Meet les parents!

Last Saturday, Mom, D and I took off in our little rental car for Coustellet. It was time for Mom to meet les parents.

Yes, this would be the first time our families would meet.  Les parents didn’t attend our wedding in Toronto because D and I had already made the move across the Atlantic.  And really, what would they do for 2 weeks in English-speaking Toronto?

But back to Mom’s visit to Coustellet and the meeting of les parents.

I must admit that I wondered how this first meeting would go.  Les parents don’t speak English and Mom speaks even less French.  Yes, D and I would be there to translate but that can be a little difficult for the parties involved.  Plus, there are certain things that don’t always translate well.  Or, there are conversations that go on and on in one language leaving some of the listeners by the wayside.

It was something, though, seeing Mom interact with les parents.  Thankfully, Mom didn’t use what I call her “busted French”; she was all smiles.  And les parents?  It seems that le papy had been practicing the three English words he knows: “Welcome!” and “thank you”.  (I’m not even exaggerating!)  It was quite hilarious actually.


I don’t know if Mom was nervous but le papy certainly was.  The nerves quickly dissipated however.  Maybe it was the bottle of Canard Duchêne demi-sec that we polished off in short order.  By the time we hit the table for lunch les parents and Mom were relaxed and totally at ease.  Dinner that night was just an extension of lunch; more champagne, rosé wine, and a little rum to cap the night off.  (I had to tell Mom that I don’t drink this much normally — and really, I don’t — but when it comes to celebrating why hold back?)

Lest you think we sat around eating and drinking D, Mom and I decided to hit the road for a mini trip to Ménerbes.  Sadly, the village was closed (as D put it).  Our favourite café was closed as the entire pedestrian area was being re-paved.  We left Ménerbes and decided to backtrack a bit to Oppède Le Vieux.  We didn’t walk all the way to the ancient church at the top.  Instead, we stopped for a cool drink at a café in the old part of town.

On Sunday, after breakfast, we took a stroll through Coustellet’s market.  I can always find something there that I need want.  I gave up nougat this time for chutney de figuesLa vendeuse assured us that it was perfect on goat cheese toast.  (I was sold at the words ‘goat cheese’.)  Mom bought a few goodies to take home too.

After lunch, we were back on the road.  On our way home we made a stop in St Tropez.  The streets were packed; it was a lovely afternoon to be out.  We treated ourselves to ice cream and wandered the streets, looking into shops and art galleries.

Finally, it was time to hit the road for the drive home.  Traffic was a lot lighter and the drive was uneventful.  We were still exhausted from the week and thankfully we had nothing planned for Monday.

Next up: our April in Paris…on Tuesday!

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Categories: guests

Author:Tanya in Transition

I am a woman in transition. I left my job of 13 years to find happiness and self-fulfillment...in France!

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14 Comments on “Meet les parents!”

  1. April 25, 2011 at 6:23 PM #

    There is little in life more exciting than the first intercultural encounter of “les parents”! Glad to hear it went well !

    • April 25, 2011 at 10:42 PM #

      How very true! It was so strange, but so fun at the same time, seeing my Mom interact with D’s parents.

  2. gracekaya
    April 25, 2011 at 7:13 PM #

    would love to see a pic of the whole family if you’ve got one… or at least the folks together 🙂

  3. Sinead
    April 25, 2011 at 8:18 PM #

    Tanya….I’m curious…what is the green drink that is in the picture with you and your mum there?

    • April 25, 2011 at 10:44 PM #

      Leprechaun soda. Kidding. I said that ‘cuz you’re Irish.
      It’s called diabolo menthe. It’s soda water, in this case Perrier I think, with mint syrup. You can make it with any other syrup. Of course it won’t be menthe but still… Just don’t use too much syrup or the sweetness will take away some of the refreshing quality of the drink.

  4. April 25, 2011 at 9:36 PM #

    Awww! This is beyond sweet. Your mum is gorgeous, girl! Still looking young.

  5. April 26, 2011 at 11:07 AM #

    Ah! Glad to hear the translation went well. Hope they were able to get a sense of each other with only smiles and hand gestures. (Love the welcomes and thank yous.) I’m fairly sure that’s how our meeting between the parents and les parents will go in the next few weeks. At least, I hope it goes that well!

    • April 27, 2011 at 1:19 PM #

      I’m sure things will go well for you too; nothing like a celebration — and some champagne — to bring people together!

  6. April 27, 2011 at 8:03 AM #

    First meeting with in-laws is always nerve-recking..So glad everything ended up well…As I always say, there is nothing “une flute de champagne” cannot solve ;D

  7. April 27, 2011 at 2:39 PM #

    Love this, reminds me of the BIG meeting with my B and the inlaws on both sides! There was loads of great wine and food that first night and everything flowed like butta after. SO nice to read these days with your mommy! Coming back to Paris before JA?

    • April 27, 2011 at 6:32 PM #

      Actually, we’ll be in Paris next week for a couple days. I think we arrive on Tues eve.

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