French Language Blog

Paris-Plages: When The Beach Comes to Paris! Posted by on Jul 21, 2011 in Vocabulary

If you spent the past two weeks or so in Paris, you’ll know that le temps (the weather) did not exactly “spoil” the Parisians—Together with the millions of tourists who flocked into France to visit the French capital!

But actually, since yesterday, the Paris weather has decided to take it easy for a bit. Much to the delight of the fans who came to see le lancement (the launching) of this year’s Paris-Plages edition: La dixième (the tenth), to be precise!

What is Paris-Plages?

It’s three kilometers of transformed quays, equipped with almost 2000 transats (beach chairs) and other pieces of furniture, and boast some 15 restaurants and buvettes (refreshment areas.)

It’s true, the Paris Beach fans are not as numerous as the previous years. Instead of les maillots de bains (the swimsuits) and les parasols (beach umbrellas), you could mostly see the odd spectacle of les parapluies (rain umbrellas) covering les quais (the quays) of the Seine River!

In such climatic conditions, people tend to discover another face of Paris-Plages, while secretly hoping that a better weather is just around the corner—very soon de préférence !

En attendant (in the meantime), the amateurs of this Summery rendez-vous can find solace in the numerous activités graciously offered to them for the occasion.

Some like doing un peu de vélo, others do their footing du matin or du soir. The younger ones, however, enjoy giving free reign to their “constructive” power of imagination, by building “original” châteaux de sable (sandcastles.)

La nouveau trait (the new feature) of this year’s Paris-Plages is the participation of Disneyland Paris. The French subsidiary of Disney has in fact taken the construction of les châteaux de sable to a whole new level, by reproducing the famous castle of la Belle au bois dormant (Sleeping Beauty)—Sept mètres de haut (seven meters high)!

Seven talented sculpteurs (sculptors) hailing from la France, l’Italie, and la Russie, were assigned this task, which they must complete within a delay of five days.

The chef d’équipe (head of the team) admitted that la pluie (the rain) was a major challenge, and caused the constructors a few headaches, but he remains confident about the success of the project.

The Paris-Plages fun will last an entire month: Until le 21 août (the 21st of August)!

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