The Seine Also Rises: Is the Big One (the Paris Flood) on the Way?



California awaits the Big One — the killer earthquake of the century — and Paris awaits its very own Grand Cru flood. No joke. That is what the French are now calling it. The Grand Cru du Siecle.

This would of course be catastrophic, and this Paris denizen would be in trouble: we live in the Marais and our building would be partly underwater. No more blog posts from me!

If the Grand Cru of the Seine occurs — or rather when it occurs — the city will be not only be flooded, it will be snarled and tied up, and largely shut down, for months. No metro. No buses (unless amphibious). No nothing. Except mud, mold, fear, death, desperation, cholera and so forth. Charming prospect, don't you agree?

The costs? Tens of billions of euros (and that makes even more $).

For now we're loving it. Yes, we don't mind the rain or snow. We thrill to be able to pick a path through the puddles, as I wrote in Paris, Paris: Journey into the City of Light. There's a chapter in the book about the Seine, with lots of details about floods and much else. Because we get floods often. I have seen much worse. But the authorities have never been so seriously alarmed.

Happily we have a new family of pet ducks. I was down at the river feeding them this afternoon. It breaks my heart to think I might have to eat one of them soon. You never know. We'll be wet, cold and starving… Quack! Instant foie gras!! Now that's something you won't get in California…


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