In Felsted today the church bells were ringing, the crowds came out, and the sunshine even turned up on cue.
A village wide festival formed the backdrop to the Tour de France, with a a giant screen to play the action, as well as beer, cake and BBQ stalls.
Nobody was enjoying themselves more than the children.
Some of the youngest and littlest, like 7 year old Olivia and Dany, watched from the village's old school house, in order to get a prime view over the grown ups heads. The pair were excited about the cyclists, but it was the caravan of floats beforehand that really caught their attention, featuring all their favourite sweets.
Others, like 12 year old Dara and Rory from Felsted School, lined the streets to get closer to the action. "I'm very excited," Rory told me. 'This probably won't happen again while I'm alive, so it's a once in a lifetime opportunity."
After several hours of anticipation the cyclists finally came through. The children yelled, the crowds cheered - and the athletes were gone in seconds.
Millie, Jessica and Rebecca had cycled all the way from Summercroft Primary School in Bishops Stortford to watch. "It was much quicker than on TV," said Jessica. "Unless you put it on fast-mo!" added Rebecca.
For Tim and Jonathan Poston, the speed of the cyclists was a little disappointing, given they had camped out overnight to get a good spot to watch. But the brothers, who went to school in Felsted, still said they wouldn't have missed the experience.
"It was very fast but it was worth it. To see the Tour de France go past where I went to school is once in a lifetime experience, I'm not going to see it again."
Click below to watch the children's reaction to the Tour de France: