Tag Archives: paris

paris, champ elysee shut down because of killing of police officer.

20 Apr

london 10.51am 11C sunny thursday 2017

8.48pm 12C night dry. its been a quiet day in london but right now i have the tv on and the news live about the shooting of two police officers in the champs elysees, one died, (9.38pm the other had died too) and the whole place is shut down with no one on the street. people asked to stay indoors. it brings home how dangerous paris is.

a major tourist and landmark street being closed like this. it would be about 9.48pm almost 10pm in paris.  this action is so unusual that it must make people who normally would take these things in their stride, and carry on their normal activities without pause, this one must make them  pause and review their thinking. coming on top of that mass killing of restaurant customers in the past, i think if i were a parisien, i will start to reassess my risk factor.

is it safe to live in paris now? perhaps if i live there, i might still consider it safe to live there… but if i were a visitor, definitely i would not go there to visit. i read recently that the police generally will vote for le pen, because of her hardline security views. this incident must strengthen her position.

 

many tourists agencies have tried to maintain that life is normal in paris, and try to persuade their clients not to avoid going to paris, that the chance of being involved in a terrorist incident is low…but it seems to me the terrorism there is taking on a frightening direction, with terrorists shooting the police, or shooting the public as they eat in restaurants. it is so random and the targets are so unpredictable. that makes it more frightening to me. if the chances of getting killed just by eating in a restaurant in central paris can happen, it would make me avoid going to paris. you might say the chances are very small, but to get killed for something you do for leisure, that your being there is nothing important and not necessary , seems to me not worth the risk. there are plenty of other places in the world where u wont get gunned down just by eating on the sidewalk cafe on the street.

i think they really have to address the security question. every time an incident like this happens will be another nail in the tourist industry for france, and make its citizens more fearful and avoid eating out or going out in paris. 

added. 12.11pm friday 21.4.17. there is a daily express article asking is it safe to go to france, and the poll says 35% will go irregardless, 43% says recent events have made them rethink and not go, whilst 22% (which includes me) says they have no plans to go anyway. 

added. 24.4.17 the french president election first round has come and gone. macron and le pen go on to the second round. both are inexperienced with govt, but le pen have a stronger pledge to do something about security. but i think she will lose the second round, as the voters who have voted for the other losing candidates will shift their vote to macron.

my feeling is that french voters are too scared of leaving the EU. they have lost their own currency and are deeply entrenched in the EU, they cannot afford to leave it. and though they might like the stronger stance le pen takes with security, i think her stance against the EU will frighten them more.

they might accept more deaths from wild card terrorists in their cities  as the price worth taking or not willing to bet that le pen will stop such terror attacks even with her increased security measures.

 

lots of foreign news happening

15 Oct

london 11.48am saturday 2016 cloudy 14.2C

3.30pm 17.1C sunny/cloudy

things are v quiet in london, though not so in paris, there pictures in today’s online daily mail show migrants sleeping in the streets altering the whole character of how we like to think of paris, the romantic city. before and after pictures taken by someone with a hidden camera shows the aftermath of a police clearance of the area.  it is no wonder the person who took the pictures is not sympathetic. it looks like a post apocalyptic city.  

the dailymail online coverage is much more interesting than its printed newspaper today. it also shows an article about the tribute service for the 86 who died in the bastille day massacre.

and an article about the effect of shutting down of the red light districts in thailand as a result of the death of the king of thailand. it looks very eerie, all shut like that. to those of us used to seeing lights and noise and brashness and vibrant activity associated with the nightlife in bangkok, it looks weird….  it is not a good time to be a tourist there . the moaning mourning will last for a year. for a month no alcohol to be served and no festive making.

the death has affected even london, there was a thai food festival that was supposed to go on friday in spitalfields and it was cancelled.

this guy in thailand on twitter has listed all the festivals that are cancelled because of this death. 

densiest cities

23 Nov

london 00.53am 3.5C monday 2015

i was so sleepy at about 6pm (yesterday, seeing it has just turned today) that i went to sleep and woke up at 10pm. so i am wide awake now. it is one of the joys of not needing to work, i can sleep whenever i like. i saw this in my reader about delhi showing in a picture how dense it is. then i saw the link to wikipedia about list of densiest cities in the world, manila is number one, with the philippines taking the top 3 places. in fact, manila is a unique case, not only is it listed top of the list , but 2 of its suburbs are listed 2nd and 3rd. so many people crowded in such a small area.

 but what is interesting is that paris have 4 suburbs in the top 10. those places have densities that we associate with slum cities in third world countries. how did it happen in a first world city like paris?

if u were to go to paris as a tourist, you would never have suspected it. it is only now that i see this list did it strike me.

though we must allow for the fact that it was selective parts of paris that fit the category… whilst for the other examples, they were whole cities. so u could argue that if u start cherry picking… selecting only the most crowded parts of a small part of a city, you can always find some parts that are very densely populated. yet rio de janeiro, which has a well known favela area dont appear in the list. 

thoughts about my day

13 Sep

london 8.20pm 15.2C sunday 2015

i see from a video taken in penang, malaysia  that there is a haze over that town. if it has spread so far north as penang, than the haze is really widespread and the south of malaysia and singapore must be affected too.

the news never mention this haze but it is really irritating, not only physically but mentally as well, i am sure.

but here in london we might be having cloudy skies but there is no smell of burning. though  they say london is polluted but if it is , it is all unnoticed in that it does not look polluted, it is invisible;  and that is more bearable. 

i was coming back from the library at marylebone, which is my usual habit, and it was such a long wait for the 88, that after the third C2 bus that goes to victoria came by, i decided to cut my losses and take that bus. and when we approached oxford st, i found out why.

the top end of regent st was blocked and the bus had to divert down oxford st to marble arch and then go down park lane to hydepark corner where it took up its usual route to victoria.

later i found out why. the tv showed live the final leg of the round britain cycle race. it was supposed to be from 3pm-6pm, so i must have caught it just when they closed the street. this time they held it between regent st and whitehall, a circular route going up one road direction and circling back the other direction. it all seems quite pointless, and so disruptive but i guess we are resigned to it. not sure if the businesses in regent st and chinatown lost money from it but the crowds were still there, at least all along oxford st. so maybe there is no damage done to the businesses in central london. and of course the tourists can still get around easily by tube which they tend to do anyway, as not many are familiar with the buses.

well, it was a pleasant diversion as i had all the time in the world and in no hurry to get back home. life is very pleasant in london, at least for me.

i read of all the pickpockets in paris , even seeing a video of a woman taking money out of the ATM machine and two gypsy women openly grabbing the money as it comes out of the machine. and walking calmly away, with the victim futilely trying to detain them. so brazen these pick pockets.

the pickpockets have certainly got more forceful and openly aggressive now in their stealing.

in the past, when i was there, it was kids, gypsy kids doing it.  they mill around you and then they all leave. and one of them at a safe distance,call out to get your attention and place something on the ground which u suddenly saw was your wallet. and that is when i realised i had my pocket picked.

luckily they took only my money and not my credit cards or documents. they are so clever i never realised my pocket was picked. but that was like 20 yrs ago, 1995 and now i see it has gotten worst.

needless to say i never reported it, as i dont know the french and it dont even know how to go about it. and as far as i was concerned they did not steal my passport, which they must have realised would get a very different reaction from me. losing a passport is so terrible, i know for a fact that with us malaysians, that is the single most horrible thing that u can do to us when we are abroad because to replace it is nigh impossible.

added.5.15pm monday 14.9.15 i saw a video showing a this kind of money grab from ATM machines happen in uk too. so lets not just think it happens in paris and with gypsies or with women muggers. this video and words  shows men hanging around and then barging away the woman and taking the money from the machine.

when i come  here to uk and see all the british people so blase about losing their passport when they are abroad. i can only marvel at them.  they just laugh because they know the govt will replace it easily without much proof. 

 i would certainly have chased them and done anything to get it back and reported the theft which i think would then bring the police on them. but this way, just stealing money, they know tourists wont bother to report it.  

there is an article in the guardian comparing london with paris, and saying london is much better. and it mentioned how paris is surrounded by very poor ghettos, with hardly any public transport nor high street stores. which no tourists ever goes, whilst at least in london there are no no-go areas. 

added. 14.9.15 as the video above shows it can happen in london too, atm robberies. i suppose it is the human thing, we prey on each other now, stealing money from each other instead of killing each other for food, like other animals. ah well, at least we dont kill each other, at least not that much. though we still kill each other too, but not for food. 

Nicole Allisson♥ Nightmare in Paris- I went to Jail (Part II)

11 Jan

Nicole Allisson♥ Nightmare in Paris- I went to Jail (Part II).

i got this from the facebook page of one of my cousins.

it looks like malaysians are suspects now because it is a islamic country. the french are now so jittery anyone from a vaguely muslim country will get a jittery reception if u give them the slightest suspicion.

it looks like malaysians now have to get a letter of invitation to visit france if u have a relative there. and if u dont have a relative there then u have to have a hotel reservation and enough money (60euros a day it seems) and medical insurance. things are made more difficult because so many malaysians dont speak french.

it seems to me that from what is required, it might be better to just give the name of a hotel and make a reservation with that hotel rather than bother to go through all that hassle with the letter of invitation which has to be signed by the mayor of the town that your host is staying.  and what about those who are using bnb, someone’s home but who are strangers to you. they might not want to go to all that trouble to get a letter of invitation from their mayor esp when u are strangers to each other. i guess best is just avoid going to france. that way all these become irrelevant.

i think once people realise that customs will tighten the requirements for entry to france, people might just avoid france altogether.

i have no intentions of going abroad, but i think this just makes me real glad i dont want to go abroad again. and definitely not france.

can’t blame the french customs for strictly implementing the requirements now, when before they were very lenient about it. i wonder if these strict requirements apply to all muslim countries. or even to all non EU countries.