Monday, July 5, 2010

4th of July in the south of France

So yesterday was the 4th of July (American Independence Day for you foreigners), a fact that I failed to realize until half way through lunch. At which point we all dramatically increased our afternoon wine consumption -- to celebrate, you know -- and sang the national anthem of the U.S., as well as England and France just to be multicultural. I also sang America the Beautiful and a few others, and for the rest of the day Claude went around singing "America, America..." but it got a little repetive because he doesn't know any of the other words. Sometimes he'd mix it up and sing "God save our gracious queen..." (again, he only knows the one line). Still, it's better than the two lines of Michael Jackson ("We are the world, we are the children) that he had been singing incessantly since my arrival to honor my American-ness.

There was even something of a fireworks show: a neighbor dog came around to terrorize the Jourdans' three dogs, so Claude set off one of those things that makes a really loud gunshot sound (either I never knew the name of it, or I'm already forgetting English). After lunch, I ranted to Kin about bourgeois Parisian antisemitism (because I got a little of that when I was in Paris for the weekend) and that felt very American. He complained about the French police, and I amped up my patriotism by expaining in bad French American search and seizure laws (which are far more strenuous and much more focused on protecting individual freedom than the French laws, of which there are basically none).

More wine and toasting of the Americans came with dinner (yes, Grandma Sharon, we drink twice a day here, but relax -- I'M IN FRANCE and it's only wine and good for digestion) and we sang the national anthem again, which inspired Claude to sing the anthem of the IWW. Three times. It was truly beautiful. We went on to sing French and American nursery rhymes and I impressed everyone by knowing every word to "Frère Jacques".

So no hotdogs or red, white, and blue, but certainly immensely patriotic. And it seems there's some telepathy in this household, because just now Claude started humming the American national anthem again. Or perhaps it's just subversive American imperialism rearing its ugly head.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Rachel. Just letting you know I'm keeping up. You drank wine and I delivered a baby on the 4th. I drank wine, too, later - 40 year old bordeaux at Tom Carrol's birthday party. Have fun!