Home NEWS-EUROPENEWS-CNN-EUROPE Locked down elderly in rural French village find some parallels with World War II

Locked down elderly in rural French village find some parallels with World War II

by staff
Locked down elderly in rural French village find some parallels with World War II


Editor’s note: Jim Bittermann is CNN’s Senior International Correspondent based in Paris. He has lived there for 40 years.

In the countryside, people typically greet each other with “les bises,” the tradition of kissing each other on the cheek. Now they stand awkwardly two meters apart and talk loudly. The coronavirus outbreak is making people nervous and anxious and ready for any human, if touchless, contact.

There are the physical tragedies of the illness and its deaths, but there are the psychological ones too. For France, these are awful times. This is a supremely social country, but now social distancing is the rule of the day. So many French obsessions are related to getting…



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