Project Amour Eric and Chandra's Journey to Get Married in Paris


Traditions de Mariage Francais

French Wedding Traditions

While in France do as the Frenchmen. Once Eric and I had determined that Paris would be the site for our wedding I began to research the traditions of a typical wedding in France. Many of the traditions in the US today are adaptations of what the French have been doing for centuries. Below is a listing of traditions not commonly seen in the US. Each of them will be a part of our french-style wedding in April.

Ritual Bath: This bath symbolizes the purification of the bride, ridding her of all evil as well as memories of any previous boyfriends

Coco Chanel Bath at The Ritz Paris

White Ribbons: On the day of the wedding the entrance to the church is blocked with white ribbons. The bride cuts the ribbon and she with her groom and guests enter the church. The ribbons are symbolic obstacles the couple will overcome together.
Order of Entry: Following one or more musicians the bride makes her way to the door of the church where she awaits her groom. They take hands and enter the chruch together signifying the beginning of their lives together.
Bridal Path: Laurel Leaves are placed down the path outside the church for the couple to walk over after the wedding

Coup de Mariage

Toasting: The couple toasts one another with a two-handled cup. This particular cup is then passed down from one generation to another. Known as coup de mariage, this tradition is one of the oldest traditions still in practice today.

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Chandra repondre Pomerol

Chandra meet Pomerol

Mont Moulin 2006 Pomerol

While visiting Paris in October I had the pleasure of experiencing a French Wine Tasting. My wedding planner and I had discussed my dream to find the perfect French wine to serve at my wedding party back in Raleigh. We talked about the types of wine I prefer and we were off to find just the right one. In talking with a very knowlegeable Sommelier I was introduced to a new wine. The wine is called Pomerol.

Pomerol is a fantastic wine grown in the ancient and excellent, in terms of wine making, scenery and pedigree, Bordeaux region of France. Bordeaux is located in the South West of France close to the coast and the premier wine trading port of Bordeaux. Bordeaux is the largest 'good vintage' district in the world. Pomerol is one of the best of the red wine 'appellations' (wine growing areas) within the Bordeaux district.

Pomerol lies about 25 miles to the east of Bordeaux. Along the banks of the beautiful Dordogne River. The area is practically exclusively given over to wine production. There is no real village center in Pomerol just scattered Chateauxs and vineyards.  Chateau's are the term used for vineyards in Bordeaux and each chateau can produce between 10 to 1000 barrels of wine. These Chateaus are not always large houses, some of them, particularly in the Pomerol area are just everyday houses but it is the name given to the produce of an individual vineyard producing wine in the area. Bordeaux wines are not usually ready to drink for at least two years after the wine has been bottled, and sometimes they are not ready for twenty years.

We were presented with a bottle of Moulin la Gravière, Mont Moulin, 2006 LaLande de Pomerol. We were instructed to give it a few moments to breathe and then take a nice sip. WOW – what a wonderful wine.  It is rich and gentle, deep red in color, but not too acidic. It also did not have alot of tannin. It is just one of the nicest red wines I have ever had the pleasure of drinking.

So, we spent a couple of hours sipping wine, eating cheese, crackers, salmon and foie gras and then I purchased 18 bottles to share with my family and friends. Yes, I safely flew across the Atlantic with 18 bottles of some of the best Bordeaux has to offer, passed US customs and now the bottles sit in wait for our magnificent party. I love that I was able to bring a real taste of France back to Raleigh to share with those I love the most!

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Hemingway et Paris

Hemingway and Paris

Anyone who plans to go to Paris, and wants to know more about the city other than the Champs Elysees and the Eiffel Tower, might do well to read Ernest Hemingway's A Moveable Feast.

It's a marvelous book that gives a glimpse of what Paris was like in the 1920's. It was the time of the Lost Generation when writers, painters, musicians and composers went to Paris to work and make names for themselves. Hemingway's first novel, The Sun Also Rises, was about Paris.

Paris saw a lot of Hemingway immediately after World War II. He often came for the fall steeplechase meets at Auteuil, the emerald race track in the heart of Bois de Boulogne that he so enjoyed.

In Auteil, he would convene with his friends in the Little Bar of the Ritz every race day at noon and while the bartender made Bloody Marys, they would study the race forms and make their selections.

Hemingway enjoyed his lunches at the Course Restaurant, which is still functioning. He wrote about the meals between races: Belon Oysters, omelette with ham and fine herbs, cooked endives, Pont l'Eveque cheese and cold Sancerre wine.

If you go up to Montmartre Hill to Place de Tertre, you will find Hemingway's first Paris haunt. At one corner of the square, where Rue Norvins starts, was the Au Cliron des Chausseurs, where he often ate when he had money. He was then working for the Kansas City Star, and getting between US$11 and $21 for each article he wrote.

If you want to see the neighbourhood where Hemlngway first lived, go to Rue Notre-Dame-des-Champs, where he rented a room over a sawmill. Every day his rejected manuscripts would come back through the slot in the door of the bare room.

Hemingway's writings give us a truly nostalgic account of life in Paris. In all of his works, life centres around cafe life, drinking and dining. If there were bull fights and big game hunting in Paris, those would have been included, and Hemingway's Paris would have been complete.

Source:  Harold Stephens

To Read More about Hemingway and Paris click here

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