Bastille Day Weekend

The 14th of July was Bastille Day or Fête nationale française. The celebration started on Saturday for us. In the morning we prepared food for the picnic, then had a quick lunch before heading out. We headed to the beach for a picnic with a group of family friends. I met many new people and kids.
When the sun finally started to set we ate our sandwiches and other foods that different families brought on a rock-formed path above the beach. It took a while for the feux d’artifice (fireworks) to begin.
While waiting, Arthur and Manon (a little girl of one of the family friend’s ) and I walked along the beach. We played “who can throw the rock the furthest”  to pass the time.
On the narrow street above, a carnival of acrobatic clowns and car displays…think Rio Carnaval…was displayed to pedestrians.The firework danced to the rhythm of the music and the sea was beautiful at every angle.  The mosquitoes were active at night. I acquired a few more itchy bites that have swollen up. The small ones are always more poisonous than the larger ones. During the fireworks I felt something fall into my shirt. Later when walking on the beach with the kids again, I panicked and began to feel sick after looking into my sous-vêtement. I had killed a mosquito in my sports bra. That wasn’t the only thing that made me turn green. The spattered blood stains on the white material and the thought of it being flung against my skin almost had me falling over. Nonetheless, it was forgotten sooner or later as the kids distracted me with playing on the beach and watching the carnival on the street.

On Sunday we spent the day at a friend’s house to celebrate the 80th birthday of his father. So far it has been 5 days since I first arrived and I still feel like Julia Robert’s character in the movie, Eat Pray Love. Standing on the terrace, looking at the houses on the hill I still wonder how I am another side of the world and how I happened to be surrounded by such lovely yet  different people. Mama mia, life is full of surprises.
I met many new people today and practiced the french bisous (kissing on the cheeks). A while ago I once suggested to a close few friends in Toronto that we should greet with a kiss on the cheek. But no one was really interested to kiss with me….but here I am  in the land of such affection 🙂
We arrived before noon and had lunch until 3 or 4pm. Everyone was very kind and the Italian men were very funny.  Need I say it? I would love to live in a house like this.
I connected with Nancy quickly and she was very easy to talk to. More or less I took a break from French and we conversed in mostly English.
A trio that consisted of an accordion, violin and double bass played incredible Italian and French classics. The bass player is from Montreal and he even let me try to play with the instrument.
Lots of dancing, music and laughter.
As a visual learner, I find it hard to understand phrases without seeing the words on paper. I am still slowly training my ear for French. Today, plenty for Italian too.
Before watching the fireworks, we had some pasta for dinner. Today was a special experience. This week we begin our English lessons.


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