Things I learn from Ikoku Meiro no Croisée

Ikoku Meiro no Croisée is an anime that features a young Japanese girl named Yune and explores her normal daily life in France during the 19th century. If anyone ask me what I think about this series, I’ll say “Yune’s a cutie, the artwork is amazing and I love the OP song plus the culture exchange between a Japanese girl and a few French”. It’s really that simple =)

And because I can sum up what I think of Ikoku Meiro no Croisée in such a few words, I decided instead of writing an afterthought I’ll jot down a few things I’ve learned from this 12 episode series.

The few things I’ve learned are:-

  • Rain doesn’t last too long in Paris. That sounds lovely. I love rain but I don’t like it when it rains for a long period of time, like three days straight. So as long as it rains to cool down the usually hot and humid weather here, I want it to rain how it rains in Paris. Haha. But seriously, on average how many minutes or hours does the rain last over there? Does anybody know?
  • Bathing is considered an indulgence only rich could afford in Paris. I’m more like Yune on this one so it kind of surprised me for a bit. In my country, we bath or shower every single day, three times a day or more. But I’m sure it’s different now in Paris.
  • Crinoline. This is perhaps one of the best things I’ve learned from the series. I only knew about corset. Very interesting.
  • “Bise”. I know some cultures show affections or greet through air-kisses or kisses or any other form of embrace. It’s just that I didn’t know there’s a name for it. We don’t do that here so I’m unfamiliar with it. I generally call them “a peck on the cheek” whenever I’m referring to the gesture to someone. Yeah.
  • They picnic without picnic cloth. I’m used to going to and seeing picnics under huge trees with checkered picnic cloth and basket full of finger food. However, when Oscar, Claude and Yune went for picnic, they sat on a bench at the park. A bit unusual but I guess it happens. Good to know.

  • You can eat cheese with soy sauce! I probably wouldn’t try it but still, I’ve learned someone (Yune!) who actually did. I wonder how’s the taste like. Personally, I prefer my cheese to go with something like bread or crackers.

I think that’s all. It has been a pleasant trip with Ikoku Meiro no Croisée. =)

P.S In case you missed the announcement, Good Smile Company has announced they are selling Nendoroid Yune for 3,500 yen. Should be available at the stores by January 2012. Are you buying?

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21 thoughts on “Things I learn from Ikoku Meiro no Croisée

  1. Ah, Yune is so kawaii and strong girl.

    I don’t know if I actually can live at foreign country at that age without my parent around.

    I like Crinoline, they are my inspiration in making a dress for dollfie but the right material for it just doesn’t come to my mind yet.

  2. As a French, I bring answers to your questions!
    – Well, I don’t know specifically for Paris since I don’t live there, and my Parisians friends who came to visit were REALLY surprised by how cold it is in my place, but, no, there’s no such things as “rain doesn’t last long”, except in Spring. Even though there are obviously exceptions.
    Rain can last from 5min to a few days. Yeah, it’s that wide of a range.

    – Most people now shower every day. And there were public baths at the time (there still are) though not used by poor people, Claude belongs to the part of society who would go there once in a while.
    Also, you can’t forget that most appartments/houses at the time didn’t have nor the space, nor did they have running water or more generally enough water to waste for a bath.
    To be honest, my mother, who’s born in 1953, was even telling me a few days ago that when she was a child, she didn’t bathe regulary either, and they changed clothes only once a week too. So you can image what it was like in a poor family at the time of the anime (though once again, Claude’s family is far from poor)

    – The dresses worn with a crinoline are gorgeous.

    – How do you great people then? I’m curious.
    Anyway, over there, the girls do a a bise and the men shake hands between themselves and do a bise to the girls.
    And it’s a rather annoying way of greeting, it takes time when you come to a party and have to greet everyone because it’d be rude otherwise.

    – Now you mention it, the only time I ever remember pic nicking on a cloth was when I went to the beach.
    But yeah, usually we do that on benches, or in some place they have set tables for people who want to pic nic, and I’ve done it sitting straight on the floor a few times too. I guess it’s different for everyone and that there are people who do that on a cloth, but for most people sitting on the floor is something dirty that adults shouldn’t do anymore.
    But I do anyway because it’s still better than standing up XD

    – You can eat cheese with anything!
    There are so many different kinds that I’m pretty sure there’s one that tastes good with soy sauce.

    Aaand, if you, or anyone else passing by for that matters, has another question/remark/anything related to the French way of living/culture/anything French, please ask and I’ll do my best to answer!

    • Haha, first of all, thanks!

      – Ah, then the anime lied! Haha. Rain in Malaysia also ranges from a few minutes to a few days.

      – So, this has changed since Claude’s time. That makes sense.

      – Absolutely agree. They are gorgeous, although I won’t wear them. It looks hot.

      – Depending on one’s upbringing I’ll say. Normally, I greet people with a smile and say “hey” or “good morning” (for some reason, I never say “good evening” or “good night”). That’s with people I’m not too close with. And I only shake hands in formal occasions. With friends, we don’t even bother greeting and just dive straight into conversations. No embrace whatsoever.

      – Haha. That’s true, I’d prefer sitting down then standing up.

      – When you find the cheese that tastes good with soy sauce, you tell me. I wanna know. We don’t have loads of choices when it comes to cheese. It’s usually cheddar and mozzarella.

      Thank you for your offer. Now I know who to look for when I have burning questions on French culture! =)

  3. I think I understand the logic behind cheese with soy sauce, but that doesn’t mean I’m gonna try it.

    I do NOT understand the logic behind not taking baths. That’s probably just me, though.

    • Thanks for reading. =)

      Oh yeah, the stray cats Yune love to play with so much. I guess because we have so many stray dogs and cats over here I didn’t notice that.

  4. I’ve heard the rain in Paris thing before but that’s obviously some sort of tall tale thing or something *shrug*. I didn’t know what crinoline was called before Ikoku either, but I knew of it. It’s strange to picnic on a bench but I guess it’s not much different than using a table like I would. Also, I want that Nendo, but not sure if I’ll be getting. I thought it was interesting that Ikoku took place in a pre-Eiffel Tower Paris.

    • Sometimes we do learn a few things watching anime, don’t we? As for the rain thing, apparently that’s not true as pointed out by Kuuki earlier.

      Same here – I want that Yune Nendo, but I’m still not sure I’ll be buying at all. She’s cute though.

  5. I myself learned a lot from the anime. I really love the anime.
    Whenever I watch an episode of it, I feel very nostalgic.
    I’ve been to Paris and I wish I could go there again for the second time.

  6. Yune’s cuteness is nearly unmatched, Alice’s romantic affections for Yune made my day, Claude’s alright but not the reason I watched the show. The thing about this anime I think is that it succeeded where GOSICK failed. Don’t get me wrong, GOSICK is one of my fav anime of 2011, but Ikoku Meiro captured the classic European feel much better than GOSICK did is all I’m saying. There are other good things about this show but I’m too lazy to repeat myself.

    • I don’t actually see Alice’s affection towards Yune as a romantic one. But seeing her getting so excited about and attached to Yune is cute. Alice happens to be my favorite character of the show. So energetic, so hyper, so much fun.

      I guess what GOSICK was trying to do is to focus on the mysteries, which is why the setting wasn’t as appealing or as accurate as it should’ve been. It would’ve done better perhaps if it had captured the feeling as well as Croisee did.

      • The nation doesn’t quite agree with me either on Alice’s feelings for Yune but gosh darn it I can’t control myself, just like Alice can’t control her love for Yune. You’re correct Hoshiko, Alice is the best character on the show.

        Agreed on the argument of why GOSICK failed to deliver in its historical accuracy.

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