Welcome to our Brittany Blog
Monday, 12th August 2019
Should homeopathic medicines be funded by the state?
Joe, my son, suffers from nose bleeds. Most people get the occassional nose bleed but Joe gets at least one every week and in the warmer months they are daily.
About ten years ago our GP prescribed homeopathic medicines for him, two types of Arnica, one to be taken every month and the other when he had a nose bleed. For the past ten years these medicines have been really effective. Yes, he still suffers from nosebleeds but they aren’t as heavy and they soon stop.
He also takes homeopathic medication for hay fever.
Up until now this medication has been paid for by the state and our mutuelle.
But I don’t think for much longer, a report issued to the French government has recommended that homeopathic medicine should no longer be reimbursed by the French State, as it provides “insufficient medical service”.
Homeopathy costs the State Sécurité Sociale €130 million per year, compared to €20 billion for regular medicine.
I belive that homeopathic and regular medicines should be used together. If homeopathic medicine works then this is much better for us, but of course this is not always the case and then regular medicine should be used. Surprisingly enough, the French government haven’t asked for my opinion!
The Old Ivy restaurant in Reminiac is re-opening
The good news is that the Old Ivy is re-opening on the 4th of January 2020 after being closed a while due to the previous owners ill health
A local family is taking it over and intend to offer all sorts of local Breton produce both lunchtime and some evenings
There will also be a bar plus café and fresh bread will be on sale daily..........
As soon as we have tried it out we'll let you know !
Wednesday, 31st July 2019
France is now more attractive than China for foreign investment.
This was the first time that France has entered the top five on the annual Foreign Direct Investment Confidence Index by US management and consulting firm A.T. Kearney, beating China in the rankings by two places.
The country’s rating sharply improved following the election of Emmanuel Macron as President, and does not appear to have been badly affected by the gilets jaunes movement.
France came in fifth place, up two from last year.
For the seventh year in a row, the United States has come out on top, due to its “vast domestic market”, “competitive fiscality” and “technological capacity”.
The US is followed by Germany and Canada; and in fourth place - as in previous years - is the United Kingdom, despite the delays and continued uncertainty over Brexit. Japan took sixth place.
China, which took the top spot on the rankings for 10 years between 2002-2012, fell this year to seventh place - its lowest ranking since the list first began 20 years ago.
This was attributed to “the slowing of interior demand”, “a drop in exports”, “growing worries over the level of debt of Chinese companies”, and the “impact of the commercial war with the United States”.
Monday, 22nd July 2019
Speed limit to be increased to 90kph in SOME departments
The speed limit on 400,000km of departmental roads across the country was cut from 90kph to 80kph in July 2018 - a decision that has proved hugely unpopular.
Motoring organisations and local government officials highlighted a lack of consultation at the time, and the gilets jaunes movement highlighted it as a main complaint when the protests first started in November 2018.
Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said last week that he would be willing to devolve the speed limit issue to local government offices.
But, any return to 90kph speed limits must be "systematically accompanied by measures" guaranteeing "the highest possible level of road safety", he added.
Many departments are now considering restoring the 90kph speed limits on secondary roads but they are concerned about the practical implications, new signage for example will be extreemely expensive.
The number of deaths on the roads in France dropped to a historic low in 2018, with 3,259 people killed, which the government claimed was a victory for the new measures.
However in January and February 2019, casualty figures began climbing again. The government said that vandalism of speed cameras was to blame for the increases.
Thursday, 11th July 2019
The hunt is on..... for a bald eagle.
An 18-year-old bald eagle with a 2.2-metre wingspan became lost during a display at the Aquashow animal park in Finistère.
Named Dana, the bird weighs 4.5kg, and is a “bald” eagle, meaning she has black feathers on her body, and a white feathered head.
She was born at the park, and has always lived there. She is used to captivity and is always fed by human keepers, and usually takes part in regular bird display shows at the park.
Park manager Pierre Poussard said that Dana habitually left the centre “two or three times a year” to fly further afield, but this is the first time that she has been gone for so long
He said: “It is during one of our demonstrations that Dana went. She must have ‘taken high altitude’ very quickly due to strong winds, and must have got lost.”
So, if you happen to be holidaying in Brittany this summer, keep an eye out for Dana!
Wednesday, 3rd July 2019
Breakfast clubs to be introduced in France
The French government have announced a €6 million initial funding for a free breakfast programme, which will be put in place in public schools in some poorest urban neighbourhoods and rural areas.
The programme will be expanded nationwide, and is expected to provide breakfast to as many as 100,000 schoolchildren once fully operational.
While many nutritionists would agree that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, an estimated 13 percent of students at France’s poorest areas arrive at schools in the morning on an empty stomach.
Yet studies have shown that skipping breakfast can leave children hungry and easily distracted, making it harder for them to participate in the classroom.
France is not the only country to experiment with offering free breakfast in schools. The United Kingdom found that students’ performance generally improved after rolling out a similar programme in 2014.
In England the results have been very positive, as well as reducing hunger, breakfast clubs were perceived to improve concentration and behaviour in class and to improve punctuality. Additional positive impacts are on pupils’ social development and the way in which they helped some pupils make wider friendship groups and become more confident.
There are now hopes that the programme in France will meet with similar results.
Monday, 24th June 2019
Phones and restaurants!
If I am eating at a restaurant (a very rare occurance!) and someone that I am with takes out their phone to take a picture of their food, that doesn’t annoy me. In fact, I am pleased that they are enjoying their food so much that they want to share it. But, if I am with someone and they start to have a conversation via social media then I am embarassed. I am not irritated, I don’t find it rude, I am embarrassed that I am such poor company!
According to a recent poll most people (69%) find it annoying when other diners use their smartphones in a restaurant, with men and those over 50 most likely to find it irritating. (That would be Mark!)
Yet, the same study showed that 40% of French people regularly use social media in a restaurant, and mainly do so to post photos of their food (29%), or to “check in” where they are geographically (15%).
Women aged 18-24 (45%) and women aged 25-34 (54%) were the most likely to do this, and were found to be the biggest fans of Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
Similarly, 74% of respondents said that they had previously shared photos of their dishes with their partner and friends via smartphone.
I think that there is a certain amount of hypocrocy going on here, 69% of respondants find it annoying when other diners use their smartphones in a restaurant yet 74% of respondents said that they had previously shared photos of their dishes with their partner and friends via smartphone.!