Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Best Longest Day Ever!

As I mentioned in my post yesterday, yesterday was the "Fete de la Musique" all over Europe and, of course, in Paris the Music Festival was celebrated with pizzaz! This festival happens every year on the longest day of the year. My watch broke right before my trip, so I have been going along and living my days without a single care about what time it is. This got the better of me for the first time yesterday. I was heading back to the apartment in what I thought was early evening (the sun was just beginning to set) and was beginning to get hungry. Sarah and Andrew and I decided to get some dinner before we walked around to find music, and when we looked at the time, it was 10 o'clock! However, we were not alone in the restaurant- it seems that everyone had the same idea. After enjoying some excellent Moroccan food (Morocco, a north-African country, used to belong to France, so there are some strong French-Moroccan ties), we began to walk the streets looking for music.

By the amount of people that were on the street, you might have thought that it was the middle of the day! We saw all types of local and visiting bands, from an Irish folk music band, to a great French band playing American music, to a single Frenchman (beret and all!) playing famous French music, to a Reggae band at the Eiffel Tower. Just as that band ended its set, the back lights of the Eiffel Tower turned off, and it began to sparkle! What a way to end the night!

Earlier in the day, we went to visit the Louvre, the biggest and most famous museum in Paris (this is where the Mona Lisa is displayed). As we were walking across the courtyard, we heard music and high voice singing opera. We were curious to see who was singing this beautiful music. After wading through the crowd, we couldn't believe our eyes when we saw not an elegantly dressed woman, but a man dressed in baggy street clothes, singing in his falsetto voice! It was quite unexpected, and was a good lesson that people are not always what they seem. From looking at this man, I would have never guessed that he would have such a talent!

I realize that this is getting a bit long, but I want to share with you all that I got a fantastic book yesterday with 1500 traditional songs, poems, and games. It even comes with a CD, and is considered the most comprehensive collection of essential rhymes, etc. in France. Many of these have been around centuries! I can't wait to learn some with my students!

Well, tonight ends my stay on Paris. Tomorrow I leave for Geneva, Switzerland. Happy belated Fete de la Musique to everyone at home!


Nathan R. said...

Dear Madame,

That book sounds really cool. I can't wait to see it next year. What was your favorite musician that day.

Nathan Rankin

Andrew said...

Hey Madame,

G you sure have had some adventures. I was really glad to get to be a part of your trip. We had some very unique French experiences to say the least. I think I understand why Europeans in general are considered more thin than Americans: they walk everywhere! Hope the rest of the trip is great.