Agence France Press reports that far fewer cars were burned this New Year’s Eve than in previous years. Last year over a thousand cars were torched on December 31st, mostly in Strasbourg and the Paris suburbs. It’s such a common occurrence, it’s practically a tradition, like toilet papering houses as a Halloween prank in the US. But this year only 70 cars were burned in Strasbourg, and 32 in the St-Denis suburb of Paris.
Perhaps, ironically, it was just too cold for the disgruntled youth to bother going outside this year. France, like most of Europe, has been hit with multiple snowfalls and below freezing temperatures since December 17, delaying flights and trains, and blocking roads. A huge block of ice damaged the brakes on a train heading to Paris from Belfort this morning, delaying 250 passengers while workmen were called on site to make repairs. And passengers trying to get to the UK or Germany this weekend are not likely to get very far, with trains in much of England (including the Eurostar) still on limited service, and a blizzard forecast in Berlin has residents stocking up on food and water “to last for at least four days”.
Of course, burning cars to stay warm is a bit of a no-no, even if it’s your own. Perhaps you can thaw out with a copy of the magazine “Entrevue“, which is currently showing very naughty photos of the 2009 Miss Paris. They’re being sued, but for the moment circulation has not been stopped. Is anyone even surprised anymore?