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Happy Dragon New Year!


As we've mentioned before, Paris Play loves a parade.

So does Paris.



This week's parade, on a bone-chilling zero degree Sunday, was in honor of Chinese New Year, in one of Paris' two Chinatowns, the one in the thirteenth arrondissement. (The other is in the tenth, in Belleville.)

It had the requisite din of firecrackers and drums, brightly colored lions (one on a cell phone--look close) and dragons, precision kung fu squadrons, fragrant incense, and hundreds of thousands of cheering spectators, including a Dali aficionado. Most of THEM had cameras, ranging from cell phones to huge video rigs, which makes an attempted parade more like a slow costumed crawl through a rugby scrum.



While police kept order accompanying the first few contingents, and polite Parisians stayed behind the barricades, the rest of us moved in after the police disappeared for close-ups of anything that was painted yellow or red. By day's end, the yellowest part of the parade was our bruises from battling for the best camera angles.



But we LOVE parades, particularly one heralding a new year that promises positive change. Here's a forecast for the Year of the Dragon from our favorite living Chinese sage and medical practitioner, Dr. Maoshing Ni of Santa Monica's Tao of Wellness.


















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Reader Comments (6)

Dear Kaaren & Richard ~

Happy Year of the Dragon to you both! And thank you for bringing the wild color and exuberance of this celebration to us! I just love these photos and your descriptions! I could hear the thrilling drums and cymbals and firecrackers, and for some reason, I especially love the ladies in their fuchsia silk suits ready to fan dance. And also, Richard, how beautifully you've captured the faces of spectators and participants alike. ("Dali-man" looks a bit like Jerry Lewis, non?)

Gong Hey Fat Choy!


Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 0:57 | Unregistered Commenterdawna

Happy New Year Kaaren and Richard! Thank you for your beautiful writing and photographs!


Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 1:16 | Unregistered CommenterLaura Maaske


We love the way you see things. And read things.

That IS Jerry's younger brother, Max. He moved to Paris after realizing that only the French understood his brother's genius. He is trying to get financing for his own film, a Dali biopic, which will be called THE NUTTY ARTIST.

May you get your own fuchsia silk suit as a birthday present next time around.


--R & K

Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 20:05 | Registered CommenterKaaren Kitchell & Richard Beban

Dear Laura,

Gung Hay Fat Choy to you too! And thank you.


Kaaren & Richard

Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 20:48 | Unregistered CommenterKaaren & Richard

Happy Water Dragon New Year. It's different than the "normal" Dragon year: "Yang Water Dragon, brings many possibilities for good fortune. Most people know that water covers 2/3 of our planet & comprises 95% of our bodies; we simply cannot live without it. In Chinese element theory, water produces wood, which signifies growth and is the natural element of the dragon. The dragon governs east/southeast, wealth accumulation & the hours of 7 a.m. - 9 a.m. Associated with thunder, lightning and arousal, the Water Dragon personifies creativity at its best. Water Dragons occur every 60 years..."

I'm ready for Many Possibilities, Good Fortune, (more) Creativity and even a little Lightening and Arousal. <;-).

Fabulous photos Richard. Thanks for bringing the streets of Paris to the streets of Venice, Ca. Hooray for Parisians for celebrating with parades.


Friday, February 3, 2012 at 8:28 | Unregistered CommenterJoanne Warfield


I love the details you provide about Water Dragons. Especially lightning--and creativity at its best. Let's have a smashing good year!

Richard thanks you. He loves exploring the streets of Paris, just as we once meandered the streets of Venice.

Much love,

Kaaren & Richard

Friday, February 3, 2012 at 16:19 | Unregistered CommenterKaaren & Richard

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