Some news from France, CCCXXV

And here back to my original Some news from France series that I have enjoyed writing and thank you for reading me all these years as this in my typical Roman numerals is the No 325. We have escape the cold weather and now in the mild usual temps. The virus is improving according to the latest bulletin from the gouvernement de la République Française . However, most businesses remained closed or on delivery status or pick and collect which makes visiting town worthless. We must continue!

The now un-famous Health Defense Council of France is telling us no re-containment planned before the end of the winter holidays. This last month of 18h curfew appears to have paid off: the government is not considering any further restrictions at this time. At least not before the end of the winter holidays. A new Health Defense Council is being held today Wednesday, February 17. The saga continues I am sure there will be movies afterward…..

The Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot said museums and monuments will be the first summoned to the reopening assured to the presidents of the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay , the Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations (Mucem , Marseille), the Musée des confluences (Lyon) and the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Lille. We are still waiting….

The Notre Dame Cathedral is looking for timber. Foresters are currently roaming the Conches-Breteuil massif, in the Eure, in search of century-old oaks as materials. Their mission, to find the right candidates to rebuild the spire of Notre-Dame de Paris, which collapsed during the terrible fire of 2019. The perfect cast? Oaks that have been “led” so as to be straight, 50 to 90 cm in diameter and 8 to 14 meters in height. However, only hundred-year-old trees, even bicentennial, can boast of such statures. Don’t panic, reassure forestry experts in France: in both public and private forests, there are enough such specimens to reconstruct the spire. Indeed!

Unesco’s Intangible Heritage nomination from France will have a fratricidal war between the baguette and the rooftops of Paris. France will present a single candidate in 2022 in the race for the prestigious international cultural label. So take your peak, I go for the baguette yes!!!

And talking about heritage which is history and architecture my fav subjects we have the National Monuments going to give money to renovate places such as the Cité de Carcassonne, Château de Pierrefond, and the Hôtel de la Marine, renovated for 132 million euros. It should open the first half of April, if the government lifts the closure of cultural venues. Until 1789, this hotel housed the Garde-Meuble de la Couronne (or crown furniture keeps) before becoming, for more than 200 years, the seat of the Ministry of the Navy. The National Monuments Center took over management in 2015, after the departure of the ministry. The opening expected in two months concerns the heritage spaces, former 18C apartments of the intendant of the Garde-Meuble de la Couronne.This is at the Place de la Concorde, Paris. And these are just the ones that caught my eyes, there will be more building to benefit from this financial help and recognition!

Where do we live the oldest in Ile-de-France region? For the first time, the Regional Health Observatory (ORS observatoire regional de santé) is publishing a detailed atlas of health data in the 1287 towns in the Ile-de-France region. Regionally, the average is 80.6 years for men and 86.1 for women. In Paris, in the popular 18éme arrondissement, people live less well and less old than in the 16éme!, reveals a survey by the Regional Health Observatory. And in Jouarre (S/M 77), we live, on average, between 7 and 8 years less compared to regional figures. The ORS webpage in French:

In the Winter 1879-1880: when Claude Monet painted the frozen Seine. Of course, no climate change then lol!! Are you shivering from the cold? Think instead of our ancestors who endured the worst cold snap in France. -26 ° C in Paris and worse still in Vétheuil (Val-d’Oise 95 ) where the painter, a young widower, warmed his heart by painting like the damned. By the Quai Saint-Michel, on January 3, 1880. During that harsh winter, the capital experienced 29 days of frost and the Seine froze!!

According to the Le Parisien newspaper, the struggling Vélib bikes   operator Smovengo will receive 4 million euros more for three years and the amendment to the contract will be validated on Thursday. In return, it will have to improve the quality of service, assessed by a user committee. Oh yeah more taxpayers money down the drain!!!

As of this past Monday evening, only one terminal will continue to welcome passengers at Orly airport. At issue: the recent border closures to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic, which are causing air traffic to fall. Only Terminal 3 remains open, which is more modern and suitable for national and international flights. Webpage:

Abandonment of tramway 4 or T4 at Roissy airport (CDG) ,the projects to the airport are in the hot seat. The abandonment of a new terminal at Roissy also casts doubt on plans for access to the airport platform, namely the direct CDG Express train and the future metro line 17. Yes we are not moving forward and more closures and more traffic than ever!!!

The Grand Véfour, temple of French gastronomy, will take a 180 degree turn as soon as the restaurants reopen in Paris. Director since 1991 of the famous Palais-Royal house (17, rue Beajolais, Iéme), Guy Martin, its chef, has now decided to devote himself to market cuisine, more spontaneous, less expensive too. Hence the loss, last January, of the two stars it had held in the Michelin Guide since 1991. I am going to make this heritage house, founded in 1784 and listed as a Historic Monument, accessible to as many people as possible. Not without recalling that “originally, the café de Chartres, which became Véfour after its owner’s name in 1820, is open all day”.

The animated reconstruction of a panorama 120 meters long and 9 meters high takes us back to the murderous battle of Champigny, 150 years ago now depicted in detail the Battle of Champigny, a highlight of the Franco-German war of 1870. Inaugurated in 1882, the canvas was exhibited until 1887 at the Panorama National in Paris. These huge paintings were arranged inside a rotunda, allowing the public to immerse themselves in the story told by the painters. Once in the rotunda, visitors climbed onto a central platform and found themselves in the middle of the canvas. The two painters in this panorama, Alphonse de Neuville and Edouard Detaille, both took part in the war of 1870. Edouard Detaille was even present at the battle of Champigny. He made sketches of what he observed. The City of Champigny sur Marne intends to go even further, by then reconstituting the original panorama. The city of Champigny sur Marne on the battle in French:

The Louvre museum conservation center was installed in 2019 in Pas-de-Calais. The museum’s reserves, which, under the public establishment, were located in a flood zone, were 80% emptied of some 150,000 works stored there. The Louvre has deployed great resources such as a huge building was built in Liévin (Pas-de-Calais), for a budget of 60 million euros, a few km from Lens, where the decentralized branch of the National Museum is located . Since its inauguration in October 2019, semi-trailer shuttles have not stopped between rue de Rivoli and rue du Docteur-Piette. More info on the Louvre webpage:

And now controversies even on a tomb stone. The tombstone of Constantin Brancusi, simple and discreet in the Montparnasse cemetery, informed visitors preferred to meditate on his Baiser (kiss) statue. Somewhere in Division 22,section 22 they could admire this exceptional sculpture by the Romanian artist, watching over the tomb of Tania Rachevskaïa, a young Russian exile who committed suicide in 1910. Following a judgment by the Paris administrative court of appeal of December 11, 2020, the Ukrainian descendants of Tania Rachevskaïa obtained the right to recover the work. For ten years, this family has been in dispute with the public authorities, who have been fighting to preserve this stone couple, entwined for eternity, of which there are several versions, produced by Brancusi between 1907 and 1945. The Paris tourist office on the Montparnasse cemetery:

Keep an eye on this one folks ! It is the most anticipated exhibition of 2022: 20,000 m2 entirely dedicated to Harry Potter, Fantastic Beasts, and the entire universe of the saga. On the program, a crazy immersive scenography, original accessories and costumes straight out of the archives of filming locations, original installations, sets, experiences … In other words, a dream come true for any aficionado of the world of JK Rowling . The exhibition will tour the world for an entire year, stopping in almost every continent. Europe is on the program, but the cities and their dates have not yet been announced a stop in Paris is very likely, in line with other world exhibitions that have set down here: Jurassic World, Tutankhamun or even Game of Thrones. We’ll keep you posted.

A free outdoor exhibition dedicated to Louis de Funès (see post). The most famous French comic actor is in the spotlight in an exhibition at Bercy Village from next February 18 2021: it’s time to revise your classics. Passionate about jazz, Louis de Funès de Galarza began as a pianist in a bar during the war. It was long before Daniel Gélin gave him a chance, Sacha Guitry his confidence and Claude Autant-Lara locked him up in front of Gabin and Bourvil in the cellar of La Traversée de Paris. It was not until 50 years old that the little jazzman finally climbed to the top of the bill and shared his burlesque genius with the whole world. His roles describe his life, the rise of a rank-and-file: from small conductor to conductor, from non-commissioned officer to captain of industry, from deprivation to the disruption of consumer society. Thirty-eight years after his death, Bercy Village is dedicating an outdoor exhibition to him from February 18 to May 31, echoing the exhibition at the Cinémathèque française. “Laughter is the sun, it chases winter away from the human face”, proclaimed Louis de Funès, whose career, although started late, will forever mark the 7th art. Fantômas, Le Gendarme de Saint-Tropez, La Folie des Grandeurs, The Adventures of Rabbi Jacob or La Grande Vadrouille, who has never watched one of his films with the family in peace on the sofa?   echoing the exhibition at the Cinémathèque française. The classics of your ancestors (and perhaps yours). will be, all in a free course that will undoubtedly bring back beautiful memories. Louis de Funès exhibition at Bercy Village 28, rue François Truffaut – 12éme. From February 28 to May 31, 2021. More on the entertainment webpage of the city of Paris

Did you think Bram Stoker’s Dracula novel was creepy? So you haven’t read anything about this story that really took place in Paris in 1848 yet. It was during the summer of 1848 that we began to discover corpses unearthed every morning in the various cemeteries of Paris: in the famous Père-Lachaise cemetery, in others much smaller, but especially in the Montparnasse cemetery. The peculiarity of these corpses is that they were all corpses of young girls who were found mutilated and often stained with the criminal’s seed. Very quickly the story spread throughout Paris and began to frighten the population. It was the cemetery administration that launched the idea of ​​setting a trap for him to stop this man who was terrorizing the city: a large metal wire was installed around the gate of the Montparnasse cemetery. This large wire is connected to a grape shot which is triggered at the slightest contact. So on the night of March 15, 1849 (it’s still more than six months after the first events) the man was wounded by the grapeshot, he managed to go for treatment to the Val de Grâce military hospital. which is not very far. It was, in fact, François Bertrand: a fairly respected Army sergeant in Paris. He will only receive a one-year prison sentence for “burial violation” because even today necrophilia is simply considered “attacking the integrity of a corpse” and punished by only one year in prison and 15,000 euros in fines!

Something not travel related but me think worth to put in my blog.

The singer Angèle supports cancer research by launching a raffle with great gifts. Winning Angèle’s autographed piano, Julien Doré’s santiags or even a day on the set of the film Asterix and Obelix with Guillaume Canet, it is possible thanks to the commitment of many artists alongside Kickcancer. Angéle has been a sponsor of the Kickcancer association for several years now, which is involved in research into pediatric cancers: she works in schools in Belgium, raises funds regularly … But this time, it is a very large raffle bringing together the outbursts of solidarity of many Belgian, French and English artists. The concept is simple: just choose the prize (or prizes) you prefer and buy a ticket for € 10 – or more, which necessarily increases the chances of winning. The money donated will then help in the fight against cancer through the association which finances scientific research, sets up awareness campaigns on pediatric cancers and fights to modify regulations that make it difficult to take action. care of sick children. Very worthy cause me think. More info at Kickcancer:

And by now once in a while a good one recipe of the month: (metric measurements)

Ingredients for 4 persons: 1 piece of rump steak (about 600 g), 8 organic potatoes (Agria type), 400 g of various salads (lettuce, romaine, mesclun, lamb’s lettuce, treviso … depending on the season), 1 small shallot or ½ red onion, herbs fine (parsley, chives, chervil), optional.

For the vinaigrette: 1 tbsp. to c. mustard, 1 tbsp. to s. vinegar (balsamic or sherry), 3 tbsp. to s. olive oil, walnuts, or a mixture of the two, salt, pepper. For the mayonnaise: 1 egg yolk at temperature, 1 tsp. to c. mustard, sunflower or grapeseed oil, salt, pepper, vinegar.

Preparation: Bake the rump steak in the oven for 20 minutes at 190 ° C, then take it out and let it rest for 10 minutes. Clean and dry the potatoes without peeling them. Cut them into cubes, then sauté in a pan in sunflower oil or butter. Start on high heat, then reduce heat to low until tender and golden on the outside. Clean and wring out the salads. Prepare the vinaigrette by whisking the ingredients together and adding the salt and pepper. Prepare the mayonnaise by whisking the egg yolk and mustard, then add the oil in a thin stream. Adjust the seasoning and soften with a dash of vinegar or lemon juice. Bon appétit!!!

And there I hope you still dreaming of Paris and France, we are all! Patience is a virtue and we needed now more than ever. Best wishes wherever you are and keep strong and safe.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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