Posted by / Category Politics /


Every week, in London, there is a press article about French politicians. Unfortunately, it is not about politics or economics. And no, it is not about elections either! It is all about the politicians’ tangled love life. What vaudeville! The latest articles were about Rachida Dati, a former Justice Minister. She decided to sue a well-known French businessman to establish the paternity of her baby daughter. The said businessman implied that the lady had numerous lovers at the time. The saga continues. This new episode left me wondering when French politicians actually work. Don’t get me wrong: what happens between two consenting adults is their own business. But come on, surely the French politicians have too much time on their hands. Maybe it is a side effect of the 35 hours per week. It must be.
Francois Hollande had various partners, mistresses and an actual girlfriend. Apparently he has a love child too. It must be some sort of compulsory routine when you want to be a French president. Love child: check…Giscard d’Estaing had an accident with the milkman when he came back from a night with one of his mistresses. I don’t get it. Where do they find the time to do some actual work? Correction: do they actually work?
I am starting to wonder whether it might actually be me. My life seems, in comparison, incredibly boring. I wouldn’t be able to do a tenth of what they do. Not that I would want to. Is there something wrong with me? No wonder that the French social security deficit is so abysmal when what is expected from some is so, let’s say, incredibly demanding. What is going on in my home country?
Where in America we would have tears and confessions and promises that it will never happen again (remember John Edwards? Mark Sanford?), everything is kept under wraps in France (literally and, well, figuratively) and, even when the rumours are founded, French politicians will sue the newspapers for ‘invasion of privacy’. And most of the time, they will win, although the fines are ridiculously low.
So there is another French paradox: in France you are protected, and sometimes even rewarded for a tangled love life. Especially if you are a man, that is. I am not sure that Rachida Dati will have such an easy escape: apparently she could be jailed if she was to travel to Morocco, her country of origin, because of its strict morality laws. In the meantime, all the male French politicians can travel as much as they want with all the honours. Some things never change.

Muriel – A French Yummy Mummy In London

Posted by / Category Politics /

I have found the perfect bracelet for the ceremony

Tomorrow is the end of a journey for me. I have my citizenship ceremony at 9.30 am. Then, I will be a British citizen. I thought that it was going to be a formality but I can already feel butterflies in my tummy. I also have a vague feeling of betrayal, probably because my education instilled in me a sense that nothing could top up France. Everybody keeps asking me why I want to become British, which doesn’t help. After all, with a French passport, surely I don’t need to become British. Well, my daughters are answering back to me in English now and, the more I look at what is happening in France, the more I am convinced that I am making the right choice. I will have dual citizenship anyway.

 
What really tipped the scales in favour of British citizenship was what happened a little over a month ago. National French newspaper “Liberation”’ main headline was as follows:
Liberation

This is a picture of Bernard Arnault, one of the wealthiest French businessmen, with a luggage. The headline translates “P**s off, rich c**t !” – without the stars, obviously. The rude headline was published because Bernard Arnault has applied for Belgium citizenship. He denies that his application is for tax reasons and will keep his dual nationality, but because of it he had to face a torrent of abuse.

 I am stunned. The violence of this headline gets me. This is pure incitation to hate, don’t you think? Is it ever acceptable to insult somebody in such a public way? Whatever your political opinion might be, I don’t think that the use of such an invective is ever justified. I hope that Bernard Arnault will win his case against them. Castigating the rich and the entrepreneurs might not help the ailing French economy. Quite the opposite, in fact. Let’s face it: I don’t understand my home country any more.

To make matters even worse, this headline also implies that applying for another nationality makes you a bad person. There are all sorts of reasons why people want to apply for another citizenship. As for me, I just moved to London to keep my family together. Should have I stayed in France out of patriotism? Please, give me a break.

The good news is that I seriously doubt that my application will make any headline. Phew! Just don’t tell the French!

Muriel – A French Yummy Mummy In London

Posted by / Category Politics /

Everything is doom & gloom and it was time to talk about something a bit more light hearted, don’t you think?
So here it is: Fleur Pellerin is a newly appointed French Minister.

She is in charge of the digital economy, but I am not quite sure what it entails. Naively, I thought that she had an office on Second Life but no, I was wrong, that’s not the case. But I digress. Have you seen the picture of the skirt she was wearing a couple of weeks ago? First of all, is it even a skirt? Might it not be a large belt? Is it even possible that she forgot her skirt?
OK, I will admit it: I am a bitter old lady who might be (a bit) jealous of her legs. Actually that’s not true and to prove my point here is a picture of my legs. Yes, it’s me and no, you won’t see more. Not bad for an almost 40-years old, eh? See, I am absolutely NOT jealous.

Anyway, I might be more French than I thought, after all. What I like about London is that I can go out in my PJs or with my husband’s shirts and nobody bats an eyelid. In this country, you are not judged by the way you look and it feels great. Actually, it is more than great, it is liberating!
But here it is: Fleur Pellerin’s non-existing skirt is simply too short. She looks like she is going to paint the town red. I might let my teenage daughter go to a disco dressed like this but that’s about it…Fleur Pellerin was, in fact, going to a crisis meeting following the outage of a major mobile provider. It might have been a crisis, but come on, she doesn’t look too stressed, does she?
So why do I feel so judgemental? What is wrong with me? I like the fact that there are more women in politics and Fleur Pellerin, an adopted child, is a living proof that the social elevator might still be working in France. I am not the fashion police and should not care about what she wears.
But I do. And I feel slightly cheated. Come on, I am sure that her colleagues could see her ministerial brief and that’s simply a step too far, don’t you think?
Nb: if you could leave a comment saying that you prefer my legs it would make my day. Thanks in advance.

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Muriel – A French Yummy Mummy In London