Is there an etiquette to observe when inviting French friends over for aperitif? Cindy, our guest blogger, having recently arrived in France, has discovered that there is.
Muguet, or Lily of the Valley, is very popular in France around 1st May each year. It is offered as a gift to friends to wish them luck, but has a very long tradition dating back to 1561 and Charles IX.
The Fête du Travail (Labour day) is the first of the official holidays in May. This public holiday celebrates the social and economic achievements of the labour movement, and is also the day when Lily of the Valley (Muguets) are given to friends and family.
There is a tradition in France that says all the church bells go to Rome for Easter, and that on their return they drop small chocolate bells, chickens and rabbits in gardens.
It is believed that the observation of April Fool’s Day began in France when Charles IX changed the calender in 1564. People who still celebrated New Year’s Day on April 1st became the ‘butt’ of many jokes and were called ‘Poisson d’Avril’ (April Fish).