The difference of being a tourist in France vs Italy

Map of the Day



A Dieppe map of the world by Nicolas Desliens, 1566.

The Dieppe maps are a series of world maps produced in Dieppe, France, in the 1540s, 1550s and 1560s. They are large hand-produced maps, commissioned for wealthy and royal patrons, including Henry II of France and Henry VIII of England. The Dieppe school of cartographers included Pierre Desceliers, Johne Rotz, Guillaume Le Testu, Guillaume Brouscon and Nicolas Desliens

Let them eat pork says Marine Le Pen to Muslim and Jewish schools

France’s far right leader Marine Le Pen has decreed that in towns controlled by her party they will enforce secular rules and refuse to allow Jewish and Muslim schools to offer non-pork foods to students.

Far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen said on Friday it would prevent schools from offering non-pork alternatives to Muslim pupils in the 11 towns it won in local elections, saying such arrangements were contrary to France’s secular values.

France’s republic has a strict secular tradition enforceable by law, but faith-related demands have risen in recent years, especially from the country’s five-million-strong Muslim minority, the largest in Europe.

‘We will not accept any religious demands in school menus,’ Le Pen told RTL radio. ‘There is no reason for religion to enter the public sphere, that’s the law.’

Pork is forbidden under Jewish and Muslim dietary laws.¬† Read more »

Photo Of The Day

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Human Zoos: The Shameful “Export”

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Bad luck for the Poms and Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys

It seems some flat worms are devastating France’s snail population.

Snails, one of France’s signature dishes, could be off the menu if the country fails to stem an invasion by a slimy worm from Southeast Asia, scientists warned on Tuesday.

The warning is being sounded over a voracious species called the New Guinea flatworm.

It is already on a list of the 100 most dangerous invasive species in the world as it has a relentless appetite for native snails and earthworms in places where it has been introduced.

Workers at a botanical gardens in Caen, Normandy, called in scientific help after they spotted a strange, dark, flat-as-a-pancake worm among their greenhouse plants.

Reporting in the journal PeerJ on Tuesday, a team of French experts said DNA tests had confirmed their worst fears: Platydemus manokwari has arrived in Europe.

“This species is extraordinarily invasive,” said Jean-Lou Justine of the National Museum of Natural History. “I really hope it can be stopped at the earliest stages.”¬† Read more »

Dotcom: Mark of the psychopath – bends reality, believes in his own lies

Earlier today we posted the facts about the Eiffel Tower.

Built in 1889 by French engineers, using French steel and rivets, nothing was supplied by Germany and it cost around $1.5 million dollars back then.

From Wikipedia:

The¬†Eiffel Tower¬†(French:¬†La Tour Eiffel,¬†[tu Ā …õf…õl]) is an¬†iron lattice tower¬†located on the¬†Champ de Mars¬†in¬†Paris. It was named after the engineer¬†Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower. Erected in 1889 as the entrance arch to the¬†1889 World’s Fair, it has become both a¬†global cultural icon¬†of¬†France¬†and one of the most recognizable structures in the world.¬†The tower is the¬†tallest structure in Paris¬†and the most-visited paid monument in the world; 6.98 million people ascended it in 2011.¬†The tower received its 250 millionth visitor in 2010.

Before we go any further we also need some facts about the Statue of Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty (‚ÄúLiberty Enlightening the World‚ÄĚ) is a 225-ton, steel-reinforced copper female figure, 151 ft 1 in. (46.05 m) in height, facing the ocean from Liberty Island1¬†in New York Harbor. The right hand holds aloft a torch, and the left hand carries a tablet upon which is inscribed: ‚ÄúJuly IV MDCCLXXVI.‚ÄĚ

The statue was designed by Fredéric Auguste Bartholdi of Alsace as a gift to the United States from the people of France to memorialize the alliance of the two countries in the American Revolution and their abiding friendship. The French people contributed the $250,000 cost.

The 150-foot pedestal was designed by Richard M. Hunt and built by Gen. Charles P. Stone, both Americans. It contains steel underpinnings designed by Alexander Eiffel of France to support the statue. The $270,000 cost was borne by popular subscription in this country. President Grover Cleveland accepted the statue for the United States on Oct. 28, 1886.

The Statue of Liberty was designated a National Monument in 1924 and a World Heritage Site in 1984. ¬† Read more »

History lesson of the day: The Eiffel Tower

I realise you probably already know the obvious facts about the Eiffel Tower, like it is a tower, it is in Paris, and you are now wondering why you are at Whaleoil reading about what you already know.

Good question.

Trust me.  Just bone up on some of these less obvious facts below, and then come back after 10 am.

It will all make sense then.



Read more »

What to do with Len’s rail loop afterwards?

In Paris they  have come up with some cool creative ideas to re-use some of abandoned Metro railway stations.  Instead of ignoring them and letting it all go to waste, there is a chance to give then a brand new life.


Could be a long lap down that pool. ¬†Phew! Read more »

Cheese eating surrender monkeys….not surrendering?

What’s this…cheese eating surrender monkey’s not surrendering?

Furious French Ryanair passengers launched a ‘barbaric’ revolt against plane crew because of anger over a delay, it was claimed today.

Police were called when they abused staff of the low-cost airline, refused to accept instructions, and stole duty free products including alcoholic drinks and perfume from trollies.

The angry rebellion is said to have taken place on a flight which took off from Rabat, in Morocco, to Paris’s Beauvais airport last Saturday week.

France’s Metronews today reports that it all started when a passenger among the 170 people on board became seriously ill.

The crew had to divert to Madrid to deal with the medical emergency, meaning that by the time they took off from Spain again it was too late to head for Paris, where airports have night time noise restrictions.¬† Read more »

Apparently bludging foreign ratbags don’t actually exist

In the UK at the moment there is outrage about bludging foreign ratbags, but it appears it is a false assumption that hordes of gypos and wogs are descending on Western Europe on the bludge looking for good times at the taxpayers expense.

From London to Berlin, the tabloids and right-wing press whipped themselves into a xenophobic frenzy as the end of 2013 neared. They warned of “swarms of immigrants,” “soaring crime rates,” a “swamped labor market,” and “benefit tourism.” Even government officials got in on the¬†action: Lodewijk Asscher, the Dutch social affairs minister, issued a¬†“Code Orange”¬†alert — a warning normally issued in the Netherlands, a country prone to flooding, when water levels reach dangerous heights. In the United Kingdom, there was talk of introducing “Olympic-style security” at airports. French President Fran√ßois Hollande and his Socialist government called for a “crackdown.”

The cause of all the panic: On Jan. 1, 2014,¬†migration restrictions¬†imposed on Romania and Bulgaria by several Western European countries ended. After the two eastern states joined the European Union (E.U.) in 2007, these rules placed substantial limitations on the ability of Romanians and Bulgarians to emigrate for the purposes of work to Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Malta, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Spain, and the United Kingdom.¬† Read more »