I had to get a quick post up about the "water works" we experienced at St. Tropez on Saturday afternoon (& no, it's not about me crying my eyes out when one of my BFF's went back to the States, but sadly that happened as well). This is about one of those events that clearly singles out just how different living in France (and more specifically, Provence) is from living in the United States. Sure, we've got our sophisticated sports (I did my fair share of snowboard-cross watching during the winter Olympics) but I think Water Jousting takes sporting-elegance to another level.
I don't think anyone will be surprised to learn that the sport dates back to the Middle Ages and was reportedly favored by the likes of Catherine De Medici. It officially became a sport in France in 1996, and if you happen to be in Marseille on July 24, you can catch the annual Water Jousting Provence Championship. I, for one, can see how this can be a compelling sport to watch. Not only were there a few brave ladies competing against men, but at each pass there's a good likelihood that someone's going to end up in the water.
I tried to focus intently on the skillful maneuvering of the boatmen & the determined intensity of the les jousters but really I was just waiting for the next big splash! There were several competitors spending a decent amount of time in & out of the water, but I managed to film this young lady who was jousting with the best of them & hitting every mark:
Water Jousting at St. Tropez from Tuula Mattson on Vimeo.
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