Showing posts from January, 2024


The political process in France includes marching in the street. It's what you do. Nobody writes to their MP. Everyone marches in the street.  In the past few days there's been a pro-palestinian march, and one to protest at the new immigration law. At the moment it's the farmers. The current economic model puts huge pressure on farmers - supermarkets demand uniform produce of high quality for low prices and with minimal use of chemical products. It makes it very hard for farmers to stay in business. So they've taken to the streets and, this morning, to the motorway ring-road around Bordeaux. The government meanwhile is proposing talks and promising to take any reasonable measures.

What Bordeaux lacks

 Flocks of feral parrots.

Macron speaks to the nation

M. Macron spoke to all the French yesterday evening. Last week he reshuffled the government, appointing Gabriel Attal as Prime Minister. Attal is the youngest person to hold the role, at 34, and he appointed his cabinet of ministers gradually over the course of the week. In France the government is presidential, that is the people elect deputies to the National Assembly, Senators to the Senate*, and the President. So the President is not guaranteed a majority in the National Assembly.  The President then appoints a Prime Minister and the Prime Minister appoints his government ministers. They can choose anyone. They don't have to be from the same political party or even from the National Assembly. However the Prime Minister is expected to do all he can to enact the promises that the President made during his election campaign. Yesterday evening M. Macron made a direct broadcast to the nation. One newspaper said "to counter the rise of the far right". Another said "to

Snow in Bordeaux

 We're in a period of "grand froid" - when temperatures plummet and emergency accommodation is organised for the folks who live on the street. It won't last. Next Wednesday we expect 18°C.  Meanwhile today it snowed. Pretty much all day.

The rotters!

 Mrs Davey and I have both been battling with plantar fasciitis for a while.  I talked to the doctor about it. He sent me for x-rays and for ultrasound examinations of my feet, which confirmed my self-diagnosis. The doctor said that I must wear good shoes and massage my feet hard. Patricia talked to him about it and after her ultrasound examinations he prescribed unlimited physiotherapy until she's better. I rooted around for ideas and tried various measures : stretches for the achilles tendon, massage with bottles and balls for the foot, a sock to keep my ankle flexed at night. What REALLY helped was a brand of shoe that has arch support built in. I'm really thankful that after some long months my foot is pretty-well pain free and I can walk as far as I want, as long as I wear the right shoes! Patricia went to see her physio and a podologue, who ordered insoles for her feet. Her case is worse than mine, and has not yielded to treatment. She has the arch-support shoes. She'

Thinking about daily Bible reading

It's a good time to think about how to give to the Bible the place it deserves in your life. I'll begin by trying to suggest we still engage our common sense as we think it through. Make reading the Bible the first thing you do every day : Yeah. Right. That will be great for some people, but for others it's a disaster. Some of us provide the best supportive evidence for the theory of human evolution every morning as we slowly pass through various stages - emerging from the depths, discovering the ability to stand erect, communication by grunts, then the first words emerge... it takes quite a lot of coffee to push-start our one remaining synapse and get it to fire. Hey - find the time that works best for you. Read 30 minutes a day. OK... But might it not be better to have a more constructive goal? Imagine if we advised people to cook their main meal for 1/2 hour a day. "Cook 30 minutes then eat whatever you got." That's nuts! Or "let's drive 1/2 hour