Archive for March 12th, 2021

March 12, 2021

Some news from France, CCCXXVI

Ok I am back at you with the latest from my eyes to you. This is for those not into Roman numerals , my 326 post in the series, which I thank you for your kind readership over the years since 2010. My belle France as others is going thru different times, we have been restricted like no other time except war time which we know well unfortunately. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel. We had days of wind, light rain, and sun all this week in my neck of the woods, yet we have gone out to my coastal beautiful Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Bretagne in my belle France. Enjoy the news as I.

And as said be careful, ask ask research research, we wait. Now AstraZeneca vaccine has come up with severe allergies added to possible side effects. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) wants to add anaphylaxis and hypersensitivity as side effects. And countries like Denmark, Iceland and Norway have stopped the vaccines.

The newest entry into the lotto roulette on vaccines for the Covid-19 is Janssen vaccine from Johnson & Johnson ,which have been authorized in France as in other countries. This is after Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca,is the fourth vaccine against the covid19 to be inoculated in France. I am sure the list won’t stop there and plenty of others in other countries….

France announced this yesterday the easing of travel to and from seven countries outside the European Union, abolishing the obligation of a “compelling reason”. From Friday, Great Britain will be part of this easing of travel arrangements. The others are Australia, South Korea, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore. For travel to and from these countries, other traffic restrictions remain in effect like the presentation of a negative PCR test less than 72 hours before departure, in particular. Consulting the Travel Advice website is particularly recommended and it is strongly recommended to limit international travel as much as possible lol!

And the Notre Dame Cathedral continues to get closer. Two years after the terrible fire which destroyed part of Notre-Dame de Paris, thousands of oaks trees will be cut all over France by the end of March 2021 to allow the identical reconstruction of the frame and the spire of the cathedral. This past Thursday morning, two hundred-year-old oaks from the Meudon national forest, selected a few weeks ago, were cut down by the ONF logging team. In the next few days, ten more large oaks will be harvested in the region with eight in the forest of Marly (Yvelines dept 78) and two others in Dourdan (Essonne dept 91). The first cuts have already started last Friday in the Sarthe, in the forest of Bercé, where the first eight oaks were cut. In total, more than a thousand hundred-year-old, even bicentennial, trees will be donated across France for the reconstruction of Notre-Dame de Paris.

Reconstruction of Notre-Dame continues indeed with finding the “ideal stone” from the Oise (dept 60) quarries. While studies are launched to find the most suitable stones for the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral of Paris. The decision is due in May to extract this stone from the area of Saint-Maximin (Oise) which is the same type of limestone as that used to build Notre-Dame de Paris !!   Yes move on my Lady!

The restaurants have been closed for almost 5 months and, despite the take-out sale that they have managed to organize with a masterful hand, the activity is more than ever in danger. YES! They have even proposed to the French government to revert to the sanitary protocol which was in force until last fall; that is   respecting a distance of one meter between the tables and a maximum of 6 guests per table. In addition, the sector is proposing the establishment of a QR code system in establishments which would replace the system of “reminders”. The Prime Minister Casteix gave new key elements regarding a possible reopening of catering places: ” He suggested that the key is for the entire French population at risk to be vaccinated, which should take place between mid-April and mid-May”. So light at the end of the tunnel…

Fifteen occupied theaters in France! The movement could increase …!! The Cinemas announce that they want to “show films” this weekend, and there is a wind of revolt in the world of culture, exasperated while the minister mentioned this Friday morning a “goal of reopening during the second quarter of 2021” . Nantes (Loire-Atlantique dept 44 ), The Graslin theater was also occupied this Thursday, joining several other establishments across the country. Of course, Roselyne Bachelot, the Minister of Culture a guest speaker in France Culture. She testified to her support for intermittent entertainment workers and assured that she would work for a reopening of cultural venues between April and June: “We are really in this objective of reopening during the second quarter of 2021.” What a big hope for these people who are hurting and keeping us away from culture!

And of course, for the upteen time that I lost count the Eiffel Tower needs to be repainted . However, too much lead stops the painting of the Eiffel Tower. The board of directors announced last Friday the suspension of the painting project, due to dispersion of lead. Ok at least she gets a break from all that glue thingy lol! OF course ,where are the ecologists here? The last measurements date from January 5 2021,   and they are maddening. While indoors, the regulatory lead dangerousness threshold is set at 1,000 micrograms per m2 (5,000 mg / m2 in Parisian public spaces according to the regional health agency), lead concentration levels detected on the tower Eiffel “explode” , a measurement on the ground floor,(1 fl) exit from the south staircase, is 22,452 mg / m2. Another nearby is 9563 mg / m2. And on the first floor (2nd Fl US), at the level of the northeast passageway, a measurement made the counter jump to 46,333 mg / m2. More than nine times the authorized threshold! These are non-standard rates. However, is the Tour Eiffel have you smell!

Of course, we tried to reduce carbon oxide but the lead the lead!! Now the riding at 30 km / h by car in almost all of Paris is for the end of the year 2021. It was a campaign pledge from Mayor Anne Hidalgo and environmentalists. The whole of Paris will be affected, at the beginning of 2022 at the latest, with the exception of a few major axes. This is already the case in 60% of Paris anyway, mind you 30 kph is about 18 mph even slower than in school zones in the USA! Which is 20 mph!

The Manufacture is ready to roll the Goutte d´Or. This former Talbot cycle factory, with its Eiffel structures, is open to support professional projects in the neighborhood. As soon as the sanitary measures kick off. You can take a peek here:

Nice Paris do the Buttes-Chaumont, a timeless walk. The Buttes-Chaumont park delivers the art of gardens and the technical prowess of the 19C. An exceptional and magical space driven by Napoleon III to clean up this unhealthy district of Paris. The Parc des Buttes-Chaumont 19éme arrondissement or district of Paris offers, on 25 hectares, exceptional landscapes between Norman cliffs and Mediterranean forest. Sublime indeed to visit when possible

This one gave a chuckle or two, well now I know the last time at the CNIT La Défense 2015. The Cnit event space upgraded in post-Covid mode. Closed since 2015 due to construction work on the future RER E station, the conference space managed by Viparis will reopen in 2022, completely redesigned in a new form to recreate a kind of underground forest.

And this will be new by the time I go back to the area yikes! A transformed avenue, renovated buildings, etc is the new face of Neuilly-sur-Seine   to appeals to companies. The second phase of the redevelopment of the aisles on Avenue Charles-de-Gaulle, which will begin next month April, is accompanied by other extensive work, with major restructuring of the offices. Something to please companies, a little less for residents. Of course , my fav place de Madrid will be unrecognisable. More from the city here:

The Auberge Ravoux will remain closed, the other sites ready to reopen. Due to the epidemic, Van Gogh’s house, at Auvers-sur-Oise , which is also a restaurant, is giving up on opening again this season. It will use this period to carry out maintenance work.

The opening of Disneyland Paris again postponed. Yikes and my boys waiting for it! The reopening of the amusement park scheduled for April 2 has been postponed again due to travel restrictions in Europe. The site has been closed since October 29, 2020. New opening date is June 2, 2021. Fingers crossed!!!

While waiting for the Supermétro, Guyancourt (Yvelines 78) begins to draw its district of the station. A consultation, which will last three years, is launched this Saturday 13 March 2021 in order to draw the contours of the future Savoirs district, which will be served by metro line 18 ,the line from Orly airport to Versailles Chantiers train station that in turn connects with Montparnasse in Paris. More from the Grand Paris project webpage:

The Biennale des Antiquaires lowers the curtain wow !. It was Le Journal des Arts which first published the news, in the form of an obituary: born in 1956, established at the Grand Palais in Paris in 1962, under the patronage of André Malraux, La Biennale-Paris (formerly Biennale des antique dealers) is dead. The National Union of Antiquaries (SNA), which organized it, hands over to an outside company called Manufactura, which will create, in November 2021, a new event, whose name has not yet been revealed, at the ephemeral Grand Palais. . Too bad another bites the dust in Paris. More in French at Le Journal des Arts

And time for renovation indeed. The Canal Saint-Martin is (finally) getting a facelift of yesteryear: historical and colorimetric studies have made it possible to find the original color of Napoleon Bonaparte’s footbridges, light gray. On either side of the walkways, workers will also restore two candelabras to their original locations and add lighting to the underside of the arches.   Built during the second half of the 19C, thousands of walkers use them every day. You may have already seen workers start work on the oldest of all, passerelle des Douanes or Customs Bridge (assembled in 1860). The operation will continue on that of Bichat and that of La Grange-aux-Belles. Renovation work will also be carried out to reinforce the stability of the structure and the ground with its original stones; the same as those of the Sacré-Coeur, by the way. Work is expected to continue until July 2021. Great!

And last but not least. Between Pantin and Romainville, a few minutes walk from Bobigny-Pantin-Raymond Queneau station line 5, this is the first shopping brands mall with direct access with a metro line. A large village of brands names coupled with a place of creation is about to open its doors at the end of November 2021. The village will see the light of day in the former postal stables of Paris, an industrial and working-class district of Romainville. On the program, shops, yes, but also unmissable food spots: we are promised a selection of world cuisine, ten restaurants, an 800 m2 food court and a culinary program that evolves all year round. For those in public transport mode in addition to the metro line 5 you can get here on bus lines 145, 147, 318 and 330. The webpage for the current mall:

And there you go folks, my latest news from my belle France that I like of course. Hope you enjoy them as I do, and until next time in Some news from France!

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

March 12, 2021

Church Saint Malo at Saint-Malo-de-Beignon!!

So bringing you back to my beautiful Morbihan and its small picturesques towns on the off the beaten path. I like to present you with Saint Malo de Beignon. So much for updating older posts which ,also, allows me to find these missing gems. Hope you enjoy the post on the Church of Saint Malo at Saint Malo de Beignon!

Again, this is the beauty of travel me think, going into these small quant towns inland Morbihan and see the beautiful monuments even for a day is a great family outing. Enjoy the tour!

Saint-Malo-de-Beignon is close to Beignon, its name also evokes Saint-Malo because under the Ancien Régime (monarchy) the bishop of Saint-Malo had his summer residence there since 1062.

The Church Saint-Malo is located in Saint-Malo-de-Beignon.  From 1396, Saint-Malo-de-Beignon is an ecclesiastical court of the Bishop of Saint-Malo, whose manor house is adjacent to the Church. The church preserves vestiges of Romanesque construction: portal from the 13C, tall, narrow windows from the 11C In the choir, tombstones of the bishops of Aleth (15-16-17C). The construction began in the 11C. The residence of the bishops was burned in 1958 and in large part demolished in 1977. The west façade is Romanesque, stands out by its polychrome apparatus. It is partly hidden in the north by what remains of the residence of the bishops, which also hides a large part of the north wall of the Church. Framed by two powerful buttresses, it presents in its center a portal consisting of a massive masonry in advance whose top in build extends through a flat counterfort to the top of the gable. In the center of the massif, the door is framed by three broken arch arches falling on. Two full-hanger stained glass windows are  on both sides of the church. The south wall in return, pierced by three small full-sized stained glass windows, is of the same time. At the choir level, two large full-scale stained glass windows date back to the 18C. A polychrome altarpiece of the 17C occupies the background of the choir.


The typical small village with pretty stone houses, flowered, at the top of a small hill.   The 16C Calvary with a twisted column. The Bishops’ Garden, a small French-style garden, ideal for strolling , restored in 1993 according to existing plans and writings, respecting the flora and fauna. Quiet of a peaceful garden. The miniature port: in a rural setting, this miniature port invites you aboard scale models of boats, evolving on a 6 ha pond. Equipped with an electric motor, they can carry 2 to 6 people. On site, visitors will also find City Stade, children’s play areas, picnic areas in a landscaped undergrowth.

The Guer-Coetquidan tourist board on Saint Malo de Beignon heritage:

The Morbihan dept 56 Tourist board on the Church Saint Malo:

And now I feel better to tell you about this wonderful little town in inland Morbihan, another gem of our region. Hope you enjoy the brief introduction on Saint Malo de Beignon and the Church Saint Malo.

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

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March 12, 2021

Church Saint-Denis at Saint Gravé!!

So bringing you back to my beautiful Morbihan and its small picturesques towns on the off the beaten path. I will give you a brief instroduction to Saint Gravé. So much for updating older posts which ,also, allows me to find these missing gems. Hope you enjoy the post on the Church Saint Denis at  Saint Gravé. 

Indeed ,Saint Gravé is a nice little town in the woodlands of my beautiful Morbihan pretty close 4 km to St Martin sur Oust (see post), and we love it in the countryside!

The town of Saint-Gravé, it seems, is a dismemberment of the primitive parish of Pleucadeuc. In 837, the cartulary of the Abbey of Redon reported the presence of the monks in the territory of Saint-Gravé.  The parish is mentioned in the 11C. It seems probable that Saint Gravé, Sancta Gravida, is the name of the Virgin responding to the Angel who announced that she was going to be the mother of the Redeemer. Created as a town under the French revolution in 1790, Saint-Gravé was attached to the canton of Rochefort-sur-Terre in 1801. The territory is naturally bounded to the north by the Oust river and to the south by that of Arz river; to the east it borders to Peillac and to the west to Pluherlin and to Saint-Congard. The town is located to the east, 6 km from Rochefort en Terre and 40 km from Vannes ,and just 20 minutes from Redon.

The Church Saint-Denis b. 1900 replaces an old church destroyed in the late 19C. The old church remains only part of the Sainte-Anne Chapel, dated 1864. The Church houses a polychrome wooden statue of Santa Gravida or Our Lady of Advent. It retains a processional cross in silver of 1664. The parish church, under the term of Saint Denis the Areopagita, preserves some remnants of an ancient church south of the nave. There are also two ogival stained glass windows with flaming mullets, impellers and four leaf clover . The chapels once wore the names of Cancoet, the Brossais and the Saulaye. Today they are dedicated to the Rosary, to St. Anne and to the Sacred Heart.


Other things to see are: the Dolmen des Follets (around 3000 years BC), the Saint-Sixte chapel (16C), the former 18C presbytery, former hunting meeting point for the lords of Rochefort, the residence of Kerdrel (1882), former house of nuns (the Daughters of the Holy Spirit) donated in 1882 by the family of Kerdrel. Chapel of La Bogerais (16C). Also, the private monuments such as the Château du Brossais (19C). The first manor house existed in 1383. The current castle was built around 1600 and enlarged in 1780. The castle of Cancouët (15C), seat of a former lordship. The buildings are surrounded by a wall dated 1643. You will see there a dovecote.

The city of Saint Gravé on its heritage:

The Rochefort en Terre tourist office on Saint Gravé

And now I feel better telling you about these small gems in my beautiful countryside of Morbihan in my lovely Bretagne. Little Saint Gravé is quant, pretty and if combine with a visit to the above towns a perfect getaway by car of course. Hope you enjoy the tour as I.

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

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March 12, 2021

Church Saint Martin at Saint Martin sur Oust!

So bringing you back to my beautiful Morbihan and its small picturesques towns on the off the beaten path. I like to introduce Saint Martin sur Oust to you. So much for updating older posts which ,also, allows me to find these missing gems. Hope you enjoy the post on the Church Saint Martin at Saint Martin sur Oust!

Another picturesque small town in my beautiful Morbihan in an off the beaten path discovery of Saint Martin sur Oust. Deep Morbihan indeed!

Saint-Martin-sur-Oust is apparently a dismemberment of the Gallo-Roman parish of Glénac. In feudal times, the territory depends on the Rieux family . It is erected in town  in the French revolutionary period of 1790 as most if not all French towns. Saint-Martin, also known as Saint-Martin-sur-Oust, because of the river that bound it to the south, is contiguous to Saint-Laurent, Ruffiac, Saint-Nicolas-du-Tertre, Les Fougerêts, Peillac, Saint-Gravé and Saint-Gongard. The town is located close to the river Oust, and 10 km La Gacilly and 54 km from Vannes.

The Church Saint Martin built from the 15C to 1959, renovated in 1853 for the bell tower and transept, then finally rebuilt in 1959. From the 15C Church, there was only one third-point door at the beginning of the 20C and a stained glass window with a radiant lattice. The nave and the choir had been rearranged in the 18C. The cross-braces and the bell tower were also redone in 1853. The bell tower has three broken hanger openings. On the façade, the fenestration is underlined by clear stones. The pinion, backed by two buttresses, is pierced by two oculi. The door and the cowl date back to the 15C. The altarpiece dates from the 17C,  it presents in its center a painting appearing a crucifixion and the lateral niches house the statues of St. John the Baptist and Saint Michael. There are some old wooden statues including a statue of St. Martin with his sword and his coat to give to the poor. A simple ogive door, and a window of the same style with clover and triodes mullets. The lateral altars were dedicated one to the Rosary, the other to Saint Blaise and St. William, a 3rd to St. Julien and St. Margaret, a 4th, removed since then, to St. Barbara, they are today under the words of the Blessed Virgin, the Sacred Heart and St. Peter.

St Martin sur Oust

Other things to see here are : Chapel of Saint-Mathurin dite, in its time, Saint-Mathurin-des-Garais. Two dates can be read on its door lintels: 1602 and 1681. This already testifies to several improvements. The civil status archives show marriages there around 1580 … Its altarpiece has just been restored in 2007. The Chapel of Saint-Léonard Its pediment bears a date: 1651. The existence of a chapel of Saint- Léonard, in this sector, has been established since 1155. It was then a small colony founded by a monastery of women, the Saint-Sulpice abbey in Rennes. Walk on the Nantes-Brest canal or on its banks: village of Saint-Martin, Guélin lock, Guélin bridge by the towpath, possibility of extension to various directions in the countryside.

The city of Saint Martin sur Oust on its history/heritage:

So this is a picturesque little town of  Saint Martin sur Oust of about 1300 folks sitting right in the countryside of the Morbihan sitting by the center of a nice visiting triangle of Maletroit, La Gacilly ,and Rochefort en Terre! see posts. Hope you enjoy this gem and do dare to come into the off the beaten path of my Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Bretagne.

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

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