06 July 2006

Excessive Celebration

Well, if you follow World Cup soccer at all, you can probably guess that we were up late last night! France beat Portugal 1-0 to advance to the championship game for the second time in team history. Needless to say, there was a lot of celebrating in the streets last night -- 2.5 hours solid of car-horn honking, to be more precise. The picture to the left (taken from the FIFA/Yahoo page) is on the Champs-Elysées after the game. At the end of this post, I've added a picture of what the same street looked like *during* the game, while everyone was glued to TV sets around the city! What a difference a game makes...

Our greatest form of entertainment ended up being a drunken guy wearing a blue clown wig ... and little else. He was shirtless, and his shorts were so baggy that we could pretty much see three quarters of his boxer briefs as he wandered through the middle of Général Leclerc. Fortunately, he was a happy drunk, so he was hugging everyone else who either happened to wander into the street or lean far enough out of their cars. I was also amazed at the sheer number of serious fireworks that got set off in the middle of the street. Crazy stuff! (And a little scary ... somehow, I don't think it's a fantastic idea to set off a bunch of noisemaking firecrackers in between cars sitting in traffic.)

Perhaps the more annoying occurrence was that the celebrations spilled into today. When I took Didge out this morning, I watched a VERY weary looking couple drive by on a motorcycle: the driver was still honking the French's Morse Code cheer (.. ... .... ..), albeit slowly, and the woman on the back weakly held up the French flag-turned-cape in the breeze. They literally looked like they had been driving around all night long celebrating, as if they had vowed to do this if France advanced to the final game.

Sometime this afternoon, there was also a large group of teenaged kids hanging out at Porte d'Orleans, cheering "Allez allez bleus!" over ... and over ... and over again. This, of course, prompted more of the Morse Code car-horn honking. Colin and I were trying to nap, since we had been kept up until 3 am-ish by all of the noises from the previous night, and then took Rachel's luggage to the airport at 10 am-ish this morning. At some point, I remember saying rather loudly, "Hey, you won LAST NIGHT! Get over it, already!"

Seriously, folks, you've got to save some energy for Sunday. I know there isn't a penalty in soccer for excessive celebrating, but I'm beginning to think that there should be a fan penalty! Thank goodness I don't have to get up and go to a job here.

Of course, there's always Sunday. We're headed to the stadium to watch the game on big screen again. Here's hoping that they upset Italy and win it all! (I have faith, anyway!)


At 6/7/06 23:48, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What an amazing time to be in Paris! I think, though, that I'm happy we managed to be away from the city for each of the recent games -- I need my sleep!

You listed the 10 things you miss about the US in a recent blog. The things I'm most grateful for now that we're back are air conditioning and easy (and cheap) access to Coke and Pepsi. I know that's petty, but that's what I notice most.

Thanks for hosting us for a wonderful trip!

SD Mom


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