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This post will tie the last two posts together, and you can use the audio track to as an opportunity to work on improving your French (if you’re at an elementary or intermediary level), or to help you develop an ear for French (if you’re at a more basic level).
In the audio track of this episode of radio program “L’Autre midi à la table d’à côté” (The Other Afternoon, at the Next Table…”), Ariane Moffatt and Guylaine Tremblay sit down for a one-on-one meal together. I get the impression they have never met before, but they spend the hour learning about each other, and focusing on what they have in common.
Both are mothers, but both did not carry their own children (in Moffatt’s case, it was her spouse who carried their children, and in Tremblay’s case, her children were adopted). They also speak about a number of other topics regarding children (such as Christmas and childhood memories).
I think you’ll hear both of their personalities shine (the intimacy and one-on-one nature of the conversation greatly facilitates the conversation).
The dialogue summary (below) is written in chronological order with the audio track, highlighting various discussion points and the dialogue continues. You can use the summary as a crutch when listening and improving your French listening skills.
The official link-page for this episode of L’Autre midi à la table d’à côté can be opened by clicking HERE. (Click “Audio fil” half way down the page… that will open an audio window with the sound track).
- Both spoke of Christmas as children and their Christmas experiences with their own children, what they like about Christmas, and how it fits in with their own experiences.
- Guylaine talks about how Christmas in Québec used to be celebrated different than how it is celebrated now (mass traditions on Dec 24th have been moved to 7pm now from midnight decades ago). She says Christmas today seem to be all about gifts, whereas when Guylaine was a child, she could hardly remember receiving any gifts.
- Ariane talks of her family’s Christmas traditions.
- Ariane talks of how she slowly starting to fall into music as a child, and her family’s role in influencing her artistic talents. Guylaine also shares her childhood development stories and relates them to her family.
- They talk about their different styles of communication and how they perceive their respective styles.
- Guylaine took her two daughters to the 2012 protests, “le Printemps érable” to protest university tuition hikes
- (Comment: “Le Printemps érable” (the “Maple Spring”) was a period of mass student protests in Québec in the spring of 2012, which greatly divided Québec society as a whole. Students refused to accept government tuition hikes – and (in a very very general sense) it pitted right-against-left, and opposition parties against the government at the time. Many believe it had a direct impact in the defeat of the Charest government, but it left much bitterness in Québec’s society – involving accusations flying everywhere; against the government, the opposition, school bodies, and even the media. It also greatly divided student bodies).
- Guylaine talks about having being an angry child, and how she still becomes vexed and involved if she believes there’s an action she judges to be unjust.
- (Comment: This actually surprised me when she said this – she seems like such a calm, cool headed person whenever I have seen her in interviews, the type of person with measured and empathetic emotions. It seems like this is a part of her character which she doesn’t regularly show in interviews – but she also seems very self-aware, which in itself is a very good thing – regardless if you do or do not agree with her politics or the battles she chooses to fight, and how she chooses to fight them. Something also quite interesting is that she states she took her children to the protests. I also found this surprising because many people were criticized for taking their minor children to events which (a) involved much emotion which minor perhaps could not have conscious control over, and (b) periodically turned quite violent, resulting in many arrest and police action. However, I do not know the context in which she involved her own children. All-in-all, I find what Tremblay says to be extremely interesting. I will probably pay much more attention to her public appearances in the future. Like I said in the earlier post about her, she has a personality I really like and greatly identify with, even if I don’t agree with her politics. And I have learned many other things about her in the last couple of years, which makes her a very intriguing figure. I don’t have to agree with her views on various issues to have to like her – and I still very much like her. She’s the type of person who is difficult not to like – and as you listen to the audio track, I venture to say you’ll agree with me).
- Both spoke about how they act upon what they feel is right (Ariane speaks about her own coming out, and both talk about how society has changed to be accepting of the new normal).
- Both speak about their choices to have children which they didn’t carry themselves, and what their children signify to them in this context, and in general. Guylaine said people often ask her “Do you love your children as much as if you had carried them yourself?”
- They speak of their worries as mothers.
- At 44:00 minutes, they sing a Capella songs which bring back Christmas memories for both. For the remaining 15 minutes of their meal, they just sing Christmas carols. You may be interested in this part, because they sing certain carols which do not exist in English – and even for me, they brought back memories from my childhood when much of that period of my life was in French.
I hope you enjoyed this 3-part mini blog series, and found it insightful on a few fronts.
MINI “EAVESDROPPING” SERIES
- Ariane Moffatt – An “eavesdropping” short series: Moffatt-Tremblay – Post 1 of 3 (#150)
- Guylaine Tremblay – An “eavesdropping” short series: Moffatt-Tremblay – Post 2 of 3 (#151)
- “L’autre midi, À la table d’à côte”; Moffatt-Tremblay discussion summary post 3 of 3 (#152) (with link to the radio episode)