In general France is a beautiful place and a tranquille society. Successive regimes have sought to stabilize thinking and encourage the population to leave the real work of governance to the brainiacs that are produced by the grand ecoles (Mr Sarkozy did not attend a Grand Ecole). The system works relatively well, better in times of prosperity when people are more docile and have more to lose by rebellious behaviour. In that respect most western societies are the same. The price that is paid is higher tax rates and occasional petty, laughable politicians and petty corruption. Toronto does not have a monopoly on wacky bureaucrats. I defer to Dave. He feeds me at 06:00, he cleans up my poops, feeds me cookies and he carries me when I am tired or threatened. In short Dave and Alanea take good care of me and I in turn take care of them. I snuggle in bed with Alanea and I make sure Dave stays occupied. We are a team of 3 however we have made good, reliable friends here in France. Russians, Danish, Swiss, English, Dutch and French friends. We sometimes agonize over why we don't have more visitors from Canada and Dave whines about not having Coors Light. We watch with interest and sometimes think that the French are their own worst enemies. They encourage freedom and egalitarianism yet sing the national anthem when the far right threatens the very basis of democracy. They seem to forget that one of the founding reasons for the EU was "NO MORE WARS", that has been achieved They drive recklessly as if to say "I pay for insurance so I am bloody well going to use it", even at the risk of serious injury. The French take a win / lose approach to almost everything, more than likely because in a socialist country winning and wealth accumulation are generally viewed with distain by those who's competitive edge is limited to passing cars on narrow roads. Unfortunately efficiency in France would destroy it's quaint reputation, produce a 60% unemployment rate and simply not sit well.
Why the rant:
Because I almost met my maker on Saturday. Yes despite Dave and Alanea's best efforts to keep me safe some idiot woman allowed her big dog to run the length of a busy parking lot in a busier large city and attack me. Well he did not really attack me but it sure felt like she / he was attacking me. I screamed Dave and chased the dog away while the woman was trying to corral the dog and put it on a proper leash. Dave was very angry, he carried me until I stopped crying. Alanea scolded the lady (in French) but it won't do any good. Anyway I have posted a nice photo of me on my lounge chair for everyone to see. It is spring and I am alive and in love just like Alban.