A Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight
Special note: Apologies for the technical difficulties we experienced launching this week’s Nouvellettres® on time and any email you sent which may have bounced back. We’re not “out of the woods” yet, but working on it and should be back to normal soon!
Today is the longest day of the year, and one of the hottest in Paris. Anyone who doesn’t believe Global Warming is for real, needs to visit the City of Light and see for themselves how we are experiencing increased temperatures. My geraniums knew it when they easily survived the winter and now when they are begging to be watered daily. Fans are going full blast in every room of the apartment and visits to the frozen food departments of the local supermarkets our only respite. A trip to Darty this morning to fruitlessly search for another fan proves the overwhelming need for cooler air.
No, my apartment doesn’t have air conditioning like most all Paris apartments, nor do most restaurants, because in the past we didn’t really need it. It’s also near to impossible to find a place to put the necessary compressor in a place that doesn’t visually disturb the environment, which is protected heavily by city regulations. With the “réchauffement climatique” wreaking havoc in the summer months, we may soon be seeking alternatives to “climatisé” our environments in any way possible. Someone needs to invent something fast!
There’s no need to write me with all of your suggestions on how to better cool my Paris apartment — I basically know most all the answers myself, and have (stupidly) chosen not to spend a fortune installing central AC or even placing portable units in each room, which are unsightly and take up too much space. But meanwhile, I’m heading to Nice on Saturday instead, where the breezes are breezier and the apartment is fully air-conditioned thanks to the looser city regulations that didn’t prevent having a compressor on the balcony.
On this longest day of the year is the annual Fête de la Musique to which I look forward every year. First launched in 1982 by Minister of Culture, Jack Lang, Christian Dupavillon, an architect-scenographer with a member of his departmental staff and Maurice Fleuret, a French composer, music journalist, radio producer, arts administrator, and festival organizer, it is now celebrated in more than 120 countries.
A creature of habit, I’ll be doing the usual route, by having dinner at one of the bad restaurants at the Place Marché Sainte-Catherine (they all are bad, for some reason), listening to the bands playing there (Lemon Hearts this year), and then roaming the “hood” for more. Place des Vosges is always a great spot for classical performances and sing-alongs, under the archways where the acoustics make every sound, sound better. My favorite performances tend to be the youngest musicians who have the moxy to go out there and play, regardless of their proficiency.
Since I’m headed to Nice Saturday afternoon, I’ll be sadly missing another one of my favorite summer events, Gay Pride. This is the 40th anniversary of the first parade! The LGBT reminds us all this year, that they are still battling prejudice and social injustice.
The parade route is different this year…leaving at 2 p.m. from Place de la Concorde then marching down rue de Rivoli, passing not far from the Ministry of Justice and near the Pyramide du Louvre. The procession then turns onto Boulevard de Sébastopol to cross the ultra dynamic district of Châtelet and then will turn right onto Boulevard Saint Martin, ending at Place de la République where the Grand Podium will be held from 5 to 10 p.m.
My advice: Find a nice café near the end of the parade. Arrive there about 3:30 or 4 p.m. to get a good table. Drink and be merry until the parade shows up at the Place…then leave the café, walk against the parade and take pictures so that within about one hour you can see all the floats and marching groups and side-shows! I promise you will have a blast and laugh your colorful buns off.
Yep, there’ll be a hot time in the Old Town tonight!
A la prochaine…
Adrian Leeds Group
(by Erica Simone)
P.S. Make your plans to attend the next Après Midi–the last before our summer break. Craig Carlson, Restaurateur and Author, will make a presentation about how his restaurant “Pancakes in Paris” came to be. Don’t miss it