mais, pourquoi?

As long as I can remember, I have been an undeniable Francophile. I started taking French lessons in sixth grade and took them right through graduate school, even wrote my Master's thesis on French medieval tapestries which required about 30% of the reading in French. I have collected French books, music and movies since I was twelve. French food, French fashion, French culture, all of it. Its not even conscious anymore, its like I'm magnetic to French things.
Mais, pourquoi? Why do I love it all so much? I realized that I had something of the French language in every room in my house, which made me start wondering why. I asked my mom, and she said its just because that's what I am. Maybe I was a Frenchie in another life. I don't know why. Its terribly predictable though, and something of a trademark in my family that gets its fair share of gentle ribbing.

Which brings me to my next French inspired point. I recently read this book about French culture, in which there was a whole chapter about how French women handle their body image. It was so exactly how I feel about my own body that it was a relief to know women elsewhere feel the same way. In essence the author wrote about how French women don't find enough pleasure in the hard-core high-energy spandex-y work outs that American women so often do. A French woman won't tell you she's on a diet. There was a lot about French sexuality that I also really resonated with, but I won't, *ahem,* discuss that in public. I just think I could move to France tomorrow and I would fit better than in American culture.

I need sensual joys in my life, and I find it in the wind whooshing past my ears on bike rides or swimming, but I've always detested anything that resembles something you'd be forced to do in high school gym. Granted, all French women smoke, and its keeps them thinner and able to, you know, eat creme brulee and chocolate without as much consequence :).

Anyway. I guess my question is why do we love what we love? Or why is there an entire culture that has had me captivated and emulating my whole life, and will forever. Mmm...what do you think?


  1. Oh lady - do I get this.
    But I get more than ribbing. And I've probably not given myself permission to be as thorough a Francophile as you. (Hence my not speaking much French).

    It can be a lonely sensation, no?

    Let's get together soon, I'd like that.

  2. Shelley, I would love for you to meet my boyfriend! He is originally from Canada (going to school here in Dubquque, was baptized a year ago and I met him a few months after his baptism), and is fluent in both french and english and loves french things as well. :)
    Love you Shelley!