No, not plague...we are not being damned with locus or anything!
The Paris Plage is a free summer event that transforms several spots in Paris into full-fledged beaches.
I have read that the activities fill up fast, so the best thing to do is go in the morning and sign up for a slot and then do other things while you wait. There are also going to be free concerts and street performers there, as well as my favorite way to pass time, people watching! Now if the weather will just cooperate. Don't get me wrong, I am loving not being in N.C. right now with the heat and humidity, but in order to swim or surf, it would be nice if it could get above 70 degrees. That's right, you heard me those of you sweltering away in N.C. It has not been above 70 degrees this week! It has also been a little rainy, but that is supposed to end. The forecast only calls for highs in the mid-70's (highest being 76 degrees) next week. But as long as it's sunny, the kids will brave having blue lips from the cold to swim!
For Bastille Day, we started a day early and went to a Lorraine's, a coworker of Patrick's, for the
Sapeurs-Pompiers (Fireman's) Ball. You may find yourself asking about the relationship between fireman and the most important holiday. The answer is that firemen host the largest dance parties to celebrate Bastille Day in all of the fire stations in Paris July 13 and 14 . There is a fire station close to Lorraine's apartment so we all met there and had some munchies and then walked over to the fire station. The kids were great, considering it is now about 10 p.m. but they were troopers. As we got closer, you could hear and feel the bass from the speakers. This is a free event, but the firefighters have a big barrel or bucket and ask for a donation as you come in. Once in, it is like a huge outdoor nightclub. People everywhere, dancing and watching the stage show. When we walk in there were two guts on stilts dressed up like devils. Now, walking on stilts is impressive enough, but these guys were also in springs and would bounce up and down like pogo sticks ON STILTS!
|Couldn't get a good picture as they were|
For Bastille Day, we went to Bercy Village. Bercy Village is the urban-renewal project in the 12th arrondissement, next to Parc de Bercy and the Seine, which consists largely of small wine warehouses from the late 19th Century that have been saved from destruction by conversion into shops and restaurants. We wandered around and then had an early dinner at the Hippopotamus (a kid friendly chain that actually has good food). To end the day, we went a saw Harry Potter. We had to go to the 3D showing because the other English language time was sold out. It was fine in 3D (nothing jumps out at you) and I was glad they didn't muck it up with effects just because it was shown in 3D. I did find myself looking at the French subtitles frequently as they were a bit distracting on the bottom of the screen, but it was kinda fun too to see if I could follow along!
On a side note, we did go shopping and stopped for lunch at KFC! It was great. It's kind of funny the simple/stupid things you miss when living in a foreign country. But we were all giddy with excitement at the self-service soda machine with free refills and an ice dispenser! The French rarely serve beverages with ice and if they do, it's usually only a cube or two and there are NO free refills on anything but water. On the way out I filled my cup with ice cubes and a dash of soda and was a happy, happy girl.
These signs in the KFC made me smile.
Well I wasn't going to pay for one!
|"Soda, ice, here it is at pleasure"|
see, it's so rare they made a sign celebrating it!
Hopefully, the weather will cooperate and I will be able to get the kids down to the Paris Plage and get some pictures of a beach in the middle of the city. Until then, enjoy a BIG cup of crushed ice for me...