Jogging and other forms of organized exercise are not usually seen in France, I think. Perhaps in the cities, but I personally have never seen it. Not once in all the times I have had the pleasure of visiting France these past 20 plus years have I ever seen jogging...bicycling, yes; jogging no.
Until one day, after one of Lorraine's sumptuous Sunday dinners we found ourselves in Pierre's car and on our way to Henri's sister, Bertille's, house. Smoothly sliding along on the road between Auteuil and Montainville we were all comfortably settled in and enjoying the early autumn scenery of farmers' fields getting ready for their final harvests. Everything was wide open and flat so adjacent roads connecting to the main road were easily seen. Suddenly, I looked off to my left and saw a man frantically running down one of these roads waving his arms.
I kiddingly said to Pierre, "Is that a friend of yours? I think he wants you to stop. Or maybe he is just out for a jog."
Forgetting that my American humor can be lost in translation, Pierre couldn't understand how I would think that this guy was his friend. Did I naively think that he knew everyone in France?
Just as I was starting to explain myself as my husband, Henri, rolls his eyes thinking, "Oh no! Here we go again!", we come upon a horse happily trotting along the main road. Of course, I just had to blurt out, "Anyone know how to stop a horse?" Foot in mouth disease is so hard to cure!
Pierre politely pulled his car over to the side of the road allowing the local jogger to get his horse. All was well as we continued on a sunny autumn day enjoying the scenery on our way to visit Bertille.
I dedicate this post to my friend and colleague, Becka, who said after I told her this little story, "You should write about that." Duh! Why didn't I think of that? Merci for the reminder, Becka!