Saturday, 16 October 2010

Have you heard the one about le Rosbif and le rosbif

At 11:25 I went downstairs to wait for Madame as I knew that she would be going to F and J-M’s flat for the roast beef lunch.

An yes of course the fact that the French refer to the English as les rosbifs is just as funny the 300th time that you hear about it as on the first occasion.
Eventually she shuffled out of her apartment clutching a plastic bag with bottles in it, and sporting a strap on leg brace on one calf, She was exhausted after her Paris trip. 5 hours standing in the Louvre, 5 hours standing in the gardens of the Palace of Versailles etc etc.
Was I going to F’s house for lunch? She enquired (as if she didn’t know). Yes I said.
Off we went down the steps, her dog dancing excitedly round us. I had thought that we would walk down together, but as we reached her car she said that she was too worn out to walk. She was taking her car. There was a long pause. Did I want a lift?
We arrived in one piece and gained entry through the various security gates.
We listened once again to Madame’s tales of self inflicted woes.
Le apero nibbles arrived to take her mind off things, and she dug in.
F told her how fantastic her birthday had been the previous weekend. 15 all.
The roast beef arrived on the table. The British are used to a well done piece of uniformly grey meat, with perhaps a slight pink blush spreading from the centre.
The French prefer to heat up the oven. put the joint of meat in for 3 minutes or so, or until the very outside of the meat goes grey, then whip it out again.
The result is a piece of meat just as raw as before it entered the oven.
Being debonair and cosmolopitan and once having ordered steak tartare in a restaurant in France in the ‘80s ,(thinking that it must be steak with tartare sauce) I am prepared to munch my way through most things with my sang froide in tact.
After the meal, F wanted to watch the DVD of birthday photos that I had made for her, complete with soundtrack (Thin Lizzy’s “Parisienne walkways”).
F just loved her DVD and played it over and over and over and over.......
I had arranged to take F and J-M to the parachute regiment open day the following weekend, did Madame want to come too? No, she was far too tired and would need to rest.
Madame decided that she was now even more tired. You understand 5 hours in the Louvre, 5 hours at the Palace of Versaille, the hard Parisian pavements.....
F and J-M wanted us to stay to supper. I thought that it was best if I left at the same time as Madame so we thanked our hosts and off we went.

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