Faux Amis*

Mid February  is the time for one of my friends to come over to see her favourite French specialist in Charleville.

Fortunately she travelled with another friend as the journey on Thursday was horrendous due to hold-ups and delays at the tunnel.  In fact they sat in the car for the best part of 12 hours and were tired and aching by the time they arrived at nearly midnight but kept each other’s spirits up by having a good gossip.

The appointment was at 11a.m. on Friday and I went along as interpreter. Dr C was running a bit late because he was getting used to new software on his computer. My friend was his last patient before he started his holiday.

On the way there she had been telling me that she’d had an allergy test and was allergic to chlorine (which meant no more swimming except in the sea) and preservatives (particularly in bread) so when the doctor asked if she had any allergies we both answered simultaneously: “chlore et conservateurs” and “chlorine and preservatives”.

Her response was obviously the one he heard because his next words were “Hmm – latex?”

She looked puzzled but I fell about laughing and explained that ‘preservatifs’ means ‘condoms’.

The doctor realised what had happened and laughed as well.

She won’t live that down in a hurry!

*Faux amis = words that look the same or similar in another language but mean something different.


7 Responses to “Faux Amis*”

  1. Pat Says:

    Oh I’m glad faux amis doesn’t mean what it looks like . That would be awful.

  2. Little old me Says:

    Bit of a red face there was there

  3. Vagabonde Says:

    I know what faux amis are. When I came to the US I was invited to a posh home in Greenwich, Connecticut. I had walked on the beach for a while and when I came back, everybody gathered to have a drink, the hostess asked me if I needed something and I said I would not mind having a douche first. Well I did not realize that the word douche in English was for feminine hygiene and I should have used the world shower. That was embarrassing.

  4. canisfamiliaris Says:

    I thought that was a pas de deux!!!!!! Ou est-ce une danse des amants avec des préservatifs?


  5. canisfamiliaris Says:


    N’était-ce pas la danse de l’amour que vous bouleversé quand tu as rencontré la Baleine et de l’ours???


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: