7 Blunders Of The French World: Things that drive me crazy living in France.

 

 

Ok, let me start of by saying I LOVE France. I love the Country, the people and my life here. If you know me I have probably already talked your ear off about how much I adore living in the octagon. I have even been told that I should stop talking about how much I prefer aspects of my life here (sorry not sorry). I guess I have come off as a bit of a frangosnob to some .So here it is, my attempt to prove that i’m not trying to dump on the states, the downsides to my utopia, seven things that I can’t stand in France.

1. The paperwork. No this is not a stereotype. The French administration loves its paperwork and by that I mean real, hardcopy pieces of paper. France is a place that will leave you dreaming of emails and PDF files before you can say Schengen Visa. I mean really, when I go to an office with papers in hand and they tell me ‘no sorry that has to be mailed’, to the office that I’m standing in…you have a problem with your paper work, and chain of authority obsession France.

2. What’s up with your McDonalds addiction. I am always amazed when I pass by a MacDo and it is PACKED. I mean you even have electronic cashiers to help control the herds of hungry french teenagers who flock here for lunch, dinner, and everything in between. Not to mention, your franglish used to name some of your burgers would scare away even the hardiest of grease fans. (Double Shiny Bacon….no thanks!) I know I know a BigMac is ‘Top’ (awesome) but your addiction to the double bun is OUT OF CONTROL. There are so many other amazing things you could be eating that are so much cheaper and don’t leave you with a face full of acne and regret. YOU LIVE IN THE LAND OF FOOD !!

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3. The dog poop….why. It’s like ALL the dog owning residents decided it’s ok to just let their dog poop wherever it pleases and leave it for someone else to step on take care of. Now don’t get me wrong, there is dog poop on the sidewalks of American cities, but it is the sheer amount that litters your sidewalks which really stands out.  I get that many cities don’t have a ‘dog poop’ fine in place but really if you all do your part it will be SO MUCH NICER FOR EVERYONE.

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This view should have a ‘Caution doggie land mines’ sign.

4. You seem to be very confused about how to get on a metro train. Why in any world do you think its productive to get ON a train while a horde of people are trying to get off….trust me if you all step to the side, wait , and THEN get on, the world will not end, you will still make your train, and everyone will be happy.

5. I would loooove to be able to buy simple pharmaceutical things at the grocery store…It sounds like something out of a history book, in France Pharmacies are separate from other stores and only sell health products. There is nothing that equates to a CVS, Walgreens, or Target Pharmacy Department in France. Those little green crosses are your only option for all your medical needs.But really, having to go to a pharmacy for anything from IcyHot to Advil or Midol is a bit much. On the upside I have always gotten amazing customer service and more advice than I thought I needed at these pharmacies. Maybe we should jot this one down as love/hate.

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Check out the little green cross, that is your only option for anything pharmacy related while in France.

6. How do you even operate with the hours of most offices/banks/stores?!?! I mean really almost EVERYTHING is closed on Sundays and about the same amount of places take a half day on Saturdays. Also do not even get me started with banks. Closed on the weekends, Mondays, between 12:30 and 2:30, and after 5:00……..how????? There were numerous times I wanted to go rainy day shopping, or save my weekly grocery trip for Sunday, only to be crudely reminded that these things are not possible in France. I mean who actually NEEDS time with their families anyways.

7. Lets have a serious conversation about coffee on the go. Whenever I step into a boulangerie out of a pastry lovers fantasy (read: almost every boulangerie in France) I want a nice big cup of joe to accompany whatever decadent treat I chose to devour. Unfortunately that’s not what you get. Most pastry shops (IF they sell coffee) will offer you some kind of Instacoffee mix in what looks like a tiny solo cup….yes I coooouuld walk to the nearest hipster café but come on who has time for that?!

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Why don’t you try this to go?!

Living abroad? What are some things that just drive you nuts in your new home?

 

 

 

7 thoughts on “7 Blunders Of The French World: Things that drive me crazy living in France.

  1. theaixpataixperience says:

    I completely agree with you about France’s fast-food addiction. It’s OUT OF CONTROL! There’s a reason fast-food is a thing in the US: The US isn’t the AMAZING FOOD CAPITAL in the world! But, France… Well, I know I’d rather have a sandwich, crêpe, or panini than walk into MacDo. France just doesn’t know how lucky she is – Crêpes are EVERYWHERE!

    I like the separation with pharmacies and supermarkets. I remember when that was the case in the US. It felt less “factory” and more “personal”. In the US, it’s literally a pharmacy that’s in most super markets, which is why you can find Midol and etc…But, then again I’m not a fan of big supermarket chains, so, that’s probably why I enjoy this separation. I also like the fact that most places are closed on Sundays and/or Mondays (although it can get quite annoying when it’s your only day off to do stuff). It gives new meaning to the word “life”. Also, it shows how the French value “living” rather than “profiting” unlike the US (where even on Labor Day (a holiday for workers), people labor away!). I just want to say to companies: “It’s ok! We can take one day off and shut down the store!” Besides, there’s always at least (depends on the size of the city) 1 pharmacy on guard (which cycles, so, it’s not just the same pharmacy every time),so, there’s no worries.

    Great post!

  2. Cristen En Route says:

    Thank you 🙂

    Yes the fast food addiction here blows my mind! Plus it makes sense that fast food is such a thing in the United States. First of all it was where the entire idea of fast food came from, and also goes hand in hand with the fact that we are time poor in the United States. There are also not as many cheep but quick options in the United States. I mean, even a Kebab is better in my opinion. At least you can see the slab of meat that it’s coming from (and come on Kebabs are A M A Z I N G).

    I also agree with you about the pharmacies and the store hours. They are both love hate things for me. Trust me I would have done my time working retail in France instead of the United States the workers are just treated SO MUCH BETTER. I am not talking just by their emplyers either. I love how you are expected to say “Bonjour” , “Merci” , and “Bonne Journée” to store clerks and cashiers. While I was in retail there would be people who ignored me and just shoved money at me more times than I can count. The culture of respect is great.

  3. Cristen En Route says:

    Ok so it’s not 24/7 but 7 days a week you can be sure! It has its ups and downs. My mom works in the banking industry so of course I wish she was working on a French workers schedule but the convenience factor is something that I miss! I love how small our world is now too 🙂

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