Why getting a bike should be a priority

It was a beautiful autumn morning today. Here, rain makes everything better. The cobblestones shine as you trod on them, the smell of burning wood adds more romanticism in the air, and people smoke less cigarettes.

It was a beautiful autumn morning as I ran my daily jogging route at the Bois de Boulogne, with my ancient relic of an iPod still bumping hearty Samba music through the speakers, reminding me with excitement that today was the day Capoeira courses would start again at the Dance School in Montparnasse.

It was a beautiful morning day, and the world seemed to have really changed over night. As I ran past Allée de Longchamp, I realized the car traffic had doubled. And the usual group of young prostitutes was nowhere to be seen. Pity, since I had grown accustomed to their bickering amongst each other in provocative clothing on that white bench. Something did not feel right. I had not seen a bus all day long, the queues of working people were not bustling around the Metro stations, people were driving cars. And then it hit me:

It’s a national transportation strike. La grève national. As I hurried home, I started to notice half of the shops were closed, the schools were quiet and the traffic moved an inch every five minutes.

This is something I am not used to; In Italy strikes are more frequent, but they are so badly organized that they seldom work. In France, they are not as frequent (once or twice a month, minimum…pity eh?) but they are on, they are on! One time, the strike went on for 17 days. That is 17 days where all aspects of commerce were virutally paralyzed. I am talking about EVERYONE from the sidewalk prostitute of Allée de Longchamp to the CEOs of multinational businesses was badly hurt.

I already miss feeling like an anchovy...

Meanwhile I am sitting here, pissed that the first day I could actually go to a class of Capoeira, I can’t go because it’s impossible to reach by foot, even with my stamina.

I seriously need to start looking for a sturdy bike.

~ par gitane sur 23 septembre 2010.

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