This blog was written by our student Holly Doran! Merci Holly!
Le Quatorze Juillet
Exploding fireworks, colorful lights, and music so loud that you can feel it in your chest. And dancing, you can’t forget the dancing. These are just
some of the memorable parts of spending July 14th in France. Every year, on July 14th, the French celebrate “Quatorze Juillet,” a
holiday similar to Fourth of July in the US. This day marks the storming of the Bastille Prison and the start of the French Revolution. Quatorze Juillet is one
of the largest holidays in France, and I was lucky enough to be here with CIEE Toulouse to celebrate!
Most people celebrate the holiday on the evening of the 14th, but my host family celebrated the evening before. When my host sister and I came
home to St. Sulpice from our classes in Toulouse, we were greeted with a variety of fruits, salads, and bread for dinner prepared by our host mom.
Earlier in the day, our host mom had led the military and veterans parade in the town!
At night is when the festivities really began. Our host family, and some other CIEE students in the area, met up in the centre ville. French music was
playing and we were all encouraged to get out on the dance floor. The French were much better dancers than us, but we did not let that stop us from
having fun. At one point, the DJ even played the YMCA, and we danced our little American hearts out. The dance floor was surrounded by vendors selling
crepes and other French delicacies. Around 11pm, everyone gathered to watch a fantastic firework display over the river.
We danced until 12 am, even though the party did not stop until 2! I fell asleep that night to the sound of music and laughter from outside my
window. The celebration of Quatorze Juillet will forever be one of my favorite memories of my time abroad with CIEE in Toulouse.