So, in addition to having been the start of the Persian New Year and the start of spring, yesterday was also Macaron Day. No wonder it was such a happy and beautiful day for me! You could say it was a trifecta of holidays, especially for a Persian Francophile who happens to be a spring baby- like moi.
Being the start of my new year, yesterday was a big, beautiful and super busy day in my house. Calls had to be made to destinations far and near to wish friends and family a happy year ahead. This being the modern age, I also sat before my laptop, ready to Skype with those around the world on Norooz. This, after I made sure I looked sufficiently presentable for video chatting. Hair, make up, wardrobe—it takes work to be ready to show up on people’s computers, you know!
Then, there was the lighting on the candles and the taking in the beauty of my Haftseen spread. Then came the one-person celebrating (yes, I danced, snapped, clapped to music from my internet Persian radio all by myself in my apartment).
Once that was done, the hard work began. There was special shopping to be done for our traditional New Year’s dinner, which consists of herbed Basmati rice, grilled fish and an herb omelet called Koukou. Delish, but lots of work, especially when the chef is as rusty in Persian cooking as I am. There was shopping, prepping, planning, cutting, mixing and chopping (I’m lucky, my husband is the human chopping machine).
By the time dinner was made and served, dishes cleaned and mint tea made to cap my evening, I was too exhausted to break out the macarons I had especially bought for Macaron Day. I’m ashamed to say this Francophile went to bed without probably exercising joie de vivre in the form of enjoying her macarons as dessert.
But, today’s a new day full of possibilities and opportunities to celebrate and enjoy. So this morning, I began my day with the heavenly combination of French press coffee and my beautiful macarons. And, as I sat here enjoying the scene (read, taking photos for my blog, and Facebook and Instgram), I realized that this is how it was supposed to be all along. This is how I was supposed to celebrate.
Let me see if I can explain it.
Being a dedicated Francophile, I pride myself in starting each day by trying to be as “French” as possible: to take my time to enjoy everything instead of running and rushing constantly, and to live in the moment and taking joy in the small things instead of striving for constant efficiency and mastering the terrible idea of multitasking. My calendar, my journal and my bedside table are filled with little notes reminding me to “be French”.
Yesterday was a mad dash of activities and the definition of multitasking. It needed it. But, it was also a beautiful tapestry of excitement, joy and tradition. It was me enjoying my life, honoring my heritage and taking in every moment as it came. It was, in other words, an homage to the very idea of joie de vivre. It may have been unconventional, and not too terribly French, but it was everything the French have given my French loving heart: live in the moment, take time to enjoy life and stay connected to the culture and traditions that give me roots. And what could be more French than that?
Joie de vivre comes in all shapes, sizes and manners and it can be experienced whenever and wherever you are and whatever you’re doing. That’s what matters.
Happy belated Macaron Day!