Totally Frenched Out

From the blogger formerly known as Samdebretagne

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Fête de la Musique

Did everyone else have fun at the fête de la musique? I've gone the past few years in V-town, but it was always on such a small scale - nothing even remotely like what I saw in Paris last night. It was absolutely insane, but in a really good way.

My evening started out with me taking the two kids around the neighborhood so they could hear a bit of the music. I should've brought my camera with, because our quartier was filled with little bourgeois kids trying to rock it out on the street corners. They were so funny, trying so hard to be bad in their (expensive) punk rocker clothes.

It was pretty late by the time the parents got back, so I just changed quick and headed out to find my friends. I had to laugh at the group of lycée kids from my building who were playing in front of the door. There was a huge crowd of kids around them - they all looked about 16 years old and yet there they were, swigging from bottles of wine, right in front of their parents. You'd never see that in America!

I made my way over to the Canal St Martin, where I found quite possibly one of the biggest crowds of people I've ever seen in my life. It was fantastic though - such a great ambiance. People were either dancing in the streets or sitting at the edge of the canal just hanging out and talking. People were drinking, but no one was falling-down drunk and puking in the streets like their Breton counterparts were doing. And there was a great mix of music - from African to Fanfare to House. We spent the night dancing our way between all three. I'm discovering that I really do like to dance - how about that? Though apparently I was wearing a sign that said "If you are from Africa, please hit on me". I had men from Senegal, the Congo, Nigeria, etc after me all night, but they were harmless enough - just a little bit too touchy-feely for my liking.

We stayed until around 3:30am - I could've stayed a lot longer, but everyone else was pooped so I headed home. Unfortunately, I didn't read the signage very well before going out - I thought I'd read "LES metros, RER et Bus circulent toute la nuit", but it really said "DES metros, RER et Bus circulent toute la nuit". For non-French speakers, the difference being "The subway, RER trains & Busses will run all night" vs "SOME subway lines, RER trains & Busses will run all night". So the line I'd been planning on going home on was closed. Luckily one of the lines at the Gare de l'Est was open, and it stops about a ten minute walk from my place. I hopped on it, only to realize that it was only stopping at about 1 out of every 4 stops. Would it have been that hard for them to put up signs saying that? Or for the driver to at least announce it? But whatever. I ended up getting off at Montparnasse train station, hoping to catch a night bus from there. Once I got out of the metro, there were about a million people there, milling about in general chaos, and it was clear that I was not the only confused about which lines were running and which weren't. I waited at the bus stop for a while, but after talking to some people, I realized the night buses weren't running either. I finally decided to just walk the rest of the way home since it was such a nice night and there were so many people in the streets.

I got kind of hungry along the way, so I stopped for a crêpe au nutella. I started talking to the two guys running the stand, and as I was about to pay, one of them said something to the other one in their native language, and they ended up giving it to me for free since I was so "charmante". So then I continued my walk home eating my delicious warm, chocolately, FREE crêpe, thinking "Man, I love this city!!"



Blogger purejuice said...

i love this. you're a flaneuse! on with the nutella! nutella for all!

June 22, 2008 at 4:37 PM  
Blogger Fned said...

hahah... chances are we might have bumped into you last night. We live a couple of blocks away from the canal de saint martin!

and yeah... it was insane last night.


June 22, 2008 at 4:48 PM  
Blogger Le Tigre in France said...

Sounds like a great evening topped off with a free delicious snack! Paris sounds wonderful, despite confusing signs!

June 22, 2008 at 5:22 PM  
Blogger shannon said...

That sounds like such a wonderful night! I love how Paris can be so full of life at night.

June 22, 2008 at 6:55 PM  
Blogger Mira said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

June 22, 2008 at 7:29 PM  
Blogger au soleil levant said...

I had a good time in Reims, but Paris sounds amazing. Will have to add that to the list for next year. I love reading about your adventure in Paris!

June 22, 2008 at 7:38 PM  
Blogger Mignon said...

Sam, I read the PDP blog. I think someday you may be posted on it. You 2 in the same city and all. Or you might even see Eric the author of the blog taking random shots of Paris.

June 22, 2008 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger C. said...

ahhh nutella crepe after a night out - brings back memories. I miss Paris! Glad you are taking to the city so well.

June 22, 2008 at 9:04 PM  
Blogger Brno girl said...

sounds like you had a lot of fun and that is great!!

June 22, 2008 at 9:33 PM  
Blogger Leesa said...

Sounds great!! Next year I will do the Fête, I'm sure... I am glad you had such a wonderful time...You go girl!! ---Leesa

June 22, 2008 at 9:52 PM  
Blogger Our Juicy Life said...

you sound so happy!!!!! i think that's wonderful.
glad you have a lovely night

June 22, 2008 at 10:55 PM  
Blogger from cali said...

You are killing me! I wish I had been able to experience that, but since I can't I am glad you are able to and that you are kind enough to share.

June 23, 2008 at 5:58 AM  

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