Getting a PACS in France – the non-romance of civil partnership

  Just what on earth is a PACS, why would you want one, how do you get it, and how might you get out of it? I myself went through the rigmarole just after I moved to Paris (that’s to say, obtaining it and not getting out of it), and had no idea what I […]

Paris Snow

This is Paris 8:30am this morning from the apartment window. I was catching the news and heard about the snow in the UK, chuckling to myself how the whole infrastructure crumbles with just half a cm of the white stuff, let alone several centimeters, but then I drew back the curtains, and found the above. […]

The Paris Metro

The Paris Métro is a necessary evil. Its sixteen lines cover over one hundred and thirty miles stopping by more than three hundred stations (conveniently pour moi, one of those is directly outside my apartment). With 4.5 million users a day you can kiss goodbye to your normal boundaries of personal space but at least […]

Eating snails in France – the art of avoidance

Eventually one has to get to the topic of why the French eat snails. I have to confess I don’t actually know the reason why a little garden dwelling gastropod now rises to the status of becoming gratifying gastronomic grub. The Romans used to eat them and if I had to guess I imagine during […]

Bercy Paris, stiltskin dancers and olive oil

Bercy was the place Parisians came to get merry when once upon a time it stood as a rural village serving cheap intoxicating liquors (untaxed). With time the area turned to squalor until its revival in the 1970’s. The dilapidated wine storehouses (chais in French) have been revamped into dedicated commercial shops, and a modern […]

The 16th arrondissement and the return of the Space Invaders!

  It seems those pesky space invaders won’t leave me be. I walked to the end of my road this morning, the same walk I’d taken many a time, and I’ll be damned if I didn’t find another of the little mosaic freaks looking up at me with two sinister black hollowed square eyes. [April […]

Space Invaders taking over Paris

I swear I saw a space invader somewhere on our street or perhaps down a little side road in the 16th arr., scratched my head at the implausible context and then carried on walking giving it no more thought. Then one day I was in the 18th arrondissement and there was another, perhaps 10 feet […]

Cheri (Film), 1920’s Paris. To feature a photo from the website

Over the past fortnight I’ve been exchanging a few emails with a couple of members of a film production team, working on a movie named “Cheri” set in Paris in the 1920’s and due for release next year. I spoke to the assistant of Andras Hamori (producer for such films as Sunshine and eXistenZ which […]

Notre Dame, cannibalism and opera

  Sunday congregation is not normally the pursuit of an apostate whose Sunday school preached that friends and family were most likely going to a very bad place with wailing and gnashing of teeth etc. etc. Never-the-less it was Sunday morning and we went to Notre Dame to see my girlfriend’s gay opera singer friend […]

Jardin du Luxembourg in the Autumn

  I was in the Latin Quarter this afternoon and passed a strange looking aluminum sculpture in front of La Sorbonne which served as a climbing frame for kids and adults. To add to the surrealism a bleached haired, leather clad 6ft 6 couple (they were identical heights, male and female) walked past getting strange […]