Alors, I was invited last-minute by a friend from school to intend an election party for the U.S. elections. As a side note, the French are very interested in American politics and are often surprisingly, even intimidatingly well-informed. Moreover, not understanding the nuanced taboo in American culture--frequently, I have been asked personal political questions- with a political abruptness not existing in the US. Feeling a little under-the-weather I intended to watch a few results come in--call it a night--and wake up for the final results.
The rest is history (quite literally.) I ended up staying out all night (in French, une nuit blanche) hearing EVERY state's results (sans Florida) with expats and self-proclaimed "concerned" French people alike. This wasn't your typical house party, folks. A young American political organization of Paris organized the party at a swank Parisian night club not far from the Champs-Elyssées. With complementary champagne, chandeliers, tv-projection screens in all directions, and a well informed DJ alternating between house music and CNN "Wolf Blitzer Reports," (an impressive task to say the least)... I can think of no better way to celebrate democracy.
CLICK TO ENLARGE PHOTOS:
"Election Night in America" ...in France
cue: Michael Jackson, Kanye West, oh and Wolf Blitzer
please excuse my smart-phone photography!
Below are photos my new friend and talented photographer, William Lounsbury took of the evening (I was limited to cell-phone photos.) Click Here for a link to his website, and Here for his beautiful blog: William Lounsbury, a visual story teller. Check him out, I really appreciate him letting me use his photos from the event! Thanks, Will!
my candid cheers to democracy!
(easiest all nighter I've pulled since my last Biochem final)
A bit of our watch-crew (clearly in the early am)
Want to get the young vote out, America? Let young Americans watch the results roll in at 3 am, with house music intermittently muted to announce a state's results. The DJ did an excellent job letting us dance through the cable news time-fillers and hit us with both the hits, and the results. Did I mention they served breakfast croissants around 5am?!
And lastly, for the real patriots, some of us lasted well past the announcement of Obama's re-elction (at 5am I might add)! We decided to "crash" the more expensive (80eu/head) version of our party, hosted by the same organization, right off the Champs. Though, at 8am, the older crowd had indeed died down, we were able to watch the concession and acceptance speeches with a small group of fellow bloodshot-eyed but democracy-energized patriots from all over the world.
Democracy wins as we march the Champs-Elysées (taken at approximately 8am)! A bit bizarre walking with the party crashin' crew by Parisians heading to work, starting their mornings at a café, etc
For the countless things that don't go well with politics- I've found the exception: clubbing.
**As a Rotary Scholar, representing the disparate political opinions of the thousands of wonderful men and women of Rotary is impossible. That is not my intent in my time in France nor through this post. I hope, rather, to recount an amazing historical event and ex-pat experience of being 4,000+ miles removed from a major Presidential election in my home country. After all, my next move is DC!