Saturday, June 29, 2013

Weather, parades, and a carnival

I know that discussions of the weather are often regarded as a form of small talk, but I’m not so convinced of that as I once was. It’s true that in places like my hometown, America’s Hellhole, where the weather is sunny, hot, and clear every single day of the year, there’s not much to say about the weather—but here in the City of Light, where the weather changes significantly, it’s a legitimate subject of conversation. Weather is environment, and environment has a huge influence on the activities in which you can engage, and whether or not you enjoy them.

So, speaking of the weather … it has been nice (read: cool) for the past few days in Paris, so I am content. I hope it lasts. We’ll soon be in July and we’ve mostly escaped heat waves, so I hope that continues, especially since I’ll be out and about for much of next week. At least we are not afflicted with the weather prevailing back in the Valley of the Sunstroke, where today’s high is predicted to hit 118° F. That’s about 60° F above the predicted high here, and also about 60° F above what I can comfortably tolerate outdoors. Of course, we have 81% humidity here, and it’s only 18% back in that desert dump of a town, but at 118° F, even zero humidity doesn’t help. It just dehydrates you faster, and you die sooner.

Despite the nice weather, I don’t plan to go out today, except maybe to do some laundry. There’s a parade of homosexuals planned for today, no doubt with lots of ear-splitting music and people dancing in underwear, and I can do without that. (I know that it’s politically incorrect to not immediately salivate when any homosexual rings a bell these days, but I’ve always been a kind of polite rebel.) In fact, I tend to avoid parades generally, since they are usually loud and occasionally degenerate. They are sometimes good photo ops, but I don’t take many pictures these days, since I had to sell all my equipment to pay bills. If I’m not taking photos, there’s no reason to go anywhere near a parade. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on whether I want to see it or not), many parades seem to choose routes that take them very near my apartment. Even if I don’t see them, I can often hear booming music and people chanting.

I noticed a Ferris wheel at the Tuileries, which means that the summer carnival has come to town. It used to come twice a year, in summer and around Christmas, but I haven’t seen the Christmas version show up for several years now. The summer one is nice, though. There’s lots of junk food to eat, including a stand that sells great gyros (sliced roasted lamb in a bun with fries). There’s a place that makes nice granitas too (they are mostly like flavored slushy drinks in France).

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