Free Bikes In Paris
Over 20,000 bicycles are on their way to Paris as part of the mayor’s plan to make the residents of the city less-dependent on cars. (Many citizens of the city are absolutely irate about the new bike lanes.) The bikes will be free to use and can be picked up at one of 1451 stations, then dropped off at any one of them as well.
The system is set to be in place early this summer, just in time for tourist season.
Pack a helmet!
Partial Smoking Ban Begins Today
Today marks the beginning of the ban on smoking in public places in France. It’s believed that 12 million people smoke in France, and nearly 66,000 smokers die each year due to smoking-related illnesses. 25-30% of all adults smoke in France (which is below the European average), and half of all young adults under 35 light up too.
(Tip: If you’re smoke-sensitive, don’t sit next to a table of teenage girls. Trust me.)
The air in 42% of all places that allowed smoking was considered “dangerous”. Smoking is now prohibited in public buildings like hospitals, stores, offices, and schools, and there are stiff fines for smokers (68€) and business owners. The total ban on smoking in bars, caf&eagrave;s, and restaurants, will begin in 11 months, starting January 1, 2008, and the EU Health Commissioner has proposed a total ban in all 27 EU countries.
Currently it’s illegal to talk on a cell phone while driving, considered a public danger. But curiously, smoking indoors has been tolerated and vigorously defended. Today I expect to see a lot of people grousing in the street (les râleurs).
And speaking of ‘as seen on the streets of Paris’…
C’est très Parisien?
I’m heading out for a walk…it’s gonna be fun out there today!