Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Cleaning the catacombs

My friend and former colleague Gail, who once gave me the greatest compliment ever, sent me a link to an interesting blogpost. Kristin Espinasse, an American who married a Frenchman and is raising their 2 kids in France, offers French Word-A-Day, which she has also turned into a book. In her April 1st post, she discusses having to complete 3 days of community service because of a complaint by a local sheep farmer that his flock had gotten sick after grazing in her pasture. The assigned task was "le nettoyage de l'ossuaire municipal" - cleaning the municipal ossuary, in other words the Paris catacombs! The state paid for her train ticket, but Espinasse was required to bring her own small scrub brush and some olive oil – "une goutte par tête" (one drop per head)– although she was unsure if this was meant to serve as a detergent or a polish...


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