Strange ‘Descoings’ on

Dangerous liaisons in New York?

France was shocked last week to learn of the untimely death of top political scientist, Richard Descoings.

The naked body of the director of the Institute of Political Sciences, or ‘Sciences Po’ was found in a New York hotel room, and strange circumstances surround the death.

Interestingly, if you read the French press, you get only very brief details of the case, with no hint of what my lie behind the bizarre demise of Msr Descoings. However, the British press have revealed far more detail of what may have gone on in the hotel.

For example, although married, Msr Descoings was ‘really into men’, the Daily Mail quotes his wife as saying. The UK paper reports he had been ‘trawling through gay hookup sites’ and that two men joined him in his room.

It’s shaping up to be quite a salacious story, moreso given we’re in the run up to the French elections and the fact Descoings had previously commented there may be a plot to ‘out’ him and discredit his reputation as a change activist in the system for creating the nation’s political elite.

What PoitouTV can’t ignore is that, lately, sinister events in French politics appear to favour as their location the luxury hotel rooms of New York – anyone remember Dominic Strauss-Kahn?


Expat French Favour Sarkozy

French expats living abroad are putting their faith in current President Nicolas Sarkozy to retain power, but then they ARE living abroad.

Latest readings from polling firm LV2 show that 37% of ‘Henri expat’ voters would keep Sarko in power. The survey covered 2,031 French expats, in total.

Only 27% said they would vote for Francois Hollande, the  Socialist candidate.

I say if it aint broke don’t fix it. The problem, though, is that it IS very broke.

Looks like the gap is narrowing folks, but who would you vote for?


Car-free Poitiers

Recently revamped centre of Poitiers

Poitiers has always been one of my favourite cities in France, and not just because I live nearby. It’s a university city, which means it’s full of energy and life; it’s situated on a mount and it has some great little streets, historical buildings and restaurants; and of course, it’s not too bad for shopping either.

Now, though, the city’s main square has had a fairly lengthy revamp and it’s now also car free. The picture shows the newly finished square, with a cleaned up Hotel de Ville too.

It really feels impressive to walk around it now. And I’m betting the waiters – who used to have to cross a busy road with meals on trays to get to the tables on the square – are relieved they no longer need to dodge drivers to serve their customers.

Sadly, all the trees that surrounded the square before have now gone, along with the well manicured floral arrangements, which has left it looking just a little bereft of greenery.

Verteuil en vogue

Chateau by the river in Verteuil

Getting out and about to explore the region is something I’m always promising to do, so it was great when a friend introduced me to this lovely little village in the south of our region, recently.

As you can see, even the smallest of villages in the Poitou-Charentes are bestowed with impressive looking chateaux.

And believe it or not, Verteuil even has a bit of nightlife, boasting a couple of entertaining bars. Who knew?