East of Manning Provincial Park
Christina Lake to Castlegar
East of Osoyoos
Christina Lake to Rossland
North of Merritt
Highway 5, 60 km from Hope

kootenay bound

our annual trip north began with a drive along highway 3, the crowsnest which i consider the best (read most scenic and pleasant) drive to the interior of b.c. our destination the « kootenays » my old stomping ground and where many friends still live amongst the mountains and lakes.  we dawdled along, taking pictures of old building, mountains, rivers and the ever changing foliage as autumn descends.  being familiar with the route we did not stay long in any one spot but we did take some extra time to explore greenwood, a relic of days gone by and apparently still thriving and a stop for a picnic in grand forks.

we stayed with a friend in trail, an old mining town know for teck cominco, the worlds largest non-ferrous smelter, still going strong and dominating the town as it sits on a high plateau above the columbia river.  our friend recently moved back to trail after living for many years in vancouver.  she gave us a guided tour of the town, through the old italian neighbourhoods clinging to the cliff sides and along the river to parks and more upscale  developments.  we dined at the long standing  colander restaurant in the downtown core.  it seems to have been there forever, serving copious amounts of pasta, chicken and meatballs….mmmmm.

next day, after a lazy start, we headed off for kaslo.  visiting old haunts where i had lived for several years.  following the west arm of kootenay lake we first visited nelson, b.c. and my old hometown during the 70’s, following the west arm of kootenay lake through to balfour where you can cross the lake on one of the longest free ferry rides in the world.  the last leg took us to kaslo, past ainsworth hotsprings, noted for the very hot caves and majestic view of the lake and the purcell mountains.  following the steep shore of kootenay lake we arrived in kaslo, a jewel on the lake!

i lived and worked in kaslo for a couple of years before moving back to vancouver, it still feels like home and friends there make it tempting to return for the remainder of my retirement years.  with a population of about a thousand souls it has a friendly atmosphere and no shortage of charm.  one of our friends is half owner of the treehouse restaurant and, in my opinion, the best place to eat in town. visiting another friend we had three encounters with bears within an hour, two, we suspect were the same bear!  the first was enormous and fortunately unaware of our proximity, the second however was too close for me and had it not been for max « the bear dog » we would not have been as ready to bolt into the house as it sauntered by.  a walk through the side streets brought us the next bear!  enough! we headed back to our hotel and a relaxing drink of wine.

kaslo is full of history and has been well preserved by the residents and business community alike.  for more info, visit their website.

here is an assortment of images taken on the way to kaslo, bc.

Lire la suite de « kootenay bound »

seeing red! …roasted tomato sauce

the beginning of fall and the last of the tomatoes (about 10 kg) from my garden are ready for sauce. this is the second batch we’ve processed in the last couple of weeks, much to my surprise as i only grew 10 plants this year (we bought another 24 kg for canning).

my friend sheila, another avid gardener on vancouver island, shared her sauce recipe with me 2 years back and it’s definitely a keeper in our house!

with small embellishments here is sheila’s recipe for perfect tomato sauce.

« I have used this recipe for years and it never fails. I usually make it in the
summer as we have a vegetable garden and always end up with too many
tomatoes, I then make in batches, for the freezer. I use a lot of garlic in this
recipe but that’s because we love it and the garlic sweetens in the roasting
process. I have strained the sauce at times to remove the seeds. Though most
people don’t mind tomato seeds.
« 

ingredients:

  • 2 lbs large tomatoes (i do a large tray on the bbq, about 4 lbs or 2 kg*)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian herb seasoning (i use a tablespoon full*)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (1 for the tray and one to drizzle over the tomatoes*)

putting it together:
Preheat the oven/grill to 400°f. 205°c.
Slice tomatoes in half, set aside. (i give them a squeeze to get out some seeds and juice*)
Pour the olive oil onto a large baking sheet and spread it around the sheet.
Sprinkle evenly the garlic, herbs, sugar, salt and pepper over the oil.
Place the tomatoes cut side down onto the baking sheet (optional: add sliced peppers on top and drizzle with olive oil)  shake the italian herb mixture over the lot*)
Roast for about 30-40 minutes, or until the skins start to lift from the tomatoes. (i roast mine for about an hour until they are just getting dark caramelising on top*)
Allow to cool.
Remove the skins and put the sauce into a large bowl and break up the flesh with a fork. (…we invested in an italian tomato mill to process the mixture, it removes the skin and seeds quickly*)

Reheat sauce if using immediately.

sheila’s comments:
« I’ve been making this sauce and freezing it sucessfully for several years. (we bag ours in ziploc bags for freezing*) I press it in a mill to remove the seeds and skins once it has cooled. I have discovered that salt takes away the bitterness. I know some suggest sugar but salt works too.« 

« It’s good if you roast a tray of sweet peppers with a tray of tomatoes and combine them. Roasting reduces the water content so you get a more intense tomato taste.
No stirring. I use parchment paper on the baking sheets. »

* ◊ my variations

home-grownseasoninggoodatxmas onthegrillitaliantomatomill reward