"When good Americans die, they go to Paris." - Oscar Wilde

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Eating Goose Liver, Drinking at Two, and Other Things American Students Have to Try in France

Today has been interesting so far. It's Berry's birthday, so the family had a large lunch prepared. I met her boyfriend, Léo, who had studied in America for four months and wanted to practice his English with me. We watched a French game show and he seemed surprised when I could hold my own on the French literature questions. Then he, François, and I played Wii Sports until it was time to eat.

First, we had champagne and salty snacks. I gave Berry her gift and she loved it. I had bought some pretty macaroons from a pâtisserie downtown and Mme. informed me that Berry loved macaroons. I was so relieved, because I was worried she would be one of those strange people who didn't like sweets.

After this, we sat at the table. In front of each of us was a plate with a slice of what appeared to be spam. Mme. said she'd tell me what it was after I ate it. Never a good sign, but....vive la France! I ate it and, not liking it, I washed it down with a sweet white wine. M. told me it was goose liver. It's a French delicacy that's only served on special occasions. You slice it and eat it with baguettes and onion paste. I was the only one who didn't finish, so Mme. asked if I didn't like it. I told her it was new for me because I was a vegetarian in the States, but I was willing to try anything and everything while in France. I mean, when I return to the States I'll be able to say I had goose liver and got drunk with my family. Bad ass, right?

Afterwards, she served a stew with pork, oranges, rice, and mashed celery. Bon! I actually enjoyed the pork and accepted a second and third glass of wine. Léo laughed and asked, "Tu aimes le vin?" Later, Mme. asked about my astrological year and while I meant to say cheval for horse, I said chèvre for goat. For some reason I found this hilarious. By this time the room was tilting so I decided to stop.

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