Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Happy Bastille Day!

Happy Bastille Day to all who feel oppressed... although the storming of the Bastille was more important as a rallying point and symbolic act of rebellion than a practical act of defiance- apparently there were only 7 prisoners of lesser importance IN the Bastille, on the day.

my granddad is the handsome standing gent

I mention this because of two connections- the first is the Belgian one:  During the first World War, Liège, in Belgium, surprised the German invading army by  putting up a fight.  Enough of a fight to give France (and their British allies) enough time to regroup and realign its defenses on the Marne River.

It may be that it didn't really delay the Germans at all, but it was all about morale at the time, and the two day delay gave the defenders a shot in the arm.

The French president at the end of the first World War, bestowed the légion d'honneur on the city, for their bravery.

Therefore Belgians celebrate Bastille Day too.

My grandfather fought in the first world war as a soldier.  In the second world war, he fought as a resistance fighter.

The second reason to celebrate Bastille Day is our good friend from Athens is arriving in Corfu for a two week holiday with his family.  We will be spending time with them and hopefully showing off our beautiful island. (They're the ones staying at the beautiful Eva Palace Hotel!)

So "Cheers" to all and I'll raise a glass of wine to you on this holiday of some special meaning- to me anyway.


  1. What a handsome chap your grandad was...I love these old photos!

  2. Thank you dear Ayak!

    Yes, he was a good looking guy, and he had a great sense of humor and vitality.

    I am so lucky to have a few precious photo's (or at least the copies of the photos!) My cousin has the bulk of the albums, but I have scanned quite a few into my computer - AND made back up copies of them!

    (i gave a dvd copy to each my sons for a Christmas present a few years ago.)

  3. hello! i came across your blog today and found it fascinating --- also noticed we have some common interests -- i am a fellow cancerian (happy birthday btw!) and archaeologist who has lived in greece as well and travels frequently to ithaki, just to the south of corfu.

    lucky you to live in such a beautiful place! i look forward to exploring your blog more (will sign up to follow) and enjoying greece vicariously until my next trip!

    p.s. if you have a moment to stop by and visit my blog i would love it -- i write about my travels in greece and also a memoir of my work on ithaki over 25 years.

    thanks and hope to meet you soon!


  4. Welcome Amanda! Thank you for visiting. I did look at your blog and I will be exploring further.

    This is a fairly busy time for all of us who live in Paradise as we are beset with visitors... the winter is the time we all cocoon in with our favorite backlog of reading, so that's when I'll do my big catch-up!

    Happy birthday back to you, and many many more to follow!

  5. thanks so much for visiting my blog!! i checked out the ley lines website you sent and never knew about those that ran through corfu - very interesting!!

    i can imagine your summer is full with so many folks wanting to visit you in paradise, as you say!! many thanks for taking the time to visit me and i'm so glad we've connected -- will look forward to reading much more of your lovely blog about life on corfu!


    (p.s. in the event you have a moment, i just posted an excerpt from my ongoing memoir about ithaka......wondering if you've ever been?)

  6. Reminds me of the values of liberty, equality and fraternity! Bastille Day, I didn't remember it this year, but thanks for reminding me!

  7. I love those old photos! I have one from my family dating back to 1883 showing my great grandparents and their offspring, the youngest my grandfather as a baby.

    Have fun with your friend and I hope you're not suffering through another heatwave!

  8. i just posted a "how i spent my Greek friends summer vacation" i'm pretty sure it's going to take me the rest of the month to recover. (maybe longer for my liver!) and yes. we ARE having another heatwave. but it's bearable.

    thanks for commenting considering i haven't written anything for over two weeks!

    really sorry about that.



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