Tucked between the New Year’s big dreams and the anticipation of spring, shorter than its eleven siblings, often the coldest, the month of February could be forgotten.
Maybe because of its bleak appeal, this is, however, a month of many events.
Two of them for this first part of the month:
1- Super Bowl. This one is for my French readers who asked.
2013 was our first Superbowl at home. We had guacamole and chips, BBQ chicken wings, more chips, some pie, and even sodas.
We skipped 2014 because we were out of town.
2015 should have been a good year for me. The Patriots are from my son’s hometown, also where I became an American citizen. On my gym’s big screens I saw Matt Damon and Ben Affleck giving their pronostics. I also heard that this Super Bowl was controversial. There was an issue about a deflated ball. I’m concerned about a deflated soufflé not a ball. We didn’t watch.
You see, American football remains strange to me.
Even though I went once to the UC Berkeley stadium for a game and felt part of the crowd, I would lie if I said that I loved the game. I enjoy people’s company in general, and like most French I also like watching people. We have the cafés terraces for practice back there. I’ve just learned to watch people in a more discreet way, now that I am an American, that’s all. Anyway at the Berkeley stadium it turned out that observing was an asset for someone who doesn’t know the rules of the game.
When people cheered, I cheered, when they stood up like one, I stood up too, when they booed, I booed. I just made sure I was watching the right people, the ones who wore the colors of my daughter’s school. I could manage that part.
I just realize that I wrote about Super Bowl in English for my French readers. Sorry! But, as it is for football, practice is key. It will be good for your English skills.
2- The Chandeleur is the American Groundhog Day. Instead of waiting for a weird furry animal to see or not its shadow, the French flip crepes. At my home we do both. We make crepes and we watch Groudhog Day for the hundredth times.
I’m sad to say that with our four kids away from home for the first time this year, my husband and I forgot about the Chandeleur. We didn’t even watch our cult movie. And I only read today that we are getting six more weeks of winter, people.
Two encouraging things about crepes:
- The first crepe is always imperfect, too thin, too thick, burnt or uncooked. But you need the first one. The rest will be perfect. I swear.
- When I offered to teach my kids how to make crepes, so they would make some for their kids one day, my youngest daughter said, “No, you will make them for our kids. And you will speak French too. You’re much better than us at these French things.”
My crepes recipe comes from my maman. She got it from hers who probably got it from her maman too. It’s not fancy. It’s real. And it always works. Kind of a vintage recipe. Certainly a collectible in my homemade cookbook.
In my Middle Grade novel Chronicles From Château Moines, Scott is disappointed when his dad makes crepes for the first time.
“Dad made crepes for the festival of la Chandeleur, but the batter was so runny he couldn’t flip one single crepe, so we ended up eating pasta for the fourth time that week. I suppose my classic cookbook wasn’t such a great gift after all.”
He’s also surprised to realize that Valentine’s Day isn’t the same in France than in the US.
“I hid my Valentines just in time. In France, only the adults celebrate with red roses and a dinner. We stayed home, reading the sweet Valentines Stacey made for us.”
More about February 14th soon…
Meanwhile, tell me, in French, in English, or anything in between.
Now that the game is over, what is Super Bowl really about? I’m not talking of the food and friends. I got that part.
And what about crepes? Do you make some? Do you like them?