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I’m forever blowing bubbles …

Little bubbles in the air …. for me that is the anthem of West Ham (an East End of London football team for those unfamiliar with them … don’t ask me to explain the Ham nor the fact that they are from the East and called West – though I can if pushed).  I support The Arsenal, a North London team.

These bubbles  were installed in Grenoble, which you can glimpse in the background and which is commonly referred to as the gateway to the Alps, for the 1968 Winter Olympic Games.  They are correctly called The Grenoble-Bastille Telepherique (or cable car).  The sixties was a time of experimentation and free expression in every sphere and engineering was no exception.  The French love engineering and respect engineers.  Which can only be a good thing.  Amongst other revelations were three tower blocks to house the athletes which were to revolve on their bases.  They are still inhabited and still visible from all over the city but I’m quite relieved to say that they never actually revolved.  The bubbles were to be the symbol of the games.    All these years later (and a rebuild in 1975 of the stations at top and bottom too) and they are preserved and still running happily up and down to la Bastille, the mountain in the middle of the city, all day and into the night over the Isere river below.  They long ago surpassed the original ideal to become the symbol of the city.

The title of this weeks photo challenge is Symbol – you can find many more exemplaires of the notion, here


PS:  The inaugural ‘voyage’ of the bubbles in 1967 was planned point perfect as such things are and the bubble cars were filled with dignitaries, including the mayor himself and various Olympic higher-muck-a-mucks …. unfortunately the cable busted and the bubbles were left suspended over the river for some time until a rescue could be effected. They were left for seemingly hours because the Franco-German consortium responsible for the design and installation (it should be noted that there had been a cable car of sorts in place since 1934) had a bigger project to attend to!   These days this would have spelt instant closure.  Some things have not improved in this modern world of ours

The picture was taken by HB²  (my husband to the unititiated) and though I have many good ones – we are regular visitors – I wanted his to be published since Grenoble was once his home and still remains so somewhere in his heart.

12 Comments Post a comment
  1. Telepherique.
    I absolutely love that word.
    It is teleriffic!

    And as for the West Ham reference, I’m not sure what to make of it.
    And there was me thinking you were a good Norf Landan Gel 😉

    July 12, 2015
  2. Are Olympic transit systems doomed at their inauguration, I wonder? Didn’t the awful mayor of London get stuck on some sort of cable car meant to serve the London Olympics?

    July 12, 2015
    • Boris! Yes he did. Think not of him as mayor for he will surely lead the country before I crack another grey hair. Love him, hate him – the boy seems to attract adoration. This one, I have just been told by the Hublette – and will adjust the script accordingly – is even worse than I first realised … the reason the dignitaries were forced to hang in the balance for so long was that the Franco-German consortium who designed and built the new telepherique (there was an existing rather dull and traditional one installed and serviing the Bastille since 1934) was that they had problems elsewhere with a MUCH grander cable car … bets on where it might have been!

      July 12, 2015
  3. Franco Prussian war all over again…

    July 12, 2015
    • That’s the one! Gosh … takes me right back to A Level History and getting my head round Bismarck – thanks for that … no honestly – thank you 🙂

      July 12, 2015
  4. We did take a ride in these bubbles…it was quite a lot of fun. And the view from the Bastille is quite spectacular. (Suzanne)

    July 13, 2015
    • The Bean enjoys riding them too … we have a habit when my husband is working in Grenoble of talking an aller-simple, she and I and then walking down – she likes both ways 🙂

      July 13, 2015
  5. I was a Spurs supporter; what can I say. 🙂

    July 14, 2015
  6. I love flying, but I’m not a “bubble fan”… 🙂 btw, guess what: I’ve never been to Grenoble, but I’ve been to Japan and Taiwan 4 times… 🙂 cherchez l’erreur, SVP!!! 😉

    July 14, 2015
    • Taiwan is the home of Bubble Tea, I think …. yuck!! 😉

      July 15, 2015

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