Archive for swimming pool

the incredible shrinking pools

Posted in Kids, Running, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , on February 10, 2023 by xi'an

I was reading an opinion piece in The Guardian about the sorry state of public pools in England. With more and more closing for lack of proper funding, this being aggravated by the explosion in heating costs, as pools are excluded from governmental help. And the resulting impact on public health (and the NHS), since providing one less opportunity for exercising. And on general safety, since nowadays less children can swim… Which reminded me of the difficulty to find a pool in Oxford and Oaxaca. And of the cost of entering one in Roma and Milano. And of the relative accessibility of French pools, at least in cities, as shown by the estimation that 95% of the French high school students can swim to some extent.

a passage to & from India

Posted in pictures, Running, Statistics, Travel, University life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 10, 2023 by xi'an

Our trip from Paris (CDG) to Bengaluru got a wee bit (!) perturbed by 2x bad luck, with a first plane grounded for damages to a wing and a second plane flashing an alarm signal just as it was accelerating to take off, which induced an extra hour of tests, plus an unexpected long wait to get the e-visa at the Bengalore airport, resulting in an arrival in town at 5:30 am! A good thing that my talk was only the next day.

I was glad to be back at the (Tata) Indian Institute of Science and its wonderful campus for the IISA meeting (taking place alternately in India and in the US). The conference program was rich and with a large Bayesian component, but being sleep deprived and slightly sick did not help with my concentration during the talks… Had however nice discussions during the poster session, including one on a most unusual RJMCMC where the model-to-model transform was the identity. In a sense this voided (?) the need for RJMCMC, but it allowed for a fast & valid exploration of the different models.

Quite a contrast in my local lodging conditions, when compared with my previous visit,  since, rather than staying in the ideal visitors’ lodge located at the centre of the campus, I took the (bargain) offer (from IISA) of the nearby Sheraton (!) as the conference hotel with five star conditions, including a proper, outside, empty and non-heated swimming pool.

The (touristy) train trip to Mysore was most pleasant, on an air-conditioned carriage with food vendors proposing their wares all along the journey, great views of the countryside and an arrival sharp on time. The reverse trip to the airport was less successful as the FlyBus we took was crawling rather than flying, with heavy traffic all the way because/despite being New Year Eve’ning.  At some point, a truck carrying what looked like kindling was stuck in a pothole, blocking the highway, and a crane was brought on site to push the truck out of the hole, a strategy that surprisingly worked. But we managed to reach the airport just before midnight, when absolutely nothing happened in relation with the entry into 2023!

where to save [no gas & no nuke]

Posted in Books, pictures, Statistics, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2022 by xi'an

Bruxelles ma belle

Posted in Books, Running, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 25, 2022 by xi'an

Tour de Paris [of pools]

Posted in Kids, pictures, Running, Travel with tags , , , , , , , on April 25, 2021 by xi'an

As I am prevented from running since the beginning of this year, due to a ligament injury caused by an excess of kilometers run since the beginning of the (first) lockdown, I have started swimming most days I can find a free window of time. And an open swimming pool! While Paris and most of the suburban cities near me have a decent offer of (cheap) public pools, it is often a challenge to find one open at a manageable time. Meaning for me mostly in the early morning. The lockdown has obviously reduced opening hours and introduced restricted access, requiring a medical certificate for indoor pools, and I have thus being recently visiting a rather extensive array of pools to fit such constraints, since both nearby pools, at home and at work, are rarely available. Last week, I biked to the most exotic so far, namely a pool made from a barge standing on the Seine River. It is alas not yet outdoor, but not yet crowded either (if small and rather hot). By comparison, the nearer and wider pool at Porte d’Orléans is surprisingly crowded at 7am (but pleasantly colder) and the historical pool on Butte aux Cailles also gets quickly crowded and is missing its outdoor pool (but is close to a fantastic bakery!). Even careful scheduling does not always work as I sometimes find an unexpected closed door, as two weeks ago when Butte aux Cailles had emptied overnight or a few days ago when Joséphine Baker had a disfunctioning pediluvium enough to bar entry. (The outdoor 50m pool in Villejuif I used to go to has just reopened to the general public and is not yet overcrowded, despite milder temperatures.)

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