09 August 2009

Summer > autumn

Do you suppose that insects, like bees, can have allergies to pollen, the way humans and other mammals can? I hope the one just below isn't allergic to the pollen it is coated in. The bee was moving very slowly. I didn't hear any little sneezes, however.

A bee on an artichoke flower

That was a summery moment. Yesterday and the day before, though, I started noticing signs of fall. Maybe it's because the weather has been so dry that some of the leaves are turning brown, red, or gold — autumn colors. Or maybe it's because the mornings are cool and the afternoons are still very warm, or even hot.

Browns and yellows

Maybe it's because the days are getting perceptibly shorter. That full moon we had a couple of days ago might have had something to do with it.

Reds and purples

Sometimes I think I might just be getting used to having seasons again, after nearly 20 years on the California coast without them. You end up looking forward to the next one.

« Petit à petit, l'oiseau fait son nid », goes a well-known French saying. "Little by little, the bird makes its nest." That's what's happening here.

Now it's time to go out and water the garden.

15 comments:

  1. The new header photo is marvellous.
    I know what you mean about the first signs of autumn. We are harvesting our runner beans and the hedgerows are full of blackberries. I love this time of year. It's still summer (we haven't had our main holiday yet) but the colours are changing, the sunlight is more mellow and the nights are drawing in. Part of me loves the changes, the other part dreads the onset of winter. Still, that's a long way off yet.

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  2. Noooooooooooooo
    I haven't had Summer yet in Montréal except for a couple of days of high temp back in July. It's been raining most of July and my chilly plants are flowerless.

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  3. That bee went to the market and got so many groceries that she can't carry them all. Slows you right down.

    Around here, poison oak is turning colors, and the sequoia trees are starting to shed. Otherwise, we still have that mid-summer feeling.

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  4. Great, colorful photos. It's true that it does seem like there is some transition going on for these plants!

    Language questions (open to all French speakers who care to offer an idea!):
    I'm putting together a list of idiomatic expressions that use Ça (ones that I wish I had just known before I went to France). I'd like to check on a few just to be sure that I haven't been thinking the wrong thing all these years:

    - Ça vaut la peine. and - Ça vaut le coup. -- are these pretty interchangeable to express "It's worth it (it being your time and effort)."?

    - Ça ne vaut pas la peine. and - C'est pas la peine. -- Are these roughly the same idea? I thought of C'est pas la peine de.... as meaning something like, "There's no point in (doing whatever).)

    -- Ça me dit qqch. is something like, "That rings a bell.", but, Ça ne me dit rien., though it seems kind of like the opposite of the previous phrase, is more like, "That really does nothing for me/I don't really feel like doing (whatever was suggested)." and is therefore pretty similar in meaning to, Ça ne me dit pas grand-chose.

    Merci bien to any and all who have input for me!

    Judy

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  5. How about ça marche. I think it means "that's a good idea", or "good plan".

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  6. Judy, I think your expressions and translations look right. The opposite of "Ça ne me dit rien." in one sense is just "Ça me dit." — "That doesn't thrill (or interest) me." as opposed to "That sounds like fun (or a good idea)." "Ça me dit quelque chose." is the opposite of "Ça ne me dit rien." meaning something either does or doesn't ring a bell.

    Jean is right about "Ça marche." That's an expression I hear a lot these days but that I don't remember from Paris all those years ago, at least not used the same way. Back then, I think we would have said "C'est d'accord.", just "D'accord.", or "Bon, on fait comme ça."

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  7. Judy and Jean,

    "Ça marche !" is in the Collins-Robert French-English dictionary meaning "C'est d'accord !", translated as "Great!" or "OK!"

    The Collins-Robert also gives "ça marche pour 8 heures lundi" = "8 o'clock Monday is fine".

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  8. "Ca m'est bien egal"!(Pronounced with your nose up in the air means : I couldn't care less).

    "Ca me fait de belles jambes" : "like... I care?"

    I love the red color on the vine leaves and the beautiful colors of the stained-glass reflection in Walt's blog.

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  9. You've captured some great colours in your pics. While you are approaching autumn, we are looking forward to our spring down here.
    The trees are starting to bud and even a few now flowering. We did have a glass of white on the deck this weekend.
    Leon & Sue

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  10. C'est déjà ça = it's better than nothing.

    C'est cristal ça = that's crystal clear.

    I always think of ça marche as = yep, that'll work. The artisans use it a lot here when we are discussing work on the house.

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  11. Thanks Jean, Ken, Nadege, Susan!

    Judy

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  12. Sorry Judy, that should be c'est cristallin ça

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  13. "C'est déjà ça" isn't exactly "That's better than nothing." That would be "C'est mieux que rien." "C'est déjà ça" has a more positive meaning than that. We might say: "It's not perfect, but I'll take it" or "it'll do". You could say "It's nothing to sneeze at." or "That already pretty good." or "That's something to be thankful for."

    You hear "Ça c'est clair" all the time now, "That's for sure." or "There's no doubt about it." "Cristallin" is a more emphatic version of "clair".

    I think there are differences in usage between "C'est pas la peine" which might mean "No need..." or "There's no point..." and "Ça ne vaut pas la peine" which means "it's really not worth the trouble." But the two expression overlap, one being more informal and the other more formal. "C'est pas la peine de chercher plus loin."

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  14. Judy, do you know Alain Souchon? And his song titled "C'est déjà ça" ?

    Here are the words:

    Je sais bien que, rue d'Belleville,
    Rien n'est fait pour moi,
    Mais je suis dans une belle ville :
    C'est déjà ça.
    Si loin de mes antilopes,
    Je marche tout bas.
    Marcher dans une ville d'Europe,
    C'est déjà ça.

    Oh, oh, oh, et je rêve
    Que Soudan, mon pays, soudain, se soulève...
    Oh, oh,
    Rêver, c'est déjà ça, c'est déjà ça.

    Y a un sac de plastique vert
    Au bout de mon bras.
    Dans mon sac vert, il y a de l'air :
    C'est déjà ça.
    Quand je danse en marchant
    Dans ces djellabas,
    Ça fait sourire les passants :
    C'est déjà ça.

    Oh, oh, oh, et je rêve
    Que Soudan, mon pays, soudain, se soulève...
    Oh, oh,
    Rêver, c'est déjà ça, c'est déjà ça,
    C'est déjà ça, déjà ça.

    Déjà...

    Pour vouloir la belle musique,
    Soudan, mon Soudan,
    Pour un air démocratique,
    On t'casse les dents.
    Pour vouloir le monde parlé,
    Soudan, mon Soudan,
    Celui d'la parole échangée,
    On t'casse les dents.

    Oh, oh, oh, et je rêve
    Que Soudan, mon pays, soudain, se soulève...
    Oh, oh,
    Rêver, c'est déjà ça, c'est déjà ça.

    Je suis assis rue d'Belleville
    Au milieu d'une foule,
    Et là, le temps, hémophile,
    Coule.

    Oh, oh, oh, et je rêve
    Que Soudan, mon pays, soudain, se soulève...
    Oh, oh,
    Rêver, c'est déjà ça, c'est déjà ça.
    Oh, oh, oh, et je rêve
    Que soudain, mon pays, Soudan se soulève...
    Oh, oh,
    Rêver, c'est déjà ça, c'est déjà ça.

    C'est... dé... jà... ça.

    Here's a link to a video clip of the song, which is one of Souchon's good ones. It's about an African, a Soudanese, in Paris, dreaming of what could happen in his country but thankful he is in Europe, Paris...

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  15. That should probably be Sudanese.

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