The summer of 1998 seems just like yesterday as my brothers and I triumphantly witnessed Les Bleus advance to the FIFA World Cup Finals and gloriously defeat Brazil 3-0. France then became the 6th country to win the tournament on home soil! As I close my eyes, my eardrums still vibrate from all the racketing of pot, pans and car honks. As I open my eyes, I smile, remembering my one year old brother bouncing and kicking in his highchair. Furthermore, I remember the fans and Parisiennes quickly filling the streets with hugs and kisses as everyone was celebrating by the uproar of sudden relief, excitement, and joy!
It was Paris as I’ve never seen and experienced before. Through my eyes, Paris became more than just a cultural mecca flourished with art museums, unique architecture, and a land renowned to some of the most prestigious artists and fashion designers; Paris was now a country brought together by football, where age, race, sex, did not matter. Truly, I tell you, that summer in Paris was unforgettable as my brothers and I had quickly fell in love with Les Bleus and the game of football.
14 years later, through the ups and downs of Les Bleus, my brothers and I have faithfully continued to cheer on our team. Although, I admit that it definitely hasn’t been the same without my Zinedine Zidane (my ALL time favorite football player!!!) and Thierry Henry, my love and hope for this team has yet to cease. Despite my constant frustration over bad plays, Zidane’s red card, and Domenech’s unthoughtful decisions, I still will cheer.
May it be the FIFA World Cup, Euro Cup, or Olympics, we’ll always be rooting for you! We’re Parisiennes at heart. ALLEZ LES BLEUS!!!
Watch France v. Sweden today! Who will you be cheering for?