Xavier pulled out two expressions this week that really got me - the second one made me laugh like crazy:
1. "On peut rentrer comme dans un moulin." (We can get in like going into a windmill). Xavier said this about the hospital when we were recently there for a birthing class. It is an idiomatic expression that means anyone can get in - no security, no restrictions.
2. " Je n'ai pas envie de poireauter comme ça." (I don't want to leek [stand around and wait] like this). For the life of me, I could not pick out the verb he had just used in his phrase when he said this, so I asked him to review. He looked at me like it was obvious, told me it was poireauter and when I still looked confused (I did not know this verb), he said, "You know, it comes from - poireau - the one who stands tall, is white and green and has white hair coming out the bottom." At this point, it still wasn't clear he was referring to a vegetable, but when I realized it I had to cross my legs not to pee from laughing. Apparently, leeks (poireau) have a clear relationship with waiting in French, which is not at all clear to me. Furthermore, the full idiomatic expression is "poireauter 107 ans" (to leek for 107 years) - the time it took to build Notre Dame. (Even stranger is the relationship between leeks and Notre Dame).
Also, leeks are not the only idiomatic vegetable reference in French. Carrots have their phrase too: carotter is to steal something from someone in French. Again, the relationship between carrots and stealing is flustering.
"Je n'ai plus un radis" (I don't have a radish left) - I am totally broke.
"C'est la fin des haricots !" (I'm out of beans) - I'm in deep trouble.