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Questions concerning French culture-(Aix-en-Provence)

Questions concerning French culture-(Aix-en-Provence)

Jun 11th, 2002, 08:55 PM
Posts: n/a
Questions concerning French culture-(Aix-en-Provence)


I am going to be an exchange student this summer in Aix-en Provence, France. I am so excited, but have many questions (some of which are pretty frivolous).
1st- For highschool aged young women, what is appropriate dress?
* Are there any certain habits/conduct/ behaviors that I should not find offensive or that I should not do that would be okay in the states?
*How about any habits (for lack of a better word) that my family might have that I should be prepared for?
Thank you. any advice is greatly appreciated.

Jun 11th, 2002, 10:06 PM
Posts: n/a
hi arabella,
could you tell us what is appropriate dress for you in your town? what are you afraid may offend? and where are you from in the US?

i can't address your concerns as they relate directly to france, i will offer this advice: take much, much less than you think you should bring. i studied in scotland for a semester and brought enough 'things' and clothes to fill a room. i thought i would need it, but i didn't. it was a pain in the butt to get it over and back, and made travelling after my semester was over nearly impossible.

good luck.
Jun 12th, 2002, 12:04 AM
Posts: n/a

Teenagers here in Provence dress pretty casually... but the girls have more "style" than the boys. If you'll only be here for the summer - skirts, sundresses, capris ( called pantacourt here), jeans, cotton shirts and tank type tops.

As to "habits" - I think one of the main differences you will find as an American is that meals are eaten together as a family. Everyone talks to each other and dinners can take a couple of hours.
Being polite is highly valued here... unless you are told to use first names, you would call your hosts Monsieur xxxx et Madame xxx.

Jun 12th, 2002, 12:30 AM
martine (from Belgium)
Posts: n/a
Hi Arabella
In Europe the people have other table manners. I have been in NY,and there I saw that you first cut your meat, than you put your knife on your plate , you take the fork in your right hand, you hold your left hand under the table, you eat the peace of meat and than you begin all over again. "Funny". We have also the fork in the left hand and the knife in the right to cut, but we cut and we take the food with ou left hand to the mouth. Meanwhile we keep the knife in or left hand and than we cut again etc. That is our poliet way of eating. Never put hands under the table while eating!
(I'll go to the US this summer again and I will try to adapt myself at your table manners )
Jun 12th, 2002, 12:33 AM
martine (again)
Posts: n/a
Sorry, I wrote a mistake. It must be "Meanwhile we keep the knife in our right hand"
Jun 12th, 2002, 05:50 AM
fitting in
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The thing that I found most different was that all the students were smoking. I didn't notice anything particularly different about their dress. They hang out in cafes with their drinks...and cigarettes. If you were my daughter, I'd be more worried about the smoking than anything else.
Jun 12th, 2002, 06:20 AM
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Just be polite.
Say "s'il-vous-plaît" and "merci".
First name basis is only for close friends and classmates. Same goes for second person singular ("tu" vs "vous").
Wait for everybody to be served before starting to eat.
Jun 12th, 2002, 03:33 PM
Posts: n/a
you should be fine as long as you shine!
Jun 21st, 2002, 10:20 AM
gregory pendalton
Posts: n/a
Be ready for the toppless beaches ma souer!
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