Saturday, July 16, 2005

Tour de France

tour de france 2005.2

What a busy two days I've had! Yesterday we ate lunch at Jube's parents' house, and then they came to our house for dinner. Then, since it was Bastille Day (otherwise known as "the fourteenth of July"--le quatorze juillet) we went to see the fireworks. I saw the fireworks in Montpellier for the first time two years ago, the summer of 2003, and we couldn't see a thing. There was no wind, so the smoke from the fireworks hung in the air, obscuring the rest of the show. We saw lots of red smoke... green smoke... pink smoke... Unfortunately this seems to be a chronic problem in Montpellier, because yesterday the same thing happened. Disappointed, we walked home, stopping twice to listen to cover bands in the street. (They were covering songs I didn't know. They are allegedly on the radio right now, but I haven't been able to confirm or deny this rumor.)

Today Jube and I watched the Tour de France arrive in Montpellier. Sadly, the route they chose ignored the most beautiful parts of the city, so if you were watching on TV, you didn't see the best! Luckily for us, the route ran close to our apartment, on the Avenue de la Liberté. We biked there (how French! how “Tour de France”y!), so we arrived just in time for the Caravan. That means, just in time for the free stuff that the sponsors of the Tour throw out of their cars about an hour before the cyclists arrive. We were apparently not in the right spot, because we only got one packet of candy, one sun hat, and a pair of plastic inflatable noisemakers. Eh, no big deal! I came for the Tour de France, right? See the great picture I got? You’re lucky—the cyclists go by in about two seconds. I couldn’t identify Lance Armstrong until I saw him on the picture.

After watching the tour, we took the bikes in town. Jube needed to buy a new pair of pants for this wedding we’ll be going to in two weeks, and since it is the time of les soldes, we took advantage. So now there is one more Frenchman with navy blue striped pants. Nice, eh? I also sent an e-mail to the director of international studies in Nice. Who knows? I might be able to earn a Master’s equivalency in one year! Pretty sweet, eh? Or maybe I’d write a huge thesis and just end up not earning anything except for a degree that only works in France. Or maybe I’m too late to sign up anyway! Life is hard when you’re an immigrant...

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