Monday, 13 July 2009

Fete Nationale/Bastille Day

Photo: Fête Nationale Carcassonne

Tomorrow is Fête Nationale ("National Celebration") in France or as it is known outside of France "Bastille Day".
It commemorates the 1790 Fête de la Fédération, held on the first anniversary of the storming of the Bastille on 14 July 1789; the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison was seen as a symbol of the uprising of the modern nation, and of the reconciliation of all the French inside the constitutional monarchy which preceded the First Republic, during the French Revolution.

Festivities are held on the morning of 14 July, on the Champs-Élysées avenue in Paris in front of the President of the Republic.
The parade opens with many cadets from the École Polytechnique, Saint-Cyr, École Navale, and so forth, then other infantry troops, then motorised troops; aviation of the Patrouille de France flies above. In recent times, it has become customary to invite units from France's allies to the parade; in 2004 during the centenary of the Entente Cordiale, British troops (the band of the Royal Marines, the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, Grenadier Guards and King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery) led the Bastille Day parade in Paris for the first time, with the Red Arrows flying overhead.
Traditionally, the students of the École Polytechnique set up some form of joke.
The president used to give an interview to members of the press, discussing the situation of the country, recent events and projects for the future. Nicolas Sarkozy, elected president in 2007, has chosen not to give it.
The President also holds a garden party at the Palais de l'Elysée.
Bastille Day falls during the Tour de France and is traditionally a day when French riders try to take a stage victory for France, working harder than they might on other days.
All over France the atmosphere is amazing and whether you are in a small village or a large town you are guranteed to have a fabulous time. Last year we spent the night in Castillonnes where the mood was upbeat, a lot of champagne was consumed and the firework display was incredible as it seemed to go on and on.....
So you can understand why it is one of the best days to be in France.....
Leeann x

12 comments:

  1. Happy 'Fete Nationale' to you!
    By the way, I ADORE your pink shutters - you have done a fabulous job!

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  2. Hi! There`s an award for you on my blog!Finally I got the opportunity to give one back to you! From AK

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  3. Have a great day tomorrow and enjoy the celebrations. My daughter is in a little village near Bergerac and can't waat for the celebrations to begin.....especially the fireworks. I will hear all about it when she gets back and I can't wait to hear about yours....

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  4. Thank you for educating an ignorant Aussie about what actually takes place in France on Bastille Day. I must say, it sounds like it would be wonderful to be in France on this very special day. Lee :)

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  5. Leeann-I'll drink some Sancerre tomorrow in your honor.

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  6. Happy Fete Nationale Day, to you Leeann.

    It was neat to read the history behind this day ~ thank you.
    Enjoy the fireworks and celebrations and we will raise a glass to you tomorrow.

    Hugs
    Carolyn

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  7. I'm sure whatever you're doing it will be wonderful Leeann! Make sure you put down the paintbrush & relax & enjoy.
    Millie ^_^

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  8. Wish I was there. Enjoy.

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  9. I hope you had a wonderful Bastille day Leeann! Would love to experience it one day...Ax

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  10. HAPPY BASTILLE DAY LEEANN,
    IT IS FUN BEING ABLE TO CELEBRATE THROUGH YOU.
    I WAS DOING THE HAPPY DANCE WHEN I RECEIVED A POSTCARD FROM PARIS TODAY FROM ERIKA, JAIMEPARIS,BLOGSPOT.COM, WHO IS SPENDING THE SUMMER IN FRANCE. I CAN'T EVEN IMAGINE HOW MUCH FUN IT IS.
    I HAVE WANTED TO GO THERE SINCE I WAS 17 YEARS OLD.
    BUT I AM SOOO THRILLED WHEN SOMEONE SENDS ME A POSTCARD...IT IS LIKE I HAVE TRAVELED A SMALL PIECE OF FRANCE.
    HUGS,
    SIMPLY DEBBIE

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