Living through a pandemic
in the south of France
512 days in Carcassonne since
1st lockdown in March 2020
DAILY STATISTICS HERE
▫️ FROM HOME’S NEWS DESK
✒︎ Made it back, as planned, from Cavalaire yesterday.
The roads were quite busy and we decided to leave the motorway approaching Marseille and cross the Camargue area via secondary roads all the way to Montpellier where we rejoined the motorway.
✒︎ The number of people hospitalised continues to rise this Friday in the Aude, which has recorded a third death this week.
According to data from Santé publique France, in the Aude region, 83 people were hospitalised on Friday evening (+4 in 24 hours, +12 in two days), including 10 in intensive care (-1). 62 are in conventional hospitalisation (+5), 10 in follow-up or long-term care (stable number) and 1 in other structures. An additional death is to be deplored this Friday. The coronavirus has caused the death of 374 people in the Aude since the beginning of the pandemic.
The incidence rate has fallen to 427.4 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the rolling week from 4 to 10 August (published on 13 August). It was 437.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the sliding week from 3 to 9 August.
Two more patients in intensive care in the Pyrénées-Orientales
This Friday evening, in the Pyrenees-Orientales, 134 people are hospitalised because of Covid-19 (as many as on Thursday). Among them, 22 are in intensive care (+2), 69 in conventional hospitalisation (-3), 32 in follow-up or long-term care (+2) and 11 in other structures (-1). The department did not record any additional deaths on Friday. In the Pyrénées-Orientales, 353 people have died in hospital because of Covid-19 since the beginning of the epidemic.
The incidence rate is almost stable in the department this Friday. In the sliding week from 4 to 10 August, it is 451.1 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, compared to 450.9 per 100,000 in the sliding week from 3 to 9 August.
▫️ PLACES TO DISCOVER
Summer holidays in Occitanie: 5 unforgettable wild swimming spots
When it comes to swimming, are you more interested in peaceful rivers, pools between two rocks or creeks by the sea? Here are 5 unforgettable ones.
In a river in the Dordogne
In the Lot department, you can swim in several rivers such as the Célé, the Lot of course, but also the Dordogne at Montvalent for example. The river is not too well developed and therefore reasonably busy, with easy access to the banks covered in soft grass where you can put your towel down in the shade of tall trees. The water is relatively peaceful and its temperature is around 23 degrees in summer according to regulars from the nearby guinguette “Le Vieux Chêne”.
In the Mediterranean Sea
On the sea side, the one to recommend is the Ouille beach which is made up of small pebbles but which do not hurt your feet… It is located along the coastal path between Argelès-sur-Mer and Collioure in the Pyrénées-Orientales. It is mostly frequented by the inhabitants of the surrounding area or by the clients of the neighbouring campsites. It extends over 100 metres below the cliffs of the Vermeille coast.
Gorges and basins in the Cévennes
From its source on the south-eastern flanks of the Massif Central, the Gard is known as the Gardon. Its two small rivers, the Gardon de Saint-Jean and the Gardon de Mialet, flow through small gorges. They offer opportunities to jump from large rocks into clear waters. As for the beach, it’s paradise in the Cévennes: whirlpool baths in small basins or relaxation on flat pebble beaches along large stretches of water where you can try your hand at swimming.
Among the most beautiful are the natural pools at the foot of the Martinet waterfall. Access is on foot from the car park of the Martinet restaurant before the village of Saint-Étienne-Vallée-Française. Follow the irrigation canal (le béal) for 10 minutes to the waterfall. Be careful, the access is quite steep.
In the Artigue stream in Ariège
The Artigue stream in the Ariège is a favourite with canyoning enthusiasts. It cascades down its bed in short waterfalls and slides along the welcoming banks to cool off in the heat of summer. If you like clear, brisk and cool water, this is the place for you. The walk from the L’Artigue car park (above Villahge de Marc) takes you along the stream with possible stops for a dip.
After 45 minutes of quiet walking under the trees, a pretty pool at the foot of a waterfall is waiting for you. It’s up to you to test or not this beautiful translucent water of emerald green colour…
In the Cèze downstream from the Sautadet waterfalls
The Sautadet waterfalls are a great opportunity to take in the sights and then head a little further downstream for a swim in the Cèze.
First of all, you can’t miss this series of spectacular waterfalls: the bubbling river rushes through cavities dug in the limestone, forming water holes, pots and cauldrons.
Please note that swimming in the waterfalls is strictly forbidden as it is very dangerous. The force of the currents and the whirlpools regularly cause accidents, sometimes fatal, to unwary bathers.On the other hand, if you go a little further downstream, you will find beautiful beaches where swimming is not dangerous.
To access the waterfalls, the most practical way is to park at the foot of the Charles Martel bridge at La Roque-sur-Cèze in the Gard.
▫️ TRAVEL NEWS
Travel Page. is up to date
▫️ FOOD & DRINKS
Wednesday is Market day in Cavalaire and I almost always visit it if I happen to be in town. It is quite different from the stalls in Carcassonne. In addition to the food there is also a very large section of clothes and local / Provence materials.
Did not have much time to listen to music those past few days
▫️ THE FABULOUS FRIDAY (FUNNIES) GROANS from Paul
Greetings one and all
✒︎Asked my doctor today how long he thought this Covid thing would last: He answered, “How should I know, I’m a doctor not a politician.
✒︎ One evening, during a bout of bad weather, a mother was tucking her small boy into bed. She was about to turn off the light when he asked with a tremor in his voice, “Mommy, will you sleep in my bed tonight?”
The mother smiled and gave him a reassuring hug. “I can’t, dear,” she said,”I have to sleep in the large bed, with Daddy.”
A long silence was broken at last by a shaken little voice saying, “The big wimp.”
✒︎ The ethical question
Upon seeing an elderly lady for the drafting of her will, the attorney charged her $100. She gave him a $100 note, not noticing that it was stuck to another $100 note. On seeing the two notes stuck together, the ethical question came to the attorney’s mind:
“Do I tell my partner?”
✒︎ Two men went bear hunting.
While one stayed in the cabin, the other went looking for a grizzly.
He soon found one. Taking aim, he fired his rifle, nicking the bear.
Enraged, it charged the hunter, chasing him back to the cabin. As the hunter reached the open cabin door, he slipped and fell. the bear tripped over him and rolled into the cabin.
The man leapt up, slammed the cabin door shut and yelled to his friend inside, “You skin this one while I go and get another.”
✒︎ A selection ………………
▫︎ A friend’s sister worked as a census collector many decades ago. She helped newly arrived immigrants to fill out the form. One had answered the question ‘Length of residence in Australia?’ with ‘35 feet, including verandas’ .’’
▫︎ ‘‘ While essential shopping yesterday, I was intrigued by two large signs in the window of a very colourful variety store, one of which read: ‘STAY POSITIVE’. I’m sure they meant ‘STAY WELL.
▫︎ ‘‘ A baggage handler at Sydney International Terminal assures me that case numbers are right down.’’
▫︎ You know you’re in strict lockdown when … ‘‘ you start talking about the good old days … back in 2019.
▫︎‘‘ Getting carried away by the Olympics, yesterday I clocked a personal best by pinging a QR code from 1.7 metres,’’ says my neighbour.
✒︎ A mother was anxiously awaiting the arrival of her daughter’s plane. Her daughter was returning from abroad, where she’d enjoyed months of adventure during a ‘gap year’.
As the daughter exited the plane and walked out to the arrivals lounge, her mother noticed a man directly behind her dressed in feathers, with exotic markings all over his body and
carrying a shrunken head. The daughter introduced the man as her new husband.
The mother gasped in disbelief.
“I said for you to marry a rich doctor … A rich doctor!”
✒︎ Husband: Sweetheart, would you say that I’m the only man you’ve ever loved?
Wife: Of course you are! Why do all men ask me the same silly question?
✒︎ Rupert and Elaine, a young couple, got married and went happily on their honeymoon. When they got back, Elaine immediately telephoned her mother, who asked how the honeymoon was.“Oh, Ma,” Elaine replied. “The honeymoon was wonderful. It was so romantic.” Then she burst out crying. “But, Ma, as soon as we returned home, Rupert started using the ghastliest language… saying things I’ve never heard before! I mean, these awful four letter words! You’ve got to come get me and take me home. I can’t be in a marriage like this! Please Ma!”
Elaine begged. “Calm down, Elaine!” said her mother. “Tell me, what could be so awful? What four-letter words?”
Still sobbing, Elaine whispered, “Oh Ma, words like ‘dust’, ‘wash’, ‘cook’ and ‘iron’.”
✒︎A man is sitting in a fancy restaurant when his food finally arrives at his table. As the plate is being served the man notices the waiter has his thumb resting on the edge of his
“Umm, excuse me,” the man says, “but I couldn’t help but notice you had your thumb on my steak.”
“Yes, I know, sir,” the waiter responds, “but I didn’t want to drop it again.”
✒︎ The one about ‘thrown’ rice reminds me of the story of Dave and Mabel, who had been ‘going steady’ for 30 years, when Mabel one day said “Don’t you think it’s about time we got married?”
Dave thought for a while, and said “You’re probably right.
But who would have us, at our age?”
✒︎ While watching a movie recently, I couldn’t hear the dialogue over the chatter of the two women sitting in front of me. Unable to bear it any longer, I tapped one of them on the
“Excuse me,” I said, “I can’t hear.”
“I should hope not,” she replied sharply. “This is a private conversation.”
✒︎An Australian, an Irishman and an Englishman were sitting in a bar.
There was only one other person in the bar. It was a man. The three
men kept looking at this other man, for he seemed terribly familiar.
They stared and stared, wondering where they had seen him before, when
suddenly the Irishman cried out ‘My God, I know who that man is. It’s Jesus!’
The others looked again and, sure enough, it was Jesus himself, sitting alone at a table.
The Irishman calls out, ‘Hey! You!!! Are you Jesus?’
The man looks over at him, smiles a small smile and nods his head.
‘Yes, I am Jesus’ he says.
The Irishman calls the bartender over and says to him ‘I’d like you to
give Jesus over there a pint of Guinness from me.’
So the bartender pours Jesus a Guinness and takes it over to his table.
Jesus looks over, raises his glass, smiles thank you and drinks.
The Englishman then calls out, ‘Errr, excuse me Sir but would you be Jesus?’
Jesus smiles and says, ‘Yes, I am Jesus.’
The Englishman beckons the bartender and tells him to send over a Pint
of Newcastle Brown Ale for Jesus.
This the bartender duly does. As before, Jesus accepts the drink and
smiles over at the men.
Then the Australian calls out, ‘Oi, you! D’ya reckon you’re Jesus, or what?’
Jesus nods and says, ‘Yes, I am Jesus.’
The Australian is mighty impressed and has the bartender send over Schooner
of Victoria Bitter for Jesus, this he accepts with pleasure.
Some time later, after finishing the drinks, Jesus leaves his seat and approaches the three men He reaches for the hand of the Irishman and
shakes it, thanking him for the Guinness.
When he lets go, the Irishman gives a cry of amazement
‘Oh God, the arthritis is gone,’ he says. ‘The arthritis I’ve had for
years is gone. It’s a miracle!’
Jesus then shakes the hand of the Englishman, thanking him for the
Newcastle Brown Ale. Upon letting go, the Englishman’s eyes widen in shock.
‘By Jove’, he exclaims, ‘The migraine I’ve had for over 40 years is completely gone.
It’s a Miracle!’
Jesus then approaches the Australian, who has a terrified look on his face.
The Aussie whispers. P*ss off mate, I’m on Workers Comp’
✒︎ Bob: Want to hear a joke about the letter with no stamp?
Bob: Oh, never mind. You’d never get it!
✒︎ A man was getting a haircut prior to a trip to Rome. He mentioned the trip to the barber who responded, “Rome? Why would anyone want to go there? It’s crowded and dirty. You’re crazy to go to Rome. So, how are you getting there?” “We’re taking American Airlines,” was the reply. “We got a great rate!” “American Airlines?” exclaimed the barber. “That’s a terrible airline. Their planes are old, their flight attendants are ugly, and they’re always late. So, where are you staying in Rome?” “We’ll be at the downtown International Marriott.””That dump! That’s the worst hotel in the city. The rooms are small, the service is surly and they’re overpriced. So, whatcha doing when you get there?” “We’re going to go to see the Vatican and we hope to see the Pope.” “That’s rich,” laughed the barber. “You and a million other people trying to see him. You’ll be at the back of St Peter’s Square and from that distance he’ll look the size of an ant. Boy, good luck on this lousy trip of yours. You’re going to need it.” A month later, the man again came in for his regular haircut. The barber asked him about his trip to Rome. “It was wonderful,” explained the man. “Not only were we on time in one of American Airlines’s brand new planes, but it was overbooked and they bumped us up to first class. The food and wine were wonderful, and I had a beautiful 28 year old stewardess who waited on me hand and foot. And the hotel was great! They’d just finished a $25 million remodelling job and now it’s the finest hotel in the city. They, too, were overbooked, so they apologised and gave us the presidential suite at no extra charge!””Well,” muttered the barber, “I know you didn’t get to see the Pope.” “Actually, we were quite lucky, for as we toured the Vatican, a Swiss Guard tapped me on the shoulder and explained that the pope likes to personally meet some of the visitors, and if I’d be so kind as to step into his private room and wait, the pope would personally greet me. Sure enough, five minutes later the pope walked through the door and shook my hand! I knelt down as he spoke a few words to me.” “Really?” asked the Barber. “What’d he say?”He said, “Where’d you get the shitty haircut?”
On that note – see you next week.
▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸
Some more gems from crazy USA
▫️ ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY
✏️ (to come shortly)
✏️ (to come shortly)