For ages, Father Christmas received letters, letters and more letters. They came to him from all over the planet. However, he had never taken a letter to other people.
A poem for the 14th July (from French original)How sweet it seems, my beautiful Republic
Where many winds died down a long time ago,
When from our harsh suns to a hundred northern plains
Robespierre and Danton once enemies became friends.
How beautiful it seems, my France of folk tunes,
Which can dance to a thousand accordions,
While from our villages to the borders of Paris
A single people celebrates in good heart and with a single soul.
The 14th July is very often associated with the storming of the Bastille in 1789. It was indeed in the morning of that day that an angry crowd seized this prison-fortress and brought its destruction. However, it was a year later on 14th July 1790 that another event took place, the Festival of Federation. Besides being the first anniversary of the fall of the royal prerogative, this marked the national merging of the regional units of national guards, formed in each of the French provinces.
The 21st June, day of the summer solstice (the longest day of the year), is the day of the festival of music. The festival exists all over the world but did you know that its origin is French?! … And a bit American! In 1976, the American musician Joel Cohen, who was working at Radio France, put forward a special programme of music for the 21st June and the 21st December (for the two solstices). In 1981, Jack Lang, the Minister for Culture, made it an official holiday in France. Continue reading
From 20th to 28th May, Aix-en-Provence continues an ancestral tradition with the Festival of the tabor, a musical instrument which is emblematic of Provence. From throughout Provence, and also from the Drôme, Gard and Hérault departments, some 200 tabor players gather on Cours Mirabeau simply for the pleasure of playing together, virtuoso players and beginners alike.
De Guillaume Apollinaire (1880 – 1918), un superbe poème traversé par le temps nostalgique et un amour malheureux
Le mai le joli mai en barque sur le Rhin
Des dames regardaient du haut de la montagne
Vous êtes si jolies mais la barque s’éloigne
Qui donc a fait pleurer les saules riverains
Or des vergers fleuris se figeaient en arrière
Les pétales tombés des cerisiers de mai Continue reading
Mai, mois du muguet, mois de de la fête des travailleurs, mois du temps des cerises et mois des champs en fleurs.
Pourquoi la tradition d’offrir du muguet ? Cette tradition date de 1560, le chevalier Louise de Girard de Maisonforte a offert un brin de muguet, au roi Charles IX, en visite avec sa mère Catherine de Médicis dans la Drôme. Dès le 1er mai 1561, le roi se met alors à distribuer des brins de muguet aux dames de la cour en leur disant: «Qu’il en soit fait ainsi chaque année». La coutume était née !