Friday, April 06, 2012

Becoming French!


Today, someone you all know if you're a true visitor to ParisDailyPhoto, has officially become French! Yes, he's on the left in this photo, yes his name is Michael and yes he is of American origin (Florida to be exact). But he's lived in France long enough and apparently intends to stay here, so he went through the hassle of applying for French nationality - without giving up his US one though. I attended the ceremony which was pretty moving actually - everybody (about 40 applicants) had to sing the Marseillaise!, watch a movie about "the values of France", listen to a welcome speech by the nice lady in blue in this photo and wait for one's name to be called. I'm glad France is fortunate enough to welcome a new member like him, even though to me, he'll always remain "mon Américain favori !"

55 comments:

  1. Oooh la la! Another handsome Frenchman!! Felicitations, mon amie!!

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  2. Oooh la la!!! Ditto what Jane said! :-) Congratulations lovely boy.. though you will always be a French Batman in my eyes.. xxx

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  3. Bravo! And Eric, you are right about these kinds of events - they are very moving. years ago a dear friend of mine was going to go her swearing in ceremony for US citizenship. I asked to come along because she did not have any family living in the US. I was glad I did. It was beautiful to watch all of these people from all over the world taking their oath. No matter what country you are from, do yourself a favor and go watch a naturalization ceremony. You will be pleased you did.

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  4. That's soooo awesome! (I'm soooo jealous, too.) Ditto to the first comments in all regards, as well. : ) I've been to my own naturalization ceremony here in the US and can attest to the pride, happiness and momentousness that pervades the atmosphere. Its a lifechanging day. What a cool idea for an uplifting afternoon out! ....did I mention how jealous I am?!

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  5. Congrats Michael! I'm sure you represent America splendidly in France. I raise my glass of Heineken...on second thought make that a Coke...er...ah..no better make that a nice Bourgogne Pinot Noir to stay thematic. In any case, Sante Miguel! Nice photo, too.:-)

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  6. Congratulations Michel! Uncle Sam & Marianne been getting busy!

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  7. Bravo, Michael/Michel! Now you have un pied in each country. Dites—do they turn you down at le dernier moment if you sing La Marseillaise off-key? (Thanks for the vimeo, Eric; it was very touching. I loved it that la dame en bleu gave out both citizenship papers and bisous!)

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  8. Hey, guys -- that last comment by Lila was actually Alexa (my daughter has appropriated by computer and my google account, apparently).

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  9. Congratulations Michael! And thank you, Eric for the link to the little movie. It made me wish that I could become une nouvelle citroyenne.

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  10. (Freaking happy) GuilleApril 6, 2012 at 2:45:00 AM GMT+2

    THIS.IS.AWESOME.

    I am so freaking happy we gained such a cutie dans notre nation! LOL
    Mon américain favori aussi. After the one I have at home. ;)

    Love,
    Guille

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  11. Congratulations to Michael! Would love to live there!

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  12. Congratulations to Michael! Totally deserved for someone who appreciates and knows so much about French culture... and wines....
    Félicitations aussi à Guille dont l'aide a été si efficace !
    But, Michael, be prepared! You may have to prove you can sing the Marseillaise at the picnic!!!

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  13. Congratulations, Michael!! Your first night as an official Frenchman! Woohoo! :)

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  14. Bravo Michael ! Let's pop the Champagne !!!

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  15. Coltrane_lives said : "I'm sure you represent America splendidly in France."
    Eh bien moi, je suis très très fier que désormais la France soit représentée aussi par toi, Michael !
    Merci et félicitations !

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  16. Bravo Michael !!! The French touch you must have ;))
    Bienvenue heureux Franco-américain ! Enjoy !!
    Contente de voir que cela fait plaisir de devenir Français.

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  17. Congratulations to France on acquiring a handsome new French citizen.

    ..and well done Michael!

    Denise
    Love from Bolton

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  18. Oh how nice to wake up this morning and see all of these comments. Thank you to Eric and Guille for all of their help with the mounds of paperwork and support.

    Twenty years ago I was transferred to France for work. After growing up in Florida where I had years of Spanish and couldn't speak a word, I was terrified.

    I worked in an environment filled with wonderful people who taught me French culture, all the "bad words" I'd need to know to survive, shared their families and became my friends. I've been lucky to see and keep in touch with them over the years and I guess my message is this: The small act of kindness you show to someone today may not seem important to you in the moment, but I can attest that this kindness is never forgotten, and in my case, gave me a love for France that resulted in yesterday's symbolic climax.

    Vive la France!

    (Eric, no comment on the photo! You'd think I just got out of bed!)

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  19. A striking picture, the sort of thing that becomes en-greved on the mind, if you are truly nationalised eh?

    Bad puns aside, congratulations on leaving the fleshy pots (bellies) of Florida for the flesh pots of Paris.

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  20. Dear Michael & Eric, thank you both for sharing this moving moment with the rest of us and congratulations to France and Michael.

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  21. Congratulations and Welcome to the duel-citizenship club :)
    Sure brought a tear to my eye as memories of my ceremony 27 years ago came back...nice one Eric.

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  22. Congratulations, Michael, and I beg to differ with regards to your photo ~ I think you look wonderful. And most importantly, very happy.

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  23. I hope someday to also become French. Hearing the Marseillaise makes me teary every time I hear it. Congrats Michael!

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  24. It was a good day for France! Congratulations, Michael! xoxoxo

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  25. Congratulations Michael! (And don't forget to file your US tax returns if you haven't already...)

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  26. Oh you all are just so nice. @Justine, one of the "benefits" of being American is that I get to file US taxes no matter where I live in the world. Glad to know they still love me.

    @Gina - all I can say is "Oh what a feeling!"

    @Ham - LOL! I'm guessing in London it's the Lush Plots?

    @Shell - you should see an optometrist! (But thanks anyway!)

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  27. BTW don't you think Marianne looks a little bit like Guille???!

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  28. Congratulations Michael. My son and daughter in law moved to Paris for his job - it was suppose to be a 3 year deal - and now 5 years later they are still there and have added a little one to their family. It is such a great and wonderful experience - not to mention that Grandma gets to visit and stay at their place!

    Have a wonderful holiday weekend everyone.

    Eric, thank you again for all you do with your beautiful pictures and little stories so that those living away from Paris can feel close to the action.

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  29. What an accomplishment. And to think you didn't speak a word of French before arriving. I admire you. And, For MANY more reasons!!!
    Now I want to know, will Veleeta still taste the same now that you are French?

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  30. Congratulations Michael and thank you Eric! I am inspired. I know the process is not easy. Congratulations for following through and realizing your dreams!! From a regular lurker Americana ;-) Valorie

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  31. Ha! PHX and your Velveeta comment! Let's not forget Skippy.

    Congratulations, Michael. All the paper work is finally done. It's nice to have friends, n'est-ce pas?

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  32. @PHX - Velveeta will always have a special place in my heart (and stomach!).

    @Olivier - thanks partner! If you can become Canadian, then I can become French!

    @Jeff - the paperwork is NEVER done in France. When they gave me my identity card, the first thing I noticed was an expiration date and thought, "you mean I have to renew this too?!?!"

    @Anne - you get the best of both worlds then!

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  33. Congratulations. Sometime, you'll have to sing the French national anthem. Deb

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  34. @Deb - only if you sing the one from Mars!

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  35. Hahahaha. I don't even sing in church. I can't carry a tune unless I have a bucket!

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  36. Congratulations lovely to have another French friend and hopefully see you at a pic nic soon xxx

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  37. I have had the pleasure of seeing the American citizenship ceremony which is incredibly moving. I teared up a bit when I watched the video of them calling your name and your double cheek French kiss. Congrats, Oncle. I know this was a long time in the making. Miss you!

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  38. It's interesting to see that he's all alone. I recently became a U.S. citizen, and there were close to 4,000 of us at the ceremony -- from 97 different countries!

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  39. Congratulations, Michael! What a wonderful world to live in where we can make a life anywhere that makes us happy and feels like home. On a weekend of special holidays for many of us, I wish for peace and this kind of happiness for all! Michelle (another American lurker who's jealous, but in the best possible way)

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  40. Belated congratulations, Michael!

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  41. Congrats, Michael! You already had the cake, now you've got the icing!

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  42. Congratulations, Michael! This is unbelievably, incredibly, fabulously, amazingly AWESOME news!! Although I only know you from PDP posts and a conversation we had long, long ago about American TV legal dramas, I am over the moon for you - what a dream come true!

    Best wishes, Monnica (Pont Girl)

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  43. Felicitations, Michael! How much paperwork would be involved in legally changing your name to Michel? 'Might as well "go whole hog," n'est-ce pas? You look wonderful! Eric, thank you for sharing this very special event with us here at PDP!

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  44. @Anonymous - if only this were true. I wasn't quite alone (see the video), but far from the 4000 you describe. We were about 50 I'd say. Syria, Lebanon, a few from Asian countries, many from Africa, and 3 from the US (NY, Ft Lauderdale and Miami).

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  45. @jaq - Thank you! I hope to see you at the next PDP picnic too!
    @Megan - I know you work with foreign students every day at Ohio State, so coming from you I know you understand. I miss you too...when are you coming for another visit??

    @Michelle (another American lurker who's jealous) - you wouldn't happen to be married to Barack would you? Thank you!

    @Ms M - Merci beaucoup!

    @Lucio - to have you make a comment here, and include food, is a real honor! Thanks!

    @Monnica (Pont Girl) - yes it's amazing how many people we've met via PDP and come to feel like family. Thank you for stopping by and sharing in "This is unbelievably, incredibly, fabulously, amazingly AWESOME news!!"


    @parisianheart..."How much paperwork would be involved in legally changing your name to Michel? 'Might as well "go whole hog," n'est-ce pas?" In fact, you are given this choice toward the end of the process, but frankly at my age, I have a hard enough time remembering my real name so declined the offer ;-)

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  46. Felicitations !
    J'ai une photo pareille prise il y a presque 2 ans. Ca fait plaisir, ne c'est pas?

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  47. C'est trop "Chou"! Féliciations à toi mon AMI ! Tu es magnifique! Comme il y a plus de 10 ans maintenant, je t'ai dit "Bienvenue" in Paris, je le répète: "Bienvenue" dans la nationalité française ! C'est super que notre pays, la France, compte un citoyen comme toi de plus parmi les siens !
    Plein de gros bisous de ma part

    Ma maman te félicite

    Patricia

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  48. @ceronne - Vraiment! Féliciations !

    @Patricia - my dear friend and one of the first people I met when I returned to Paris this time in 1998 (world cup..France beat Brazil...remember?!) You are part of the reason I love France and have decided to stay!

    Big kisses to you and maman!

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  49. I was out on a trip April 6th, so I couldn´t congratulate him before. This is such a great accomplishiment and you deserve it so much, we´re all very happy for you.

    France has certainly got the best of America!!!!!!!!!!!

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  50. Miss a few days and I miss one of the most important posts ever! Congratulations, mon ami Michael! What a happy achievement!

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  51. Thank you Monica and Petrea! It has been a fun journey :-)

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