Today was Bastille day in France, a national holiday, so I really got to experience the fun and traditions of the day 1st hand.
We started with a light brunch at Bethany’s, before venturing to the parade route, we found a spot, and settled in for a few hours of standing and watching the Bastille Day Parade, which is a military parade (not like the parades we think of in the states). Before the parade started, you had flyovers by jets, the first one creating the French flag in the sky with red, white and blue dust. It was pretty cool, but I must say that having planes fly that low in a city is a bit unnerving – especially the historic planes that I am certain were similar to those used during the air raids and bombings.
The parade was different than any I had ever seen – each military group came through in their dress uniforms (I assume) and many of them were marching and singing – while I couldn’t understand a word (no French, remember?) I was able to really appreciate the difficulty of that task – they were very impressive. We discovered that were only saw about 1/2 of the parade because of a split in the route, but it was cool none the less.
The neatest thing was that each year, France picks a partnering nation to be the guest, and this year it was Mexico – and the Mexican Military group marched with huge birds – I kid you not! It was amazing to see them march, sing and cary these giant birds with them!
After the parade, we headed back to Bethany’s to chill before our next fun adventure, a picnic.
Joy planned a great picnic with lots of her friends (and involving wine and cheese, so you know it will be great!). We enjoyed the conversation with each other and the beauty of the park – it was great!)
After several hours, we realized we were done, and we were both perfectly ok to skip fighting the crowds at the fireworks and the Eiffel tower, so we ventured back to Joy’s, ordered yummy Lebanese take out, and just relaxed.
Tomorrow is my last full day in Paris, so I will see what I can check off my list before heading home Thursday evening – I also realized today that somewhere in my blog I have messed up the days – but oh well! 🙂