30 April 2007

Here's a French music video to amuse until I write about the annual Front National parade tomorrow morning – it's in honor of Joan of Arc and Jean-Marie Le Pen. Should be a disturbing and interesting time.

Mick est tout seul – La clé des chants

27 April 2007

Being at Sciences Po between the two rounds of the French presidential election is like being thrust into a hub of political hyperactivity. The dueling Sarko and Ségo camps have hung up jeunes pour Ségolène Royal/Nicolas Sarkozy flags in penîche (main hall) and spend every free moment trying to turn another young French voter and professors have cancelled classes to go off and debate or campaign for their preferred candidates.

Actually, the mood has been electric since mid-February, when François Bayrou crept up from behind to challenge to two main contenders for the Élysée (the Palais de l’Élysée is the presidential residence – basically the French White House) and turned the fairly predictable election into something much more interesting.

The way the French présidentielle works is by a run-off system. Each political party has the option to present a candidate who must gather 500 signatures from elected officials in at least 30 French departments (regions). The only other requirements to be a candidate are to be of French nationality and be at least 23 years old. After the official candidate list is announced, the candidates enter an official campaign period, the rules of which are strictly enforced – each candidate must be allotted the exact same amount of television time, whether through commercials, interviews or debates. The day before the elections campaigning is forbidden – no speeches, appearances or ads are allowed in order to give voters a “day of reflection.” Citizens vote on all candidates in the prémier tour of elections (which took place here on Sunday, April 22nd). If no candidate receives an absolute majority, there’s a run-off election between the top two two weeks later.

This year 12 offical candidates were announced, the favorites of which have long been Ségolène Royal from the Socialist Party and Nicolas Sarkozy of Jacques Chirac’s party the UMP. A run-off between Ségo and Sarko as they’re popularly called, has long been the expectation, but the emergence of the centrist candidate François Bayrou in the polls in February and March threw a serious wrench into the predictability of the election. As the first voting round drew closer, France was mainly concerned with four candidates – Ségo, Sarko, Bayrou and Jean-Marie Le Pen, a racist, fascist, holocaust-denying, extreme right-wing candidate with one eye, who shocked the country and the international scene when he made it into the second round of voting in the 2002 présidentielle. As extreme and offensive as Le Pen may be, he consistently manages to garner a hefty percentage of votes. Last Sunday he received around 11 percent of votes, compared to the inoffensive Green Party candidate’s 1.5 percent.

Polling stations opened at 8 am Sunday morning and officially closed at 6 pm. Unlike the U.S. elections, where voters watch the slow roll of blue or red across the country as polling stations close in each state and see the votes mounting up as they’re counted, the estimated results are not allowed to be announced until 8 pm the night of the first round. At 7:50 Sunday evening, Rachael, our friend Tom and I arrived at a friend’s parents’ Moroccan restaurant, which had opened early for the election results. Faris (the Moroccan friend) and a few other people had set up a projector and speakers so the news was playing 10 feet tall against the wall of the restaurant when we arrived.

The scene reminded me of New Year’s eve, with a countdown clock ticking away the seconds in the corner of the screen, and the camera views alternating between the different candidate’s headquarters. When the clock reached 7:59:30, a collective “SHHHH” rolled around the restaurant and everyone began counting down with the ticker, clutching wine or beer in one hand and frantically silencing cell phones with the other. At precisely 8:00:00, the screen was filled with two headshots – those of Ségo and Sarko before switching once more to the headquarters of each candidate. The whole scene was almost ridiculously theatrical – from the countdown to the winners’ pictures to the photo montages set to inspirational music that played homage to each candidate. I was reminded more of the Academy Awards or New Year’s with Dick Clark more than a serious political event – but I guess the French are used to doing it with flair.

The restaurant where we were was smack in the middle of the 11ème arrondissment, not too far from place de la Bastille – an area that is distinctly left-wing. When Ségo’s picture flashed on the screen the restaurant erupted in cheers – which shortly turned into boos and irritated Sarko insults when the percentages of votes tipped less and less in her favor. Over in the 2ème arrondissement, on the other hand, Sarko’s advance is being celebrated. As I find myself surrounded by some of the most politically aware kids I’ve ever met, I didn’t bat an eyelid when Paul (7) told me that he was “so happy” that Sarko made it, and was only mildly surprised when Ella (10) went off into a tirade about how “everyone wants Ségolène because they think she’ll give money to poor people, but really she’ll make everything more expensive for every one else with too many taxes!” Even 2-year old Georges knows, in direct accordance with the politics of his parents, that “Ségolène bad.”

While I’m sure 99 percent of what I hear from the kids is regurgitated straight back from their parents, it still amuses me to no end when Paul tells me he can’t wait for May 6th to find out who will win. Though Sarkozy came out of the first round with 31.18 percent and a clear lead over Royal’s 25.87 percent (numbers that three of my four nannying charges had memorized to the 100th), nobody knows where Bayrou’s 18 percent will go. At the moment, he’s endorsing neither candidate, and has instead declared that he’ll be founding a new political party – the Parti démocrate. The rest of the votes are easy to assign – Le Pen’s extremist votes will most likely go to the immigration-unfriendly Sarkozy, while most of the little leftist parties will be casting their votes for Ségolène. It’s the middle 18 percent that has everybody aflutter – and while my personal prediction is Sarkozy in the Élysée, we won’t know for sure until next weekend.

Meanwhile, Paul and I are counting down the days.

17 April 2007

News of the shooting is on the front pages of all the French dailies today. All over the world people are mourning with Virginia Tech. Here's a link to the article in Le Monde.

Compte rendu: Scotland

After two trains, a night on a bench in the Glasgow airport, a plane, a bus and a metro ride, I am finally back in Paris. I landed at Paris Beauvais airport at noon yesterday still wearing my polar fleece and wind breaker from the chilly weather in Edinburgh to find temperatures in the 70s and bright bright sun. Needless to say, I stripped down quickly.

View of Edinburgh from the Camera Obscura in the Old City:

It’s weird to be back – I’ve traveled from Paris before, to Munich and back, to visit Christina in Nantes, to Barcelona last November, back to Tacoma for Christmas, and all around France in a car with my mom, but for some reason coming back this time felt different. Maybe because I’ve been here for 8 months now it feels more like coming back to school and routine than just continuing the fun in Paris. Or maybe it’s just because I had a really really great time in Scotland.

Planning spring break is a different experience in Paris. Last year we just wanted to get out of Seattle and planned a quick backpacking trip to the Washington coast. This year the plan was backpacking again – it was just a matter of picking the country I wanted to do it in. I ended up planning the trip with Anna, a Canadian from Sciences Po who I’d met in my French politics class. Before break we were just class buddies who save each other seats in our conférence de method, but after a week traveling together, two plane rides and a lot of time to kill in Glasgow Prestwick International we’ve got each other’s stories memorized. She knows that my youngest brother Noah is 16 and loves jazz, I know that her sister’s boyfriend lives in India and likes whisky, and we’re convinced that our own boyfriends might actually be the same person.

These kids were a part of the Ipswich (Massachusetts) High School music program, who are currently touring Scotland and England. A and I thought they were so cute that we followed their flier to the Greyfriars Kirk to hear them give a free performance before catching our train to Glasgow Sunday night. The listeners seemed to be made up of a few parent chaperones, a few teachers and a few church parishioners, so we were glad we stopped by to fill out the audience – plus they reminded me of my little brother.

We left Paris last Tuesday morning, and after nearly a full day of traveling made it to our hostel in Edinburgh. We walked around a bit, had a dorky but satisfying dinner in the café where J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book and went to bed early so we could be up to meet our backpacking group the next morning. We’d signed up for a tour with Macbackpackers, which is maybe not quite as rugged as I’d like you all to think I am, but it was a great way to see Scotland. When our guides arrived Wednesday morning, A and I flung our packs in the trunk of the MacBackpackers mini-bus and climbed aboard with our 12 fellow backpackers. For three days we were driven around the highlands and lowlands of Scotland by a kilted guide, stopping every so often to hike on mountains, through moors and over battlefields.

The natural result of throwing 14 strangers together for three days with nothing tying them except the facts that they like to hike, love to travel and are at least somewhat interested in Scotland is that they’re going to bond. There are people A and I met who I feel like I’ll be in touch with indefinitely – funny how that happens. Two girls from Paris (currently living in London) and a girl from Australia in particular, all of whom will be making their respective ways to Paris sometime in the next few months.

The five of us went out to dinner in Edinburgh Friday when we arrived back in the city and spent a night talking about anything and everything in various pubs of the old city. Together we learned the most shocking thing about Scotland – its conservative alcohol laws! After three days of our guide telling story after story that involved drunk Scots, we were ready to get back to Edinburgh and check out the pub culture ourselves. In Paris, you don’t go out until at least midnight, and it’s not uncommon to come home when the boulangerie are reopening in the morning. In Scotland, it is illegal to sell liquor after 10 pm anywhere but a pub. We found this out when we tried to purchase a few bottles of wine in a convenience store at 5 past 10 pm to get the evening started. The rule kind of made sense, we supposed, encouraging people to spend more money in the pubs. It stopped making sense at 12:30, when the lights came on and we were kicked out of the Castle Arms pub. Yes, in Scotland, the land of whisky, the pubs close at 12:30. Surprised, we asked around our hostel and were told, “If you run, you might catch one that’s open until 1am, but you’d better hurry.”

This is at a restaurant in Edinburgh – before our wine-buying shutout.

We were pretty surprised at this news, but were more amused than anything and retreated back to the hostel to finish our girly talk about first kisses and ex-boyfriends and favorite movies. The next morning everyone began to disperse. The five of us, A and I, plus two Frenchies and an Aussie woke up earlier to have breakfast together before we went on our merry ways. First to depart were Angelique and Samya, who had to catch a train back to Leicester. Paula stuck around long enough to hike up Arthur’s Seat with us before catching a bus back to Glasgow, the jumping-off point for the rest of her European adventure. That left just A and I to explore together until it was time to head back to Paris. I love how a random group of 5 people can fall together for a few days and click so perfectly that it feels like we’ve been girlfriends for years. It’s sad that we clicked so well and live so far apart, but at least we got a few crazy fun days together before we had to split.

On the way up to Arthur's Seat:

Before the trip, all I knew of Scotland was from the documentary about the Loch Ness Monster that I watched with my Tacoma friend Annette one weekend in high school. I’ve never seen Braveheart – the historical inaccuracy of which is actually a bit of a sore point for the Scots, so maybe it’s better that I haven’t. I’m also lacking any ancestral ties to the country, which made me a bit jealous watching my fellow hikers look up their family tartans or become suddenly extra attentive at the mention of the massacre of the MacDonald clan at Glen Coe. Hiking the highlands and the Isle of Skye and hearing nothing but stories of highland culture, clans and battles for three days made me wish for a little highland heritage myself. I guess I just need to marry a Campbell. Or a MacLaren. Or a Farquharson.

Beyond learning the history, a week in Scotland gave me the chance to absorb a bit of the feel of the country. Coming from Paris, Scotland felt a bit more like home, with its English native tongue, tougher liquor laws, love for fried foods and decidedly less skinny people. It’s also a more environmentally friendly place, with its 100% biodegradable plastic grocery bags and plentiful recycling receptacles. It’s a country with a history that’s a little bloodier, bars that close earlier, people that are friendlier, skirts that are manlier, but above all, Scotland is beautiful.

Culloden battle field:

I wonder if you can guess which loch this is:

The Cullin Mountains:

This is at a place called Faerie Glen on the Isle of Skye. J.R. Tolkien apparently spent a summer on Skye in his childhood – I believe it.

The view of the road from Faerie Glen:

One of our hiking stops:

This is on the Isle of Skye:

Loch Garry (known as "the loch that's shaped like Scotland"):

This is a ridiculous statue at the William Wallace monument. Check out the case of the Braveheart dvd if you're curious about this sculptor's inspirations. Or just look at a picture of Mel Gibson:

More Scotland pictures here.

06 April 2007

It’s starting to feel like the beginning of the end. Today I spent half an hour looking at the new Ikea catalogue with Paul and Ella, the three of us trying to pick out the prettiest bed for me to buy for my apartment next year. We settled on a dark metal bed frame – I knew this was the perfect girly pick when E started making indiscernible cooing sounds and pointing out the matching bedside tables, while P started making fake retching sounds.

I still have nearly four whole months left in Paris, but I’m already planning for the fifth one. I finally bought my ticket home a few weeks ago, which was a 900 dollar blow to my bank account. Apparently it is not cheap to fly one-way from France o the West Coast at the end of July. My flight arrives at SeaTac Airport at 4:45 pm on July 27th, and on July 28th, there’s a concert I want to see in Renton. August 11th we leave for the annual family beach trip to the Washington Coast, and my brother and I are crusading for a family date to see the Steve Miller Band play a concert in September.

I’ve already emailed my boss from work last summer to see about working as a teaching assistant for Seabury Summer classes again this year, and I’ve sent in my volunteer application to work at the UW incoming foreign exchange student orientation at the end of the summer. Christina and I have been stalking the classifieds for rental apartments for the past few weeks now, and P and E are excitedly helping me make-believe furnish it. There should be an emphasis on make-believe, because both of the kids were thrilled by a completely round bed featured in the catalogue. They didn’t want to listen to me telling them that it would be really hard finding an apartment with a bed big enough to host a round bed – not to mention the Hugh Hefner references that I didn’t feel like mentioning to the kids.

Registration for Autumn quarter is coming up in May and I need to email my Jackson School advisor about scheduling. I also need to track down a professor to partner with on my qualifying paper – an international studies-specific paper usually written during the fall of your Junior year, unless, of course, you’re studying abroad. I also need to pin down a topic for the paper, which should be, according to my advisor, an expansion on something I’ve studied this year. So far I’m leaning toward EU enlargement for the paper topic – a subject that intrigues me and is always current.

Besides worrying about my classes for Autumn 2007, there’s also that pesky fact that I’m going to be a Senior. This means that in addition to the regular stress of finding a schedule that fits with my two majors, I need to find a schedule that is going to keep me on track for graduation next June. As much as I want to just sit back and enjoy the baguettes, the reality is that there are a lot of things I need to figure out about what I’ll be doing in the few months after I step off of that plane for the final time.

I’m not the only one who’s thinking ahead. Cassie (nanny mom) is already stressing about how to explain to Georges what has happened to me when I disappear for good in the middle of the summer. You can explain it anyway you want to a three-year old, but the only thing he’s going to retain is “Halley going on a big big airplane?” It’s been more than a month since my mom ditched me for Tacoma, and Georges is still completely befuddled. “Halley, where Halley-mom go?” he asks me every few days.

There’s also the question of my replacement for next year – no matter how thoroughly you interview someone, or how highly recommended they come from their last employer, it’s still terrifying to employ a complete stranger to spend 25 hours a week with your children. The fact that an ex=employee of the family is currently being investigated for letting an 11-month old baby drown in the bathtub on her watch is only compounding the terror. It’s infinitely less scary if you find someone who is recommended by a person you already know and trust, so when C asked me to help her find someone for next year, I completely understood.

Thinking that this would be a great opportunity to keep in the UW family – a free apartment in the heart of Paris in exchange for a little light babysitting – I emailed my advisor in the UW study abroad office, only to find out that not a single Husky applied to Sciences Po this year. I find this totally bizarre, but what can you do? At least the lack of Washington students heading to Paris doesn’t affect the direct exchange agreement with Sciences Po, and there are still 4 Frenchies destined for Seattle in September.

Feeling like I needed to reach out to the students heading to Washington next year, I found their names at Sciences Po and emailed them. Having conversation after conversation about what people wear in Seattle (my answer: Jeans, flip-flops and hooded sweatshirts, plus a lot of polar fleece) or whether there’s a good music scene in Washington (my answer: Um, hello, have you heard of Jimi Hendrix? Nirvana? Pearl Jam? You don’t need to worry.) hasn’t done anything to redirect my thoughts from the upcoming school year.

I keep catching myself thinking about August and beyond and feeling like I should stop thinking about things that are so far away. But then again, four months is not a long time. In two months, I’ll be winding up my second semester at Sciences Po. Then I’ll be hosting a ridiculous slew of visitors, from brothers to boyfriends, to aunts and uncles, to friends of brothers, my floor will be jam packed for a month. Then it’s down to Provence for two weeks in July with the nanny family, two weeks in Turkey and Israel with Rachael (our last hurrah), two days in Paris to square things away and it’s back to Tacoma again. Four months isn’t very much time at all.

Yes, it’s definitely the beginning of the end. Or I suppose a more optimistic way of looking at it would be, it’s the beginning of the beginning of a new set of adventures: Tacoma Girl Back in Tacoma. See you then. Three months, three weeks and counting.

You know it's Passover in Paris when you find discarded matzo-stuffed Dior bags along the rue St. Honoré.

03 April 2007

It turns out that it is not that easy to date someone who lives on a different continent from you. First of all, there’s that word – dating, the very nature of which implies that you have someone with whom you go out in the world and do things. You’d think dating someone you’d go out to dinner, see movies, go to parks on nice days like today (it’s 60 degrees out and gorgeous), but when the two of you are on opposite ends of not only the Atlantic Ocean, but the North American Continent, all bets are off.

I didn’t expect it to be a problem when we started – yeah, it’s a “long-distance relationship,” but there’s still the phone, email, skype and even La Poste. Maybe we won’t get to see each other every day, but I’d rather be a girlfriend than not, and I’ll be home by August anyway. Besides, I have all of Paris to distract me.

Right. The situation is not so easy breezy when you’re having a bad day and all you want to do is see your boyfriend – but you can’t, because he’s 10,730 kilometers away. You can’t call him either, because it’s 5am in Seattle and besides the fact that he’s probably asleep, the long-distance charges on your cell phone would be ridiculous. Then you realize that because of the 9-hour difference between time zones and your conflicting schedules you can’t even talk to him voice-to-voice until Saturday. This is when it sucks.

I'm the red square – make sure to check out step #18

Being boyfriendless because you’re single in Paris is fantastic – there’s a never-ending supply of amorous French boys to take you out, you can go dancing and stay out all night without anybody worrying, you can give your phone number to any cute boy who asks for it. But what happens when you’re boyfriendless and not single? When there’s supposed to be one particular American boy taking you out, waiting for you when you come home from dancing with the girls, glaring at the boys who ask for your number on the street – and he’s not there?

I spent four months being single in Paris, and they were fantastic. I spent my weekdays dancing all night at Sciences Po parties and le Queen, and my weekends splitting bottles of wine with French boys with names like Alexi and Jacques (I kid you not) who gave me flowers and wanted to touch my hair. All of those complimentary French boys combined can’t compare with the one boy waiting for me back in Seattle – but the situation we have here is the pits.

There’s a pretty extensive “Weepy girlfriend” club at Sciences Po – at least once a week the subject of the boyfriends left behind crops up in one of my classes. I am never the instigator of these conversations, but I always end up joining in. The girls are different every time, but the lame conversation is always the same:

Sigh, I miss my boyfriend.

Sigh, me too, where’s yours?

(Insert random U.S. or Canadian city). But he’s coming to visit me!

Oh yeah? Mine too? When’s yours coming?

(Insert random week and month)

Sigh, yours is coming before mine – lucky girl!

The cities vary, as do the names of boyfriends and dates of reunification, but nothing else ever does. The recurrent nature of these conversations is due in large part to the fact that nobody ever wants to hear some girl moan about missing her boyfriend while she’s studying abroad – unless the listener has a boyfriend of her own tucked away at home and can’t wait to get through the obligated sympathy comments to moan about her own.

Things are a lot easier now than they used to be – international telephone calls are expensive, but Skype is free, and if you happen to have a webcam, you can pretend for a few minutes that you’re actually in the same room. Despite all your best efforts though, you’re never actually in the same room. If I had a euro for every time I’ve heard “I was webcamming with my boyfriend the other night, and…” somewhere at Sciences Po, I could…um…buy another webcam.

What can you do, though? There’s an empty spot next to me where a boy is supposed to be, so instead of calling him when I’m having a bad day, I flirt with the bus driver, pause a little longer than I should watching the French boys play soccer in the jardin des Tuileries, develop an inappropriate crush on my vie politique professor and devote entirely too much time and energy to finding Rachael a French boy. There’s nothing else to do – except wait.

02 April 2007

One sunny Sunday morning in February, Rachael and I began by setting out for a regular run around the jardin des Tuileries. Somewhere between the triumphal arch and the carousal something about the beautiful weather, the hordes of people filling the park and the endorphins shooting through us turned us a little silly.

Bored of running, we took up a spot near the Southeastern corner of the park and began doing crazy exercises – partly for our own amusement/fitness and partly because we’re both apparently big show-offs. Maybe a little too tickled by the fact that we were leaping around like crazy girls in the middle of Paris, we took turns picking activities and ended up bolting through the gardens pretending to be football players, skipping around fountains, and just being generally quite ridiculous.

As goofy as we were, we were both nearly too sore to bend the next day, and pleased with the apparent efficiency of our workout, we began to get very into the idea of forming a workout group in the city.

We batted the idea around for a few weeks, every so often saying, “Hey, we should make flyers or something,” but never actually acting on it until last weekend. The motivating factor was probably the fact that we both had a huge amount of homework that we both desperately wanted to avoid doing, so we drafted a flyer for me to have corrected by the nanny kids.

I chose Paul to correct our advertisement, which he was more than thrilled to do. Not only did he correct my grammar, but he was so excited about the flyer that he made a rainbow title reading Avez-vouz besoin d’exercice? Venez ici! (Do you need exercise? Come here!). He also turned the entire flyer’s worth of font lime green and added a few soccer ball clipart graphics. Even at 7, Paul is incredibly perceptive – he advised me to remove the sentence that began “We are two American girls….” We’d just have hundreds of French boys responding who wanted to date us, he thought.

After Paul’s edits, we went ahead and posted our ad on Craig’s List Paris, the Ex-Patriates website and in paper form at Sciences Po and in laundromats and boulangerie around the city. We went so far as to create a new email address (parisworkout@yahoo.fr) for the occasion. So far, we’ve had three replies. One came right away from a Parisienne named Stéphanie whose main interest was getting back into shape. We had an email from a guy from the Phillipines, asking us if we wouldn’t rather just go get some coffee to get to know eachother instead of working out, and we had one from an American ex-pat named Patrick who seemed so into the idea that he proposed the location of our first workout.

We sent an email to our three responders detailing the time, date and location of our first meeting. We chose the Parc des Buttes Chaumont, for its hilly trails and (at Patrick’s behest) its location and somewhat arbitrarily picked Sunday morning at 10 for the workout.

Since the park is about 10 minutes from Rachael’s apartment and about 40 from mine, I spent the night at Rachael's, and by a quarter to ten we were waiting hopefully by the metro exit for Buttes Chaumont. Of our meager three potential group members, Stéphanie was the only one to actually show – she’s around 30, French, works for a non-profit and is a great sport.

It’s hard to throw three people of different physical ability together to figure out what workout they can do together. Due to my typical bossiness, plus the desire to actually get a work out, I took charge, and felt like I was channeling Mark and Denise from Tuf Enuf at the Tacoma YMCA. We alternated laps around the lake with series of lunges, squats, kickboxing, skipping and anything else we could think of. After an hour, we split up and Rachael and I ran back to her apartment while Stéphanie took the métro all the way back to her place in the 15ème – a long way to come for a workout group!

While my thighs are pretty sore today, the part of me that got the best workout was my French-speaking muscles. As with camera repair, doctor’s visits and blood donations, words for working out are not my area of vocabulary expertise. Hopefully our little group will gather a few more people and Rachael and I will have another place to practice our French-speaking every weekend.

We are so ready to work out.

Avez-vous besoin d’exercice ? Venez ici !

Recherche: Des gens de tous ages, toutes nationalités, tous niveaux de forme pour se constituer un groupe actif d’exercice GRATUIT!

On est: Deux filles Américaines, pas trop fortes, pas trop faibles, qui aimerions rencontrer des gens pour faire du jogging et s’exercer dans une atmosphère géniale et décontracté (d’esprit, pas du corps !).

Propose : Un rendez-vous d’exercice par semaine, de n’importe quel type d’exercice – du jogging, du yoga, du football, d’entraînement en circuit, et au déla. Nous vous proposons soit les samedis matins ou soit les dimanches, environs 10h, à une variété des parcs publiques – Parc Monceau, Bois des Vincennes, Jardins des Tuileries, Parc des buttes Chaumonts. Chacun, s’il le veut, aura l’opportunité d’envisager le programme d’un rendez-vous.

Si ça vous intéresse, contactez-nous par email (parisworkout@yahoo.fr), et nous vous répondrons avec le lieu, l’heure et date de notre prochain rendez-vous.

Venez nombreux !!!

Do you need exercise ? Come here !

Looking for: People of all ages, nationalities and fitness levels to form a free exercise group!

We are: Two American girls, not too strong, not too weak, who would like to find people to run and exercise in a fun and relaxed atmosphere (relaxed in mind, not body!).

We propose: A meeting every weekend of all types of exercise – jogging, yoga, soccer, circuit training, et cetera. We suggest either Saturday or Sunday mornings around 10h, in a variety of public parks – parc Monceau, bois des Vincennes, jardin des Tuileries, parc des Buttes Chaumonts, etc. Everyone who wants to will have the chance to plan out a day of exercise.

If you’re interested, email us at parisworkout@yahoo.fr, and we’ll email you back with the time, date and location of our next workout!