Thursday, November 17, 2011

Je suis arrivée

I was in Paris for the past few weeks.  It was partly business, partly fun.  I have never been there before so I was a classic American stupid tourist, but I did have a list of things to see in my free time and I saw them.  Just being there for so long I got a taste of the lifestyle there, and it wasn't really what I expected.

I was disappointed at how Catholic the country still is.  November 1 is a "national holiday."  And why would that be?  Because it's All Saints Day.  I considered going to Notre Dame Cathedral that day, but I decided to sleep late and relax instead.  That's what holidays are for!  And anyway, if I want to see how the French Catholics celebrate a holiday, I'd rather see how they celebrate St. Denis, the patron saint of Paris, who was beheaded.  I love Catholic art!  The beheaded saints are pictured holding their heads.  Kind of makes me wonder what the ceremony would be like. 

Where I was staying there were lots of immigrants from Africa.  They're presumed to be from "Morocco" but I rather doubt they all are.   Anywho, supposedly there is bigotry against the "Moroccans" but they have only themselves to blame.  If you invade a country and force the natives to learn your language you can hardly blame them for choosing your country to migrate to after their way of life has ceased to support them.  Their national motto, Liberté Egalité, Fraternité, is all over the place.  They should read it more often.

On the other hand, they were nice to me for the most part, despite my horrible pronunciation of French.

Now that I'm back, I'll do a few book reviews of the books I put on my Kindle for the trip.  Some interesting stuff on my kindle!


Infidel753 said...

November 1 is a "national holiday." And why would that be? Because it's All Saints Day.

That kind of thing is just cultural inertia. France is really much more secular than the US. Whenever the Catholic Church speaks out on law or social policy, there are public protests.

The Muslims (immigrants and descendants of immigrants) are unpopular largely because they're now the main source of gay-bashing, anti-Semitism, moves to teach creationism in schools, and other such religious evils which France had otherwise mostly outgrown. Assimilation is proceeding inexorably, though.

Welcome back.

Bud said...

Welcome back. Hope life has been treating you well.

LadyAtheist said...

Thanks, guys! I guess the best of both worlds is to have the day off on a religious holiday and not feel obligated to observe the religious stuff.

Plasma Engineer said...

August 15th is another surprising holiday in France. Yes - also religious - the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin. The down side of that holiday is that in some areas everything is closed - and I really mean everything! If you haven't bought food or fuel in advance you can have a tough day!