FRANCEMy Francophile friend and I went to the Bastille Day celebration at Chateau St. Jean in Kenwood on Saturday, and the GM immediately set the tone.

Michael McNeil spoke about the attack in Nice, telling the crowd how upsetting it was. He said, in so many words, we stand with the French during this difficult time.

My friend and I listened to French music, watched the can can dancers, and talked about the calamity on the other side of the pond.

I met this friend in a class called “Why We Love Paris.” Our love for all things French runs deep, and we are particularly taken by the French resolve.

By way of example: We know a French woman who lives in Washington, D.C., and she said she was going to celebrate Bastille Day despite the turmoil the French are experiencing. She was determined to celebrate it with “increased defiance and joy — joie de vivre.”

The national holiday commemorates the French Revolution of 1789 and the birth of the Republic.

When I think about that lorry on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, with all those people in its path, I ache.

But now I’m quick to hold my head up high, the Francophile in me, determined to celebrate the lives of those we lost, with increased defiance and joy.