Hello and happy Tuesday everyone!!
This past weekend was a week-end prolongé here to celebrate the national holiday of France, 14 Juillet (or Bastille Day in English). The 14th fell on a Friday this year, so it was absolutely perfect!
It was our first Bastille Day experience in France, so we were quite determined to make the most of it. We woke up pretty early, took Murphy for a long walk in the Bois, and then headed into the city for festivities. It was an absolutely perfect morning- sunny and clear but still relatively cool and fresh….my absolute favourite kind of summer weather!
Marc and I decided to go to Champs-Élysées to watch the military parade in the morning. I had never been to a military parade…strangely, we don’t have too many in Canada (or in Switzerland for that matter). I didn’t really know what to expect, but it was actually pretty fun! Sure, there was a whole lot of waiting around in big crowds and TONS of security– but we got to see President Macron drive by, and I guess Donald Trump (France’s guest of honour for the parade) was in one of the blacked out vans behind Macron….so we kind of saw him too?
Military vehicles are just so cool…. the parade included 63 airplanes, 29 helicopters, and countless trucks, tanks and ground personnel. I just couldn’t help wishing I had miniature versions of all the trucks to play in a sandbox with. Is that weird?
One cool thing- from Marc’s office in La Defense, he has a great view of the Arc de Triomphe, and he got to see the planes and helicopters do their test passes earlier in the week.
The parade was LONG, and we were absolutely starving after. We immediately found a bistro and settled down to eat…. and today the choice of what to have was easy. What better way to celebrate the amazing culinary history of France than to eat a planchette de charcuterie & planchette de fromage? The charcuterie plate was really traditional and included something that I’ve been meaning to try for ages….andouille, which is a traditional tripe sausage. I have to say- it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be… but I still wasn’t too convinced. I think it might be an acquired taste!
After a chill afternoon and evening at home, it was fireworks time! Marc and I didn’t really feel up to more crowds, so we opted to walk to Mare Saint James a few blocks away, where there is a view of the Eiffel Tower. In the end, we couldn’t see much of the fireworks, but just as we were leaving, a big demonstration started over the river in Neuilly! It was really beautiful and so special to enjoy the show just down the street from home. We had Murphy with us and he did great- for some reason fireworks and thunderstorms don’t bother him at all, whereas the sound of a crinkling trash bag in the wind will send him running to hide in a corner. Dogs are so weird sometimes!
The rest of the weekend was really relaxed and fun- we spend a lot of time with Murphy, saw some friends, and just chilled out. I think we’re going to have a pretty busy week, so it was great to take a deep breath before all the craziness starts. To close the whole weekend on a high note, we went into the city on Sunday evening for gelato (NOM!) and a couple beers by the river. Paris Plages (Paris beaches) has started, so there are a lot of different demonstrations and exhibits along the banks of the Seine. We spent a very enjoyable hour enjoying beers and sunshine while watching Salsa dancers near Pont Neuf.
Life is good!!
Marc, Murphy, and I are leaving on holidays this Saturday- keep posted for all our adventures in: Bordeaux, Andorra, and Marseille. I can’t wait, it’s going to be so much fun!
Many adventures to come soon! Until then,