how do you say… ouch?

There’s nothing that can quite remind me of how little French I really know like a situation in which I really need it.

This afternoon after picking Kaitlyn up from school, we were sitting in the car and a woman hit us from behind. Fairly hard. Honestly, my first thought was that she was simply a typical but brutal French driver. They all park by braille… bumping into the car ahead and/or behind until they’re snugly in their spot.

But instead of parking her car and going about her business (which is exactly what I expected), she left her car touching mine and got out to talk to me. She explained that as she was pulling in her brake failed and it just wasn’t her first thought to pull her parking brake to stop the car. No, no, she used my car to stop her car.

I got out and looked and I didn’t see anything resembling a dent. Then she insisted I get in my car and move it forward so we could see the damage. I did as instructed and looked. There is a mark on my bumper. In my mind, it has simply joined the other marks on my bumper. To her, this was horrible.

She called her neighbor, who is a town police officer. He came down to the parking lot to have a look. His advice was not to fill out an incident report and certainly not to get insurance involved. The woman insisted that I take the car to a garage and send her the bill. I tried to convince her that for that mark I’m not going to go to the garage. Even if language wasn’t an issue, it doesn’t look worth the hassle. I finally agreed to take her name and number but told her that it really isn’t that serious. The police officer suggested using a polish to buff out the mark. I said that sounded like a good project for my husband.

I finally got her to stop apologizing and I got in the car and drove home. Now that I’m here, I keep thinking “does my neck hurt?” I’m so American. A glass of wine, a quiet evening… all will be fine.

One Response to “how do you say… ouch?”

  1. D.A.D. says:

    You found that one woman implanted in France who is civil! Congratulations, you’ve just won a five night vacation for two to the beautiful island of Maui, compliments of, where vacations are easy to plan and book. Air fare provided by United Airlines….fly the friendly skies of United. Your prize is valued at $5,000! (applause up & under)

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