We love the game shows on the French TV stations. They happen to be broadcast during our happy hour(s) every evening. We watch with the subtitles on in French so we can comprehend some of the words that are spoken so quickly. Money Drop is a great show where money is placed on trap doors of the answers and the losing answers drop the money away back to the vault.
We think of this show every day as the planes line up to land at the local airport and they have to pass by the Cité and over the Bastide St. Louis. Yes there might be a bit of noise as they fly directly overhead but the planes are filled with tourists coming to the area to spend their vacation (and Euros) in the region. Each and every tourist dropping out of the sky helps our local economy and in turn helps keep the taxes lower for those of us living here on a permanent basis. As the region is known for the wine production and the two UNESCO world heritage sites there are not many large businesses as a tax base, although this is the world’s largest wine producing region and we are doing our part to keep the vintners in production.
I have to say that I might be one of the few people who does not mind paying taxes when the money is well spent to support the local infrastructure and this seems to be the case here in Carcassonne. Our streets are cleaned regularly (even the weeds removed from the cracks) trash service is provided (paid by a tax), fire, ambulance, police and even 27 HD TV channels are available without cable and that is also paid by a tax. The regional bus service (and some train services) are available for 1€. This means not having to pay for a car to get around to the shopping districts outside the center of town. The fireworks display on the 14th of July is spectacular and it is a line item in the budget. Our summer music festival has more “free” concerts than paid events and the rest of the year is filled with many different festivals.
Being a property owner in France means paying a real estate tax when purchasing the property and then an annual tax on the property in addition to the habitation tax for living in a property. Nothing is free in life so I’m happy to hear the sound of the planes coming into land with more of those tourists and their money to spend so I don’t have to spend more of mine.
How about bottle drop? Just as I was writing this the cabinet that holds our liquor decided to break apart and fall onto the sound system below it. Nothing but the cabinet broke so we will be moving the liquor to the new house sooner than we expected and repairing the cabinet and it will be left empty for the duration. That could have really been a money drop had any of the bottles broken in the fall.