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I love the French, because …..
• when they decide that something's a good idea, they get on and do it. They've had a high-speed rail link between Paris and the Tunnel for years and years. Ours still isn't finished
• their capital city has a rapid-transit system that actually works
• people still live right in the middle of their cities, so they don't turn into ghost-towns at five o'clock when the offices close
• they have really good motorways with proper services and picnic areas
• I once watched a man cleaning the toilets at a motorway picnic area. He did it with a high-pressure hose. It took him all of five minutes
• they have a refreshing approach to local government. They put most of the power into the hands of one man - the local mayor. He lives locally, he shops locally and everyone knows where he lives. If they don't like what he's doing, they can go and tell him about it
• when they speak to you, you can often understand what they're saying even though they're speaking French. In this country, I can't understand half the people who speak English
• when their lorry-drivers decide that something isn't right, they park their lorries all over the motorway until someone does something about it
• when the EU tells them to do something they don't want to do, they don't do it
• they have several different police forces, none of which know (or care) what the others are doing
• they may have speed cameras for all I know, but I haven't seen one yet
• they have the glorious nerve to describe themselves as the gastronomic capital of the world, and still serve andouillettes
• they weren't afraid to ban religious symbols/clothing in schools
• once you're used to them, their road-signs are a lot clearer than ours
• in the supermarket, much of the food is not made of plastic. In the market it still has earth on it
• they're almost as bad at languages as we are
• they think workaholicism is a disease
• they have those joke public toilets, where (a) the lights don't work so you have to grope for the bowl with your hands, or (b) the light works but goes out halfway through and you can't remember where the toilet paper was, or (c) the door flies open when you're in mid-flow, or (d) the entire floor flushes, washing you out into the street with your trousers round your ankles. Or perm any two from four.
• you can still smoke in bars
I love the French. I think they're the world's greatest nation.
Actually, so do they.



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