Can you imagine a country having a vacation culture so strong that they had to create specific vocabulary words to highlight who and when vacations are enjoyed? P'Niche loves this aspect of the French culture that really knows how to disconnect, recharge, and enjoy the many pleasures of life - and a dreamy vacation is just the place to start!
Let's start first by defining these very specific summertime fun monikers - Juilletistes and Aoûtiens.
Simply stated, Juilletistes are those who take their summer holiday during July and Aoûtiens take their summer holiday during August. Summer Vacation - it's a big deal.
These two words came to be recognized in 1969, when a fourth week of vacation was legalized in a milestone win for the citizens of France - leading to les grandes vacances, the big summer holidays, where 8 out of 10 of the French take holiday.
There is quite the debate about which is better or more popular. August vacation time was seen for a time when the working class took a break, while the executives and other white collar professionals chose July. These clichés led to somewhat of a cultural divide. Juilletistes were seen as lazy, leaving town while others were hard at work while the Aoûtiens regarded their decision as the real vacation time.
In addition, the chassé- croisé refers to the weekend between July and August when one group returns from holiday just as the other departs.
While August remains the main vacation month in France, it's now more a personal preference as to the type of vacation you wish to plan. So, let's get planning!
Planning a romantic interlude?
What could be dreamier than a sexy escape for two to all the exotic locations of the globe (even if that exotic location is a picnic in your favorite park or backyard?)
Make time for each other - these are the special times...
Summer holiday is a wonderful time to reconnect with your family, or even to plan a family reunion with more of your extended loved ones.
These days, children's schedules at school, not to mention the hours of homework and extra-curricular obligations (to say nothing of part time jobs), make it truly difficult to carve out time for that critical familial connection.
Use this time to plan for fun filled events that will engage all the members of your clan.
These are the days to create those cherished memories and inside jokes that you will all look upon with love and fondness in all the summer times to come.
Not taking time with your kin this summer? P'Niche understands that your friends are your chosen family and a vital part of your life.
Plan a girls' or guy's getaway, or make it a fun "Jack & Jill" vacation. The most important thing is to surround yourself with people who love and accept you and let the good times roll...
Plan outside games like pétanque, make rainy day board game plans, vineyard visits, small museums, concerts, fun excursions, the works. This is the time to kick back and reconnect - enjoying each other's company.
Now may be the perfect time to try out some of those summer drinks recipes you've been wanting to play with!
Needing some time on your own to get to that 100% recharge? Don't let anyone tell you that this isn't a great plan!
You will have complete reign over your time and all the things you want to do, see, and accomplish, even if that is a whole lot of nothing.
You will answer to no one, and during this time, you will not only learn a lot about the places you will see, but also about yourself.
This is your chance, fabulous P'Nicher: get to know - and enjoy - your best self!
These days, more often than not, vacation has just become "remote working," working form a different location, with the email bell ringing and a lot of work calls (and resentment) piling up.
You know already that the chic Parisian lifestyle advocates for a complete disconnect and recharge.
You should have every right (both legal and personal) to take a vacation... real time away to turn off all professional signals. If you return from time away haggard and stressed, what good will the time away serve you?
P'Niche has said it before and will say it again (and again if needed). Take your vacation!
Using this time away from the workplace, revisit some of your personal passions. Missed meditation for months on end? Recapture your zen!
Have a pile of "to-read" books? Get to it. New recipes to try? Connections to reach out to? Museums to visit? New things to learn? Now is the time.
Now is the time to explore as well. Get lost in a new city. Fall back through history. Savor the local flavor and cuisine of your chosen destination. Try something new. Or revisit a tried and true classic.
The choice is yours, what's your fancy?
Learn, Grow, Do...
Or... do NOT.
Perhaps a morning, afternoon, or even an entire day can be devoted to doing not one single thing.
The fine are of doing nothing. Except napping. Napping is allowed.
Sweet Dreams, P'Nichers!
And don't let it stress you all out. A trip properly budgeted for will help you disconnect to get your summer on!
Don't have time off during the summer or simply want to avoid that brutal summer heat? All good - P'Niche thinks the best time to visit Paris is when it works for you!
Shoulder season (there is even a group of holiday revelers called septembristes!) as well as the winter holiday season have lots of draws to enjoy. Whatever helps you take your best French holiday vacation!
What do you think, P’Nichers? When are you setting aside time to take a proper holiday? Let us know in the comments below et à bientôt!