A Parade on the Champs Elysees

Dear Reader,

The Champs Elysees was soo crowded, the entire street filled with drummers and dancers dressed in outrageously colorful costumes-- feathers, sparkles, glitter, gowns, lingerie. The theme seemed to embrace African culture and heritage in France and so many of the costumes resembled traditional African clothing. The drum beats performed by the numerous band groups were infectious, convincing the whole crowd of spectators to flow with the rhythm, swaying and dancing and keeping to the beat. I walked along the Champs Elysees, pausing here and there to catch a glimpse of the different dance and drum groups. It was so strange to see the main highway so empty-- no cars or traffic or pedestrian crossings-- just group after group in costume, performing. The sky was blue and the sun was scorching and so it was the perfect summer day for a parade and ice cream or crepes. I met my friend at the Tuilleries after the parade and we went to the carnival that was taking place there, amidst the crowd fron the carnival and the general crowd that always seems to be about Paris. We went on a swing ride, enabling us to catch a glimpse of Paris from the rooftops, the warm, summer breeze engulfing us. It was sooo much fun. We could see the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower and all of the other confusion occuring below us. Before we knew it, night was already approaching and we decided to go to a brasserie and order a drink, later going to the Banana Cafe in the Chatalet-les Halles area as well. This would be my last week in Paris and I felt nostalgic already. I could not believe that six weeks had gone by so quickly-- my time in Paris was quickly dissapearing and I did not want it to end. I am not ready to go home yet. At around midnight we made the spontaneous decision to go back to the Champs Elysees and spend the night at Queen, a night club located just along the main road. The music was wonderful, a good mix of french techno music and popular pop songs by Rihanna and Britney Spears. We left the club at around five and had breakfast at a Pomme de Pain just a few stores away from the club-- it was still dark outside but it slowly got lighter as we ate, the sun gradually rising. I will miss these nights. I will miss ordering drinks as I wont be able to do this once I am home again.

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