In which we go to the opening of le marché de Noël and witness basically the best parade to ever parade.
It's possibly still a little premature, but I was using the opening of the Christmas market as a milestone. A fine-now-you-start-getting-festive milestone. Even as I write this I'm listening to Christmas songs (of which there was a disappointing lack at the markets, though for some reason they thought Sunny Afternoon by The Kinks was nice and seasonal. I don't even know if France really does Christmas songs? Maybe it's hymns or nowt here? That would be terribly sad if so.)
|drunk Christmas tree left in a corner by his tree friends, probably|
It was drizzling, and bloody freezing, but we were giggling like idiots the whole time we were there. Never more than during the parade though, which might be my favourite thing I've witnessed since arriving here. A heady mix of multiple Papas Noëls, the entire nativity cast, a man with a Christmas tree on his head and a brilliantly incongruous chicken, all dancing exuberantly at the feet of some truly quite terrifying enormous puppets. Really, any description of mine is bound to be inadequate. Luckily, I got the whole thing on video so I can relive the sheer joy of this procession again and again. (Along with, apparently, our entire commentary on the experience. You are welcome.)
We had vin chaud (a rather generous serving of it for a good price, which makes a nice change from the overpriced mulled wine at the markets at home but I suppose it's not surprising) and croziflette (the local version of tartiflette, made with crozets instead of potato) the cheesy loveliness of which very nearly sent me over the edge of happiness into unadulterated hysteria.
It's just so nice to have the lights on at last. Everything is better with fairy lights. In fact I think there could be more fairy lights around town, but then I always think there could be more fairy lights, in every situation, always.