Has it really been a whole month? Has it only been a month? Are we really going to have to keep doing this for another 30 days? Short answer: Yes.
Direct from the President
President Macron gave another televised speech tonight. Here are the highlights: thanks to everyone’s hard work fighting the virus, keeping the country fed, and observing the confinement rules, the coronavirus death rate in France is slowing and life support cases in hospitals have not gone up in five days. So there is hope. He admitted France, like most countries, was not prepared, but that manufacturers are working overtime to catch up to the demand for medical supplies, masks, hand gel and respirators. For now, confinement will continue until Monday May 11th. Starting on that date, elementary and highs schools will start reopening (universities will not be able to open before summer), enough masks will be available for everyone, and enough tests will be available to check everyone who has symptoms. Other businesses (including restaurants, hotels, museums) will still be closed until further notice, and no festivals will be allowed to take place before mid-July. Solidays, the annual music festival to raise funds for AIDS/HIV treatment and prevention has been cancelled. The organizers have promised that reimbursements can be requested starting in May, but hopes people will consider it a donation instead, and not ask for their money back.
Notre Dame a Year after the Fire
“An Hour From Paris” author Annabel Simms has written a new article, Notre Dame a Year after the Fire “Just a year after the fire that nearly destroyed Notre Dame, the cathedral is once again at the heart of a far bigger worldwide disaster. What can we learn about life after the Covid19 pandemic from the fire that almost destroyed it – but didn’t?”
Dreaming of the Loire Valley
Someday this will all be over and we’ll be back to our sightseeing and world travel. In the meantime, you can start thinking about all of the wonderful new places you’ll visit by checking out the videos of Loire Valley Châteaux (for you sporty types, check out the 800km bike route along the Loire River):
Sustainable, Seasonal, Local Produce
Want to know how to help keep small farmers in business during the lockdown? Potager City is a service that delivers seasonal produce directly to the consumer from producers in their region. You can order boxes of seasonal fruits, vegetables, or a mix of the two, but you don’t have to choose the “formules” if you prefer to order specific items. What’s most interesting is that what you get depends on what’s being harvested in farms closest to you, which means that nothing will travel more than a few hours maximum from farm to your table. You need to pick up your order at relais points near you (be sure to pick a food shop that’s open under confinement).
The Perfect Family in Confinement
The French comedic couple Mélissa & Fred have made a series of hilarious videos showing what the (imagined) life of the perfect family would look like under confinement:
For the reality, A Day in Confinement captures the bizarre new habits we’ve all acquired to make it through the groundhog like days under lockdown. Even if you can’t understand French (the subtitles help), you just might recognize some of the same repetitive actions you’ve been doing, too.