(the misadventures of an expatriate corporate dropout)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

stayin' alive, stayin' alive.

My second week in France included an invitation to a party. A “disco-themed” party, to be exact.

This party was staged at a firehouse in the countryside. My new friends Marjo and J-Y were in attendance. I called J-Y when I arrived at a nearby gas station, and he came to have me follow to the party.

It was after dark and in a few moments I was temporarily blinded by headlights in my eyes. Once adjusted, I viewed the driver and decided this was not J-Y. The driver had a cascade of blond curly locks and was driving a bright red VW beetle. J-Y, to my knowledge, drives a Clio.

Suddenly, the door flew open and the blonde emerged. In fact, it WAS J-Y in a huge blonde wig, a pink tunic and huge bell bottoms! Through the darkness, I saw his passenger had a similar wig, only bright red in color.

Laughing, Jean-Yves waved to me to follow, and off we went down a few dark twists and turns … arriving in the countryside at a brightly lit firehouse complete with spinning disco ball and loud disco music.

Several long wooden picnic tables were laden with a large selection of foods, including duck, salades, cheeses, bottles of wine, bottles of water and a big bowl of rum punch.

I alight from my camionette and make my way to the table, slightly intimidated. I am immediately presented to one of the women there, and quickly introductions continue. J-Y whisks off and I have the opportunity for a closer look at his companion. Big red wig, gold medallions, shirt unbuttoned to his navel … in short, hysterical! Christian was his name and he was immensely entertaining. No sooner are introductions slowing, I turn around and a leggy woman approaches. It is Marjo!!! her outfit consists of loud red spandex pants, a black pleated super-mini, a gold sequined tube top, platform sandals and her blonde hair tucked into pigtails. Her make-up is fantastic and she is laughing. I wished out loud for a camera and she exclaimed, “non!!” “Oui!”, I insisted, “for my blog!”

“NON!”, she reiterated, “Jamais!”

We shared some giggles, I accepted a glass of rum punch and sat down. I confess it wasn’t easy at first to acquaint myself with the French speaking folks. We did manage some small talk, but it took patience not available when folks are partying.

The girl with long platinum locks seated next to me. When she turned, I realized it was J-Y’s girlfriend, Caroline. Of the 25 or so people attending, at least 20 of them were in great costumes.

I am told that these parties occur about once a month, with different themes. There were people of all ages, children kicking a ball around, teens (Marjo’s daughter, for example) on up to people I would estimate in their 50s.

Everyone danced, including me after a few drinks. And on that topic, the drinks were plentiful!

In some ways it wasn’t much different than in the States. For example, when “Its Raining Men” came over the speakers, everyone there was on the dance floor, singing along.

No one over consumed alcohol to the point of not being in control. Everyone laughed, joked around, danced, ate, hugged, talked … basically an amazingly good time.

I arrived around 10:00 p.m. and it was 3:00 a.m. when I returned home.

The next day involved basically sleep. sleep. and more sleep. Interspersed with a giggle or 2 in remembering certain occurrences.

Like when Christian’s wig fell off and revealed the shortest haircut ever. Christian was a farmer. And danced his arse off.

Or the fellow in the dreadlocked wig who had fashioned a huge joint (fake) out of an 8x12 piece of paper rolled into a cone, filled with leaves and bits of red paper at the end to mimic it being lit. He wandered through the group, offering ‘hits’.

Or the gal in the biggest Afro I’ve ever seen. and hotpants and fishnets. Oo la la!

Everyone danced together, very little couples dancing. Most of the time there was a loose circle formed in the big room, with everyone dancing away with each other.

It was a lot of fun and I hope I can find a way to integrate myself into this circle hard-working, fun-loving people.

I was told the next party has a Science Fiction theme. Costume ideas, anyone?


Our Juicy Life said...

how cool...see, you have made friends already and Americans say the french are not friendly. I so disagree with that, every time we have gone everyone was so friendly and nice.

Colleen - where are you??? Kim needs science fiction ideas for the next party. I'm sure she'll come up with a great idea. I'm not good with costume parties. Although princess leah from Star Wars could be fun.

Randal Graves said...

You move to France and get hit with a disco party? Aren't you trying avoid crass, grotesque Americanism?

Sci-fi? Barbarella? Muah.

La Framéricaine said...

Split the definition of sci-fi and go as a Cone Head "We are from France." Under the circumstances it would be quite a funny send up of the original joke on SNL!

I'm delighted to hear that you are having so much fun mixed in with your very demanding labor.

If you ever get a TV, besides having to pay a TV tax, you will be able to catch up on all the French pop culture stars--J-Y in the blond wig was probably paying homage to Claude François!!! I love to watch "Vivement Dimanche" on TV5 and see all of the old pop culture icons honored. It's a riot!

Drinking can be fun when done in moderation and sleep is the best thing since sliced bread.

Bonne continuation!

Je ne regrette rien said...

ojl-Marjo et al have been key to my experience!

rg-barbarella!!! me likey!

laf-i wish you were avail for more frequent consultation!

Utah Savage said...

Yeah, party time. already the woman has friends and is partying. And Cone head sounds easy enough. I was so glad to see you at my place today. I have a new contributor, and you may have noticed with the Jane, you ignorant slut piece. Phillip has been my administrator from the beginning and will allow no crappy writing, or candy assed whining. And has been pushing me to be "myself" for a long time. So he has outed me. Peggy it will be. Gulp.

I'm excited about the prospects for you getting more computer time. I miss you greatly.

Anonymous said...

Testy poo by Refiner

James said...

Try again by Refiner

Je ne regrette rien said...

I see you there, Sir James. I KNEW you could do it!