Cannes and canicules

We’ve blogged many times on the madness that is the Cannes Film Festival, but it’s not the only big event that happens here. After all, what’s the point of having lots of conference space, hotels and bars if you don’t use them? In popular imagination, Cannes is all about the outrageous and extrovert self-promotion of the film festival. This conceals the fact that lots of other conferences, trade fairs and festivals are held here. Although we wouldn’t use the adjective modest for anything at Cannes, except perhaps our church, the managers of these don’t panic when they don’t make the front page of worlds’s press. Often only really known by folk ‘in the trade’, some of them are very big indeed and obviously involve massive investment .

Setting up for a festival. Sadly the cutlery in the photo on the left still seems to be plastic. The flowers probably are too.

In fact some of these other events are actually bigger than the film festival. Cannes Lions is one of those. Unsurprisingly, it’s nothing to do with animals but is rather ‘a five-day festival that explores and celebrates the value of creativity in branded communications’. In plainer words, it’s all about advertising: how you do it, how you get your brand out, etc. So here’s a compilation of some pictures taken either side of a Sunday morning service at Cannes as they set up for that event.

Whatever structure they are building, it’s got to be ready by tomorrow
All the slogans seem to be in English, but still don’t make much sense.
The famous red carpet has been taken away from the steps, and these women are going for comfortable footwear rather than exaggerated heels.

One other development this year at Cannes has been an extension of the public beach at the expense of some of the private ones. This photo was taken around 9 am so the beach isn’t crowded.

And finally, as we write this, we are enduring the blast of the hot air from Africa as it spreads out over the whole of France. The one exception is Brittany whose inhabitants, we gather, are celebrating the fact that they alone are immune from the heat wave, the canicule, which comes from the Latin for ‘dog days’.

It’s not been too bad with us, partly because down here we are used to temperatures of 39°C or 40°C and we have good air conditioning units and a pool. The real concern of course is that this is still June. A question hangs ominously in the stifling air: if June feels like August what will August feel like?

It’s not easy to see, but our thermometer is showing 40°C – that’s about 105°F

On this map we’re not in the red, but near enough!
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