French idioms: Every voice counts 'à la Sainte Prudence'
Last Friday at midnight, the official French election campaign stopped. Instantly there were no more hard selling video clips on TV or active Facebook pages of the two candidates, leaving the voters in a final reflective space until Sunday. What were the French thinking and doing during that break?
Bonnet blanc et blanc bonnet
In those last 48 hours opinions and passionate discussions about the next President of France were blooming in cafés, bars and shops, as much as in family reunions and online chats.
Some had a last look at the two programs; others just enjoyed a weekend at home with their mind at peace. Some watched the live semi finale of The Voice show, another battle on TV that gathered 9 million French people voting for their favourite artiste en herbe (budding artist) during the last weeks.
The pessimists raised their shoulders (a very French habit) in expectation of the difficult times ahead, seeing no real difference between the two candidates and their promises. As we say in France, bonnet blanc, blanc bonnet (and here is a fun video:)
46 million French called for voting
In order to get all the votes ready for last Sunday night 8PM CET, 1,7 million people living in the French islands called Departements or Territoires d’Outre Mer, a.k.a. ultramarins, as well as the French living in the Americas went to the voting offices overseas on Saturday.
For many of them, although they live away from their home country, their heart is French and they often have an even stronger sense of belonging and responsibility.
As we saw the last polls – 52,5 /47,5 – were very, very close to the final outcome which meant that just over half of the French population were celebrating while the other almost half were having a bitter Sunday dinner. So, champagne or soupe à la grimace?
Luckily the day after most people are able to enjoy a pont and get over all the emotions and hangovers. Clever political planning, isn’t it?
Do you have any other French idioms which could have been fitting at the time or retrospectively?
 NS Program (PDF) – FH Program (PDF)
A French idiom that could translate like « the hat is white, white is the hat » meaning there is no difference between two options although the wording is different.
A french idiom that could translate as « A soup that makes your face frown » to express a bitter deception
 Tuesday 8th of May is the anniversary of the French Victory over the German invader in 1945. Therefore Monday is a day off in France in 2012.