Archive for January, 2010

Metlinks OTW : 29.01.10


Ok, I have to grant you this picture was definitely not taken this week: such clear blue skies… Also, when would I have had the time to go to La Vilette? Still I thought it was a nice picture.

Two-way bicycle paths in one-way streets?

Doesn’t this concept seem odd? I’ve always knows people riding bikes as having to follow the regular “code de la route“. Which meant, among other things: riding only one way on one-way streets and no riding on sidewalks. This could be very frustrating for those rinding on bicyles as it would mean a number of detours instead of taking the shortest route. (Not all were deterred though and I’ve often seen both people riding their bycicle in the wrong way on one-way streets and people riding their bycicle on the sidewalk… Some even assuming they should have priority on the pedestrians!)

Anyhow, it seems that, in order to favor bycicle use in Paris, one-way streets will become two-way by bicycles, thanks to an extra bicycle lane! All the info can be found here, where there is even an animation to illustrate how cars and bicycles will be moving along with these new paths. I’m sligthly worried about people not thinking to check BOTH WAYS before crossing such streets… But apparently, these lanes have already been in place in a few areas and things have been going well, with cars riding more slowly for example.

By the end of this year, almost all one-way streets where speed is limited to 30 kph should be equiped with the extra bicycle lane. I feel this could make quite a change for those using bicycles and encourage some who didn’t use bicycles before…


Metlinks OTW : 22.01.10

Wow, this is my first metlinks for 2010! Doesn’t it feel weird to write 2010? Well, I’ll get used to it soon enough I hope… Anyhow, here are some things that caught my attention this week, in a completely random order.


  • For the past few months, a group has been living illegally in a luxurious mansion off place des Vosges as a way to demonstrate against the difficulties of students and others to find decent and affordable places to live in Paris. A sentence has recently been passed by justice that they will be forced out of the building. You can follow the whole story on the press review of this group’s website
  • A lovely shot illustrating this week’s weather: Eiffel tower shrouded in mist
  • The possibility of a public transport strike on Feb. 3rd is looming…
  • Watch for all the closing exhibits at the end of the week! Among others, Teotihuacan at Quai Branly will stay open every day until midnight before it ends on Sunday…
  • But of course there are many more to come. Here is a proposed recap of upcoming exhibits!
  • Three concerts are organised in Paris in order to support victims of the earthquake in Haiti.
  • What about the soldes? Did you go crazy? Here’s the Figaro‘s take on their success for this year.
  • Neat post by David Lebovitz about mistakes onemight make while ordering in a Parisian restaurant.
  • A funny mistake or maybe we should indeed make line 14 doubly automatic??

Can you spare a dime?

Can you spare a dime?

Street art: Jef Aerosol left his mark just off Rue Mouffetard, 5th arrodissement.

Une partie du Luco inaccessible?

Dimanche, je marchais dans le jardin du Luxembourg et voilà que ma route est coupée : des cordons de sécurité bloquent l’accès à la partie centrale du jardin (toute la partie basse autour du grand bassin)…


La vue est originale : le centre est totalement désert, un fait rarissime, mais on peut voir les passants à droite dans la zone qui reste ouverte…

Je n’ai pas encore réussi à déterminer pourquoi cette zone était fermée, l’enquête est en cours.

Part of the Luxembourg gardens was closed on Sunday, a mystery but also a rare moment of quiet.

Metlinks OTW : 14.01.10

Two weeks into the new year, and nearly a month since the blanket of white snow descended Europe-wide, the Arctic chill is finally going to ease off a little. We’re starting to see temperature around 1-3°C (yay it’s greater than 0) but there’s no telling exactly how long will this reprieve be. Brrr…

Place de la Concorde

In The News

  • Is the nightlife of Paris heading towards extinction? New York Times argues it is so.
  • Pal Sarkozy (that’s the papa of Nicolas Sarkozy) has landed an one-man Surrealist art show in Espace Pierre Cardin in April. And the centrepiece of the show? A large canvas featuring his daughter-in-law, Carla.
  • All the kerfuffle over Christmas attempted terrorist attack on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit has now seen rippling security tightening worldwide. The French civil aviation authority will begin implementing the body scanner in Paris at the end of the month on an experimental basis.


  • What is the favourite word used incessantly by Parisians? “Putain!“, claimed Olivier Magny.
  • Are you a creature of habit when it comes to eating out? Or are you the adventurous kind who are constantly in search of some place new, you’re trying to challenge François Simon for his job?
  • In the mean time, is wine bar the new trend for dining out? Here are a few of the best wine bars that you could check out next.
  • Looking to pamper yourself a little in the new year with some Chinese foot massage session in your own home? At €40 an hour, it’s not too bad a deal and quite nicely, you have no need to go out in the cold!


Metlinks OTW : 07.01.10

Happy New Year! We trust you had had a good winter holiday, and tell us, did you become a king/queen yesterday? And how have your first week of the year pan out so far?


New Year

  • Did you make any new year’s resolution(s) for 2010? Penelope felt hers look rather familiar
  • January means winter sales! Les soldes officially started yesterday, and if you need a little navigation help, check out its official website. By the way, there’s extraordinary opening hours until 9 January.
  • Zeva of Paris BAO, featuring Sharon Bowman, introduces 10 great champagnes for the new year. Who says champagne is dead?

Special Requests

  • Adam took on a special request from one of his readers, featuring photographs of a location dear to a New Hampshire man. Adam has also generously offered to research and feature similar requests.
  • Don’t just chuck them – recycle your Christmas trees instead. There are 95 collection points around the city, and get them in before 24 January.


  • A few days before Christmas, the catacombes of Paris have reopened after a few months of closure, to deal with the aftermath of vandalism. Hurrah for the reopening! That place is spooky but cool spooky.
  • From 13 January to 21 February, the Monumenta Project at the Grand Palais will feature an exhibition of the works by Christian Boltanski.
  • The 260 black and white columns by Buren at Palais Royal took approximately €1.5 million to install, and to restore them, another €4 million was put through! The restored columns will be inaugurated tomorrow, Friday 8 January.

In The News

  • The folks from UK are chiming in on Sarkozy’s call for les grandes écoles to admit more students from low-income families.
  • What defines “Frenchness”? The motto of Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité? As the debate of French national identity continues, foreign press including BBC, The Guardian, LA Times, Huffington Post and Sydney Morning Herald publish their pieces on the issue. The most curious article, in my personal opinion, is that from The Independent, which admittedly is not all about the identity debate but touches on Sarkozy’s remark on the meaning of fraternité – then promptly blames Parisians of the ills of society in the form of rudeness.
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