Day 197: Embrace the Holidays.

Don't hate me for reporting this but now that Thanksgiving is over, the Christmas season is officially here. Wow, where did this year go? And how am I going to survive this holiday season being so broke?! Chaque choses en son temps...

Before heading to our work T-gives dinner yesterday I went to the gym to burn some pre-feast calories. I made the mistake of telling Antoine, my inconveniently attractive aerobics instructor that it was Thanksgiving and explained that I would be stuffing my face this weekend. He took into account what I had said and severely kicked not only my ass but the rest of the students in a double class of Body Attack and Taille/Abdos/Fessiers.

In my entire French fitness career, I have never heard any of the other students groan from the pain except for yesterday where the complaints were a-pourin'. "C'est pas possible!", "C'est pas vrai!", "C'est horrible!", "Aye! Ca fait mal, putain!", "C'est méphistopholique!" It's Mephistopheles-esque? It's evil? Ok, that one was pushing it. It hurt but not like a cone biopsy in the caverns of hell hurt. When we got up from our 500th leg lift that was made excruciatingly more difficult with an elastic band around our ankles for resistance, the class wasn't just annoyed but they were pretty pissed. "It's not Thanksgiving for us!" one woman shouted. "Why should we have to suffer!? We're not American!" another woman added in agreement. Dressed brazenly American in an old Minnesota Twins t-shirt and embarrassing Victoria's Secret yoga pants that read 'Pink' on the butt, I kept my eyes glued to the floor because I had a felt the heat of everyone's eyes on me. They really weren't joking, they were pissed. 

At the end of the class, as everyone was putting their mats and weights back, Antoine commented that while the class did a good job, it wasn't exceptional and that he would be expecting more work from our bodies than our mouths next week. He wished me a Bon Appétit and through the mirror, I caught a woman roll her eyes. My uncomfortable encounters with Antoine never cease to exist and now the other students were picking up on it.

Today is Black Friday, Aurel point-blankly asked me if people were going to die today in America. I told that I hoped not but if the sales were good enough that it might be a possibility. He was horrified by my answer and I thought it would be best to shed light on why fatalities have occurred over Christmas sales in the past. I explained that the stores will mark select quantities of items on sale which creates a sense of urgency or chaos if you will. For example, I remember one year only 100 Sex and the City: The Movie DVDs were marked on sale for $9.99 which reeked havoc at Best Buy because everyone just had to get their hands on the blockbuster smash turned perfect stocking stuffer but wanted nothing to do with it at its normally marked price of $19.99. He was still horrified. I love shocking the French.

To celebrate Black Friday here in Paris, I'm going to get buzzed on vin chaud sold at the Christmas vendors along the Champs-Elysées and walk down Avenue Montaigne and daydream about beautiful things that I can't buy. At least I'll be pompette on cheap, sugary hot wine. The trick is to go to with an empty Starbucks cup and pay an extra euro and bat your eyelashes to have it filled up or buy two and dump it in the cup yourself. If nothing, I'm resourceful. Now that the holidays have officially started, I refuse to skip my holiday songs on my iPod which means Mariah, The Waitresses, Wham! and of course, Elvis will be ready to rock around my mini fake Christmas tree with me!

To my all of you in The States, stay home and go shopping next week and my friends in Paris bon week-end!

Also, thank you all for your warm Thanksgiving wishes!


  1. I've been rocking out to Charlie Brown's Christmas and Buble's latest since Thursday, love the holiday season!

  2. What a great idea! I'm going to take a page from your book and use my Starbucks cup for the vin chaud at the Christmas market. Can you come along and bat your eyelashes for me? ;-)

  3. I went off to explore the Christmas market on Saturday - full of tourists. Got my vin chaud, didn't think about bringing a Starbucks cup!

  4. PS thanks for linking my blog up!

  5. Walking around Aix buzzed on vin chaud was 'aight. Walking around creepy Arles buzzed on sangria was awesome.. (which included sneaking into les arènes).

    It may be a while for photos... still didn't get to Barcelona yet!

  6. @Chickster - Oh Charlie Brown! Forgot about that gems! Thanks chickadee! ; )

    @MK - Yeah! Let's have a vin chaud date this week! Let me know if you're up to it!

    @Victoria - No prob, it's my pleasure! And thank you in return! I <3 the blogger community! : )

    @Dana - Whoa, why was Arles creepy? I love creepy little village stories. Was it desolate? And you though the vin chaud was just 'aight'...aww!! Come on!! I think it's the best.thing.EVER. : P !!

  7. Arles is a poor town. It's not as creepy as Lunel, and we managed to find a bar with live music. But, there's no life in the city center. Good food though! In Aix, food (and the xmas market) sucks. No, the vin chaud was good, but I mean it wasn't entertaining like walking around creepy Arles drunk. I had shopping to do in Aix, and was alone, so I had to concentrate.

    Xmas market in Grenoble is great this year!!! So much food.. tartiflette, diots au vin blanc, raclette, soups, cheese, chocalate, vin chaud AND green chaud! Blow Aix away! Never seen anything like it. And usually the people serving the food are hot young men.

  8. And I heart vin chaud. The xmas market is a 3 min walk from where I live (dangerous) so I may get me one now...

    Here in Grenoble there are not only numerous "vin chaud" stands, but there's also "green chaud".....