Some news from France, CCCXXVII

And yes is that time again to tell you about my belle France and its ups and downs lately. Of course, in addition to some news that I like ; thank you for reading me along these years, always appreciated. We had a bit cool weather and wet light rain but the sun did came out and we enjoy a ride  on the beaches. Let me tell you what is going on in the French Republic!

The new confinement certificate, necessary since midnight ,this past Friday to be able to travel to the sixteen departments concerned, was posted online overnight from Friday to Saturday by the Interior Ministry. As a reminder, Île-de-France, Hauts-de-France as well as Eure, Seine-Maritime and Alpes-Maritimes are the territories affected by this re confinement. The measure is scheduled to last at least four weeks. To accommodate daylight saving time on March 28, the government has moved to shift the curfew to 19h (7 p.m). From Saturday, March 20. Inter-regional travel is prohibited, except for compelling or professional reasons. Teleworking is strongly recommended: for companies that can, they should spend at least 4 out of 5 days teleworking lol!!!

From this past Saturday, what will be the consequences of the new re confinement on the offer of public transport in Ile-de-France? For the time being, no change in sight according to Ile-de-France Mobilités. The offer of trains, metros, buses and trams in force was modified on March 1, in consultation with user associations. During the day, around 90% of the usual offer is maintained, except on metro lines 7 and 13 or the RER B, the busiest. On the other hand, the frequency of metro and trains drops after 19h30. In the evening, only one in two metro runs. The Transiliens local trains have reduced the service since March 15, with an announced maximum delay of 30 minutes between two trains. Ile-de-France Mobilités will observe next week whether the end of the day peak requires an extension of the normal offer until 20h30 (8:30 p.m) . or not.

Barely a few hours after the Prime Minister’s announcement last Friday on the re confinement of 16 departments in France, trains from Paris were full. The train company already had twice as many bookings by early evening on Thursday and some destinations in the West and South of France are now almost full. The regions most affected by reservations in recent hours are Brittany, the Basque Country, Gironde and Corsica. Train tickets to the cities of Rennes, Nantes, Vannes, Bordeaux, La Rochelle, left in a few minutes. For flights, it is the airports of Toulouse, Montpellier, Biarritz and those of Corsica that have been the most requested. Yeah they are coming home to Bretagne lol!

Nope, the long-awaited reopening date is not yet known. But restos are starting to see more clearly: the reopening will include three phases of 4 weeks each. The 1st phase concerns hotel restaurants. These will once again be able to receive their customers at the table for breakfast. The 2nd phase allows the terraces to reopen (ouiiiii). The interior of cafes and restaurants will also be able to receive people, within a limit of 50% of the usual capacity so that the distance is respected.The 3rd and last phase gives rise to a total opening and without gauge, in the respect of the protocol. The protocol is the same as last summer, and   it is supplemented by a device for tracing customers via a QR code to be flashed at the entrance!. The problem?   The length of these phases. At the rate of 4 weeks each, we cannot hope for a return to normal for at least three months. The clubs, largely forgotten, should know more by the end of March since a “disco plan” is in preparation by the government.

But mais ouai .. The ban on heated terraces of bars and restaurants postponed to April 2022. If the heated terraces have been declared harmful to the environment, the deputies believe that they could be necessary for a good economic recovery of restaurateurs. Bien sûr no need a brain for that gov politicians!

In the business chic La Défense, more than 60% of employees have already deserted their offices. After a brief upturn after the summer, the larger business district was once again abandoned by a majority of telecommuting employees. The new measures announced by the government should further accentuate the process. But of course, who can work at a distance not in my Finance field we need the terrain!!check check check!

The Stade de France, located in Saint-Denis (Seine-Saint-Denis dept 93), will soon reopen its doors to the public… Not to see a football/soccer match or a concert, but to get vaccinated. A “vaccinodrome”! a huge vaccination center should indeed take place next month in the stadium which saw the Blues become world football/soccer champions in 1998. It will allow thousands of inhabitants to be vaccinated every week. from Seine-Saint-Denis but also from Île-de-France region. And just to keep the rivalty going even with vaccines at Marseille (Bouches-du-Rhône dept 13), the iconic Vélodrome stadium has already been hosting a Covid-19 vaccination center since last Monday. It is installed in the premises of a grandstand, and not on the lawn or in the stands, according to the regional health authorities (ARS).

The employees of TUI France, the French subsidiary of the German tour operator will have 600 dismissals confirmed. The Cergy administrative court dismissed the employees of the tour operator, who challenged the approval of the job protection plan by the regional labor department. Always investments wins even if jobs are lost.

Confinement: in Paris, traders between resignation and catastrophism. Whether in leather goods, ready-to-wear or hairdressing, the owners of small independent businesses do not hide their concern on the eve of this third closure in a year. But of course, the small ones pay more and will be difficult to recuperate unless we will be a completely welfare society! Life goes on….

Already a large majority of restaurateurs, penalized by the closure of their establishments, have adapted by offering take-away sales, there are now a certain number of professionals cooking their dishes directly in the markets. The restaurateurs of Versailles (Yvelines 78 capital) had shown the way to the Saint-Louis market in January with the “Place aux restos” operation, organized by the Metro distributor and professional unions. In Triel-sur-Seine,(Yvelines dept 78) where the market has been welcoming professionals from the city and the surrounding area for several weeks, under particularly favorable conditions. The city, which had bought wooden chalets a few months earlier from the city of Marseille for its Christmas market, decided to leave the shelters available to traders, while reserving a square for restaurants. All new creative minds at work, go to the markets I always said.

With the ski lifts at a standstill due to a health crisis, ski touring has never been so popular. With its ridges and snow-capped domes, the Espiau mountain in the Pyrenees is the ideal place to get started. Above the town of Bagnères-de-Luchon, in Haute-Garonne,(dept 31) once famous for its thermal baths and romantic landscapes including the famous Lake Oô. The Oueil valley is a small valley like there are so many others in the Pyrenees, wild and lost. A dead end that ends in the village of Bourg-d’Oueil and its ski resort (at an altitude of 1,350 meters ), the smallest in the Pyrenees. Three ski lifts, a team of amazing volunteers to welcome you, run the restaurant, rent skis, and a ski patroller “loaned” by neighboring resorts, all giving a family atmosphere and good-natured. The village of Cirès is located almost at the end of the Oueil valley, just before Bourg d’Oueil. Above the church, the Pierrefitte pass. You leave this village at the end of the morning to reach the Pierrefite pass. After conscientiously gluing your skins on, slipping in a shovel and probe, the equipment used to free a person buried in the snow, in your backpacks, and turning on your avalanche victim detectors, you begin by walking up a forest of fir trees. There, you quickly get in the mood. In winter, no more landmarks, no more paths. You have to deal with hollows, bumps, cross streams or avoid fences. The only visible traces are those of chamois and deer. Ok so I guess no masks there oh yes ski sun eyeglasses needed!

The Paris Observatory, a citadel of science with its head in the stars. This historic landmark saw the discovery of Neptune or the invention of the speaking clock. Today, it hosts researchers participating in major astronomical projects and space missions. Built in 1847 on the roof of the Paris Observatory, the Arago dome houses a 9-meter-long telescope, which was once used to study the stars. And we need it open to see it again !

Montmartre is angry, This past Thursday morning, the services of the City of Paris cut, destroyed, and finally put under concrete the trunk of the magnificent hundred-year-old wisteria, which covered the terrace of the brasserie le Plumeau. And housed the meals of all the greatest artists of the Butte. André Breton had lunch there… The whole neighborhood is talking about it. Ok so where are the ecolos in Paris!

A 450,000-year-old human bone identified in the Tautavel cave (Pyrénées-Orientales dept 66)), Numerous fragments of several “men of Tautavel” members of the genus Homo who lived 450,000 years ago have already been discovered since more than half a century. This time, it is a piece of fibula a little less than six centimeters in length, found eighteen years ago, as told by  Agence France-Presse (AFP), by archaeologist Christian Perrenoud, responsible for research on this site, which has been systematically excavated since 1964. On the other hand, no DNA research is possible on such ancient fossils. Still not yet able to go beyond 80,000 years maximum with DNA, even if there are examples in Spain where they have managed to go a little further”, explained M Perrenoud. The Caune de l’Arago, or Tautavel cave, about twenty km north-west of Perpignan, has already yielded a very large number of fossils which have made it possible to reconstruct the evolution of faunas, flora, landscapes and Mediterranean climates between 100,000 and 700,000 years ago. Well a little finger will go a long way to tell us who we were lol!

The restoration of the Bayeux tapestry created snags in Franco-British diplomacy. More damaged than it was thought, medieval embroidery will be extensively restored from 2024, calling into question its loan across the Channel. For nearly five months, it has been lying in the dark, isolated from the fury of the world behind its three-centimeter-thick armored glass. Like all museums in France, the one that hosts the Bayeux tapestry in Calvados has not opened since October 30 2020, closed by the government to stem the epidemic due to the covid virus. Embroidered nearly a thousand years ago to celebrate William the Conqueror’s victorious landing in England in 1066, the old linen lady is in pain and in need of emergency care. Exposed vertically since its installation in 1983 in a building built for it, in the heart of the capital of Bessin, the Bayeux tapestry has cracks, despite all the precautions taken to ensure its conservation. A total of 24,204 stains, 16,445 folds and 9,646 gaps in the fabric or embroidery were identified. More worryingly, 30 unstabilized tears were observed. Such a statement had never been made on the embroidered face, It was assure by the regional directorate of cultural affairs (DRAC) of Normandy. We will see delicate yes only the compagnons pros on this one I hope.

A sad news for the arts. Less than two years after its inauguration, will the Montpellier Mo.Co radically change? Its initiator, Nicolas Bourriaud, seems in any case excluded from the game. On March 23, the board of directors met to decide on his successor and the future of this unique structure, which brings together the Ecole supérieure des beaux-arts, the art center La Panacea as well as the Hôtel des Beaux-Arts. collections, created in 2019. We will see if a good management is found.

And to end with good news. The Maison Philippe Conticini has opened its chouquette bar . They are sold individually or by 3, you choose your pastry cream: vanilla, coffee, citrus, lemon or chocolate and an insert of your choice . You will rather opt for the lemon confit, the citrus confit, caramel, speculoos paste or praline? Classic or daring, all combinations are allowed. To devour for breakfast or at snack time, the essential chouquette has never ceased to make us salivate. The opportunity to have a blast. Chouquette bar Maison Philippe Conticini , open Wednesday and Thursday from 12h to 17h at 42 Rue de l’Annéquence 16éme and Friday and Saturday from 11h to 17h at. 31 Rue Notre-Dame de Nazareth 3éme of Paris. Well take out for now but looking forward to try it, we love the chouquettes!!!

And voilà my belle France hanging on as usual in history. We shall overcome and when all is open again, the flocks will be huge!!! better get your reservations with right to cancellation ok! And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

2 Comments to “Some news from France, CCCXXVII”

  1. Thanks for the update. Not a lot of good news coming out of France right now.

    Liked by 1 person

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