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Lehaut last won the day on March 25

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  1. I think water is destined to become the next area to fall under the gaze of the government. Already my local paper is asking for a reduction of 10% in home usage. Putting the price up will encourage people to use less, fixing the massive loss due to leaks is another area. The figures quoted for consumption per person seem ridiculously high compared to our actual usage. In Normandy for example for the two of us, and during the holidays 4, we used about 65 cu meters per year, We had build two ponds which recuperated a lot of rain water for the garden, so never used a hose pipe. Here in our flat, for 3 we are using about 42 cu meter a year. According to this article the average for each person in France is 54 cu m per person per year!! https://www.monreseaudeau.fr/actualites/40-chiffres-reseaux-eau-potable-france-2021/#:~:text=150 litres %3A c'est la,la préservation de la ressource.
  2. Hello NormanH, welcome back seems an age since I last enjoyed one of your posts. No, its not necessary to own a property. The new law concerning the thermal audit of buildings/follow up work in a co pro could cost individuals up to €30,000 in our area (if other experiences are to go by). This is already causing concern in some of the older residents here. They don't want to spend the money (if they have it). Several have no direct family, so an increase in the value of the property does not automatically translate into an increased inheritance for a family member. Rents here are much more tightly controlled than in the UK for example, rises in rent are governed by INSEE, then there is the 'treve". So in principle a renter, provided they continue to pay, are fairly secure. As someone who owned an apartment for rent, I would never do it again. Our experience is not uncommon. It is also not as easy to find a good place as it used to be, possibly because, like you, the wet sand is becoming too much of a burden. https://www.lemonde.fr/societe/article/2022/09/08/immobilier-le-marche-de-la-location-se-tend_6140645_3224.html
  3. Virtually impossible. Peaceful protestors, by their very nature, are peaceful. They are not equipped to deal with armed black bloc protestors. You would have to employ your own "police" force to deal with the black bloc element. You have seen the fight they put up against the properly protected police. Ordinary civilians would not stand a chance. On another point raised above, you can cover the surface of these reservoirs with solar panels. They help reduce the evaporation. The solar panels also perform better as the water keeps them cooler. https://www.euronews.com/green/2023/03/14/float-ovoltaics-how-floating-solar-panels-in-reservoirs-could-revolutionise-global-power
  4. Loiseau/Hectorsdad you have summed up the same reasons we sold our large house and massive garden in Normandy and moved to a flat in Nantes (albeit with 2 hectares of garden with paid staff!) Now we get all the advantages with non of the hard work. Several of the longer term residents have asked if we regret the decision and miss our old house. We give the same answers, better to leave the work whilst it was still a pleasure rather than a drudge.
  5. It must be age, but I view with increased scepticism the "sound bites" these reports come out with. The "hose pipe of lies" affected by Trump et al means that, by the time you check the facts and find the errors, time and the story has moved on. I too thought the figures very questionable. But, like Macron's watch, that is what grabs the headlines, not the real story.
  6. Watching the BBC yesterday about another hike in the mortgage rate in the UK. Some poor chap was paying £250 a month and now its nearly £1000 (according to the report). When we bought this flat in 2017, we negotiated with the bank and got the loan a 1% fixed for the life of the mortgage, regardless of any changes. Why can France/Europe get this so right when, on the face of it, the UK subject house buyers to this stress?
  7. Is there not also a fear amongst the Unions that they must put on a show of force against the government? I understand that France has one of the lowest unions rates in the EU. I doubt they will win, but they must be seen to try to maintain their strength. What I do find abhorrent is the fact that school children can also form a "blockhaus". It happened to our kids Lycée where the students blocked the school gate with chairs. The teachers were not allowed to pass this barricade, so no school. Its happening at the moment too. Madness.
  8. Have started discussing pensions with our youngest, who has been contribution to the French state scheme for 3 years. Having a hard job getting him interested in the subject though. As you seem keen to take your children's future French pension out of the hand of the government, where will you have their contributions go? The stock market controls my wife's, as yet untouched, UK pension pot. She made it up by contributions. As far as I am aware, one of the reasons the "idiots" in government stepped in in the UK during the most recent financial crisis was to prop up private pension funds (https://www.theguardian.com/business/2022/oct/06/bank-of-england-confirms-pension-funds-almost-collapsed-amid-market-meltdown). Can an individual in France opt out completely from the government pension scheme and leave it in the hands of their more competent father?
  9. Is in not just someone who has copied your name and cat photo? Should it not be the policy of a forum that "names" are unique to avoid this situation. (to be honest I had not noticed that you had a doppelganger till you mentioned it!)
  10. Colour me stupid then. The UK Government pension scheme has kept us in the life style we are used to in France for the past 27 years 😁
  11. Why say something that is not true? Everyone? I do not hate him; neither does my neighbour!
  12. I suppose this accounts for the police inaction at these events. Cycled alongside kilometres of stalled traffic yesterday as the anti faction had put a filter blockage on the main road out of Nantes. What always aggravates me is they always burn piles of tyres at these events. We had to hold our breath cycling through the black smoke. Apart from the pollution, and the self inflicted harm they are causing, the police/pompiers never seem to react. Perhaps, as you say, DraytonBoy they take the strange view that they want to keep the public on their side? "Il est interdit de les mettre en décharge, de les abandonner dans la nature ou de les brûler" https://www.ecologie.gouv.fr/pneumatiques#:~:text=Il est interdit de les,a été renforcé en 2015.
  13. A very good point. The regulations for our apartment specifically mention not over loading the designed support weight for floors etc (sadly without saying what this is, but expecting you to either use your common sense or get expert advice) I believe that multi story car parks built in the 70's used much smaller cars for their support capabilities. However, with car sizes increasing, weight of electric cars and SUVs, perhaps one of these is the next to collapse?
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