Translation of the Day: Charlotte’s Web

Salut mes amis!

I am now on Week 2, Day 2 of my 12 Week Language Learning Challenge and that means one hour of reading! I would highly recommend “Le Petit Monde de Charlotte” for any early beg-intermediate readers of French out there. As I mentioned previously, there is a lot of farm vocabulary to get used to, but the new vocabulary is repeated often enough that it makes it easy enough to pick up on. (After this book I will never forget that le fumier means “manure” and yet I hope I will never have an occasion that requires me to use it in France…)

The best part about reading children’s literature in French is that it makes stories written for children sound very serious and somber indeed! It’s been a busy day for me but I wanted to share a quick translation from my reading today to show you what I mean..

La Citation:

“C’était vraiment le plus mauvais jour de sa vie. Il ne voyait pas comment il pourrait supporter cette affreuse solitude une minute de plus. L’obscurité noyait tout.” 

My translation:

It was truly the worst day of his life. He couldn’t see how he could bear this terrible solitude for one more minute. Darkness drowned everything.”

Pauvre Wilbur! I mean, I know that it’s a sad passage in English, but in French? That little pig is downright existential.

May your day be better than his, and stay tuned for happier updates from the farm!

À bientôt,

Zena

The Eiffel Tower on Google Today!

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 9.12.05 PM

I was so happy to come home from my first day of French class at the Alliance Française to find this very appropriate cartoon on Google! March 31, 2015 marks the Eiffel Tower’s 126th birthday and graphic artist Floriane Marchix created this very cute Google Doodle in celebration.

Here’s a nice quote about the Eiffel Tower, and my spin on how it can be applied towards learning languages:

La Citation:
“Dans leur idée, la tour Eiffel était ce qu’il y a de plus beau au monde. Mlle Minnier dit que c’est le Parthénon. Moi, je crois que tout ce que les gens font est beau.” – Béatrix Beck, La Décharge, 1979

My translation:
“In their minds, the Eiffel Tower was that which is most beautiful in the world. Miss Minnier says that it’s the Parthenon. Me, I think that everything that people make is beautiful.”

My take on this quote:
Since starting this blog, I’ve heard many references to French being “la plus belle langue.” Sitting in my class tonight though, you probably wouldn’t have thought so. I was somewhat relieved to find that the other students also hesitate and stumble in their speech as they work to conjugate and place pronouns correctly. It may not have sounded pretty to a native speaker, but me, I think that any language you make your own is beautiful.

I’m a big fan of the movie Paris Je T’aime, and I especially love this segment which fits nicely with today’s post:


Joyeux anniversaire à toi, belle tour! May you forever beckon people young and old to learn your beautiful language and make it their own.

À bientôt,

Zena