Daily Post – Septembre 4th

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

533 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

Happy 45th anniversary to us (C & JJ)

▫️ NEWS DESK

Home is much more comfortable.

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS
This Friday 3 September, 13,466 new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 6,812,706 since the beginning of the epidemic. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, was 2.6%, identical to the previous day.

HOSPITALISATIONS
The number of patients hospitalised, which had fallen back below the 11,000 mark on Thursday, fell again slightly, to 10,816 compared with 10,934 the previous day, with 624 patients admitted in the last 24 hours. The critical care units, which receive the most seriously ill patients, now have 2,259 patients – including 159 admitted in the last 24 hours – compared to 2,275 on Thursday.

For the past ten days, the number of patients admitted to intensive care units has fluctuated between 2,200 and nearly 2,300 without showing a clear downward trend. Hospital pressure remains particularly strong in Bouches-du-Rhône (934 hospitalised, including 218 in critical care), Martinique (719, including 165) and Guadeloupe (600, including 83).

DEATHS
95 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,773.

VACCINATION
Since the beginning of the vaccination campaign, 48,995,073 people have received at least one injection (i.e. 72.7% of the total population) and 45,140,579 people have now received the full vaccination schedule (i.e. 67% of the total population).

✏️ Daily update – Regional

The figures relating to the epidemic of Covid-19 communicated this Friday by Santé publique France.

In Aude, 94 patients were hospitalised on Tuesday because of Covid-19, the same number as on Thursday. Among them, 15 are in intensive care (stable figure), 65 in conventional hospitalisation (-1), 13 in follow-up care or long-term care (+1) and 1 in other structures (stable). 2 people were able to go home (1,401 in total since the beginning of the epidemic). No deaths have been reported in the department in the last 24 hours. In total, Covid-19 has killed 394 people in Aude since the beginning of the epidemic.

The incidence rate is falling this Friday and has fallen below the 200 mark to 191.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the week from 25 to 31 August. However, 200 is the critical threshold set by Emmanuel Macron on 12 July for territorial braking measures. Under these conditions, the prefect of the Aude, Thierry Bonnier, had the possibility of putting an end to the restriction measures he had imposed. But in a press release issued on Friday, the prefecture announced that “the wearing of masks remains compulsory outdoors in areas with a high concentration of people such as open-air markets, the vicinity of schools, particularly at school entry and exit times, shopping streets when there is a large number of people, the vicinity of railway stations and public transport waiting areas, the vicinity of places of worship when entering and leaving services and in all queues, whether in open, covered or closed areas.


In the Pyrénées-Orientales, the number of Covid patients hospitalised is also stable this Friday (112). 18 people are in intensive care (as many as on Thursday), 47 in conventional hospitalization (stable figure), 33 in follow-up care or long-term care (+1) and 14 in other structures (stable). 2 people were able to go home (1,666 in all since the beginning of the epidemic). Two additional deaths are to be deplored in the department this Friday. In the Pyrénées-Orientales, the coronavirus has caused a total of 389 victims in hospital since the beginning of the epidemic, including 9 in the last five days.

In the rolling week from 25 to 31 August, the incidence rate continued to fall to 164.1 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. It was 175.8 in the week from 24 to 30 August.

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▫️ MUSIC

🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

Celebrity spotlight

“If jazz means anything, it is freedom of expression.” Duke Ellington

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has been updated with the latest information below:

02/09: Vaccinated people no longer need a PCR test to enter Panama.
02/09: Australia will not reopen its borders until 17 December.
02/09: Argentina, Chile and Uruguay show first signs of reopening to tourists.
02/09 : Thailand: five more provinces, including Bangkok, are expected to be ready to welcome visitors from October, followed by 21 more provinces across the country.
01/09: Albania will require either a vaccination certificate, a PCR test less than 72 hours old, an antigen test less than 48 hours old, or proof of having been infected with covid from 6 September.
01/09 : French and European travellers are again exempted from short-stay visa requirements for entry into South Korea, but must obtain an electronic travel authorisation and comply with a 14-day quarantine.
01/09: Vaccinated persons can now travel freely in Mauritius from the 8th day onwards (until now it was from the 15th day).
01/09: Oman has reopened its borders without quarantine to vaccinated people.
01/09: North Macedonia now requires either a certificate of vaccination, a PCR test less than 72 hours old, or a statement of having been infected with covid.
01/09: Only vaccinated people can now enter the Turks and Caicos Islands.
31/08: Malawi has reopened its borders. Source: Government press release received by email
31/08 : The 100% digital evisa for Thailand will be implemented from September 18th. Travelling to the Paris embassy to apply for a visa will no longer be necessary.
31/08 : From September 7, Canada will reopen its borders without quarantine to all vaccinated foreigners.

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

At this very moment, I am off food. So no comment available today.

▫️ FUN

For the youngsters out there

▫️ SATIRE

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

▫️ ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

Soon, a historical era will come to an end in Europe. 67-year-old Angela Merkel, modern Germany’s second-longest-serving chancellor after Helmut Kohl, is not on her country’s September 26 election ballot. Kohl dedicated his political life to rebuilding Germany within a united Europe following World War II, and led the governing center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, continuing at the helm of a reunified Germany from 1990 to 1998.

Merkel won a seat in the Bundestag, the lower house of parliament, in Germany’s first post-reunification election in 1990. She became Kohl’s protégée, until April 2000, when Merkel was elected head of the CDU, becoming the first woman and first non-Catholic to lead the party. After the 2005 general election resulted in a stalemate for both major parties, a coalition government was formed with Merkel at its head. On November 22, 2005 Merkel took office as chancellor — the first woman, the first East German, and, at age 51, the youngest person to date to hold the office. 

Over the next 16 years, Merkel achieved status as a global diplomatic heavyweight, deftly managing a succession of crises, including tackling the financial meltdown in 2007-2008. She helped implement major reforms and policies on healthcare, energy management, and migration. She reduced unemployment, ended military conscription, enabled the legalization of same-sex marriage, introduced a national minimum wage, and raised payments to new parents. She pushed through a later retirement age, put more women in senior government posts, and set Germany on a course for a future without nuclear and fossil-fueled power.

Internationally, Merkel sought compromise and pursued a multilateral approach to the world’s problems through turbulent years that saw the U.S. drift apart from European allies under former president Trump, and Great Britain leaving the E.U. Time Magazine once dubbed her the “Chancellor of the Free World,” and she topped the 2018 Forbes list of the “World’s Most Powerful Women.” And in the twilight of her career, she led a COVID response that saw Germany fare better than some of its peers. 

Ralph Bollmann, a journalist and Merkel’s biographer, said: “I think [her] most important legacy is simply that, in such a time of worldwide crises, she provided for stability.” Through “a constant succession of crises that were really existential threats … her achievement is that she led Germany, Europe and perhaps to some extent the world fairly safely through that, for all that you can criticize details.” When Merkel insists others must judge her record, Bollmann answers: “You protected our country well.”

© (Independent, Britannica, AP)

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Daily Post – Septembre 3rd

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

532 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ TEMPORARY NEWS DESK

Once I was able to get up yesterday, I rearranged some of the furniture in my room in order to create a little office corner. Not too easy with tranfusion pouches on tow and a somewhat uncomfortable catheter to cope with but time was on my hand.

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS

This Thursday, September 2, 15,911 new cases of Covid-19 were counted in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases since the beginning of the epidemic to 6,799,240. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, stands at 2.6% compared to 2.8% yesterday.

HOSPITALISATIONS

French hospitals have recorded 10,934 Covid patients, including 648 admitted in the last 24 hours. For the first time since 22 August, the number of patients admitted to hospital has fallen below the 11,000 mark.

Hospital pressure remains high in three departments: Bouches-du-Rhône (967 people hospitalised), Martinique (727) and Guadeloupe (586).

The critical care services, which receive patients with the most serious forms of the disease, are treating 2,275 patients, 143 of whom were admitted between Wednesday and Thursday. There were 2,294 the day before and 2,261 last Thursday.

For the past ten days, the number of patients admitted to these intensive care units has oscillated between 2,200 and nearly 2,300 without showing a clear downward trend.

DEATHS

104 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,680.

VACCINATION

Since the beginning of the vaccination campaign in France, 48,877,298 people have received at least one injection (i.e. 72.5% of the total population) and 44,838,424 people have now received the full vaccination schedule (i.e. 66.5% of the total population).

✏️ Daily update – Regional

To be made available later

The incidence rate continues its slow decrease

✏️ Useless statistic

I just saw this statement on TV: Concern about the spread of the virus falls sharply to 57%, down 10 points since 20/08.

What does it mean? How is it measured? By whom?

✏️

▫️SEEKING A POLLUTION SOLUTION

Cities in India routinely dominate global pollution rankings; toxic air kills more than a million Indians annually. A new report by The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) says that 480 million people in northern India face the “most extreme levels of air pollution in the world.”

The study found pollution levels that are “10 times worse than those found anywhere else in the world.” Data from the EPIC report on Air Quality Life Index shows that residents in India’s capital of Delhi could see up to 10 years added to their lives if air pollution was reduced to meet the World Health Organization guideline of 10 µg/m³.

High pollution levels also affect lives in western and central Indian states such as Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, where the average person is now losing 2.5 to 3 years of life expectancy as compared to early 2000. According to the report, Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan, which together account for nearly a quarter of the global population, consistently figure in the top five most polluted countries on earth.

▫️ MUSIC

🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

Celebrity spotlight

This one is for Michael

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has not been updated with the latest information available:

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

Keto Mojito

Just what I could do with

Cocktails make the BEST keto summer drinks. Commonly served hard liquors contain 0g net carbs, so a sugar-free mojito with vodka is perfect.

Ingredients

  • 3-4 mint leaves
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp swerve
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 oz vodka
  • 4 oz coconut sparkling water

Instructions

  1. Add water. swerve. and coconut flakes to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
  2. Cut lime in half. Juice 1/2 lime into glass. Save the remaining half for garnish
  3. Add 3-4 mint leaves
  4. Pour homemade simple syrup into glass
  5. Muddle
  6. Add ice, vodka, and sparkling water and stir
  7. Garnish with a fresh lime slice

▫️ FUN

▫️ SATIRE

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

▫️ ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

Monkeying Around

Here’s a research project worth giggling about. According to a study published Tuesday in Biology Letters, the laughing patterns of human infants match those of great apes. Human adults primarily laugh while exhaling, whereas infants and great apes laugh during both inhalation and exhalation.

The author of the study is Mariska Kret, associate professor of cognitive psychology at Leiden University in the Netherlands. Kret originally discovered this phenomenon while attending a talk by renowned primatologist Jan van Hooff with a friend. When van Hooff said apes laugh during inhalation and exhalation, Kret’s friend showed a video of her baby laughing in the same manner. 

Kret was intrigued. So to test whether infants laugh like apes, Kret collected audio clips of laughing babies ages 3 months to 18 months. Then, she asked novice listeners to rate what percentage of the laugh was produced by inhaling versus exhaling. As a control, researchers included five clips of adults laughing. After two rounds, including at least 100 listeners each, the amateur listeners concluded that infants laughed both while inhaling and exhaling, whereas adults mainly laughed by exhaling. Kret then had expert listeners analyze the sound bites, and they reached virtually the same conclusions. 

The researchers also learned that listeners perceived the laughter produced by exhaling more positively, pleasanter, and more contagious. Adults do it by inhaling first, then producing “ha-ha-ha” sounds in short bursts, starting loud, then fading away. “The ape-type is more difficult to describe but there is an alternation huh-ha-huh-ha,” Kret said. 

Marina Davila-Ross, a reader in comparative psychology at England’s University of Portsmouth, wasn’t involved in the study, but wants us to know that infant laughter isn’t necessarily similar to all species of great apes, just those that are evolutionarily closest to humans, like chimpanzees and bonobos. “It seems to reflect that laughter is to some extent biologically deeply grounded,” she explained. 

Kret’s research also shows that older infants produced more exhaling laughter than younger ones, which she says may mean they’re learning the “communicative function” of laughter. In future research Kret hopes to repeat her experiment with other vocalizations, such as crying. But for now, she’ll continue running more of those laughter experiments, which I think we can all agree is pretty funny.

🏠

Posted in Health and fitness | Leave a comment

Daily Post – Septembre 2nd

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

531 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ TEMPORARY NEWS DESK

I have managed to get in the hospital WIFI but is so slow that it is best to link my tablet to my phone‘s hot spot & 4G.

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS

On Wednesday 1 September, 17,621 new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases since the start of the epidemic to 6,783,329. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, stands at 2.8%.

HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS

The number of hospitalised patients has stabilised over the past week at between 11,000 and 11,200 people. On Wednesday, it was 11,119 patients, including some 2,300 in intensive care.

The intensive care units, which receive the most severe forms of Covid-19, are treating 2,294 patients. This figure has tended to increase very slowly over the past week (+55 in seven days), whereas it had increased more rapidly between 25 July and 25 August.

Hospital pressure remains high in three departments: Bouches-du-Rhône (945 people hospitalised), Martinique (789) and Guadeloupe (557).

DEATHS

85 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,577.

VACCINATION

Since the beginning of the vaccination campaign, 48,767,471 people have received at least one injection (72.3% of the total population), including 44,574,529 people with a complete vaccination schedule (66.1% of the population), according to the French Health Department.

France launched on Wednesday its booster vaccination campaign, known as the third dose, which concerns the oldest and most vulnerable people vaccinated six months ago or more.

✏️ Daily update – Regional

As every day, Santé Publique France communicated at the end of the afternoon the figures relating to the Covid-19 epidemic in the Aude and Pyrénées-Orientales.
In Aude, 96 Covid patients are hospitalised, 7 more than on Tuesday, including 15 in intensive care (-1). No deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours in the department, the death toll in the Aude being 394 since the beginning of the epidemic.

In the Pyrénées-Orientales, 109 Covid patients are hospitalised (-4), including 19 in intensive care (stable figure). Three deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours, bringing the total to 387 deaths since the beginning of the health crisis.

✏️ How appropriate

The JJ catheter is a thin, flexible tube (about 3mm in diameter) with ends that form a loop (hence the term double J) which allows the catheter to remain in place between the kidney and bladder. JJ catheters are inserted into the ureter, which is the channel through which urine flows from the kidney to the bladder.

✏️ No Horsing around

Ivermectin is an animal dewormer that is not approved for use in people with COVID. But when Julie Smith’s 51-year-old husband got so sick he had to be put into a medically-induced coma, she got a prescription from an Ohio doctor for the anti-parasite medication. When the hospital in West Chester Township, Ohio refused to administer the drug to Jeffrey Smith while he was seriously ill and on a ventilator, Julie filed a lawsuit.

On August 23, without stating his reasons, Butler County Judge J. Gregory Howard ordered the hospital to administer to Smith 30 milligrams of Ivermectin daily for 21 days. The FDA, the CDC, and the NIH have warned for months against using the drug to treat the coronavirus, saying its use can “cause serious harm.” (WaPo)

▫️ MUSIC

🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

Celebrity spotlight

The rebel – Jim Morrison

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has not been updated with the latest information available:

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

New month means a new list of seasonal fruits and vegetables

(in French as usual)

▫️ FUN

▫️ SATIRE

A go at religion for a change

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

▫️ ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

Inspiration4 Crew Will Take SpaceX Dragon Higher Into Space Than Anyone’s Gone in Nearly 15 Years

🏠

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Daily Post – Septembre 1st

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

530 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ TEMPORARY NEWS DESK

✏️ Starting the new month in hospital but feeling ok for the time being. Not too sure what the next steps will be though. No doubt a doctor will come along later this morning and inform me of the plan.

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS

This Tuesday, August 31, 19,425 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, for a total of 6,765,708 confirmed cases since the beginning of the epidemic. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases relative to the number of people tested, stands at 2.8 percent.

HOSPITALISATIONS

In 24 hours, 941 patients were admitted to hospitals, compared with 725 the day before. The intensive care units, which treat the most serious cases, received 2,292 patients, two more than the day before, and 2,221 seven days before. This indicator increased slightly over the last seven days, but at a much slower pace than between late July and mid-August.

DEATHS

136 people have died in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in France to 114,494.

VACCINATION

Since the beginning of the vaccination campaign, 48,638,743 people have received at least one injection, which is 72.1% of the total population. Among them, 44,260,593 people have now received a complete vaccination schedule (65.6% of the total population).

✏️ Daily update – Regional

The figures relating to the epidemic of Covid-19 communicated this Tuesday by Santé publique France.
In Aude, 89 patients are hospitalised this Tuesday because of Covid-19, 2 less than the day before. Among them, 16 are in intensive care (+1), 61 in conventional hospitalisation (-3) and 11 in follow-up or long-term care (-1). 3 people were able to go home (1,394 in total since the beginning of the epidemic). One additional hospital death has occurred in the department in the past 24 hours. In total, Covid-19 has killed 394 people in the department.

In the Pyrénées-Orientales, the number of Covid patients hospitalised is down this Tuesday (-8) to 113. 19 people are in intensive care (-1 in 24 hours), 48 in conventional hospitalisation (-7) and 32 in follow-up or long-term care (-1). Eight people were able to go home (1,655 in total since the beginning of the epidemic). If the department had not recorded any death linked to Covid-19 these last three days, the virus killed 4 people there this Tuesday. In the Pyrénées-Orientales, the coronavirus has caused a total of 384 hospital deaths since the beginning of the epidemic.

✏️ SCAM email received yesterday…

It looks real but it is a scam. Under no circumstances follow the link “Demander en ligne

▫️ MUSIC

🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

Celebrity spotlight

Françoise Hardy

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has been updated with the latest information available:

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

Camembert cheese on the grill with candied tomatoes and olives


Serves 4: 1 Camembert, 50 g of candied tomatoes, 10 pitted black olives, a few sprigs of fresh thyme.


Thinly slice the tomato confit into pieces and cut the olives into slices.

Remove the Camembert from its packaging, place it on a sheet of baking paper and put it back in its box. Score the cheese with a knife. Place the filling on the Camembert, add the thyme leaves and fold the baking paper over before closing the box.

Place the tin on the barbecue grill over the coals and leave to melt for 10 to 12 minutes. Enjoy by dipping pieces of bread into the melted Camembert.

▫️ FUN

▫️ SATIRE

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

▫️ ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

Zoom dysmorphia is following us into the real world

🏠

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Where is the morphine?

I should be asleep but from past experiences 3 decades ago, I am concerned about the strong possibility of being woken by pain. Maybe it would be wiser to get another 2cl shot of C17H19NO3.

Posted in Health and fitness, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Daily Post – August 30th

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

528 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ HOME’S NEWS DESK

✏️ The health pass becomes compulsory in France today for people working in contact with the public, notably in restaurants, cinemas, museums and on mainline trains.

✏️ As from today, the speed limit will be 30 km/h in almost all the streets of Paris.

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS
On Sunday 29 August, 13,630 new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases since the beginning of the epidemic to 6,742,488. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, stands at 2.9%.

HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS
The critical care services, which treat the most serious forms of the disease, cared for 2,276 people, compared to 2,259 the day before.

DEATHS
53 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,210.

VACCINATION
To date, 48,390,138 people have received at least one dose of vaccine, i.e. 71.8% of the total population, and 43,584,130 people have had a complete vaccination schedule, i.e. 64.6% of the total population.

✏️ Daily update – Regional

With, respectively, 11 and 13 deaths during this week, the Aude and the Pyrénées-Orientales record the worst results of the summer and this even if there were no deaths on Sunday.

In the Aude, this Sunday, 89 people are hospitalised, including 14 in intensive care and 63 in conventional hospitalisation (as the day before).
393 people died from Covid-19 in the Aude, the same number as on Saturday evening. In total, there have been 11 more deaths this week, which has been the worst of the summer on the Covid front.

Incidence rate in the Aude still very high at 235 but going down

In the Pyrénées-Orientales, 119 people were hospitalised (+1 in 24 hours) including 19 in intensive care (as the day before) and 54 in conventional hospital (+1).
There were no additional deaths this Sunday in the Pyrenees-Orientales where 380 people died from Covid-19. There were 13 deaths during the first 6 days of the week. There too, there had not been so many deaths linked to Covid since the beginning of the summer.

In Occitanie, 1,195 people were hospitalised (+1 in 24 hours) including 305 in intensive care (+7) and 614 in conventional hospital (-7). 4,922 people have died from Covid in the region since March 2020, including 4 more this Sunday.

▫️ MUSIC

🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

Celebrity spotlight

Stevie Nicks

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has been updated with the latest information available:

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

Nostalgia

▫️ FUN

▫️ SATIRE

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

  ▫️  ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

 📖 Tony Blair should go to Afghanistan

The former British PM should follow up by personal example on his calls not to abandon Afghanistan.

© Andrew Mitrovica / Al Jazeera

Former British PM Tony Blair leaves BBC Headquarters after appearing on the Andrew Marr Show, June 6 [Henry Nicholls/Reuters]
Former British PM Tony Blair leaves BBC Headquarters after appearing on the Andrew Marr Show, June 6 [Henry Nicholls/Reuters]

Robert Fisk would not be amused.

Rather, I suspect, the late and unparalleled marquee columnist for the online British newspaper, The Independent, would, at the least, be bemused by the cyber-pamphlet’s bewildering decision to republish a 2,700-word piece of exculpatory blather penned by Tony Blair – a preening, historically illiterate dilettante Fisk detested.

Providing Blair with prime editorial real estate represents a curious and surprising volte-face, given that, not too long ago, a senior editor scolded the former prime minister in a pointed “Letter from the Deputy Editor” for having “crawl[ed] out of the woodwork to deny any responsibility for the worsening security situation in Iraq.”

The derisive note ended with this sharp indictment: “But whatever you think of his recent outburst…Mr Blair is right about one thing: the whole of the Middle East is under threat. He just needs to accept the part he played in its downfall.”

I take it that all is forgiven as The Independent has seen fit to permit Blair to crawl out of the woodwork again and share his latest windy “outburst” with readers.

I doubt Fisk would have welcomed or endorsed The Independent’s sorry, click-driven bout of amnesia.

Over many years and in many columns, Fisk excoriated Blair using deliciously blunt language. I revisited Fisk’s prolific catalogue to gather his thoughts about the unrepentant warmonger and his catastrophic obstinance to reshape Iraq and Afghanistan, since it appears The Independent’s editors have forgotten.

Fisk’s overarching assessment of Blair’s essential character cannot be dismissed as an ad hominin attack. Informed by his singular intelligence and experience, it is, instead, an accurate reflection of the foul measure of a comfortably rich, dictator-hobnobbing hypocrite (see Blair’s military coup d’état pal in Egypt, General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi) who continues to be described, insanely, as a “socialist”.

Fisk not only called Blair “repulsive”, but also a “worthless” and “mendacious” political figure “who – in an obscenity of history – we…refer to as a ‘peace envoy’” and given his “prosaic” nature, has had a disastrous preoccupation with the “banal” at the expense of the profound, indelible human suffering he is responsible for.

I challenge you to find a more precise precis of Blair.

Proof of every word Fisk employed to define Blair is evident in his recent spleen burst which, at times, reads like the grasping apologia of an aggrieved man seeking desperately to convince others of his innocence when the historical record of his guilt is fixed permanently.

In a futile and, indeed, repulsive attempt to absolve himself of liability for the lethal quagmires he engineered with a Catholic missionary’s zeal to neuter “Islamist terror”, Blair brandishes a rhetorical rod to bash the “abandonment” of Afghanistan as a short-sighted strategic folly that has delivered the country to the malignant Taliban.

Reading Blair’s revisionist, self-serving missive, I wondered, seriously, whether he does not remember that he is, in fact, Tony Blair – the cocksure prime minister who fused himself to George W Bush like a conjoined twin to unleash two unrelenting wars while dismissing the prescient, persistent cautions of millions of wise Brits who, along with Fisk, warned of the humanitarian calamity to come.

Tony Blair and George W Bush are, by now, widely accepted synonyms for “strategic folly”. That Blair remains incapable of acknowledging, let alone atoning for, his egregious geopolitical sins by, in part, just shutting up, is evidence of his abiding hubris and mendacious constitution.

Predictably, Blair trots out the familiar pallet of excuses to try to paint a more agreeable and forgiving portrait of who and what he is – today and tomorrow.

After 9/11 the world was “spinning on its axis” – which Blair apparently needs reminding it does normally – and the fear of another “slaughter” required a response. In his recounting, Blair did not help launch wars that maimed and slaughtered countless innocents in Fallujah, Samarra, Amarah, Tel Afar, or Anbar province, but plotted pleasant-sounding “interventions”. He made mistakes – “some serious” – along the calamitous way. But his intentions were noble. He fails, however, to elaborate on the number and scope of those no doubt irritating errors.

How convenient.

Fisk knew how Blair’s “interventions” in Iraq and Afghanistan would end years before they ended – in inevitable defeat and ruination – because he did not pause to consider some necessary questions.

“Where, oh where are we going?” Fisk wrote. “How much longer must we willfully misread what we are doing and what is being done to us?”

Still, perhaps the most telling and worthless aspect of Blair’s rambling essay is this cliched passage recalling the lonely weight that only prime ministers and presidents understand: “I know better than most how difficult are the decisions of leadership, and how easy it is to be critical, and how hard to be constructive.”

So, in the spirit of constructiveness, let me make this earnest proposal to Blair: Go to Afghanistan to show, by your estimable example and presence, that, unlike the quislings who have retreated in humiliation, you stand steadfast, “shoulder to shoulder” not with the dauphin Bush this time, but with besieged Afghans.

Put down your pen, Mr Blair, and pack a bag – and a bible if need be for comfort and reassurance of the righteousness of this honourable endeavour.

Surely you can leverage your lucrative, rarified contacts in Riyadh, Cairo or Tel Aviv to arrange for safe passage to turbulent Kabul. They could enlist a band of “special” forces to accompany you on your perilous pilgrimage; a tangible testament that, unlike the unnamed quislings, Tony Blair is a man of his word who will not abandon Afghans and Afghanistan.

But we and you know that you will never go, Mr Blair. Afghanistan is a dangerous, unpredictable place and you might be hurt or killed like the thousands of British soldiers who were disfigured and perished in that dangerous, unpredictable place because you decided to impose, through force and on your command, your vain, evangelical designs.

You and your faithful apologists will insist that my entreaty is absurd. It is much less absurd and certainly much less costly – both in the trillions spent to wage your disfiguring wars of choice and the deep damage done in mind, body and spirit to Afghans, the casualties of your vain, evangelical designs.

Despite your calculated effort to rid yourself of the stain of disgrace you have so earned, it will always follow you like a long shadow under the late-day sun.

And, Mr Blair, you cannot escape that your epitaph has already been written by the incomparable Robert Fisk: “Again, the same old story. It’s not the extent of an Afghan’s loss that will measure his recompense but the degree of culpability of those who brought about that loss. And we are never – ever – going to blame ourselves.”

🏠

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Daily Post – August 29th

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

527 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ HOME’S NEWS DESK

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS
This Saturday 28 August, 17,590 new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases since the beginning of the epidemic to 6,728,858. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, stands at 2.9%.

HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS
The critical care services, which treat the most serious forms of the disease, received 2,259 people, compared to 2,270 the day before.

DEATHS
75 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,157.

VACCINATION
To date, 48,356,975 people have received at least one dose of vaccine, i.e. 71.7% of the total population, and 43,490,579 people have had a complete vaccination schedule, i.e. 64.5% of the total population.

✏️ Daily update – Regional

It is in the Aude and the Pyrenees-Orientales that half of the deaths linked to Covid-19 this Saturday were recorded in Occitanie.

In Aude, this Saturday evening, there were 89 people hospitalised (-3 in 24h) including 14 in intensive care (-3) and 63 in conventional hospitalisation (+1).
Three people died of Covid in the department in one day, bringing the number of victims of the disease since March 2020 to 393.

In the Pyrénées-Orientales, 118 people were hospitalised (-6 in 24 hours), including 19 in intensive care (-2) and 53 in intensive care (-3).
380 people have died from Covid-19 in the Pyrénées-Orientales, including three on Saturday alone.

In Occitanie, 1,194 people are hospitalised (-22 in 24 hours) including 298 in intensive care (-8) and 621 in conventional hospitalisation (-13).
4,918 inhabitants of the region died from Covid-19, including 12 this Saturday.

▫️ MUSIC

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has been updated with the latest information available:

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

Pommes de terre nouvelles au vin blanc

🔸 Ingredients

1kg new potatoes (small size)
4 cloves of garlic
1 sprig of thyme
1 chicken stock
15cl dry white wine
sunflower or grape seed oil
Guerande salt, freshly ground pepper
1 bay leaf
1 salted butter

🔸 Method

STEP 1
Wash the potatoes and drain them. Do not peel them.

STEP 2
Leave the garlic cloves in the jacket (do not peel)

STEP 3
Wash the sprig of thyme.

STEP 4
Place the chicken stock cube in 1/2 litre of water. Microwave for 2 minutes and let it melt.

STEP 5
Melt the butter and oil in a non-stick pan and fry the potatoes for 10 minutes. Brown them on all sides.

STEP 6
Add garlic, thyme, bay leaf, pepper and dry white wine. Reduce by 1/4.

STEP 7
Moisten the potatoes with the chicken stock.

STEP 8
Cook, uncovered, until the liquid has almost evaporated (it will thicken at the end until it caramelises).

STEP 9
Salt sparingly and serve.

▫️ FUN

Red wine would help fight against Alzheimer’s disease.
Shit, I used to drink to forget.

▫️ SATIRE

Thank you Sheena

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

  ▫️  ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

 📖 Fastest orbiting asteroid found in our solar system 

🏠

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Talking about wine

I had a pleasant lunch at the Verre d’Un earlier today

But more importantly I came across this excellent wine “La Nine”

The domain is really not far in the Minervois and I think it is worth while a visit real soon for a sampling session.

http://www.domaine-senat.com

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Dix Vins

Another day at the beach listening to some oldies and favorite music. Right now Emerson Lake & Palmer.

The beach are emptying more and more. This weekend will see the last return from holidays of the summer for many people. At last we have the place back for us locals.

Had a pleasant lunch followed by a well needed snooze

and a walk through the port & town before heading home

Posted in Holidays, Places | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Daily Post – August 28th

Living through a pandemic

in the south of France

526 days in Carcassonne since

1st lockdown in March 2020

DAILY STATISTICS HERE

▫️ HOME’S NEWS DESK

✏️ Daily update – National

CONTAMINATIONS
On Friday 27 August, 18,249 new cases of Covid-19 were recorded in 24 hours, according to figures from Santé publique France, bringing the total number of confirmed cases since the beginning of the epidemic to 6,711,268. The positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases in relation to the number of people tested, stands at 3%.

HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS
The critical care units, which treat the most serious forms of the disease, received 2,270 people, 9 more than the previous day.

DEATHS
95 people have died of Covid-19 in hospitals in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of deaths in this epidemic in France to 114,083.

VACCINATION
To date, 48,249,676 people have received at least one dose of vaccine, i.e. 71.6% of the total population, and 43,199,196 people have received the full vaccination schedule, i.e. 64.1% of the total population.

✏️ Daily update – Regional

Covid-19 claimed three new victims this Friday evening in the Pyrénées-Orientales. There is one more death in the Aude in the same day.

In the Pyrénées-Orientales, 12 people have died in the last 7 days, including 3 in 24 hours. In total, 377 people have died from Covid in the department.
This Friday evening, there were 124 people hospitalised (-6 in 24 hours) including 21 in intensive care (-1) and 56 in conventional hospitalisation (-2).

In the Aude, 92 people were hospitalised this Friday evening (-4 in 24 hours) including 17 in intensive care (as the day before) and 62 in conventional hospital (-4). 390 people died in the department, including 1 more in 24 hours. 9 deaths were recorded during the week in the Aude.

In the Occitanie region, 1,216 people were hospitalised (-32 in 24 hours), including 306 in intensive care (-3) and 634 in conventional hospitalisation (-30).
4,906 people died from Covid-19, including 23 in 24 hours.

✏️ Vaccinations 💉

So now it is official, a third dose or booster will be made available as of Septembre for the over 65, to start with, and / or for people at risk. The booster will be exclusively an RNA messenger type of vaccine and namely Pfizer or Moderna even if your first 2 shots were Astra Zeneca.

✏️ R0 number

For the past couple of days, the magical R number at the national level is reported to be under 1 and actually showing a value of 0,93. As a reminder:

If the R value is higher than one, then the number of cases keeps increasing.

But if the R number is lower the disease will eventually stop spreading, because not enough new people are being infected to sustain the outbreak.

▫️ MUSIC

Working on My 80’s playlist. Quite a slow process… but it will be published soon.

▫️ TRAVEL NEWS

Travel Page. has been updated with the latest information below:

27/08: The following countries will change colour in France’s classification on 29 August:

  • Georgia, Iran and Turkey move to red.
  • Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Northern Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia move to orange.
  • Chile and Uruguay turn green.

    26/08: Fiji’s borders are scheduled to reopen in December.
    26/08: US airlines fear that US air borders with Europe will not open until November.
    26/08 : Greece announces new restrictions for unvaccinated travellers.
    26/08: Madagascar’s borders are expected to reopen in October.
    26/08: Qantas plans to reopen Australia’s borders in December.
    26/08: The number of weekly flights to Algeria will be increased from 9 to 32 from 28 August as part of the partial reopening of airspace. Source

▫️ FOOD & DRINKS

New sort and first crop from the garden

▫️ FUN

▫️ SATIRE

Thank you Sheena

 ▫️ THE FABULOUS FRIDAY (FUNNIES) GROANS from Paul

Greeting FFFs

Hope you get a few laughs from this lot.

A few quick ones to start……

✒︎Two Irishmen flying in a biplane, one says to the other “ If we fly
upside down, will we fall out?” His mate says “ No Paddy, we’ve been
friends for years.”

✒︎I thought it was the washing machine shrinking my clothes…
Turns out it is the refrigerator.

✒︎I never repeat gossip: so listen carefully the first time.

✒︎I use to hate it when my mom would dress me and my twin brother in the same clothes. We could hardly walk.

✒︎I was in a cafe the other day. Two waitresses were having an argument about how long to leave the tea bag in..

It ended up being a big brawl, I asked the manager how did that happen?

He said ‘I don’t know but it’s been brewing for ages!’….

✒︎Apparently, it’s only appropriate to say, “Look at you! You got so big!”, to children.
Adults tend to get offended.

✒︎ During a church service, the pastor asked if anyone in the congregation would like to express praise for answered prayers.
Suzie stood and walked to the podium. She said, “Two months ago, my husband, Phil, had a terrible bicycle accident and his scrotum was crushed.”

There was a muffled gasp from the men in the congregation.
“Phil was unable to hold me or the children,” she went on, “and every move caused him terrible pain. We prayed as the doctors performed a delicate operation, and they were able to reconstruct the crushed remnants of Phil’s scrotum, using wire to reinforce and shape it.”

The men in the congregation cringed and squirmed uncomfortably.
“Now,” she announced in a quivering voice, “thank the Lord, Phil is out of the hospital and the doctors say that with time, his scrotum should recover completely.” 

All the men sighed with relief.

The pastor rose and asked if anyone else had something to say.
A man stood up and walked slowly to the podium. He said, “I’m Phil.”
The entire congregation held its breath.
“I just want to tell my wife the word is sternum.”

✒︎ Interesting musings ……….

⚬ I had amnesia once – or twice.

⚬ Protons have mass? I didn’t even know they were Catholic.

⚬ All I ask is a chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.

⚬ I’d give my right arm to be ambidextrous.

⚬ If the world was a logical place, men would ride horses sidesaddle.

⚬ What is a “free” gift? Aren’t all gifts free?

⚬ They told me I was gullible .. and I believed them.

⚬ Teach a child to be polite and courteous in the home and, when he grows
up, he’ll never be able to edge his car onto a freeway.

⚬ Two can live as cheaply as one, for half as long.

⚬ Experience is the thing you have left when everything else is gone.

⚬ What if there were no hypothetical questions?

⚬ One nice thing about egotists: They don’t talk about other people.

✒︎ A linguistics professor was lecturing his class.

“In English,” he explained, “a double negative forms a positive.

In some languages, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative.”

“However,” the professor continued, “there is no language wherein a double positive can form a negative.”

A voice from the back of the room piped up

“Yeah, right.”

✒︎ A man doing market research for the Vaseline Company knocked at the door and
was greeted by a young woman with three small children running around at her
feet.

*’*I’m doing some research for Vaseline. Have you ever used the product?’
She said, ‘Yes, my husband and I use it all the time.’
‘If you don’t mind my asking,’ he said, ‘what do you use it for?’
‘We use it for s*x,’ she said.
The researcher was a little taken aback. ‘Usually people lie to me and say they use it on a child’s bicycle chain or to help with a gate hinge.

But in fact, I know that most people do use it for s*x. I admire
you for your honesty. Since you’ve been so frank so far, can you
tell me exactly HOW you use it for s-x?’

The woman said, ‘I don’t mind telling you at all. My husband and I put it on
the doorknob and it keeps the kids out.

✒︎ At a good bye luncheon for an old and dear coworker who was leaving the company due to ‘downsizing,’ our manager commented cheerfully, ‘This is fun. 

We should do this more often.’

Not another word was spoken. We all just looked at each other with that deer-in-the-headlights stare.

✒︎ Since my purchases came to $19.06, I handed the cashier a twenty.

“Do you have six cents?” she asked.

“Sorry,” I said after fishing around my pockets, “I have no cents.”

“Finally,” she muttered, “a man who can admit it.”

✒︎ Two men were sitting at a bar recounting their dreams.

“I dreamed I was on vacation,” one man said fondly. “It was just me
and my fishing rod and this big beautiful lake. What a dream.”

“I had a great dream too,” said the other. “I dreamed I was in bed with
two beautiful women and having the time of my life.”

His companion looked over and exhorted, “You dreamed you had two
women, and you didn’t call me?”

“Oh, I did,” said the other, “but when I called, your wife said you’d gone fishing.”

✒︎ I’ve never understood why women love cats. Cats are independent, they don’t listen, they don’t come in when you call, they like to stay out all night, and when they’re home they like to be left alone and sleep. In other words, every quality that women hate in a man, they love in a cat.

✒︎ When my wife had to rush to the hospital unexpectedly, she asked me to bring 

her a few items from home. One item on the list was “comfortable underwear.” 

Worried I’d make the wrong choice, I asked, “How will I know which ones to pick”

“Hold them up and imagine them on me,” she said. “If you smile, put them back.”

✒︎ And to see out the week…..

Most of our generation of 60+ were    HOME SCHOOLED in many ways.

1. My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE.

“If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

2. My mother taught me RELIGION.

“You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

3. My father taught me about TIME TRAVEL.

“If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you into the middle of next week!”

4. My mother & father taught me LOGIC.

” Because I said so, that’s why       .”

5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC .

“If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you’re not going to the store with me.”

6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.

“Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

7. My mother & father taught me IRONY.

“Keep crying, and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

8. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.

“Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

9. My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM.

“Just you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!”

10. My mother taught me about STAMINA.

“You’ll sit there until all that spinach is gone.”

11. My mother taught me about WEATHER.

“This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it.”

12. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.

“If I told you once, I’ve told you a million times, don’t exaggerate!”

13. My father taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE.

“I brought you into this world, and I can take you out…”

14. My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION .

“Stop acting like your father!”

15. My mother taught me about ENVY.

“There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don’t have wonderful parents like you do.”

16. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.

“Just wait until we get home.”

17. My mother taught me about RECEIVING.

“You are going to get it from your father when you get home!”

18  . My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.

“If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way.”

19. My mother taught me ESP.

“Put your sweater on; don’t you think I know when you are cold?”

20. My father taught me HUMOR.

“When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don’t come running to me.”

21. My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT.

“If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up.”

22. My mother taught me GENETICS.

“You’re just like your father.”

23. My mother taught me about my ROOTS.

“Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?”

24. My mother taught me WISDOM.

“When you get to be my age, you’ll understand.

25. My father taught me about JUSTICE .

“One day you’ll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!”

Catch you next time.

▫️ NEWS FROM ACROSS THE POND 🇺🇸

Some more gems from crazy USA

  ▫️  ADDITIONAL READS FOR TODAY

 📖 Fastest orbiting asteroid found in our solar system 

📖 This Barnacle-Inspired Glue Seals Bleeding Organs in Seconds 

🏠

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