We started the new year on 11th January with a short story by Guy de Maupasssant “Le Crime au Père Boniface” which we managed, in turn, to read and translate during our Thursday morning meeting. This was considerably extended beyond the usual 1½ hours because of the group’s enthusiasm to reach the outcome at the end of the story. A very neatly constructed story with a brisk action, compact and vivid descriptions and a neat ending.
We read an interesting article about the changing nature of French society and the composition of the new middle class, perhaps replacing the bourgeoisie.
The group read the opening chapter of a French translation of a lurid American thriller by James Patterson La dernière prophétie. We had time for the first chapter only – perhaps we will return to it.
Items in French newspapers were briefly read. Two of the more sensational were about Train Surfing on the Paris metro (running along the roofs of moving trains) and about Nutella riots – precipitated by a promotional offer by the supermarket Intermarché. Both of these can be seen on You Tube in English as well as French.
The group continues to meet weekly, with various numbers attending. As a rule the meeting is cancelled if there are less than four, but so far this year only one week has been missed for this reason.