Bastille Day, 2010, Paris and a Crepe Recipe

Two re-posts from Paris, 2010 in honor of Bastille Day, plus a link to Isabella's crepe recipe from her years in French school here in SF.

Bastille Day Eve, 2010

Bastille day is tomorrow. This city knows how to celebrate their independence.

Two big events were going on, just in the Bastille/Marais neighborhood we are staying in.

First, there was the Bal de Pompier (fireman just does not have the same ring to it as pompier). We saw everyone lining up and much later in the evening, we looked in at a very happening party with a disco ball and crazy lights.  Seemed fun, and I believe it’s a fundraiser of some sort.

More importantly, and where we ended up, was the Concert for Diversity in the Place de la Bastille. Granted, most of the music was not up our alley, but the event was fun nonetheless.

We’ve watched quite a bit of MTV here (can’t understand most of what’s going on, but found some good videos). Ben l’Oncle Soul and Shi’m both played at the concert. We had seen their videos and liked them, so it was a nice surprise to see them live.

The crowd was really well behaved, there was no pushing, no jockeying for position, no negativity. The craziest part was that, apparently, it’s ok to drink anywhere. There were tons of people with open bottles of wine wandering around, chatting with the cops.  No one was super drunk, and overall, everyone was enjoying themselves.

We left around 9:30 (when that picture was taken, still light out) and made our way back home to watch the last hour of it on TV.

A really nice start to the holiday.

Originally posted here.

 Bastille Day, 2010, Paris, France

Not only did we go to the Champs-Elysses for the Bastille Day Parade, but we also got to see some of it right down the block from our apartment on the Rue du Rivoli.

We went up to the parade route, with me vaguely aware of the fact that it was probably going to be pandemonium.

Yes, I was right.

The biggest issue we had was our height, or lack there of. I had forgotten how hard it is in huge crowds and events it is for me to see, let alone my little lady. We did our best.

The planes overhead were awesome, got some video of them, too. We heard the music of the marching bands, and saw the members of the band coming off the parade route.

And, we did manage to see a bunch of horses and their regiment dressed up ready to go. As they were preparing, the skies opened up and there was a huge downpour.

At this point, we were right near the Franklin Roosevelt Metro stop, so we ran inside. Our size here was an asset, since we had our tickets and could wiggle our way in between the crowds.

Once back in our neighborhood, we noticed the military out in the street and that the big thoroughfare was shut to traffic. As we walked around, we started seeing crowds gathering on the corners. It occurred to us that the parade was coming down our way.

And, so it did. We saw many tanks filled with crisply outfitted military men (only one or two women in the bunch). They were not slowly going down the route. No, they were booking down the road towards the Bastille where presumably parade ended. We have video of this, too, which I will try to post soon.

The skies opened up again somewhere around when the first tank appeared. We stayed put with a completely unobstructed view of the parade. But, eventually, we had seen enough and it sure felt like we were being pelted with hail, so we went home to have a crepe and dry off.

Originally posted here.

Crepes a la Isabella

originally published in

this post,


You will need a flatish-round, nonsticl pan, or better yet, a nonstick crepe pan.


  • 1 cup flour (you can substitute Gluten-Free Pantry Flour mix here)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2cup water
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • pinch of salt


  1. Mix all ingredients well in a food processor or blender until smooth.
  2. Let the batter stand for 30 minutes, undisturbed.
  3. Heat the non-stick crepe pan over medium heat.
  4. Spray a light coating of vegetable oil on pan.
  5. Pour batter slowly into center of pan. Then, quickly pick up pan and twist the handle to move batter around into a thin coating.
  6. Leave undisturbed on medium heat for 3 minutes, until edges begin to curl a little.
  • Flip the crepe over. Cook another 2 minutes and flip onto a plate.
  • Cover finished crepes with a clean kitchen towel while making the others.
  • Serve immediately with Nutella or sugar rolled inside.
  • If storing, simply make a stack of crepes and wrap in plastic wrap.

Adapted from The Joy of Coking