Personal Notes

Images of the Day: Of Books and Socialism

Librarie La Procure

This is a bookshop at 3 rue Mezieres, 75006 where I go to get lost in Philosophy books, books on the latest in local and international politics, literature and religion – all subjects of great interest and currency to me. These are all read with a limited but rapidly growing understanding of French. Thankfully, it also boasts an excellent section of French language resources ranging from dictionaries to games to practice ‘conjugasion’, ‘orthographie’and so forth… Needless to say, there are several, smaller bookshops that are much more intimate and endearing but I always look forward to popping into La Procure and leaving with a stronger vocabulary, a few pounds more in French library works, and a few new ideas…

La Sorbonne

Another enchanting haunt. Walking through history filled corridors where the greatest minds and contributors to human civilisation have trod – I’m always in a combination of a daze stirred with bewilderment, a dash of excitement and honour to have access to this great institution of learning. What caught my eye today were the anti-austerity measures student papers. And it is quite an interesting perspective indeed. SOme students seem to be saying that the welfare of people needs to return to centre of the debate on the economic crisis. Hitherto, the focus has been on credit ratings and economic performance. I guess it is then a legitimate question to ask – where do the human and humane considerations factor in within the discussion. How do you sequence it all – what comes first, fiscal stability or the fulfillment of responsibility to people who need state help? Are these contradictory imperatives? Who wins from what the EU leaders are striving for? WHo stands to lose? Interesting questions for our time in an institution that itself stretches back for centuries!

Liberté, Fraternité, Egalité (ou pas)

Worth thousands of words… Images from some of the social awareness raising postes pointing to issues of homelessness, the plight of the elderly and the acceptance of immigrants from various Catholic organisations. Great messages, well timed for the elections.

Homelessness as the Snow Begins

As my partner and I took a walk round about Métro stop Nation, we were both a little gleeful at the first flakes of snow and the prospect of waking up to a city under blankets of white tomorrow morning. But, in the middle of that – we stumbled upon makeshift beds, old satchels snowed under mountains of old clothing and blankets. The hope and prayer tonight as it begins to snow is that those in need of shelter find it. its encouraging to see some of the electoral candidates have taken on a pledge initiated by civil society to address some of the housing management issues as soon as – if ever – they get to power.

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