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The Banner that officially tells you that this is the beginning of the parade! C'est petite!

At the start of winter vacation for the kiddos, we finally caught a parade in Paris: Carnaval de Paris, which has been celebrated since the Renaissance and is equivalent to the Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans or Rio de Janeiro. We waited a long time for its arrival into our neighbourhood and were about to go home at 18h00 when we finally saw the police cars clearing the way. It had started in the 20e arrondissement at 14h00 on a Sunday afternoon.

We waited for an hour just outside Metro station "Temple" where a crowd gathered to listen to a drumming band. But no sign of the parade coming around Place de la République (=Lady statue).

We saw a cow leading the parade [a reference to the parade also named “Promenade du Boeuf Gras” (=Fat Cow Parade) back in its history]. We saw a mix of brightly-coloured costumes from different countries, a few, weird, scary-looking dudes, and a lot of marching bands.

Isn't that pretty when the ladies spin? But the bowler hats didn't work for me.

Some of these ladies didn't wear much but I suppose walking and dancing for 5 hours should warm them up a little.

I have no idea of what signficance this giant soft ball had, but children from all over wanted to push it badly.

We only stayed for a half hour because my kids were hungry and cold so we missed most of the parade. But you have to give credit to those parade participants who have to walk several miles slowly (without washroom breaks), rain or shine, and look like they’re having fun. They only had one more hour to go before ending near l’Hotel de Ville… Parades are great for educating children about cultural history. Vivre la France!

We moved further down the road to be closer to home before the parade arrived. For some reason, I looked up -- and saw her. I've walked by this angel so many times. Don't you just love that about Paris?! There is always something new to see.