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24 Things That Are Normal In France But Seem Super Weird To Everyone Else

Gird your loins for cheese and bureaucracy.

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1. Wherever you are, you'll have no problem finding a pharmacy nearby...

media.tenor.com

We may or may not have the world's highest concentration of pharmacies per square mile... 😛

2. But a lot of businesses are closed on Sundays.

So if you're in desperate need of Advil, look for places without a "fermé" sign.
Arseniy Rogov / Getty Images

So if you're in desperate need of Advil, look for places without a "fermé" sign.

3. If you're driving, be prepared for a lot of roundabouts.

France has more than 30,000 of them — more than Great Britain, where they were originally invented.
Trois Godelles à Commercy / Google

France has more than 30,000 of them — more than Great Britain, where they were originally invented.

4. ...And speed bumps.

A French town without speed bumps is very hard to come by.
upload.wikimedia.org

A French town without speed bumps is very hard to come by.

5. Snack time looks like this...

French children eat their snacks almost religiously at 4:30.
instagram.com

French children eat their snacks almost religiously at 4:30.

6. Counting will look something like this...

Be prepared to do a little math.
amiensannie-blog.tumblr.com

Be prepared to do a little math.

7. And saying hello will look something like this...

Canal +

Pucker up.

8. But the actual number of cheek kisses you give will depend...

It's a bit of a hot mess.
Bill Rankin / Via blog.michael-lawrence-wilson.com

It's a bit of a hot mess.

9. And "dessert" at the end of a meal looks like this:

You're okay with a little mold, right?
instagram.com

You're okay with a little mold, right?

10. Also, your favorite movies might seem a little different...

Warner Bros. / Via fr.web.img4.acsta.net

11. And you'll need more than Google Translate to figure out a few common expressions...

12. But if you really want to fit in, just buy a baguette.

Stephan Rosger / Via Flickr: 56183874@N08

13. And feel free to start nibbling off the tip on your way home, for added authenticity.

Canal Plus / Via youtube.com

14. If you're listening to the radio, you'll start noticing a lot of the same French songs...

slate.fr

It's because there's a legal quota that requires 35% of radio music to be French music — annoying for DJs who end up playing the same French ballads over and over.

15. And much of the TV shows just involve a lot of people yelling at each other.

INA / Via youtube.com

It's a national pastime.

16. And if you see people drinking coffee out of bowls, don't flip out.

It's a thing, and that way you can dip your toast in it!
instagram.com

It's a thing, and that way you can dip your toast in it!

17. You'll also notice a lot of rooster imagery in general...

media.tenor.co

The Gallic rooster is an unofficial national symbol of France as a nation.

18. If you're in town for July 14, get ready for an impressive military parade.

It's Bastille Day — France's national holiday and a symbol of the French revolution.
Alain Jocard / AFP / Getty Images

It's Bastille Day — France's national holiday and a symbol of the French revolution.

19. You'll notice people punctuating their phrases with sounds like "beeeh," "baaaah," and "beeeen."

Or "eeeeeeeuh."
Peopleimages / Getty Images

Or "eeeeeeeuh."

20. And if you end up having to deal with the French bureaucracy? Good luck.

Hope you're fluent in patience!
youtube.com

Hope you're fluent in patience!

This post was translated from French.

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