Saturday, July 17, 2010

Consider my fire lit

Gentle readers, my apologies for the delay in reply - it was partly caused by attending social events every single day this week and partly by my internet connection being crappy in the rare moments when I was actually home.  But never mind all that - I know you're tuning in to hear about the Firemen's Ball, so without further ado, let's get to it.

First of all, this event is hugely popular, as you might well imagine.  I got there with my friend The Redhead (known in previous posts as Miss M, but I am running out of initials for people so it's time for me to come up with proper nicknames instead) at about 10pm, and we had been in line for nearly an hour by the time I took this photo.  It's a little bit hard to see, but all those people along the right hand side of the street, as far as the eye can see?  That was the line behind us to get in.  And from where we were, there was still another block and a half of line-up ahead of us, but that was fine - it was a beautiful night and we were chatting to the people around us, so it didn't actually seem like that much of a wait.

And once we got in?  Oh. My. God.  First of all, the fire station was enormous - they park the trucks out in the street and I have no idea what they do with all the equipment (as I understand it, every firehouse in Paris has a party that night, so if you have an emergency on the 13th of July, I'm guessing you're pretty much just going to die.  Which is an even better reason to go to the party - if you have a medical emergency you're already with the firemen and paramedics, it's the safest place to be!) Entrance was by donation, so you could just pay whatever you wanted, and I was happy to donate because I am a huge fan of firefighters (and no, it's not just because they often appear in my fantasies, give me some credit) because they do a very difficult but essential job.  They must have raked in an absolute fortune, because they were clever enough to post a particularly hot fireman by the donation box and really, who wants to look like a cheapskate in front of the hot fireman???

So, as I said, the place was enormous and I found out later that we barely saw half of it, but that doesn't surprise me because it was utter chaos - what a party!  This photo is just one of the many dancefloors, this one was outside in a courtyard but you can't really get the scale of it from the photo, unfortunately.  Firemen (in uniform, no less, those boys are no fools) were everywhere - working security, working as bartenders, working as snack vendors, cleaning up, and generally keeping everything running smoothly.  The crowd went a little something like this:  single girls trying to pick up the firemen, straight men trying to pick up the single girls and gay men trying to pick up each other.  A little something for everyone, all in one party - genius! 

My little something came in the form of a tall, sizzling hot Italian named Lorenzo - after we had been dancing for a while, he dumped his glass of champagne down my front so that he could lick it off my neck and cleavage. And that's the kind of party it was - absolute carnage.  Unfortunately, we ended up losing each other in the crowd and when I caught up with The Redhead, she wasn't really in any condition to be left alone.  So I spent the rest of the party looking after her (more fun than it sounds, she's a very happy drunk) and never got a chance to find Lorenzo again, which is a damn shame, but The Redhead has promised to find me another sizzling hot Italian to make it up to me and I believe she'll do it. 

So, if you happen to be in Paris next year on 13 July and you're looking for some awesome fun, go to the Firemen's Ball.  Ladies, let me offer you these helpful tips: bring lots of cash (bars inside are cash only), bring something to drink while you wait in the line, wear flats (you will wait in line for a long time and then you will be walking on cobblestones inside), wear jeans (best thing at such a rowdy party) and wear a top that you don't mind someone spilling champagne on (see above for why!).  And look for me there, because it is definitely on my social calendar for next year already...

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