I’ll get you, mon petit, says the French civil servant

My stars today :

Avec le Soleil dans votre camp, rien ne vous paraîtra impossible : vous serez animé d’un grand courage et d’une ténacité peu commune. Sachez malgré tout ménager vos forces et ne pas en arriver au surmenage. Il y a des limites à ne pas dépasser !

An idiomatic translation :

With the sun (shining) on your field, nothing will appear impossible to you : you will be animated by a great courage, and an uncommon tenacity. Know that you must neverthless handle your forces carefully, not to arrive at a meltdown. There are limits that must not be passed!

So, a good day on which to continue my eternal fight with the French administration, as long as I don’t forget to handle my forces properly. Animated by my great courage, I phone the RAM or the RSI (something to do with something to do with healthcare, not sure which is which or if they are the same or totally different or linked by a cosmic daisy chain) and ask if I may arrange a meeting with them, because Je suis écossaise et je ne comprends rien (I am Scottish and understand nothing).  The functionary on the end of the phone says it’s impossible to arrange a meeting, and that I must go to the RAM/RSI/CSI/CIA office and wait. I politely enquire if there’ll be a long queue. (I’ve spent approximately four of my six years in France hanging about in dank 70s waiting rooms in the vain hope of completing the various dossiers necessary for life to exist in this country, so I like to know if I need to take provisions and a pillow). The uncivil servant becomes suddenly hysterical and in a burst of righteous outrage, yells : Je ne sais pas, Madame! Mais comment je peux vous dire! Il faut y aller!!! (I don’t know, Madame! But how could I (of all people) tell you that! You need to go there!) She sounded like she was choking on a gerbil so I quickly wished her a lovely day, and put the phone down before she died.

My preternatural doggedness having slunk off to the kennel of all failed promises, I unstaunchly fled  to Jo-in-the-bar’s bar. Jo was playing scrabble with a Swiss man. I wailed hello and begged to know why civil servants in France are so beastly uncivil. The Swiss said it was because they are ill-liked and ill-paid, and therefore use their petit pouvoir (puny bit of power) to ill-effect. He told me I must not approach them like an angry car horn but instead like a humble cow bell. He said he went to the CMU (or EMU, or something) and he said : I am very sorry, I am desperate and I am Swiss and I don’t understand anything at all. Please will you help me?

He also opined that the functionaries who hail from la France d’outre mer (France of the Outer Sea – such a romantic moniker for stolen territory in the name of empire) are taking their vengence for bad deeds done to them and their ancestors by said empire. What a bizarre thing to say.

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By freakyparisandbeyond

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