Fitting in to another country culture and understanding their nuances requires one to be more open and accepting of differences. I find it is helpful to learn some basic greetings and to use them even though it may be said incorrectly. I think that the effort is appreciated — Bonjour, Bonsoir, C’est bon!
An interesting aspect of southern European countries, that I have found is their desire to be part of life and a sense of place. They enjoy conversation and being a part of gatherings. Life moves at a much slower pace. In other words, “Stop and smell the roses.” I was amazed when I looked this quote up that it is attributed to golfer extraordinaire, Walter Hager. Huh! never would have guessed that.
We did just that! We stopped at a market and there were 100 of bouquets. May 29 is mother’s day in France and flowers were in bundles throughout the markets and flower shop.
Besides learning how to form a relationship to a new country, I find when traveling with tour companies the same aspects applies to your fellow travelers. Each person personality and knowledge adds another layer to the historical fact we are learning about thus, creating an additional dimension to what we are experiencing. It is the human aspect both past and present that creates our stories.
At this medieval church we visited was a French archaeologist who was in front of the church starting a dig not only to find the foundation to the missing portico but to see if there are any human remains( Angers, France). Our conversation with her was impromtu but most fascinating