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La Ville Rose!

20 December 2016

Hiiii guys, this is my first blog for Globetrotters and the LingoMap program, so I thought I’d just check in to say a quick ‘salut’ to everybody and hope you’ve all had a fandabadosey semester / term!

Well, yesterday I finished my 6-month internship (yay yay yay!) after working in Toulouse for 6 months. What a jolly good whirlwind it has been, and already I know it’s been the best year of my life yet.

It’s actually a great coincidence that I’ve been given the ‘Health and Fitness’ topic for you guys, because I couldn’t think of anything more appropriate to write about. As I just played my last match for my football team here last Sunday, and just last night returned back to my appartment from the Pyrenees, ‘health and fitness’ couldn’t be more of a relevant topic, so I can share a good few things with you!

Since being in France I have been playing for Toulouse Métropole FC, which if you see the links below, you’ll see a snazzy post the club wrote when I joined the club, and how we’re level at the top of the league… Not to be too exciting, but we are on course for the league title! Although, I’ll already be in Spain when it comes to the play-off matches, so I’ve asked the girls to send me live updates of the matches – I’ll keep you guys in the loop too!

Playing for nearly half a season with the biggest women’s football club in Toulouse has been the best thing I have done with my time in France. If I’m honest, I don’t know what I would have done without it, and it’s definitely one the proudest things I did with my time here. Working full-time in an internship is undeniably tiring, and going from a (relatively) peaceful student life, things start to become hectic. However, I found that playing with this football team helped me in many different ways that I didn’t even think it could.

Socially – meeting French friends

Linguistically – practicing French and learning a whole new world of vocab

Health wise – Playing any sport is great to keep you in good shape, especially when there’s so much good French cake and cheese about…

Football ability wise : Going from one of Cardiff University Ladies captain’s to being a rather quiet British foreigner in a football team can be quite daunting. They also play football, and I presume other sports too, in a slightly different way; formations and that kind of thing. They also have other sports which are more popular here, such as handball, quidditch (Harry Potter fans listen up…), volleyball etc. Below I’ve shared with you some links to take a look at and our most recent team photo.

Toulouse Métropole FC!
Toulouse Métropole FC!

Take a look: Club Link (our team’s recent results)

Team site (see all of our match reports etc.)

The ‘So British’ post when I joined the team!

When I turned up to the first training session, I’ll never forget the other girls’ faces, when I asked whether they were wearing their ‘bottes’ or their ‘baskets’. Having never touched on any sport-specific vocabulary before in lectures, and presuming that football boots are indeed referred to as just ‘boots’ everywhere, I wondered why they were giving me such a strange look, and replied by telling me they were going to wear their high heels! – It turns out that football boots in French are ‘crampons’, aaah….

So, on that note I thought I’d help some of you here with a little bit more vocabulary that you could use in quite a few different sports and practice during some P.E lessons.

Quick fire vocab round >>>>

Try to find out as many of these words as you can.

Tip: Make connections! Many French words can have a very close meaning to the English one.

reculer =

la défense =

(f) l’attaque =

tackler =

dribbler =

porter le ballon =

monter =

(m) l’adversaire =

marquer (un but) =

frapper / tirer =

(m) l’entraînement =

(m) l’échauffement =

une faute =

la touche =

(m) l’arbitre =

Anyways, enough about sport… Let’s talk mountaineering!


Les Pyrénées

As I mentioned earlier, I returned back from the Pyrenees last night from some hardcore mountaineering and hiking up hills. I realised it sounds so simple when you just read that aloud, but completing 15km up an altitude of 790m to 1520m, it really was a lot harder than it sounds. Being in Toulouse, I’ve been so lucky to have the Pyrenees on my doorstep, just a train journey away. Perfect for skiing, sightseeing, walking, cycling mountaineering and all those other things, a 2-hour travel really is worth it.

Mountain view at 790m above sea level.

Walking up this mountain towards the ‘pic du Midi de Bigorre’, we managed to get plenty of great snapshots. Towards the top of the mountain is a resort called ‘Hautacam’ where you can hire skiis and ski down these mountain ranges from a 1500m altitude. To get to Hautacam by foot, it is roughly 13km and takes around 3.5 hours from the foot of the mountain to the highest accessible point.


Lac des Gaves

The Lac des Gaves is a stream that runs through the heart of the Pyrenees. Here, they fish for trout and have a local trout fishmonger called ‘la truite’. Great for walking, there are plenty of routes for a good ‘randonné à pied et à velo.’


Pyrenees at dusk.

This photo I thought you may all like to see, to see how high one of the peak’s actually is from ground level. We didn’t do a bad job walking, right?

Well, I hope you guys enjoyed this article, if there’s any questions you have then feel free to contact me! Have a great Christmas, and seeing as this blog is on Health and Fitness, I’ll say eat well ;-).



  1. Alison Hughes

    Congratulations Harriet on being the first student to post onto LingoMap!
    You were definitely well placed to write about Health and Fitness! I love the bottes/crampons story 🙂

  2. Ceri Griffiths

    Very useful information in your blog Harriet! Like Alison, the boots story is great!

  3. Alison Ballantine (Llangatwg School)

    Bonjour Harriet,
    Great bog, merci. I have just found out about this through Routes newsletter. I will be showing my pupils and getting them to come up with questions!

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