So you’re wondering, is it okay to come to Paris – given the recent media feeding frenzy on ‘chaos in the capital’?
The first few days of May have been sunny and idylllic, but beware of the St. Glace!
First and foremost, to assuage any concerns of reticent visitors, Paris is Paris. We drove past the Champs de Mars on our drive in from CDG – no hint of past protests – students were back to lounging on the green grass, not grappling with police in riot gear. We did see one police bus – but it appeared to be empty. I’ve spoken with neighbors and shopkeepers in the Montparnasse district and the general attitude here is that the media had its heydey, but for the most part, Paris remained relatively unaffected by the recent protests.
That being said, the protests did effectively squash the disputed law that would have given workers under age 26 a two-year ‘probation’ on the job during which time they could have been fired without specific cause.
So, what about the St. Glace?
No one can change Mother Nature. Every year, for a few days during the month of May, the beautiful balmy weather that brings out Paris’s blossoms and even a few pastel colored dresses is suddenly crushed by the St. Glace – this is a nasty cold snap that can be downright unpleasant.
The reason I’m particularly concerned about the St. Glace this spring is the fact that we will be somewhere near Conques in southeastern France on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela.
i.e. time to pack raingear and an extra sweater.
If you were to translate St. Glace into English it might turn out to be ‘the Holy Freeze’.
There’s something that I find very reassuring about the Holy Freeze – is this the remedy to Global Warming?