This morning, without any reason at all, RATP (The Paris local transport system) decided to make a unexpected celebration of SL (The Stockholm local transport system) by adapting the “no sense” approach between information given and what actually happens.
Bus 31 – next departure in 12 minutes, the bus arrived in 2 So missed that one. Bus 21 – next departure in 13 minutes, the bus arrived within 4 minutes and best of all the Metro ligne 13, direction St Denis, no traffic at all (scared me cause the strike here is actually still ongoing) and the opposite direction 28 minutes. Have no idea if any trains eventually showed up cause I took the ligne 21.
But it is #TGIF and the end of this week feels warm, fuzzy and cozy. My new colleague whom I meet for the first time in Geneva last week will visit the Paris office today in a phase 2 introduction so not much else will be done today. So important work without doing much work is a perfect end of the work week, n’est pas?
So, all of Paris walk around in some kind of tense calm building up for this afternoons expected madness. So of course for some reason the way to work went better than ever today. It was more or less like a normal, non strike morning. So at least I am at work, in time without walking any longer distance.
Now it will be some planning on how to get home. We have to leave the building at lunchtime today cause of the risk of violence when the demonstration reach its final stop at Place de la Concorde around 16h00 this evening. So let’s see… Will it be walking home or maybe I’m so lucky at least the buses still run when we leave the office today.
So, here we go again, tomorrow on the 24th, a Friday, they close down the city and nothing will move. Even at work we have been told to go home earlier cause of the risk of violence at Place de la Concorde.
I have not been able to find a website pointing out the way the demonstrators will walk from Republique to Place de la Concorde but if they in any way pass Place de Clichy or Gare St Lazare I won’t be able to come to work, or leave work – dangerous or not. Cause on manifestation days, even if the participants not move until the afternoon, the police block the main paths during the night, so walk to work will take much longer than the normal 45 – 60 minutes.
So we will see how to tackle this problem, close my eyes and hope for the best or actually take the day off. It turns out that most of my colleagues already off cause of a by work organized ski trip, so I think we are three people in place tomorrow. Yes, if they will be able to travel at all.
In any case, the French class is cancelled, cause no one wants to try to get there.
It seems like a lot of the buses and Metro lines now working, if not perfect, at least much much better than last week. But to say the strike is over is a bit too much. 4 of 5 buses in my area, the Metro runs in the morning “as normal”. But that is my area. Over all it seems like people will be able to get to work more or less normally today at least. Let’s see on Thursday (the week day they usually use as the day of protests) if we will be back to walking to work.
I will for sure enjoy, from tomorrow, to go back to my normal wake up schedule, 30 minutes more sleep in the morning. Loevely.
My plan for this post was to be a bit funny and write about my experience in Geneva yesterday, and to be a bit ironic over “Le trône Patron” (picture) and the fact that not all have a view over Place de la Concorde.
I also planned to joke about the fact that you can’t see the Patron sitting there cause he is “so short” (My boss is kind of above 2 meter something – he also admit to reading my posts here so I hope I still have a job tomorrow), but then reality hit the fan this morning. Another Thursday with no communications what so ever. So, just “take a deep breath, a sip of Champagne and open up your eyes” (from “La cage aux folles” by Le Jeté, 1983) – and WALK!
Really, another strike day? Any demonstrations today so it will take 3 hours to get home? Stupid people…
So the mood to be fun, ironic and sarcastic about stuff kind of vanished on the way from home, step by step “fun” just slowly died.
But to demonstrate what an amazing boy I am: Today is the day when my open space colleagues get’s a piece of chocolate in the shape of a Swiss Army knife. I know, I am adorable!
As you might know, a few of the first things you learn to say in foreign languages is how to swear and of course dirty words and sex talk. Not much use of the latter yesterday but my God what a perfect day to practice the first option, the swearing.
Already in the morning it was obvious to be a hell day for people in need of transport. Without any real reason behind it, the morning offered no transport at all. No reason behind it really since the demonstrations been planned to start late in the afternoon, but why not destroy the life for people as much as possible?
So, for the first time since the strike started in the beginning of December 2019 I faced the fact to walk all the way to work, not just some parts of it.
But then, the way back home… Seriously? OK, I accept to be walking but I do not accept, not even for a second, to be blocked from doing so at every F****** street corner with added heavy rain and a police force more confused than the people they are there to “protect”. Over and over I was told to go to the next street corner cause it was possible to pass there and reaching that point of the promised land being told to go back to the first place cause there it was possible to pass.
But I love the police man who was really tiered of it all and told the pedestrians trying to go home to enter into the Car Park and wait there cause at least it was dry.
After some search I finally found a small narrow street without any police blocking the way and was able to cross the demonstration path and I promise… If looks could kill the amount of protesters would be very reduces in numbers today. I think they actually was aware of it cause they stopped and let me through.
Not at all dry and looking as if I was a kitten thrown from a bridge but managed to survive I finally arrived home. And if there was any support for this strike before yesterday it is now completely gone. I can’t fight even if my life depends on it but in this case I will do an exception and gladly punch anyone telling me they are a part of this protest, right in the face. Stupid, stupid people.
Since the strike begun early in December this is the first day NO communications worked and I was forced to walk all the way from home to work. Some heavy rain and a drop in degrees upon this and I will be in bed for a week or two. An option most likely to happen, not cause of rain but if it get’s colder, under +/-0 degrees, and the only way to reach work is walking, my cardiologist already flagged for sick leave. Not a good option right now with all reports on 2019 pending attention and a exciting system launch coming up. I also plan for a visit at the office in Geneva next week, but I do refuse to walk to the airport.
So why today? Today is a huge day for the people who strike, a huge demonstration day, something that sounds fuzzy and cozy when you say it in French “Mouvement Social” – Don’t sound so bad?
So we will see if the day ends with a healthy walk back home as well. Strike is actually worse than heavy snowfall, cause then it is impossible to leave home and it is accepted.
So to you all living in countries with no strike horny citizens, have a nice day.
And of course the picture is stolen from Internet, so if anyone protest on the use of it please let me know
Again, following yesterdays blog post, more and more people start earlier and earlier from home so soon its time too set the alarm 30 minutes earlier again… But do anyone really like to get up at 04h00 if not needed?
In any case a fun link on why French people strike when they really do not need it.
Now the strike start to get really stupid. In the beginning of last week people took days off or worked from home but it is obvious from today that some more of them need to be at work and can’t work from home. The few buses still running is crowded earlier than usual and people actually fight to get on them. The French politeness, includes a happy Bonjour is for sure gone.
I actually don’t know anyone who is included in the strike, and if it turns out I do know someone I will for sure and forever delete this person from the list of friends or if I am allowed to strangle them, slowly. I guess I won’t get such a permission so strike them from the Christmas Card list might be the weapon.
And to read what the city recommend, take a bike or a scooter, yes sure, the weather is really perfect to take a bike. It’s even hard to walk to work since the rain water in some areas is knee deep so you arrive to work wet in any case, and just thinking of how you will look after biking or riding a scooter… I get pneumonia just thinking of it. So let’s see if my employer this week actually will allow us to work from home cause I can’t do this much longer. And if it get’s just a bit colder I can at least blame my heart and be on sick leave.