How many kisses make up a greeting in France?

How many kisses make up a greeting in France?

How many kisses make up a greeting in France?

That’s a good question and it depends greatly upon where you are in France.

It’s a fundamental part of living in France that can leave foreigners a little flummoxed.

“La bise” is the way people greet each other by exchanging kisses on the cheek.

In France, cheek kissing is called “faire la bise”.

A popular French joke states that you may recognize the city you are in by counting the number of cheek kisses, as it varies across the country.

It is very common, in the southern parts of France, even between males, be they relatives or friends, whereas in the north, it is less usual for two unrelated males to perform ′la bise′. The custom came under scrutiny during the H1N1 epidemic of 2009.
Generally speaking, women will kiss both women and men, while men will kiss women but refrain from kissing other men, unless they are close friends or relatives, instead preferring to shake hands with strangers. 

However, it depends where you are in France as to how many kisses are given – from one in Finisterre in Brittany up to 5 in Corsica.

Where does this beloved tradition come from? And what are the rules? Genie Godula and Florence Villeminot teach you the basics of “bise etiquette” and how to avoid giving an unintentional French kiss.

Incidentally, La Bise  is also the name of a cold, dry wind in Switzerland which blows through the Swiss Plateau from the northeast to the southwest.

How many kisses make up a greeting in France?How many bises according to region in France

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A few days in New York

A few days in New York

A few days in New York.

Have you ever been to New York ? Is it on your list of things to do ? Do you like big cites ? Do you live in the USA? What do you think of tourists to your country?

Listen to this podcast in which Laura, a French-British young women talks to Sue about her holiday, or vacation as they say in American English.

If you are learning English listen very carefully to how Laura talks about her trip. She is half way through her holiday so notice how she describes actions/events in the past and then actions/events in the recent past and then actions/ events in the future. This podcast is a great way to see all these grammatical structures.

Notice the use of the Simple Past tense to indicate something that Laura did in the past. 

I booked the hotel on line. I bought a Tourist pass before I came 

Sue asks Laura; How did you cope with the jet leg when you arrived?

Notice the use of the Present Perfect tense which Laura uses to describe something she has done recently, within the last few days but without mentioning the exact day.

I have been to see the Statue of Liberty. I‘ve done so many things.  I have taken a cab. I’ve been to wrong places. I have been to Five Guys. I’ve spoken to quite a few people from new York. 

Notice the use of the Present Continuous tense to describe a current situation.

Sue asks Laura: How are you getting around ? 

People in the street are all carrying a cup of soda or coffee.

Notice the use of the future tenses.

Sue asks Laura: What are you doing after this diner? When are you heading back ?

I’m going to visit Brooklyn Bridge and the Highline later this afternoon.

 

 

To learn more vocabulary don’t forget to do the New York Skyline Quiz… it’s awesome !

The New York Skyline Quiz

The New York skyline is world famous, but how well do you really know it ?

 

The New York Skyline Quiz

The New York Skyline Quiz

The New York Skyline Quiz

We have all seen the New York skyline in movies or even in real life. But do you know anything about the buildings, bridges and iconic constructions in that skyline?

New York City is famous for many things, but primarily it is known as the city of skyscrapers.  It all started with the religious cathedrals – its oldest “skyscraper” was the Trinity Church, which was 280ft tall at the time of its completion, in 1846.  Nowadays there are at least 132 buildings which are taller than 600 feet (183 m).

What is a skyscraper ? A skyscraper is a tall, continuously habitable building having multiple floors (UK) or storeys (USA). When the term was originally used in the 1880s it described a building of 10 to 20 floors but now it is used to describe a building of at least 40 to 50 floors. Mostly designed for office, commercial and residential uses, a skyscraper can also be called a high-rise, but the term “skyscraper” is often used for buildings higher than 100 m (328 ft). For buildings above a height of 300 m (984 ft), the term “supertall” can be used, while skyscrapers reaching beyond 600 m (1,969 ft) are classified as “megatall”.

How many iconic constructions (skyscraper, bridges and statues) can you name ? This silhouette of the skyline can give you a clue….

Test you knowledge with this quiz, learn some new vocabulary and pick up some fun facts at the same time.

The New York Skyline Quiz

The New York skyline is world famous, but how well do you really know it ?

 

Holiday Quiz

Holiday Quiz

Holiday Quiz

Learn English vocabulary with this Holiday Quiz.

Are you ready for your holiday break ?

Have you ever wondered about the history of holidays ? Well, this quiz will answer some of those questions?

What is the difference between a holiday and a vacation ? This quiz will explain !

Do you think you have enough holiday time ? Do you know of a country where there is no legal holiday entitlement ? This quiz will put you in the picture.

Do you prefer a relaxing beach destination, an inspiring  mountain break, a sleepy countryside holiday or a bustling  city break ?  Whatever your choice this quiz will provide you with useful vocabulary and surprising general knowledge. 

Holiday Quiz

July and August are all about holidays. Try this quiz to see if you are ready for yours !

After doing the quiz, check out these other links which will really get you in the holiday mood:

Travel : Couch surfing PODCAST

Travel : Home stays PODCAST

Travel : India PODCAST

Are you healthy on holiday QUIZ

Surprising Incredible India

Surprising Incredible India

Surprising Incredible India

Listen to Sue interview Chris about his recent trip to India and especially about what surprised him.

During his travels in India, Chris went to Bangalore in the south and then to Rajasthan in the north, to The Taj Mahal in Agra, Fatihpur Sikri, Bundi, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Delhi and Jaipur, to name but a few of the fabulous places he visited.

What do you think would be the most surprising aspects of travelling in India?

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See some photos of Incredible India here

The Knowledge: Everything You Need to Know about London Quiz

The Knowledge: Everything You Need to Know about London Quiz

The Knowledge: Everything You Need to Know about London Quiz

Are you thinking of visiting London ? If so, you are not alone ! More than 19 million visitors go to London every year to see the sights and enjoy the London spirit.  Wow ! 

So if you fancy a trip to London where should you start ?

What about the Top Ten places?

  • British Museum – 5.9 million visits
  • Tate Modern – 5.7 million visits
  • National Gallery – 5.2 million visits
  • Natural History Museum – 4.4 million visits
  • V&A Museum – 3.7 million visits
  • Science Museum – 3.3 million visits
  • Southbank Centre – 3.2 million visits
  • Somerset House – 3.2 million visits
  • Tower of London – 2.8 million visits
  • Royal Museums Greenwich – 2.6 million visits

 Some of these sights are free to visit, some you need to pay an entrance fee.

Of course there are many other things to do. What about these …. ?

Walk along the Thames.
Sit in a cosy pub and chat to locals.
Stroll in the parks.
Look at the fashions in Carnaby Street.
Take a selfie in front of Tower Bridge.
Practice English with everyone you meet !! 

So before you book your flight, try this quiz to get a taste of London and learn new vocabulary at the same time.

The Knowledge: Everything You Need to Know about London Quiz

Try these 30 questions to test you knowledge of London, its landmarks, its transport system and its culture.

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