The Paulowina trees on the Place d’Italie are in bloom, and they smell AMAZING without all of the cars stinking up the place. Fun fact of the day (which I’m sure residents can already guess): Concentrations of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), produced mainly by vehicles and thermal power plants, have fallen by 54% in Paris during confinement according to maps published by the European Space Agency.
The Latest News
Today the French news shows are preoccupied with questions of what will happen when May 11 rolls around and the logistics of coming out of confinement. Will we all be required to wear masks? What about kids in school? Will those going back to work be guaranteed safe conditions? Will the elderly be required to stay in confinement and if yes, what age is considered “elderly”? Will France limit travel to countries hit hard by the pandemic such as Spain or Italy? This last one concerns me the most because I still haven’t cancelled my June trip to Venice and Florence. My friends and I are trying to remain optimistic, but I’m pretty much resigned to the idea that we’ll have to postpone it, even if France is “open” and running at that point. I think this is just how we’re going to be looking forward for awhile – indefinitely? – after today’s announcement that despite the 17,920 deaths due to coronavirus in France, at least the number of people hospitalized and the number of those patients on life support are still going down each day.
How to Make Authentic Café Crème at Home
David Lebovitz continued his daily 6pm (Paris time, CET) with an interview with coffee expert David Flynn of Belleville Brûlerie in Paris, on making café crème and café au lait. There is also a ton of geeky coffee tips (like ground coffee grain size). You can see the replay for 24 hours on his Instagram Stories.
Free Artisan Coffee Delivery
Belleville Brûlerie is also shipping their artisan coffee free throughout France during the Covid-9 lockdown, and for every purchase of a bag of their special Assemblage Petits Soins blend they will donate a bag to Paris hospitals.
Why is it Hard to Find Flour?
One of the few things that’s not always easy to find in French supermarkets is regular flour. There are a few reasons for this, which you can learn about in this “Spotlight on France” podcast in English from Radio France International. The hosts also discuss how the pandemic has highlighted inequalities in the French healthcare system, and the origins of the word for French suburbs, “banlieu”.
Parisian Restaurants Helping Soup Kitchens
Producers, distributors and restaurateurs founded a collective, “Les Ravitailleurs”, in order to provide thousands of meals a day in Ile-de-France to four soup kitchens, including Restos du Coeur and Secours Populaire, during the health crisis. If you’re a restaurant owner, producer or distributor who wants to participate, check out their website. They are not (yet) accepting donations from the public but if you’re interested, go ahead and give them your email info to be informed when they do: https://www.lesravitailleurs.org/
Navigo Pass Reimbursements
The president of the Île-de-France region, Valérie Pécresse, has announced an additional reimbursement of €25 for annual and monthly Navigo transport subscriptions, covering the period from the beginning of May, in addition to the reimbursement of April subscriptions, for €100 total in reimbursement per subscriber since the start of the lockdown in the Ile-de-France. The RATP will be scraping the budget barrel in 2020, since this comes right on the heels of the reimbursements they made in January for the strikes that crippled public transportation in December.
The Paris Challenge
How well do you know Paris’s metro stations and popular places? This timed quiz by My Little Paris is fun to play to test yourself. When you start, just choose Mission 1: Stations de Métro or Mission 2: Lieux Iconiques and you’ll see the name of the place on the bottom left appear, click where you think it is on the map. Points are calculated by distance as well as speed. I haven’t been able to get more than 15,000 yet on the metro challenge and 14,500 on the iconic places, but I’ve always been close to the mark except for La Badaboum (totally wrong arrondissement!). Have fun playing!
“Stay healthy, stay inside! – Heather