Here's a video comparing meals in France and meals in America, with some useful vocabulary to talk about cultural habits.
It's true that in France, people sit down together to eat and talk. I've never heard of someone in France nipping out to buy a sandwich to eat at their computer (ok, this may happen sometimes, but in the UK people do this every day!) Most people here in France take a lunch break - maybe not 2 hours - but at least 30 minutes to eat in the cafeteria or go out for a snack with their colleagues. And at home, it's totally normal to sit down to dinner together every night (at 8pm), even with young children. In the UK, young children are fed very early in the evening and sent to bed before their parents have dinner.
This video is a little bit harsh to the Americans - there are lots of shots of fat people eating burgers in the street. I'm sure it's not quite that bad...It also says eating is a chore. What is a chore? It's something you have to do, that you don't necessarily want to do. Doing the washing, cleaning the bathroom etc. What do you think - is eating a chore for you? Not for me, I love eating! I just wish I didn't have to clear up afterwards...
to nip out - this means to quickly leave your home or your office and come back again
to sit down to lunch / dinner - when we sit at the table, ready to eat
harsh - unpleasantly cruel or severe
Talking about cultural habits
80% of Americans...
15% of meals...
Most people (not most of people)
The majority of British / people / the time...
Do you usually sit down to lunch and dinner with other people ?
In your country, do children sit down to dinner with their parents most nights?
What do most people do for lunch when they're at work?
My blog has changed! If you're looking for my English-practice exercises, they're all still here, just look in the archives.
Catherine: blogging about learning, language, culture, France and more...