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Hello this time from Vancouver!

I’m back and frankly very glad to be. Oh don’t get me wrong, I love the city of light, the country of France and everything about it. But the weather was getting too hot, (35C) and very little air conditioning anywhere. Well at least not in most buildings in Paris.

This is why all the well healed Parisians vacate the city and flock to the beaches for the entire summer, while all the tourists sweat it out in Paris.

Anyway, the summer is always wonderful in Vancouver and I’m happy to see Larry’s newly planted vegetable garden and fruit trees are flourishing so well. The weather is simply perfect! 27C, slight winds, no humidity. Nothing lovelier than Vancouver in the summer.

Larry and I always experience something unusual on every trip to France, but this was the first time we experienced the full magnitude of the July 14th Celebration or ‘Bastille Day’ in Paris. Typically the day is full of festivities starting with a huge parade down the Champs Elysees. We’re not much for parades, so we spent the day, ambling around the Marais and doing a last bit of last minute shopping.

When we returned back to our apartment, cars were buzzing around our area and we had no idea why. We literally got the last parking space close to our apartment and from then on, into the wee hours of the morning people were circling the block in hopes to find parking.

Our apartment is located about 10 minutes walking from the Eiffel Tower, so people were frantically trying to park as close as they could and make their way there and watch the fireworks and festivities.

We don’t like crowds all that much, so we opted out for watching the fireworks from our balcony. (We can see the a good 50% of the Eiffel Tower from our apartment) An estimated 500,000 people watched the display from the Champs des Mars, the large park right in front of the Tour Eiffel. We had no idea of the magnitude of this event until watching it on the television.

But little did we know the events planned for that evening were are spectacular as they were. From open air concert productions of ‘La Traviata’ and other operatic favorites to a spectacular display of fireworks. We just may in the future, venture down to the Champs des Mars to watch the event in person.

Please click on the link below to enjoy the quick movies I took.  And have a look at another photographers link that showed the festivities for the 2009 Bastille Day.

Incredible is the only word for the ‘French’ and their never ending fountain of creativity.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdoJq_cD_jw&feature=youtu.be (fireworks)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDMQCoKFxow (concert)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5HQput353o (2009 film) (This film is incredible so fast forward through the parts that get a little slow.)

The French, there’s no one like them and I love them to bits. But I’m happy to be Canadian and back home.

Happy Summer

Mark

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