Show Jumping, Burqa Law, Derriere Tour and Liechtenstein …

Easing my way back into life here. Shooting a beautiful event in a beautiful setting helped. French luxury goods maker Hermes put on an international show jumping competition featuring the top riders in the world. The event took place at the Grand Palais, which added to the elegance of the event.

Saut Hermes International Show Jumping Competition - Grand Palais

The show also featured a spectacle from famed horse whisperer Jean-Francois Pignon and his white horses. He performed with the Ukrainian Kalena Choir singing and awed the crowd.

Jean-Francois Pignon performs with one of his horses - Grand Palais

Have a look at more photos from the competition HERE.

A big news story here this week was the start of the new law banning the wearing of any garment that fully covers the face. The law targets the approximately 2,000 or so Muslim women who wear either a burqa (full head-to-toe covering) or niqab (open slits for eyes).

A woman wears a full-face veil in front of Notre Dame Cathedral in defiance of a new French law banning the garment

Two women showed up in front of Notre Dame on the day the law went into effect in niqabs to mount their protest. They were mobbed by an ugly combination of the press and tourists, who saw the mob of photographers and joined in, figuring it was Brad Pitt or someone like that. The two women were arrested by the police and the whole protest didn’t last very long. The last numbers I saw showed that 70% of the French population supports the ban, and although I’m not sure the law was really necessary, I support it as well. I’m all for tolerance but some lines have to start being drawn.

I heard this week about a guy named Bruno who has started giving tours of the Louvre that feature the most beautiful asses in the building. Evidently, he has put together a tour based on “cultural debauchery” that shows visitors the best looking derrieres in the Louvre, along with scholarly commentary so I’m told. Tours start at the crack of dawn (not really).

And finally, in case you were looking for that perfect spot to host a big event, this might be the place for you. You can now hire the entire principality of Liechtenstein. Prices are a bargain starting at $70,000 per night; this price includes customized street signs and temporary currency. How about we get 70 of us and each pay $1,000? Who’s up for it? You can read more about it HERE.

And as you can see, the format of the blog, like the weather here, has changed. Feel free to leave me any thoughts on the new format.

Some photos of the week:

Face-covered woman on mobile phone - Notre Dame

Police protecting and later arresting the full-faced veil-wearing woman

Women Enjoying Tea - near Les Halles

Signage

Dior advertisement covering the side of the Conciergerie

Tasty Chicken Taco at new Mexican Restaurant - Rice & Beans

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