Listen up, people. France is in Lockdown 2.0 and the rules are slightly different. Pay attention so you don’t get charged the €135 fee for first-time offenses, or the whopping €3,750 fee and six months jail time for repeat offenders. Police could ask for your attestation, and maybe your ID, and they might ask you to open your bag for them. France is not eff-ing around this time.
To frame it in a positive light, I’ll first tell you what you can do.
You may go to work, if you can’t work from home. Business trips that can’t be delayed are also permitted. You’ll need the Justificatif de déplacement professionnel. If you’re self-employed, write up something and be prepared to back it up with some paperwork. I guess. That’s not clear. Good luck.
You may go to the doctor if the visit can’t be done by video.
You may go buy food, medicine, and items needed for work. (No, you can’t go to your boyfriend’s place to buy cookies from him. It has to be an authorized vendor.)
You may visit vulnerable family members or help out with family members’ child care needs.
Disabled people and their caregivers may go outside.
You may go for solitary exercise or dog-walking within one kilometer of your home, or you may go with someone who lives with you. One hour, max. And hey—parks are open, unlike in Confinement 1.0. Woohoo!
You may keep judicial rendez-vous.
You may take your kids to and from school, or take them to after-school activities. You’ll need the Justificatif de déplacement scolaire. Kids who go to school on their own need that too.
You may “participate in a mission of general interest upon request from an administrative authority.” I have no idea what that is—espionage? Starbucks run? Fact-finding mission? I can’t find anyone who has checked this box. Let us know if you have.
You may also use click and collect for non-essential things, to shop locally and avoid Amazon.
Now, what you can’t do
Go to your friend’s place just for the heck of it.
Walk in public with your friends.
Eat in a restaurant.
Gather in public.
You also can’t go to the movies, gyms, churches, museums, concerts, malls, or anyplace that sells clothing or toys or furniture. They’re all closed.
What I’m doing
There is still joy to be had, pleasures to be tasted. One day, I bought a cappuccino and a slice of carrot cake from a take-out restaurant, went to a park, and sat on the grass in the sunshine to eat it. Yes, alone. But it was better than last time when parks were closed.
I walked past my friend’s apartment, and she leaned out her window (first floor) and we chatted like it was the most normal thing in the world. Loudly, but that’s what happens when you distance properly.
Buy books with click and collect. Place your order, then go pick it up from the shop’s front door.
I’ve buddied up with my local merchants. Now, when I go buy veggies or cheese or a roast chicken, I can have an honest-to-god conversation about our kids or current events or the weather. As Luna Lovegood said, it’s almost like having friends… albeit masked and from a distance, bien sûr.
The one-kilometer limit only applies to exercise, so I’ve gone grocery shopping outside my limit when needed. There’s a Marks and Spencer that has decent bacon at 1.5 km, and an Asian place with great frozen dumplings. Bring your shopping bag and know where you’re going, because, like I said, the police are not kidding.
It is what it is
It’s just going to suck for a while. But if we stick to the plan, wear our masks, wash our hands, keep our distance, and stay home except for the really good reasons listed above, maybe we can travel and hug people and sip drinks on a terrace again in Paris. Someday soon.
- Don’t miss our list of online November events in Paris that you can do from home
- David Lebovitz writes about how he’s coping with confinement
- Hunker down on the couch with these French Netflix series for watching while you stay at home
Written by Yvonne Hazelton for HiP Paris. Looking to travel? Check out Haven In for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, France or Italy. Looking to rent long-term or buy in France or Italy? Ask us! We can connect you to our trusted providers for amazing service and rates.