Archive for July 1st, 2016

July 1, 2016

Some news from Spain XXII

More on sunny Spain where températures already reaching the late 30’s C or about 90’s F . And we are just waiting to go in August…!!! Here are some news from Spain, Everything Under the Sun.

Just what I needed more controls on the roads, announcing a new wave of checkpoints and security on the roads of Spain getting ready for the Summer avalanche on the roads. 60 new radars, more surveillance helicopters Pegasus in motorways and highways and signage for 300 sections of conventional roads where there is frequent excess  of speed are part of the conditions the  traffic department  has prepared for the exodus of the summer, which will support 84 million trips! .  It is predicted a 3.5% increase in the number of  vehicles on the road expected for July (41 million) and August (43 million). And  increase surveillance in those sections where there is high accident rate and speeding.
In this sense, during the next few weeks will also start a new system that will identify those considered the 300 most dangerous sections of secondary roads in the country (excluding Catalonia and Basque country). In this way, users will find themselves  with vertical signs of Orange which warns of the intensification of surveillance by radar, which will be at some point in those sections. (see photo map).  This traffic plan has three more phases, comprising between July 29 and August 1, from July 12 to 15 (coinciding with the holiday on this date) and from  August 26 to 28.  Soure El Mundo journal
Spain received in the first five months of the year 2016  more than 25.2 million foreign tourists, up 11.4% more than in the same period in 2015, according to the survey of tourist movements at frontiers (Frontur), released today by the National Institute of statistics (INE). The major emitting countries in the period were the United Kingdom (with 5.8 million tourists, up 16.1%), Germany (3.7 million tourists, up 5.6%) and France (with 3.7 million tourists, 7.6% more). Between January and May, the communities that received more tourists were Cataluña( 5,8 millions, increase of  4,1 %), the Canary Islands (with 5.4 million and an increase of 11%) and Andalusia (with 3.7 million and a growth of 18.1%). Being especially prominent a rise in tourists from Ireland, from 23.7%, and the Netherlands, of 19.1%Between January and May, the main tourists destination communities with the best progress, was the community of Valencia, 20.5%. The length of the majority stay between January and May was 4 to 7 nights, with 12.5 million tourists and a rise of 12.2%. The airport  was  the best way of entering by the largest  number of tourists in the first five months of the year, with 20.7 million tourists, up 12.3%. Source El Mundo journal
The great Gloria Gaynor (Newark New Jersey, 1949)  has the true story as I live it, which until the music hit the disco scene, in the mid-70s, in the clubs of the United States, dancing was still segregated. They had spent two decades of the movement for civil rights, “but remained white clubs and clubs for blacks; that all changed with the Disco.  People of all races together and celebrating life together. It was something really amazing and socially inspiring”, says Gloria . Her new tour name Never Can Say Goodbye”, as well as her  first big hit of 1974, “I Will Survive” version of the Jackson 5, with two stops in Barcelona (July 27) and Madrid (July 29). The latter, as a closing of the cycle nights of the botanical garden of Madrid ,that is since yesterday occupied the Royal Botanical Garden Alfonso XIII in the Ciudad Universidad (universary city)  and which also will  have shows by Wilco (2 July), Patti Smith (July 8), M83 (July 10), Robert Plant (July 14). John McLaughlin (July 19), Seal (22 July) and the Festival Charco (pond)  (16 and 17 July), with Jorge Drexler, Xoel López, Molotov or Toundra.
The sixth edition of the Atlantis Film Fest. From June 27 to July 3  will have 12 feature films screened free in four cinemas in Palma de Mallorca (CineCiutat, Castell de Bellver, Ses Voltes and Museum of Mallorca). The films shown in Palma – and other 33 more, along with 16 short films – will be available at Filmin until July 27. There will also be a place for discussion on the seven scheduled conferences and, on the other hand, groups such as Lili’s House or of the Purissima will best soundtrack  of the Festival in six planned concerts.
Universal Music Festival has become everything a reference for the cultural life of the capital in the summer. The majestic Teatro Real (Royal Theater)  opens its doors to all kinds of genres in this cycle which in its  2nd edition and will feature Rufus Wainwright, Rod Stewart, Diana Krall, Enrique Bunbury, José Luis Perales and Archangel.
Since its founding 14 years ago, the Madrid Flamenco Ballet company, directed by Luciano Ruiz, has released a dozen shows. Now presenting Carmina Burana, choreographed by Iván Gallego and Luciano Ruiz . prices: from 30 euros Hours: Mondays to Fridays  to 19h. Saturdays  at 18h and 20h and Sundays at 18h. Early booking: Ticket Office Mondays to Sundas  from 11h30 to 13h30 and from 17h to start of function; tel. +34  902 488 488 El Corte Ingles tel.+34 902 400 222.  Metro: Tirso de Molina. Going on from June 28, to July 24 2016

Some nice tapas in the Latina district that I like over the years are:

Inaugurated in 1882 and run by five generations of the same family, Casa Gerardo offers artisan beers, selection of wines of Madrid, selection of Spanish cheeses, Iberian sausages, hot toast and thousands of stories. From my webpage in blogroll bottom of my blog page ,this one Spanish version: The fork=el tenedor=le fourchette.
As a tavern that is out of the classic in terms of style, has a renewed decoration and more plain than normal, although retains the essence of the typical traditional taverns in their environment and in their rations. Although one at Casa Lucas is going so far: to enjoy hot or cold snacks accompanied by a freshly pulled beer or a wine from his cellar.

Many sources agree in placing the sausage (Salchicha) , as it is the case with many cultural landmarks, somewhere in Mesopotamia around 3000 B.c. The Eastern variant notes that similar products can be found in the China of the 580BC  However, we prefer the version offered in an interview with ‘The Sunday Post’ Gary Allen: “Probably, at some time in antiquity, a Hunter realized that intestines, stomach and skin of animals could give a practical way to the remains of meat and organs that otherwise would have been wasted”. And agree to it, because it is probably one of the great world experts in the matter, since he is the author of  Sausage: a Global History’ (Reaktion Book)The word “sausage” helps us understand what exactly is the dish: its origin is in latin, which in turn gave rise to the Italian “salciccia”. “Ciccia” was  used by children to refer to meat, while “salt” is, in fact, “salt”, an essential ingredient when it comes to preserving the surplus remains of meat. What is the first cultural reference to sausage? Perhaps it‘s a comedy written by Epicarmo called “Sausage”, but it seems that there was already a reference to a blood sausage in the Odyssey. More evident sign are the Festival Lupercalia, a fertility festival celebrated by elites where the sausages were playing an essential role. And Yes, it seems to be due to what the misunderstood reader has heard. The similarity between this food and the male sexual organ became the central food of this feast marked by sacrifices of dogs and goats. So much so that Emperor Constantine I forbade such parties during its Christianization project, replacing them with Valentine. Why  you still like Sausage? Perhaps the best answer to it is by  Sam Bompas, founder of Bompas & Parr, in an article published in ‘Atlas Obscura’: “Is its combination of salt, fat and texture, and sometimes a little sugar, which causes that it is much valued in terms of its taste, but also make it a comfortable food”.  It is one of the favorite meals of the children, both alone and in the form of hot dog, they just need preparation, which is very useful to overwhelmed parents in preparing dinner. Last October, the sausage was a serious setback after the World Health Organization included it in the list of foods that cause cancer, along with the bacon and other processed meats. According to a controversial report published by the Organization, the consumption of 50 grams per day of sausages (the equivalent of a unit) would increase by 18% the possibility of cancer. Article from El Confidencial 

If you thought you were going to go to Casa Corona nothing but to steep elbow and cool off in the summer, you‘re very but very wrong. In the bar of Madrid that strives to have Beach Chueca inside, made to walk barefoot, music, fashion, decoration and even sport congregate. This Saturday, without going any further, there is yoga of 12 to 13 h and creation workshop of Peseta from 17 to 19 h. And this Sunday, surf lessons Indoboard by origin Surf from 12 to 13 h, urban garden from 11 to 13 h and ‘brunch’ 13 to 16 h. In addition, from 20h30 to 22 h, evening radio: ‘The man who fell in love with the Moon’, with two of the groups of the live music of the moment, Sidecar and Dorian. Theirs is a month‘s vacation: 9 June to 10 July, and Wednesday through Sunday. Important: you must pre-register on the website.
La Cornada, this BBQ place with covered terrace will encourage your days and your nights in the Azca area and the torre Picasso, there where stands the Business district of Madrid. La Cornada boasts bringing  to the table the best meat of Spain. In another way, the most prized breeds of national beef quality: the Galician blonde and the Iberian Avileña-Black. A grill here before the proliferation of the beyond, Argentine and Brazilian. Everything from the pine wood tables and chairs to the tableware, passing by the wine and rum, is 100% Spanish product. Let’s see: the bread, from Majadahonda; salt, the Valley of Añana (Vitoria); linens, Valencia; knives, indeed, Albacete, and BBQ, Basque. His aesthetics? Carefree and very summer.
The Auto Driving permit or Carné  by points came 10 years ago wrapped in controversy. Not everyone trusted that this formula, imported from France, will be successful. And indeed it was!  If in 2006 deaths in all kinds of accidents were 4.104 persons, the number last year was reduced to 1.688. However, some studies estimate that up to 14% of the reduction is due to the effect on drivers, of which 7.5 million have lost 38 million points. The majority, after being punished for taking more speeding than necessary. Because, so far in 2016, there are more deaths in the accident than in the first half of 2015. Something expected once the reduction in claims is reduced the previous two years. With data until  this past Sunday , the numbers are 511 persons on the Spanish roads , 39 more than in the same period in 2015. In addition, five months, increased the number of deaths in four of them. And June along the same path: until day 19, 64 victims by 51 a year earlier. Traveling more and more light: in 2015 there were 373 million long distance movements, a 4% increase. The paradigmatic case are secondary roads, which are still the scene where it is  produced 8 of every 10 deaths despite the intensification of the tasks of control and surveillance, especially of the considered most dangerous stretches

Festival Frinje 2016. Friday 1 to Sunday 17  July in Madrid (Matadero). Several years  which has been celebrating this traditional version of the Scottish Fringe. Like that, it offers a tour of 23 contemporary spectacles that include Theater, music and performanceand which boasts the presence of companies and international artists such as Teatro Sotterraneo, map Theatre, Voadora, Soledad Vélez, Grumelot, Aurora & The Betrayers…

Enjoy Spain I can’t wait to be there in August!! Cheers and have a great weekend everyone!

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July 1, 2016

Some news from France CXXXV

Here here, we are having better weather today, just up to 62F or 17C with shades of sunshine. And we finish June, and for me ,we close the fiscal year for my company. Now the fun begins with the reports lol!!! My usual blah blah blah on la Belle France and especially the Paris in all of us ::)

First something I dwell on a few times is beer. Well in France the popularity and sales of it is growing. 5% higher than last year’s sale with 70% of them made in France! And more than 2000 brand names!   All this was from a popular phenomenon of drink local that said  M.  François Loos, président  of the Association des Brasseurs de France.  It all started in 1985 and in my Brittany with the creation of the brewery  brasserie Coreff at Carhaix-Plouguer.  Taken from article in the  Le Figaro journal.

The AOC Cassis of wines is celebrating 80 years since the nomination as AOC wines. The Rosé wines contributes more than 70% of the vinicole production of Cassis, but the Whites with 11 winemakers and an area of 215 hectares showing very small area in comparison with other AOC areas of France. They will come soon 100% Bio and have implemented a Customer service training to help tourists visit the vinyards! The predominant grapes are the Clairette and the Marsanne for the whites; consider the best from Provence here. The Rosés grapes are  the Grenache, Cinsault, Barbaroux, Carignan, and the Mourvédre. More of this wonderful wine here:

Prohibited to drive in Paris, new law says all cars put into circulation before January 1997 ,but also minivans registered before October 1997 are not allowed to drive in Paris according to AutoScout24, some 600,000 vehicles are concerned in the Paris  region.  Also concerned two-wheelers on the road before June 1999, and heavy trucks and buses dating from before October 2001, but not vans, moving trucks, firefighters, tankers refrigerated trucks and vintage cars. The ban is valid from Monday to Friday, from 8h to 20h (heavy goods  vehicles are prohibited 7 days a week). Ticketing will intervene only in October 2016 . The fine: 35 euros, or 45 euros for failure to have stamp (vignette). per City of Paris.

The exposition last summer of the magical theater Olympia “yesterday, today, and tomorrow”, allowed fans to discover or rediscover with photographs, film, stage costumes evoking the most memorable concerts of this mythical place. The renovations began in 1996 that helped rebuilt the Olympia 60 meters lower. An Underground street with an area for trucks dumping, parking for 16 trucks, 3 tractor trailers and unloading docks. To ventilate the room, four power air machines were installed doing 155K m3 of air per hour  with opening to cool each seat and avoid tensions on the structure, when the public has too much noise and energy, the room is place on springs that helps when the floor collapse 10 cms. The new room has preserved the soul of the original. Red or blood red or red Coquatrix and curtains, night blue ceilings, and lyre shape mezzanine. The Olympia has kept its logo with the deformed “O” symbolizing the contours of the city of Paris and the pedestrian bright letters from the time of Piaf. The reality is far removed from the caption for this address that makes 10 million euros of sales per year. The Olympia can be reserved for those who have the means to afford it – at 20 500 euros per day.

The “Longines Paris Eiffel Jumping”, which opens today July 1st for 3 days, around the obstacle course on the playground of Bagatelle in the Bois de Boulogne. Metro line 1 Pont de Neuilly takes you there. Today the horse jumping show is from 9h to 22h (Including the Eiffel Record in the high jump of the city of Paris at 8h30 today , Saturday from 9h to  21h and Sunday from 9h 20h30 . Tariffs 1500 seats in free access in the stands, or two other paid for 45€ and 75€ the day of the competition. The Village is open to the general public. Many events around such as artisans, authors, photographers, and painters.Sunday at 14h30 the Christie’s House Orchestra will have an unprecedented auction of items from the obstacles course.

As told here before, the Navigo pass is going up from 70€ to 73€ per month from August 1st. In the same proportions or increase of 4,3% the subscribers from zones 2-3,3-4, ,4-5 will paid less than 70€.  The metro single unit ticket will go up too, from 1, 80€ to 1, 90€ and increase of 5, 5% and the carnet or book of 10 tickets will cost now 14.50€ (an increase of 2.8%. RATP

Bison Futé advise motorists to delay their departure today July 1st (the first day of vacation time in France)  to before 14h or after 20h or even 22h. The 3 lanes on A6 not usually enough will be slower due to construction work between Village and Ormoy, by then the highway of the Sun (A6) may be called the highway of the misery of motorists. Le Parisien

Would Beauvais Airport be an impregnable Citadel?

Bus companies Flixbus and Frethelle come once again to face a closed door. According to the syndicate mixte de l ’Aéroport (SMABT) owner of the platform bus terminal the trajectory Between Beauvais and Paris for the second time has failed to be adopted. As early as November, bus companies have attempted to tackle the monopoly of the Airport on passenger bus service.  “We believe that the price of 16.50€ on average to connect Paris to Beauvais is aberrant, scandalous, and not justified according to Yvan Lefranc-Morin, Director of Development for Flixbus. And of course, he is correct!!! Le Parisien.

Enjoy your weekend ,wherever you are.

Just the latest news,the RATP is having free WIFI on several stations and point connect stations in others starting now. The 20 minutes free connections are at the following stations: Porte Maillot line 1, Chaussée d’Antin RER A, CDG étoile RER A, Gare de Lyon line 1, Gallieni line 3, La Defense RER A, Gare du Nord line 4, St Lazare line 14, Cité Universitaire RER B, Auber RER A. And the point connect stations are at St Denis Université, line 13, Bibliothéque François Mitterrand line 14, Val de Fontaney RER A, and Noisy le Grand RER A. More in French here:

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