This morning I woke early to get in a short run before 10am and had my first police “control” since the lockdown as I was crossing the Passerelle Simone de Beauvoir to Parc de Bercy. With the online attestation it was super quick; the officer just scanned my QR code, asked me to confirm my name, and sent me on my way. I also saw that the quays below the bridge are now closed off like the rest of the quays in Paris, and another police checkpoint was down there intercepting a rogue runner.
Beautiful Tribute to Paris
This video for Sous le Ciel de Paris (Under the Paris Sky) by the singer Zaz (with Pablo Alboran) is from her 2015 album “Effet Miroir”, but it’s such a fitting tribute to this beautiful city, pulling all of the nostalgia strings (you can also see the original with just Zaz singing and English subtitles here):
Armchair Metro Ride
Love it or hate it, the metro is very much a part of Parisian life. But even though it’s still running limited service during the lockdown, you’re not allowed to take it unless you need to use it to get to work, to the doctor’s, or for other specific reasons to leave the immediate vicinity of your home. But you can channel the metro spirit with these cool videos taken of several Paris metro lines from the driver’s perspective (lines 1, 2, 3,3bis, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11, and 14). Here is Line 6, which is partially above ground…you can even see a quick glimpse of the Eiffel Tower at 2:17:
French Theatre Live Online
Your Mid-Afternoon Parisian Dance Party
The popular French DJ Bob Sinclair, leader of the “French Touch” movement, has been doing live DJ sessions each day from 2-3pm from his Paris studio on FB and Instagram. It’s mostly house music, funk, a ton of 90s hits, and basically whatever makes him happy. I like that he makes an effort to actually dress up when he’s playing, which is more than I can say for most of us, LOL! Today he was spinning 80’s mixes in a snazzy silver jacket and black leather pants. A great pick-me-up to dance around your living room in the afternoon!
FUN MOOC: Free Online Classes from French Universities
I personally like to think “staying alive” is enough of a goal during the pandemic to keep me busy (well, and I’m still working full time), but for those of you looking to make the most of your newly imposed free time, why not check out the free online courses offered by the FUN MOOC (“FUN” = France Université Numérique”; a MOOC is a free online class available to anyone who signs up). Browse the over 500 classes from 140 different French universities in 41 themes, some available in English, many available with English subtitles (such as the “Vivre et Accéder à l’Emploi en France” (Live and Work in France) class that opened yesterday. Many have a specific timeline so you need to sign-up within the time the course is taking place. They don’t offer academic credits, but you’ll certainly find plenty to learn, from coding for the Internet of Things to home décor.
It’s not just traditional universities offering free online courses. The “Colibri” (Hummingbird) citizens movement that focuses on cooperative living models in harmony with nature are currently running their second popular Permaculture MOOC as part of the Université des Colibris. It’s only in French, but it’s quite handy if you live in France and want to learn all of the permaculture vocabulary and the some of the leading personalities in the movement.
Pet Adoptions Now Open in France!
Thanks to all of the signatures received on the petition by the French SPA to allow pet adoptions during the lockdown, today the French Minister of the Interior Christophe Castaner has announced it will now be allowed starting Thursday April 16th if you follow strict rules: choose your pet in advance on the SPA website, make a rendez-vous with the SPA to receive a special attestation with time and date of the pick-up showing (IN ADDITION to the usual attestation with the box for “motif familial” checked), and only one family member is allowed to be in the vehicle to pick-up the pet.
Open the windows, play some good music, bake a cake…but stay healthy, stay home! – Heather