The greater the event, the better one will memorize. It’s easy to remember what I had for lunch yesterday (chicken salad), September 14th. I would have to think twice about what I had the day before. No way possible to recall what I had 2 months ago on July 14th. Meaningless details your memory overwrites with more important things.
So how can it possibly be that a whole country knows exactly what went on 228 years ago in Paris, July 14th 1789?
As I said: the greater the event, the better one will memorize.
The fall of the Bastille. During the midmorning of July 14th 1789, parisians of the third estate took their chances and stormed the notorious „Bastille“ to get ahold of the 30.000 pounds of gunpowder that were hidden inside. As early as 5:00 PM the same day, they had already taken the fortress. From that moment on, french peasants were willing to lay down their lives and fight for liberty and civil rights for the french people.
The day, the french revolution began. Hour of birth: „Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité“.
It’s been exactly two times in my life that I heard from this date:
First time was in school. 8th grade, history class on a monday, late afternoon. Negative memory.
The second time: invitation by „Grey Goose Vodka“ to celebrate the „Bastille Day“ with summer cocktails on the rooftop of SoHo House Berlin. Positive memory!
Optimistic as we are, we’ll stick to the second, positive one!
I hope I don’t disappoint you guys when revealing that the „fall of the Bastille“ of 2017 in Berlin was quite a bit different as back then in Paris.
Rather than having the event take place in an 200 year old fortress that served as a prison, the event was located in the well known SoHo House.
The furious parisian people swopped with invited guests of the house and a bunch of bloggers (including me).
Even though it wasn’t gunpowder and amunition that lured us, the „bait“ or motivation to conquer the rooftop of SoHo House was a far more peaceful equivalent:
the spirit „Grey Goose Vodka“, a bar filled with ingredients for signature cocktails such as „Le Grand Fizz“, as well as all kinds of French delicacies.
Back in the days, it was the commander of the troops in paris, Baron de Besenval, who gave order to transfer their supply of gunpowder into the Bastille.
Centuries later, it is no other than the renowned barkeeper and „Atelier of Taste“-Member „Nouri“ (Noureddine Elmoussaoui) being responsible for just the right mix of sweet & sour, lemonade & fizz.
I unfortunately can’t draw any further analogies since neither have prisoners been released (merely 4 counterfeiters, 2 mental patients and 1 exiled earl), nor has the SoHo House been demolished in the course of the evening.
Even though the 14th of July 1789 has been completely different than its 2017 sibling, it still reflected all principles the french fought for in the revolution:
the rooftop gave us a feeling of freedom, we celebrated the national day as equals and ended the evening in fraternity.
Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité.
Post Scriptum: Why the small amount of pictures? The reason why is, that the house rules of the SoHo House hold a total ban of mobile devices & cameras on the rooftop. Members privacy has the highest priority, which is why we only had the permission to take pictures for a short period. Requirement: no other person than yourself can be seen on the picture.
Even though this was a disadvantage for me & you, this is a rule one should appreciate.