Thursday, September 30, 2010

Good-bye oompa band...


Following the festivities of the disco, we headed out Sunday morning for our village's weekly market. And to my surprise, the oompa band was there for one more performance! They played some traditional music, as well as "Surfin' USA," "Barbara Ann," and a whole ABBA tribute (which made Dan very happy).


The temperature has changed very quickly here, and it seems most of the mosquitos have died off as a result. We are definitely in the very pleasant grip of some fall weather and Sunday was no exception...



I've been sick for the better part of two weeks, and our neighbor Tanja bought me flowers on Sunday as a get well present - isn't she sweet?


It was definitely cool/weird shopping at the legume stand while listening to the oompa band play songs from "Mama Mia..."



And thank God the lard was on sale...






[The Phanatic is so excited about the Phils clinching the NL East for the fourth year in a row that he can't take his eyes away from the standings...]

There were more fete-related activities going on that afternoon, like another parade and some confetti balloon launching thing, but to be honest we were fete-ed out. So instead we had a big Sunday lunch and had a movie day - nothing like a little zombies ("Day of the Dead"), classic Robert Redford ("Three Days of the Condor"), and cult classics ("Omega Man") to finish out a chilly autumn Sunday.

Sidenote: Thanks to Kira for the suggestion of "Omega Man" - the first half was a definite nod to "Last Man on Earth" with Vincent Price, and then the second half takes a very weird turn that I totally dug.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Our favorite gentleman dancer...

video

I also can't help but share another video from Saturday night's fete in Thoiry. This was our faovrite gentleman dancer at the disco. Take it away, baby...

Torch Parade Grand Finale...

Blogger was giving me problems with uploading this, so instead it gets it own glorious post...congratulations oompa band.

video

Monday, September 27, 2010

"I was told there would be torches..."


[Frankenstein hunting with my torch.]

...and not only did the french not dissapoint, but they also did not mess around! Do you see this thing? Who let me have this?! I am not responsible enough to carry one of these!


[Torchless, but not for long...]

We arrived at the Fete de St. Maurice on Saturday night in Thoiry just in time, as there were only a handful of torches (for the adults) and lanterns (for the kiddies - still with 4 inch tall white lit candles inside them) left. I apologize in advance for the quality of the upcoming pictures, but I haven't mastered night vision on my camera yet. I think you'll get the idea though...


[Somebody hook a brother up with a light...]


After everybody was lit up (ha), we followed a german "Oompa" band around the block...


[In shock that someone gave him a real torch...]


[Oompa band doing their thing.]


[My crazy torch.]

And through all of this, all I kept thinking was, "Nobody better light my hair on fire..." In actuality if anyone was going to light my hair on fire it would have been me, my torch was a little out of control...


[The mob.]



Kim went for the classier and slightly less pyro-technic celebratory lantern, while Dan and I went all out with torch glory...


And we just kept saying, "Man, they would have NEVER let us do this back in the US..."



[Notice small child to the left with torch...]


And so, like the Pied Piper, we followed the sounds of the Oompa band to the Salle de fete for the disco.


But not before a little Barbapapa...i.e. the biggest cotton candy I've ever seen. This cotton candy was almost larger than an almost two year old!



And I had my first crepe made by a french person!


[French carny games...]


[You can't have your torch and barbapapa too...]

Marc showed up late and totally missed the Torch Parade! Luckily for him Frankenstein was NOT caught, so he has another chance next year. Sidenote: For those of you who don't know, "Frankenstein" was written in nearby Geneva by Mary Shelley and part of the story takes place right in our backyard - the Jura Mountains.


For the record, this was the petite size barbapapa - we didn't dare get the maxi...


Then it was on to the disco...yes, that is what a dance is called here...


This is french people dancing to the Macarena. My heart swelled at the excitement that filled the room once this song came on among the people on the dance floor. I didn't have the heart to tell them that people stopped doing this (at least in public) a good 15 years ago...



Here you will notice two little girls playing with an empty Smirnoff bottle...and with that we decided to call it a night. I have two videos to share from that night as well, which will hopefully be posted right after this one...

So, where do all the high schools girls hang out?


Pic via here.

The answer to that question is undeniably Cartigny, Suisse. No one told us this however before we ventured out on dark country roads, over the river, and across the border to Suisse for the CartiGlobe Beer Festival on Friday night. I tend to base the projected awesomeness of things based on their advertising poster, and CartiGlobe had an awesome poster, as you can see above. In addition to the sexy nun, this poster, as you can see, has words on it. These words translate to "admission 5€, no one under the age of 18." I can now email those poster creators and tell them of a crucial typo in their work, which was that there was actually no one OVER the age of 18 there. Well, besides us. And of course, the Suisse guards patting the adolescents down before they entered the cage that was the CartiGlobe Beer Fest. (I shit you not, there was a 6 foot tall fence enclosing the joint...) So, Dan, Marc, Kira and I stood outside in the chilly fall night air trying to figure out if we were indeed too old for this fete, (because who knows, maybe the adults were all inside drinking delicious artisan beer already), until Dan finally asked one of the guards what the demographics of the fete were looking like inside. Yeah, same as outside. So, we took our old selves back to the car and headed back to France - no beer, a little colder, but excited to go somewhere and be around people who were old enough to drive.



[Old heads.]


[Younger old heads.]

So to Charlie's Pub in St. Genis we went! It was nice to go and just sit at a bar and have a drink with friends, as we haven't done that in a quite a long time (May in Philly to be exact!). And everyone appeared to be at least 20, so that was a win-win for us. Two Laguvilin's later and it was time for our old selves to get home so we could be up and ready for the fetes going down in Thoiry the rest of the weekend where torches would abound!

The early bird gets the LEGO...


LEGO Christmas advertisements at Migros. In September. Utter blasphemy.

But I kinda want some LEGOS now...

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fete de Vendange; otherwise known as the Harvest Festival...


After having surviving 10 days without Dan in France (he was back in the states for work) and then promptly getting sick upon his return, yesterday was my first day out of the house in about a week. Lucky for me not only was there the weekly Thoiry market going down, but also the Fete de Vendange in Russin, Suisse. This is a festival in honor of the harvest of the grapes that make the wine of this region, and there's plenty on hand to try. So, after getting our weekly goodies at the market and watching the Nebraska/Washington game online, we crossed the border to enjoy some Suisse wine and festivities. We had a bit of a long walk up a swirly, whirly hill, and on the way there were ponies (or are these mules?)...



And donkeys...


And Billy goats....



This one in black and brown was quite feisty and tried to steal my hat everytime I leaned down to pick some weeds to feed to him....




Then Dan found a shortcut (a very steep shortcut!) up to the Fete de Vendange...




And then, voila! We found ourselves right smack in the middle of the fete.


Being that it was beginning to get dark and that it was the last day of the festival, things were starting to shut down, but we still walked around, took in the festivities that were still going on, popped into a cafe for a glass of wine, and explored Russin, as neither of had ever been there before.


[I heart Ratatouille.]










[Party foul.]



[Swoon. Major garden love.]


[It ain't over 'til the marching band leaves...]



We had a great time at the fete and next year I plan on being healthy so we can partake in a greater amount of the festivities. Look out this weekend though - there's another fete in Thoiry AND a beer festival in Russin. Wow Russin, two fetes in two weeks - ce vous hardcore!