How functional are android phones, using wifi for data, and purchasing prepaid cell service for calls in France? Previouly I had the iPod Touch, which worked very well, all the apps were available and worked as expected. A used unlocked Blackberry Bold 9900 I purchased as a replacement turned out to be useless. [more inside]
How can I become fluent in french as quickly as possible? I have studied French on and off for several years but still feel that I am no closer to fluency, and I hope to visit France and possibly even work there for an extended period within the next few years. [more inside]
I will be attending an artist residency in Marnay-sur-Seine, France from late May through the end of June. I'd love any advice on the town, nearby places I should visit, things I should be aware of, etc. Some of my high priority travel interests include botanic gardens, zoos, aquariums, other plant and animal-related destinations, art, thrift shops, and vegetarian restaurants. [more inside]
What is the cycling like inside the town of Bordeaux? I know the region is bike-friendly, but if I rent a flat in town, can I easily cycle around the city and reach the outlying areas? Is there a bike path along the Garonne? Any suggestions on bike rentals or biking destinations would be appreciated as well.
Our family will be spending a few days in Carcassonne, France in June. We're traveling with kids, so our plan is for a mostly low-key trip filled with lazily exploring the city. But we're also looking for other unique or special experiences we could do as a family that would really make our trip special. [more inside]
I'd like to see an article or book on the economic history of the French Revolution. While the poor crops and unusually harsh winters seem relatively self-explanatory, I'm interested in the personalities and the constraints that seem to lurk along the edges. [more inside]
Our family will be spending a few days in Beynac France (Dordogne region) in June. We're traveling with kids, so our plan is for a mostly low-key trip filled with canoeing and lazily exploring the towns of Beynac, Castlenaud and Sarlat. But we're also looking for other unique or special experiences we could do as a family that would really make our trip special. [more inside]
After working my butt off to build a life abroad, I'm worried that my inability to make friends at work is an un-fixable cultural issue. I have never been one of those super-incredibly popular people, but this is the first time in my life I've struggled to fit in/build a friend group, and I'm beginning to wonder if it's just an unavoidable moment in an expat's life, deliberate snubbing, or if something is actually psychologically wrong with me. [more inside]
Off to Paris (France, not Texas) in a bit. I'm in the market for nineteenth century architectural prints. Any suggestions welcome. (Cheaper is better, of course, but will consider - not cheaper.) [more inside]
Traveling along the Côte d'Azur and the Ligurian Sea in the next few weeks. Need to optimize our travel between the towns on our itinerary but searching is giving me incomplete information. Can you walk me through it, step by step? [more inside]
Are there any French stores that are similar to the Dutch store Dille & Kamille, or the Danish store Sostrene & Grene? I will also gladly accept any other recommendations for adorable stores in France! [more inside]
Traveling to Europe for the first time ever, and I'm super excited! Have most of a plan mapped out, but not sure on details and would appreciate any advice. [more inside]
I’m trying to fact-check an anecdote that I’ve come across in the course of a research project, and coming up short. In a nutshell: did King Umberto I of Italy ever visit Paris at any point between 1889 and his assassination in 1900? The anecdote suggests that he did, but my (admittedly limited) understanding of French-Italian relations at the time suggests that this is unlikely.
Traveling with the family through France in June. We will be driving from Amboise to Vezac and we're looking for suggestions for a cute little stopover for the night somewhere in between. [more inside]
I've stumbled across a little french sculpture from 1984, and I'd like to know more about it - but I can't figure out who made it... [more inside]
Clémence Poésy plays Elise Wassermann, the French detective. Several scenes showed her "going home" to a set of silver buildings (by the water?) in a French city. Can anyone recognize these? The city or the area or the buildings themselves? I want to find info on them.
Should we go to Paris this Sunday? [more inside]
During my upcoming trip to Japan, I will be staying with my boyfriend's parents. Please help me get them a gift that says "thank you for taking the trouble of having me, and I'm the perfect daughter-in-law." [more inside]
We're contemplating a short family trip to Brittany between Christmas and New Year, but have no cultural context for how shut down rural and small-town France is likely to be at that time of year. [more inside]
What should I do/see during my two month stay in Vannes, France (Brittany)? [more inside]
I have never traveled outside the U.S. and am terrified about this specific part of the trip. I anticipate being at least a little jet lagged when I arrive, so I want to make sure I have a plan in place. Advice?
I'm traveling to France this September with my mother and we're going to be there during the Fête de la Gastronomie, which is great! Except that I don't know what we should do or how we should do it. [more inside]
I'm returning home to England for a visit next month and I haven't been home since 2011. Please help me prepare properly. [more inside]
I need to order some art supplies from this place and have them delivered to my residency outside of Toulouse. The problem is, they don't give me the option to add in my US billing address; they only offer France and Morocco. Any ideas about how I can get around this? Or perhaps there is another art supply store I could order from that acknowledges foreign billing addresses?
What are your tips and tricks for saving money and reducing wait times for the various popular sites and attractions in Paris? Are there tickets that are smart to buy ahead online? [more inside]
help french speaking mefites! we are in lepuy france on the camino and lost our american to european electric cord adaptor for my surface pro 3. does any one know an electronics/computer store store that would sell these in le puy? merci!!!!
After years of scrimping and saving, we are contemplating a trip abroad in the fall. However, small budget means we have to figure out what to visit and how. Please help us figure out the last potential vacation overseas for the next decade or so! [more inside]
I flew into Charles de Gaulle Airport in May. On our descent we passed over many fields of vivid yellow flowering plants. What might those have been?
In late May, I will spend a week with my family in Italy (Rome, Florence, Venice) and then I'm going by myself to the Loire Valley to gawk at castles. Where should I stop for a day or two in between: Nice, Marseille, Lyon? [more inside]
I've read that for some smartphones it's possible, when traveling in Europe, to buy a local SIM card and put it in the phone. Is the Samsung Galaxy S III, purchased in Toronto, one of these phones? [more inside]
We are finally going on our (rather belated) honeymoon, and we've decided to spend several days in Paris and the Loire valley. I think we've got the Paris bits down, but don't have a whole lot of info on the Loire area - can you help us? Oh yeah, and we're going to do it all by bike. [more inside]
What do people in France, Spain, and Mexico call a (station) wagon in common usage in their native languages? Is "break" correct for France? I think I'm missing the subtleties when Googling here. (And "estate" is correct for the UK, right?) Thank you!
I've been working in France for the past year and am leaving permanently in one week. I've been churning through all the various administrative tasks but I'm a bit confused about tax. I know that this year I will need to pay my taxes for 2014. The question is, do I need to inform the government that I am leaving, or do I need do anything else before I leave? How do I organise paying my taxes from Australia? [more inside]
The popular perception of Versailles and the 18th century French aristocracy holds that they showed a casual disregard for the the struggles of the poor. This surely has truth to it, but the famous "let them eat cake" anecdote quite likely never happened – so can you point me to any other evidence (letters, anecdotes, trial proceedings, etc) of how the French ruling class actually regarded the poor?
I'm in the midst of a research project, and my subject (a first-year medical student in Paris in 1877) mentions taking "...Prof. Frény’s course at the Museum, where I got the honor to be received by him in his laboratory." The student was also taking classes at the Sorbonne at the time. Help me figure out who Prof. Frény was, and which museum is referenced. (And yes, I've already tried Google...) Merci beaucoup!
I'm trying to identify a French movie for a colleague. I don't have much to go on and IMDB/Google have failed me. Somewhat [more inside]
Hello, I'm looking for some good French podcasts that aren't simply radio broadcasts, but are more conversational/comedy/interview in style. I'm thinking of podcasts like: Judge John Hodgeman, WTF, Filmspotting, Comedy Bang Bang, Savage Lovecast, Lexicon Valley, My Brother my brother and me. Does such a thing even exist in France? I'd appreciate some help if you know of anything!
In The Discovery of France: A Historical Geography, the following sentence has prompted much speculation: "There were rebilhous, who called out the hours of the night, 'cinderellas', who collected and sold ashes used for laundering clothes, men called tetaires, who performed the function of a breast-pump by sucking mothers' breasts to start the flow of milk, and all the other specialists that the census listed under 'trades unknown' and 'without trade', which usually meant gypsies prostitutes, and beggars." So, uh, tetaires? [more inside]
need some pointers as to research strategies/leads to find out about the state of the art knowledge about the moon in 1878, with particular reference to things arising in or popular in the French scientific community. First thoughts are Times digital archive and to look for an encyclopaedia of similar date. Any leads appreciated.
Can anyone explain this sign? [more inside]
Currently there is a lightning storm on the France / Spain border which is oddly circular. It looks like this as seen on lightningmaps. Why is it this shape?
I've been watching the Tour de France (thinking of starting a Phil Liggett drinking game, with phrases like "dancing on the pedals" and of course "lactic acid". Anyway, among the bunches of cars and motorcycles in various roles I've noticed one with the AG2R logo on the fairing. As they are also a team sponsor, that got my attention, but I can't figure out what that motorcycle is doing. No passenger, just a pilot on the motorbike, and no obvious role like medical, law enforcement, support*, or cameras. [more inside]
I need to request a police report from a French city. The USPS doesn't sell International Reply Coupons anymore, and I can't mail coins. I can send a €5 bill (about US$7) to cover the €2 postage, or nothing at all. I have included my email and fax in the letter as well as a self-addressed envelope. Is it a good idea or bad idea to include the five Euros?
It is my understanding that French high school students take a year-long philosophy course in the last year of the lycee. So what's it like in this course, anyway? [more inside]
I'm looking for THE forum for peeps like me (mid-30s, freelancing creative professional, not a backpacker) making a go of settling down overseas. I figured the hive must know the good sites with relevant info. [more inside]
In Paris with new husband, atrocious French skills. Haven't seen my Brit sister in over 15 years and she booked us hotel in Deauville-Trouville to meet tomorrow, 15 June. All I know is the train leaves from Gare St Lazare. The NCSF site requires Europe billing address so we couldn't buy ticket online, and train listings appear and disappear. We are getting frantic about what is happening. Train strike appears to be renewed, from what I can glean. Can anyone help?
Any mefites knowledgeable about the French transport situation at the moment? Two of us have booked train tickets from Paris to Caen tomorrow and it seems that almost no trains are running. [more inside]
I always found the answers to travel questions here very interesting, so here it goes: At the end of August/beginning of September, we want to go on a little post-conference vacation in the south of France. Our plan is to rent a car in Lyon and fly back two weeks later from Marseille. Do you have any tips and recommendations for us? Anything special we should keep in mind regarding to renting a car? We thought that the area of Languedoc-Roussillon is not as crowded as the Cotê d'Azure, so which cities should we visit? Primarily visiting some interesting places and relaxing at the beach is planned but tips for some short hikes are also highly appreciated. Thanks in advance!
Some freinds and I are going to take a train from Amsterdam to the South of France this summer and we need some ideas for places to check out on a budget and with interesting places/events/people to check out. [more inside]
Where can I view a specific tourist road sign design I saw in France? [more inside]