Sunday, December 26, 2010

Is Paris Flooding?

 I leave for two weeks in Paris later today and the news of airport closings in Europe and in the States is just a little unnerving. I wonder what I was thinking when I made these plans back in September? Every year I hear horror stories from recently returned travelers and I laugh up my sleeve at them. Who, I ask myself, would be foolish enough to travel at the Christmas season?

Apparently, me.

Then, earlier this morning, I got an e-mail from a family member who is in the city of lights. She informed me that the Seine is flooding. They closed the airport last week for three inches of snow, so what will this mean? I wanted to learn more, and went on-line searching for current info. Here's what I found on a "chat" forum:

Due to all of the recent heavy snow east of Paris, the Seine is at its highest level in 4 years and rising fast. What does this mean?
-- Well, the Left Bank expressway is already closed because it will almost certainly go underwater in a day or two.
-- Half of the tourist boats, especially the big ones, are already cancelled because they can't get under the bridges anymore. The other boats have had to shorten their itinerary.
-- Next to be closed will be the Right Bank expressway (Voie Georges Pompidou) if the river keeps rising. This can wreak havoc with traffic flow near the Seine.
-- Finally, the RER C to Versailles could close if it starts flooding.
If you are going to Paris in the coming week or in January, this could affect some of your plans. (Italics mine, added for emphasis)

If there is any Internet service left on the continent, I'll post an update later this week.