Gergö will have a project meeting in Rennes on Monday and he was encouraged to check out the city on the weekend leading up to the meeting. So tomorrow noon we’ll board a TGV to Rennes.
My knowledge of French geography is even more vague then that of Austria, so I agreed to come to Rennes before I knew anything about the city or where it is. After a quick Wikipedia session I knew it’s a city about the size of Linz, north of Paris, in the Bretagne. Oh.
I wasn’t sure why, but I was wary of the Bretagne. Then I remembered: It was one chapter in my French book in school. And I detested French class with an intensity only 15 year olds have. Our teacher was a mean spirited old woman who wore mustard coloured cardigans and returned exams with nasty comments.
I guess it’s time to overcome this misplaced mistrust in the Bretagne. I don’t even remember what we learned about it. Just a colourful page of photos. At least one showed young people in traditional clothing dancing folk dances. As long as I don’t have to write an essay about the Bretagne, I’ll be fine!
While I was at it, I decided it’s time to overcome my irrational hatred for “The petit prince” as well. We had to read an altered version of it in – you guessed it – French class. It was adapted and shortened for the stage. And we read it in preparation for seeing a performance of it.
I don’t remember much about the little prince, either. Talking roses, mostly. I don’t think we got much further. What I do still remember is that our teacher wouldn’t tell us what the new words meant. We should learn to derive the meaning by context. The context being a prince flying around in space talking to plants and animals made that impossible for me at the time.
I think almost 20 years for a grudge against a fictional kid is enough. (Though I remember joking with a friend that if someone tells you their favourite quote is “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” it’s a good sign you don’t want to keep the conversation going for much longer.)
I bought the book during our last shopping trip. You can place bets now, if I will soon have a new favourite quote!