Saturday, 13 August 2011

Biker Babes Goin' Wild in Valence

200 kms from Valence a starlet poses at the Cannes Film Festival

A look at Valence (Drôme, France) from a political, economic and social standpoint, and definitely not dumbed down.

In order to respond to a mean, nasty, malicious and low-minded comment that this blog is dumbing down, we are now presenting this wholly serious posting on the French town of Valence, where I once spent 15 miserable hours due to the rain which never stopped the whole time, with the result that I left the place as ignorant as when I arrived.  So I'm now going back, digitally speaking, with the help of information and images graciously borrowed from the Internet, for a serious look at the socio-politico-economic activity of this important and vibrant community.

Anne-Sophie Lapix
We'll begin with the geography. Valence is a commune in the south-east of France and a prefecture in the department of the Drôme in the Rhône-Alpes region. It is the fifth most populated commune of the region with a population of 64,484 at the 2008 census. It is often referred to as 'the gateway to the South of France'. The current mayor is Alain Maurice of the P.c.f., the French Socialist Party, and the party of the beautiful Ségolène Royale, who I recently saw being interviewed by the ravishing Anne-Sophie Lapix. Mlle Lapix is a political science graduate, a trained and highly professional journalist and interviewer, with a sweet smile and a terrific pair of boobs.

Biker Babe contemplates 
what more she can do to 
help her community
The economic activity of Valence is primarily in the metal, textile, jewellery and agricultural sectors and many high-tech companies have facilities in the region. It has a highly developed transport infrastructure including a central train station which is served by the TGV high speed train from Paris to the Mediterranean. The city also has a popular bike sharing scheme. And in common with many continental cities, particularly in the south, there are lots of sexy, young biker babes wending their way through the traffic astride motor bikes and scooters, anxious to do their bit to ease their city's traffic congestion and thereby aid the economy of the community in which they live.

Ursula Andress, one of
Valence's most
famous non-natives
The commune has a lively and extensive intellectual and educational fabric which includes an engineering school, an Institute of Technology, as well as annexes to three universities, and various miscellaneous specialised schools. Among its most famous natives are Sébastien Chabal of the national rugby team; Bertrand and Guillaume Gille of the national handball team; and Jacques Tardi, comic strip artist. Not native to the commune is Ursula Andress, who was born in the Swiss city of Ostermundigen in the canton of Bern, and who gained overnight fame as Honey Ryder in the Bond film Dr No, in one of movie history's most iconic and memorable scenes in which she emerges from the sea looking stunning in a white bikini. 

The city also has a rich history, being ruled variously by Romans, Alans, Franks, Arabs of Spain, emperors of Germany and counts of Valentinois and of Toulouse. It has a cathedral with an apse that was rebuilt in the 11th century and consecrated in 1095. So it is a place with a fascinating past, but one which also has an active and important role to play in the present socio-politico-economic drama being enacted in the crisis-ridden world around it. So let's hear no more talk of dumbing down. This is a serious subject we've been discussing here. That's what we think, and Betty Boop does, too. Right, Betty?

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