Monday, July 18, 2011

Bastille Eve

I know it's not pronounced like that, but I can't help picturing dozens of Mini-Mes from Austin Powers...

Went out with some friends to watch the fireworks on the 13th this year. But Bastille Day is on the 14th?, I hear you cry! Some towns let their fireworks off earlier or later, to avoid clashing with all the other little places around. For example, these fireworks were officially those of Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire, but because it's basically just a suburb of Tours across the river, we could see them from our side of the Loire. It always seems a bit dumb to me how every little place in France has its own mayor etc., I think there's officially 4 or 5 different towns making up what I would consider to be just Tours and its suburbs...

Anyway, we were a bit late getting downriver to watch the fireworks, so we were stumbling down the banks of the Loire in the dark, glad no-one broke their necks. Anyway, we ended up in a very quiet spot with a lovely view of the fireworks reflected in what looks in the photos like the river. In fact, don't tell anyone, but we were pretty much standing in a swamp!

Bastille Day (or other countries' national days) always provides the opportunity for one of those awkward conversations about New Zealand's peculiarities (which you don't even realise are that weird until you don't live there any more). Example:

Colleague: So what's your national day?
Me: Um, well, we don't really have one as such...
Colleague: What about the anniversary of your independence?
Me: Well, you know, we're still under the Queen and everything... There is kind of a day, but it commemorates when we BECAME a colony, so, you know, a lot of people aren't really too keen on it. So there's always protests and stuff and everyone else just goes to the beach...
Colleague: So you don't have a day with fireworks and stuff?
Me: No! We have a day JUST for fireworks!

So, yeah, we're weird! Honestly though, I can't imagine a big national day full of flag-waving patriotism in New Zealand, it's just not our style. I think a fair chunk of the country would be faintly embarrassed at such a thing...

Anyway, tomorrow I get the keys to the new place, and the move is set for Friday. Quite good since I can try to get things a bit organised before then. Quite excited! :)


  1. Are they pictures of fireworks then or just swamp amoeba?

  2. I'm being dogged by strange word verification requirements every time I try to make a comment on your blog. The last 3 have been "skitalot", "haresse" and "fatting". Is this your doing gwandiego or just some weird conspiracy to make me waste time looking in dictionaries to see if these are real words?

  3. Fatting was definitely part of my conspiracy heh heh. (I kid, I'm not entirely sure who actually left that comment)


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