"we are straying far from our sheep, as they say in France"
by cm

Or rather they say, "Revenons à nos moutons", meaning "Lets get back to our sheep".

The origin of this curious phrase is a medieval play called La Farce de Maître Pathelin, in which a judge is deliberately confused by being presented with two cases at the same time, only one of which pertains to sheep.  The phrase is his desperate and repeated attempt to get a grip on the ovine question.