Friday, February 28, 2014


I know there is not much to see about Paris on this photo, but I like it! I took it at Les Halles, where they are doing a lot of work like I already told you about. This is a path way to one of the parking lots that they managed to keep! Have a great Friday everyone, I'm back to Paris after a few days in Nice and I'm here to stay for at least 3 weeks! 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Going to the market

Unlike a lot of people I'm not a big fan of traditional markets, like the many we have in Paris - and in France in general - but from time to time I like to visit one, just for the scenery. The Montorgueil one is particularly nice as, not only it's kept a certain traditional flavor, but on top of that it's a very bobo (Bourgeois Bohême) place with lots of interesting bars and cafés in which you can see and be seen. In the morning, you can actually find people who really do their daily shopping, like these ones I caught in the eye of my camera.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Lonely suitcase!

Is that a piece of art? Some sort of "happening"? Nah, it's just the suitcase of a trump that I found "unattended" as they say in airports in front of the Beaubourg Center (when I tell you this could have been a piece of art!) 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The aesthetics of shopping...

I don't know if you're like me, but I'm always disappointed in duty free purchase. Prices are not that low (except for cigarettes), your tax savings are often compensated by the mark-up of the store and since you have 30 minutes to kill (23 minutes exactly according to CDG airport (Paris airport)) you tend to buy anything, just to keep yourself busy, even if you need and extra perfume...  I photographed this outlet on my way to Nice, where I am at the moment, but of course within France there is no such thing as Duty Free. Anyway, it still makes a good photo...

Monday, February 24, 2014

The country side of Paris

This weekend I went to the country to a beautiful friend's house outside of Paris and... Not true! I went to Bercy gardens - again! This house is actually La Maison du Jardinage (the house of gardening) and you can find there all sorts of plants and advice to grow your own. I really don't have green fingers - and not the required patience to grow anything! - but I would love to live in this house, both inside Paris and in the middle of a huge garden... Priceless.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The new garbage cans of Paris!

I know it's not very glamorous to talk about garbage cans when running a blog about Paris, but... don't forget that we have one every 100 meters (328 ft) here, so it's an important matter! The thing is that early December the Paris town hall decided to replace the old ugly green ones (that had been installed very quickly after we've experienced a series of bombings in the 90's with this brand new "bagatelle" model. As always, it's a controversial topic as this migration costs money (1 million euros so far and 3 million eventually...).

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The surfing and jumping mannequins

OK, I've had my day off! Time to go back to PDP work ;-) And what's better than a quick drop by my favorite mannequins store, it's been a while ;-) From their attitude you can tell that summer is coming! It's actually the first time I see a mannequin in a diving position ;-) Anyway, I just wanted to put a little summer in your day, with a few weeks in advance ;-) (well for those who live in the Northern Hemisphere).

Friday, February 21, 2014

Day off!

I'm so exhausted tonight, all I want is... to take a break, like this lady in the Bercy park. I very rarely took a day off on PDP, but today I will. Sorry... (Mind you you still get a photo, but no facts and figures caption!)

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Coal delivery at the Elysée!

Yesterday morning around 6:30 am, just before President Hollande (France) was scheduled to meet with Kanzler Merkel (Germany), there was a special delivery at the Elysée (the building where President Hollande works and  meets people): a truck load of coal (5 tons!). As you can imagine this was not meant to feed the President's central heating system, but to protest against the fact that France - and Germany to a lesser extent - don't do much to boost renewable energy. It was all organized by Greenpeace France, an activist association that is very good at providing the media with strong images. Proof is... that they even made it to PDP ;-) Now if you wonder if I woke up at 5am to be on time to take this photo, well, no! It was taken by Greenpeace photographer Pierre Baëlen.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The progress of Les Halles

Do you remember this post from November 2012? At that time Les Halles (the area that used to be the central market of Paris from  1135 till the early 70's, when they transferred it to Rungis, in the suburbs) was totally destroyed as they were working on its complete renovation. Even this big head - called L'Ecoute, by Henri de Miller - was barely visible. Well I went back there a couple of days ago and it has changed a great deal already, you can even walk around the head like before... Pretty soon the cranes will be gone too...

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Hugs for free!

There may not be free lunches, but there are free hugs, I can assure you! I witnessed this scene in front of La Gare Saint Lazare where these two charming ladies (Kathryn Hudson on the left and my favorite kiwi Roniece on the right) would open their arms to hug anyone who wanted to. It did not last very long as... the SNCF (French railway company) police asked them to give hugs somewhere else! Which they did, with a lot of success! I would never dare doing something like that, so I'm really impressed that they did. Bravo Mesdames ! 

Monday, February 17, 2014

The vain van...

I went to Bercy Village, an old part of Paris that they renovated about 15 years ago and turned into a pretty cool shopping and eating area and... I came across this amazing van called Le Boudoir des Cocottes. A boudoir is a private room where ladies can "powder their nose" and a cocotte is, well, a lady who is a little vain, in a nice way. This van is precisely made for them... They can have a manicure, make up, beauty tips... for affordable prices. How clever! I'm sure it's going to be a big success! Check the website.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Who painted that?

More and more graffiti artists don't paint directly on the walls, they first draw or paint on paper and glue it to the walls of Paris. Nothing gets damaged, they have plenty of time to finish their work and their piece of art is not lost when it's covered by another one, or cleaned par the Paris anti graffiti "police"! I know nothing about this artist, but I wish I did, for I really love this image. Have a great Sunday everyone, even if the weather goes crazy in some parts of the world!

Saturday, February 15, 2014


When it rains and gets sunny several times in a row during the day, we have a word for that in French; it's called Les Giboulées (April showers in English, according to Wikipedia!). This phenomenon generally happens in March, but this year the weather must be a little desynchronized, as Les Giboulées have started! I took this photo outside my local town hall, and, well, it's a classic, but I still like it;-)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A new Paris metro line

There are 14 metro lines in Paris (16 if you count the "sublines" 3 bis and 7 bis) for a total of 220 kilometers (137 miles), but it's not enough! On top of that, the city limits are probably going to change: what's now in the suburbs will progressively be merged into a "greater Paris area". That's why the next "Paris" metro line - line 15 - will run exclusively in the suburbs, going from Pont de Sèvres to Noisy-Champs (see here, if you're interested). It will be totally underground and fully automated (therefore never be "on strike"!). Its construction should start next year and it should be completed in 2020 (yeah, right!) 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I can't stand the rain...

Yes, I know, another of these rain photos that I have taken so many times... (It rains quite a lot in Paris!), but I can't help it; it's been only 5 days that I came back to Paris after Thailand and and I'm already fed up with the rain and the cold! Just one positive aspect... humidity helps make interesting photos ;-)

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Paris mayor to leave soon...

It's not too cold in Paris at the moment, but it's still possible to ice skate! -) I'm posting this photo today because 1)I like it! and 2) because it shows the Paris town hall in which our mayor held his last city council yesterday, after 13 years in power. In a little more than a month there will be elections and he won't run again. It's very likely that the new mayor will be his current deputy mayor, so things should not change too much!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Go west!

This week our President (François Hollande) is heading West, towards the United States and more precisely towards Silicon Valley, where a lot of young French entrepreneurs moved to create or work in start-ups. He goes there to learn from the local eco-system, but also to try to collect a few dimes from the digital giant such as Google or Amazon...  I though that posting a photo of one of the "founding fathers" - and the 3rd President - of the country was appropriate. This statue of Thomas Jefferson is actually at the end of the Le Pont des arts Passerelle Léopold Sédar Senghor on the left bank. 

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Taxi war!

French taxis - and the Parisian ones in particular - are protected by something known as a numerus clausus (closed number) so that they are sure to have enough customers to make a living. There is so much demand compared to supply that competitors (SnapCar, LeCab, Chauffeur-Privé and Allocab )are trying to sneak in and grab a share of the cake, by bypassing this numerus clausus. Taxi drivers are very angry and since they have the power to paralyze the streets, governments have always given in... This time however, they might not win so easily, because their competitors really have the support of the general public.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Fromage, baguette and other French delices...

I don't know if you're like me, but when I visit a foreign country, even if I love the food they make  - and God knows that Thai food is really good - I begin to miss the food I'm used to! What I miss the most? French bread and more precisely crispy baguette which you can only find in France. Cheese also, is something I miss pretty quickly when I travel. That's why today, I stuffed myself with all this in a restaurant near my house ;-)

Friday, February 07, 2014

I'm back!

And exhausted! Going straight to bed... (Photo taken from the rooftop of Le Printemps)

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Going back to the cold!

OK, maybe I'm exaggerating a bit (especially after I told you that this winter in particularly mild in Paris...), but after one month of heat in Bangkok I really feel like I'm going back to the - very - cold. Anyway, as you can guess I took this photo last year in the rue de la Paix (you can see the colonne Vendôme in the background). Next photo will not be a "canned" shot, but a live one (I'm surprised to have been able to last a month with my stock actually ;-))

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Things change and... remain the same!

Here is one of the latest Tram stations that has recently been open in the 13th arrondissement. About 2/3 of Paris is now encircled by a tram line and no doubt that this circle will be totally closed one day. Exactly like it was until 1934 when there was an inner circle line called La petite ceinture around Paris. The Petite Ceinture line did not resist the development of other means of transport (especially cars), but now that there are too many cars, public transportation has become a new reasonable way of moving around Paris. Shame that we had to spend so much money to redo something that was pretty decent about 80 years ago...

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Let's meet at Place de l'Opéra...

In many cities you have meeting points that everybody knows and where it's easy to meet up with someone before going places. The Opera metro station is one of them... There is a large area that allows a lot of people to wait and it's also a big hub for buses and the metro. So next time you're in Paris, if you plan to go to the Rive Droite (near the Grands Magasins) you can ask your friends "On se retrouve à la station Opéra ?"

Monday, February 03, 2014

Warm winter

I have only a few days left in Bangkok and pretty soon I'll be back in Paris... I'm not too happy to go back to winter of course, but the good news is that unlike in North America, winter seems to have been - and still to be - pretty mild this year. So mild, this Maillol nymph does not need to wear any clothes! Have a good week everyone.

Sunday, February 02, 2014

A well deserved anniversary.

This is the portrait of L'Abbé Pierre, a vary famous French clergyman who died in 2007 and who is famous for a call he made exactly 60 years ago, during winter 1954 after a woman had just died of cold in the streets of Paris. He urged the Parisians to bring him blankets, tents, garments... anything that could help the homeless to go through the very cold winter of that year. He then created an association called Emmaus which aim was - and still is - to help the needy. 60 years after he is still remembered as a hero! He even has his portrait in many places in France, including this one that I photographed off l'avenue de Clichy in the 18th arrondissement.

Saturday, February 01, 2014


I did not know what the CDP theme day would be when I left Paris in January, but fortunately I have brought with me a photo that matches pretty well the theme of today: Entry! Here is one of the "entries" of Le Louvre Palace. Nothing much to add, except that I encourage you to visit the rest of the CDP community to see what sort of entries there are around the world...