Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween

Lets go to the Beach

Every August Paris takes a section of expressway along the Seine and turns it into a beach. Sand is brought in, beach umbrellas are installed and food and drink vendors set up shop. Eventually, they hope that they will be able to swim in the river. At least this gives a way for people who can't afford it to go to the beach.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

For the Aviators

A memorial plaque to a historical aviator in the Pantheon in Paris.

"Poet, novelist, aviator. Disappeared during an aerial reconaissance mission on 31 July, 1944."

Paris Street Iron

For the 4 and 2 wheel afficianados, here are some things seen in Paris. First a Citroen 2CV, also called 4 wheels and an umbrella, that will give you a tour of Paris.

Next, on the Place de la Concorde, a Ferrari and a Lambo that you can rent (I didn't ask the rate)

Seen on the street near Place Bastille, a Morgan

And that all purpose car of the Italian people, the Fiat 500 with a delivery Harley in the background

For the classic car buffs, an Hispano Suiza

A custom bike behind Notre Dame

And another in a Chinese wedding photo shoot on the side of Notre Dame

For the steam punkers, a steam trolley

And a steam tractor

Hope you enjoyed.

Monday, October 27, 2014

More Ebola

Cajun is speculating that health care professionals may decide to stay home if ebola patients are brought to their hospital and they may have to be coerced into treating patients. I'm not sure.

I once attended a presentation about a subsea wellhead that was enclosed in a pressure vessel. The idea was that the wellhead would stay at atmospheric pressure and workers would lock into it via a submarine. I asked who he thought he could get who was willing to do that. His response was that people would do anything if the money was right. I didn't believe him until I spent some time in Houston a few years ago and saw how many people were signing up to drive trucks in Iraq during the First Gulf War. Halliburton was holding indoctrination sessions in the same hotel I was in and there were hundreds of people going through the training. All you need to do is offer enough money to get them on the right side of the risk/reward equation. Sorta like hazard pay.

In other news, a NY, NJ and IL have imposed a quarantine on incoming people from ebola countries. It is giving Obama fits and NY is now waffling by saying they can stay at home. A nurse that was quarantined in NJ is complaining about the violation of her personal freedoms but she is doing it only days after a doctor came down with the disease after he walked around NYC for several days. I don't think she will get much sympathy, especially if she also gets sick. (And I predicted there would be legal issues over personal freedoms and the requirements of a health emergency)

I am gobsmacked that a medical professional, who knows the risks better than anyone else, would have the arrogance to walk around in public until he was positive he was free of the virus. All medical workers who return to this country after working with ebola patients should expect to undergo quarantine upon arrival.

American Muscle in Paris

We were walking back to the apartment after dinner lastnight when I heard a familiar sound, and I knew right away it wan't the rattle of a 4 cylinder engine but the sweet of rumble of an American V8 with glass packs. And here it is:

That has got to be an expensive machine to run and maintain in Paris.
Last month we were staying on Isle St Louis and I would routinely see this American icon parked at the end of the island. But why someone would want to use it for delivery, I have no idea.

Friday, October 17, 2014

USS Constitution

The USS Constitution, aka "Old Ironsides" is heading for dry dock for a 3 year refurbishment. I posted about her on my last visit to Boston. The link is here.

I happened to visit Boston on her last refurbishment. You get a very different perspective of the ship. First of all, they have to find guys who have skills no longer in fashion. Very few people are around that have the skills to repair a wooden sailing vessel. In the museum, they had a display of all the good luck coins that had been placed under her masts in previous refurbishments. Another interesting fact is how they get the wood to repair her. They get donations of Live Oak stumps that they then use to make her new timbers.

Even though she may not be available for boarding, it is still worth a visit if you happen to be in Boston.