Autres temps, autres moeurs

Maggie’s recent blog entry charmed me beyond words. An excerpt:

My favorite taxi driver here in Pau is a good example.  I was trying to say something in French to him, and he stopped me with a smile and said (in French, obviously), “Slow down~enjoy the words.  We have the time. Here, we like our language.  Say the words, don’t just use them.”

I tried to respond via the “une commentaire” box but the application refused to recognize my log-in ID. No matter; I have decided to post it here instead.

Maggie, I must tell you just how much I enjoyed your most recent blog entry. I love the idea of the French and their “c’est la vie” attitude. Some people (Type A Americans, anyone?) might consider this an irritating form of insouciance. I prefer to see it as refusing to waste precious emotional energy grieving over what is past, choosing instead to embrace the moment. I think it’s much healthier than what so many (myself included) tend towards: incessant handwringing and angst over what has already occurred and can never be undone. One should always try to rectify one’s mistakes whenever possible…..yes, absolutely! But also, to say, What’s done is done. Let’s move on…enjoy the life God has set before us right now…and strive to do better next time.

“That strange feeling we had in the war. Have you found anything in your lives since to equal it in strength? A sort of splendid carelessness it was, holding us together.” ~ Noel Coward

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