Monday, July 09, 2007
Bon Matin (Good morning)
We started our French week with just a couple of posts about the French language. (Sorry about that long second post. Whew!) Tomorrow, we'll have a short post about those beautiful and famous French quilts. ( I promise -- It will be brief.) And, you won't need to speak a word of French to understand it!
Don't forget, July 14 or 14 juillet is Bastille Day in France. This commemorates the storming of the famous Bastille prison, which ignited the already smouldering French Revolution in 1789. The Revolution lasted for another decade, but the French see this date as being critical to their struggle for freedom.
I had so much fun when I was seventeen and in France when Bastille Day rolled around. We saw fireworks, a parade attended by high French officials and masses of Parisians, street dances, and attended a free performance of the play, Cryano de Bergerac, at the old Opera house. Before the play began, a woman dressed in the colors of the French Flag powerfully sang their national anthem -- La Marseillaise. The audience joined in, many with tears in their eyes.
Perhaps, you'd like to read a little bit about how the French celebrate Bastille Day. You could turn this into a family holiday and learn something about French culture in the meantime. For example, you could serve a Frech meal, and make little French flags out of toothpicks and colored construction paper to decorate the table.
I have loved France and French culture since I started taking French in the ninth grade. I studied French for four years in high school, spent a summer in Paris, and then minored in French and English literature in college. That meant that I took four more years of intensive French courses while in college.
Sadly, I had little opportunity to use my French in daily life. I lost a lot of my French language skills. Then, when DH surprised me with an anniversary trip to Paris in 2006, I started brushing up on my French in earnest. I still have a long way to go, but I'm having fun.